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Amgen Tour of California 2018 Races Through Ventura and Lodi Wine

May 21, 2018

What do Ventura’s historic Mission, Olympic cyclists, and Lodi wine have to do with each other?

The Amgen Tour of California! Read more…

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Art Equals Life :: Art Saves Lives :: Bad Exhibition :: Value in Art :: Art City

May 19, 2018

Tonight’s historic opening of the Bad Exhibition: Value in Art at Ventura’s Art City is dedicated to Joe Cardella, artist, book designer, and publisher of ArtLife who died of cancer last week.

“I have used the word avant-garde a number of times in talking about Bad Exhibition: Value in Art, though I know it’s a pretentious and problematic word. This is precisely what I want to talk about. What would it mean to talk about a 1980’s and 1990’s avant-garde in Ventura and Santa Barbara as distinct from L.A., for example? Southwest China early 1990’s avant-garde as distinct from Xiamen Dada, mid-80’s?” writes curator Dr Sophia Kidd.

Read more…

“Hands Across the Sand and Land” Reaches Around the World This Saturday May 19th

May 18, 2018

Environmental Activists in Ventura earlier in 2018; I’m holding the “P”! 

“HANDS ACROSS THE SAND/LAND” PROTESTS SLATED FOR 113 LOCATIONS WORLDWIDE ON MAY 19TH

Communities standing up against offshore drilling in 17 states and seven countries

The Trump administration has announced a proposal to expand offshore oil drilling in U.S. waters, threatening ocean recreation, tourism and fishing industries. This extreme proposal opens over 90% of the Outer Continental Shelf to new drilling and puts our nation’s coastal communities, beaches, surf breaks, and marine ecosystems at risk of a catastrophic oil spill.

In response,  please join us as we take hands across the sand and land! Details from a press release on how how and why you should join below!  Read more…

The Little Prince: It’s a Question of Discipline

May 15, 2018

‘It’s a question of discipline,’ the little prince told me later on. ‘When you’ve finished washing and dressing each morning, you must tend your planet,” writes Antoine de Saint-Exupery in his classic novel The Little Prince.

The semester at Ventura College where I teach writing is coming to a close. It’s been an amazing semester, one where we’ve learned a lot about loving kindness, compassion, community, and yes, about tending our planet, our home.

We’ve been studying ecology.

The term ecology comes from the combination of two Greek words: oikos meaning “home” and logos meaning “the study of.” So, the word ecology means “the study of home.” You can think of a home as the place that meets your needs.

In our ecological studies, we’ve faced many of the problems troubling our planet and examined our role — what can we do to address climate change? Plastic pollution in the ocean? Nature deficit disorder? Technology addiction?

It is a daunting task. And it is easy to get depressed.

“One of the penalties of an ecological education is that one lives alone in a world of wounds. Much of the damage inflicted on land is quite invisible to laymen. An ecologist must either harden his shell and make believe that the consequences of science are none of his business, or he must be the doctor who sees the marks of death in a community that believes itself well and does not want to be told otherwise,” writes Aldo Leopold in A Sand County Almanac.

This semester we have actually learned that we do NOT live alone in a world of wounds: we live in community. By working in community, we can together be the doctor that sees the mark of death in communities that see themselves as well enough and we can guide out communities along the path to wellness.

I appreciate the willingness of my students to travel this path with me this semester. Not only did they learn how to be better writers, researchers, and critical thinkers but together we are making a difference. Of that I am very proud and happy.

 

Two Poems by Kevin Patrick Sullivan

May 9, 2018
Phil Taggart, Ventura County Poet Laureate at www.philtaggart.com invites you to come to downtown Ventura this Thursday, May 10 hear featured poet Kevin Patrick Sullivan at 7:30pm and join the open mic at EP Foster Library 651 E. Main Street, Ventura in the Topping Room where there’s poetry every Thursday. To whet your whistle, here’s two poems by Kevin Patrick Sullivan:

Read more…

Whitman: “I Contain Multitudes.”

May 2, 2018

Do I contradict myself?
Very well then I contradict myself;
(I am large, I contain multitudes.)

From “Song of Myself” in Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass
May 31, 1819 – March 26, 1892

To be a writer is to be very large with words. Read more…

Nat’l Poetry Month: 2 Poems on Kindness

April 30, 2018

ONE: On Kindness

I remember kindness
as the sun remembers my face
as the breeze whispers I love you
as the sea gives out wet puppy kisses

I remember kindness
as the gaze from the stranger on the same soul path
as the warmth from the smile of my cat
as the telltale green of spring

I remember kindness
as the moment of recognition
oh it’s you again
the field of lupine in the highway median
the carpet of gratefulness
the splash of orange sun underfoot captured by poppies
oh it’s you again
the piss of cougar trailside
the blackened branches now dead now alive
the smell of ash drowned by spring rains and hot chamise

I remember kindness
when I see you and you and you
the button famous to the hole
the sparkle famous to the eye
the wrinkle famous to the face

I remember kindness
when the path is clear
the light is green
the door unlocks
the creek runs clean

I remember kindness
when I am broken
and the world holds me in place
until
I feel fixed again
enough to move

Read more…

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