Village Poets of Sunland-Tujunga is pleased to invite poets and
friends of poetry to our monthly reading held in person,on Sunday, Oct 22 at 4:30pm. at Bolton Hall Museum, located at 10110
Commerce Ave, Tujunga, Los Angeles, CA 91042-2313. In October our
features will be Ambika Talwar and Susan Suntree.
Two segments of open mic will be available and refreshments will be served. Suggested donation $5 per person for the cost of refreshments and to donate to the Little Landers Society that manages the Bolton Hall Museum, a Los Angeles Historical Landmark built in 1913.
Ambika Talwar, professor emeritus, is an India-born author, wellness consultant, artist, & educator here to realize her sacred destiny. Her mystical and ecstatic poetry are a call to action, a “bridge to other worlds.” Of note is a recent anthology Crystal Fire (2022), which includes her poems and paintings. Ambika's poems appear in The Force is With You – a collection honoring the Indian defense forces (her poem honors her father and his batch mates) (2022): Ruddy Ravens Cheshire Cat & Rusty Rats; Beyond Words; and Breathe Poetry (2021): Roseate Sonnet (2020); Grateful Conversations (2018). Twice Pushcart nominee, she earned Commendable Mention in The Great India Poetry Contest (2018).Ambika shares the Poiesis Award for Excellence in Literature (2021-22) for a short story and received the Nissim International Poetry Prize. She has authored 4 Stars & 25 Roses (poems for her father) and is published in Glo-Mag; Timeless Inspirations; Breathe Poetry; Paws, Collateral Damage; Kyoto Journal; InkwaterInk-v3; Chopin with Cherries; Meditations On Divine Names; VIA-Vision in Action; in Poets on Site collections; St. Julian Press; Tower Journal; Enchanting Verses; Quill & Parchment; California Quarterly; Life & Legends, and others. Ambika published My Greece: Mirrors & Metamorphoses – a poetic-spiritual travelogue that questions our collective human purpose. She asserts it is time for creatives to offer new narratives. She made a short film titled Androgyne in 2000 earning the Best Original Story Award in Belgium.
Ambika practices Intuition-Energetics™, a powerful fusion of modalities for speedy recovery from stresses and ailments. “Both poetry and holistic practices work beautifully together – language is intricately coded in us.” Ambika makes her home in Los Angeles and in New Delhi, India. https://creativeinfinities.com
Three Poems from Ambika:
From the Shadows
From the shadows,
comes the drama of a red birth
quiet softened with flutes
of time mending the new world
before it is born.
From the shadows,
we are reminded of old tales
woven in our fabric tattered
like forgotten truths – awaiting
glory of our arrival.
From the shadows,
we know we will return some day
blessed with soundless music of
wisdom – waiting laughing
our bones restructuring…
From the shadows,
before the delivery of 1,000 names
reminding us of that
which we were born for: to sing
the world into beatitude—
sweet courage equals love
hues of peacock blue
wings over sky when trees turn green
rivers dance to earth, food is a-plenty:
life shines with generosity…
From the shadows
emerges drama of a new birth…
Though wisdom’s robes be tattered
and babies wail wondering, we unfold
new architectures that grace spirit!
Drums of heart beat fluted with
cosmic tones…Wise Ones
in our midst emerging from shadows…!
Why are we still in search?
Published in The Shadows
Devotion – The Fruit of All Wisdoms
tender fruit, not one but many
on a loom – petalled, infinite, fractal
as Devi made it.
seated in center, infinitely
disappearing – She!
for her delight watermelon
guava, radish of a singular night
of a ponderous, full, golden moon sailing
with love’s red, lush, wisdom
for creation She is –
carve fruits spherical as cosmos
for Her dance never ends – Om sukhi magic
everything comes to a point. Om shanti.
this blessing if you can without juice
running over – or let melon water fill
a river thirsty for Her favors.
Tender fruit of an earthly loom –
Devotion is all She cares for. Are you ready?
Do you want to take her place
Know Her knife is sharpest when you
shanti! Om Peace!
The Birthing of Seed
Mother awakening in our awareness
is birthing of seed
from all time into no time –
a birthing what was ever-present
holy, profane, transcendent.
Rooted we are – yet rootless we wander.
If dust cracked under our feet,
would it feel
the same as
digging a cave
a little above seed-rich soil?
Tender, fierce dance sweetens the air around
desperate passages wary, wanting, winsome.
in an instant.
Oh dear heart.
An inner smile is way of Cosmic Love.
perception and Time's boundless
sagas reveal laws of wholeness.
Do we remember?
Susan Suntree is an award-winning poet, performer, essayist, and activist whose recent books of poetry included Dear Traveler and the updated paperback and audiobook releases of her non-fiction epic poem Sacred Sites: The Secret History of Southern California, written over three decades under the guidance of indigenous Southern California Culture Bearers. This book won the Southern California Independent Booksellers Association Award for Nonfiction, the PEN Oakland Josephine Miles Award for Narrative Poetry, a Mellon Foundation Elemental Arts Award; the audiobook was a finalist for a Society of Voice Arts and Sciences prize. Other books include Eye of the Womb, also published in Madrid as a bilingual edition, El Ojo de la Matriz; Tulips, a bilingual chapbook of translations of Spanish poet Ana Rossetti; Rita Moreno, biography; Wisdom of the East; Stories of Compassion, Inspiration and Love for which the Dalai Lama wrote the foreword. Site-specific performances include the quartet, Seed to Snow: Plays for the Seasons; works exploring Los Angeles include Origins of Praise, commissioned by the Manhattan Theatre Club; Skins performed in the store windows of Playmates of Hollywood, Talking to the Sun for the Fringe Festival, and the eco-political street theater works Wetlands Land, Saving Private Pickle Plant, and Earth Water Air Los Angeles, a four day Giant Puppet trek following the path of the LA River to the Ballona Wetlands. Her work-in-progress, The Undertakers, confronts the war roots of the climate crises. She often accompanies her readings with the dulcimer and harmonica. http://www.susansuntree.com/
Three Poems from Susan Suntree:
Beside old stagecoach ruts
oak cracks pink sandstone
the trunk grows
straight up from the seed
roots drawn down
in hardened sea dunes
an oak bonsaied by
natural limits rewarding
vigor and good luck.
Traveler: Will you demand
to know the heart
of this rock-captured tree
make it your preacher
force a parable
from its stone splitting root?
Fighters from the northern bases
drive through flimsy clouds
rolling roars blown behind
engines combusting forests
long dead and decayed.
What you breathe is the tree's breath
What the tree breathes is your breath
Breath of a fevered civilization.
The boundary of hell
is the shape of your skull.
Published in Dear Traveler (Finishing Line Press)
Wealth in a Gilded Age
What is wealth in a gilded age?
Stockpiled Italian furnishings?
Houses larger than hospitals?
Owning more than everything?
Has it always been the course of blood
to heat a power suit?
To drip down the channel of a red tie
from chin to glans?
To amplify fat luxury lips to a wet red slash
above a tightened neck?
If sparks from the stars grinding by overhead
have nothing to do with it
what are these sparkling treasures
boxed in black velvet
secured by military dragons
flashing the mirrors of fear?
Wherever light might escape
the power grid keeps the doors sealed.
Wealth in gilded age hides itself with itself.
Only dust can put a finger on it.
From work-in-progress: The Undertakers
Village Poets Readings will resume in January 2024