Power and Politics - I am Not the Yellow Peril

The life and times of an Asian American activist who tells all the truth (and dishes news and analysis) but with a leftwards slant.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

New obsession

I had forgotten the variety of Youtube until Thao Worra posted up some tasty slam poetry morsels (originally misspelled "morosels") that immedately had my fingers racing across the keyboard, searching for more Asian American slam poetry vids. Btw, I have seen Bao Phi do much, much better - think that having to play to 4 walls makes him look jerky and throws off his rhythm. (Note to Bao Phi and promoters: get a better video of him up on youtube and quick, cos that one doesn't do the guy any justice.) I think that Bao Phi is one of the best APIA slam poets out there - able to turn the corner from casually funny to astoundingly deep within a sentence. His words hit the heart and reverberate inside, thrumming in the cathedral of our bodies.

What a bonanza of delicious slam poetry - happy holidays to me!

First I found Kelly Tsai, a Chicago based poet, with Little Red Books. I remember all of those books vividly! They really espoused some central Confucianisms - teacher, resprespect theect authority. Hello teacher! Stand up. Bow. Sit down.

She gets at some central truths of why I have never really felt comfortable when some of my hipper than thou, more revolutionary than thou white colleagues discuss which brand of sectarian leftism is the most correct. The Nationalists fled China for Taiwan because the Communists were killing people. I have yet to find a way to reconcile communism as a theory with my family history. I also have yet to find a way to make it right to the indigenous Taiwanese who were there when the Nationalists came and killed them.

She asks, hauntingly:
"Is it as easy to scream "revolution now!" if you knew you'd have to give up some of your shit? Is Mao as much of a genius when he tells your bourgeioisie urban intellectual ass needs to stop reading some books and go into the field and work? Did Mao experiment on your family to create a better world? Did you know that communism is not theoretical for everyone?"

2) Next up, Denizen Kane, who I believe played Lollapalooza this past summer. Another original Chicagoan, he used to spit words and now considers himself more of a musician. This poem, possibly called "Lost and Found" that was shown on Def Poetry Jam was done in a Jamaican accent and his rhymes are flowing.

Conclusion: In looking for vids by Ishle Park (arguably the Queen of As Am slam, named the Poet Laureate of Queens) and Beau Sia, I only came across an embarrassingly small selection - we need to get more vids out there, get the word out there. Plus, I would love to see more of my peeps representing in the online series of tubezzz (thank you former Senator Ted Stevens, and goodnight!)


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