Tuesday, November 27, 2007

A Poet Of Exile

Every so often I feel the need to pull one of Bei Dao's poems off my shelf to read. Though they can be difficult to grasp you can feel his isolation being an exile. How much of a fan am I? This is sad really. I already owned soft-cover copies of all his books when I ordered hardbound versions. I remember he was the first poet I ever saw at first Dodge Poetry Festival I attended. Here are a few poems written by Dao. Enjoy.

It is ironic how I keep being drawn to Old Snow, a book focussing almost entirely on his exile. I want to write my own version being a person who's lived in the same area his whole life. I have to admit I am not sure what I shall write about.

And would whoever decides these things finally give him The Noble Prize?


posted by Out Of Jersey | 11:54 AM | 4 comments

Monday, November 19, 2007

John Reilly Band

This friday a friend of mine invited me to go see a local Christian group. I don't know if I have ever expressed my personal tastes in CCM, but I tend think the greater majority of it is crap. There are several exceptions to that rule like 3rd Day, Delirious, or The Supertones. Now having had the opportunity to witness the craptacular performances of many local artists while working in a cafe (I've seen some so bad they chased customers from the room) ever so often one does pop out to show real promise and a potential to go national. That is more than the case for the band Reilly. All I can say is wow! Their music was upbeat and poppy with moments of really bold music writing delving deeper than the typical three chord mantra. For one they had a violin player occassionally joined by a second violin! Though they tended to be more on the arty side they weren't overhanded about it. Sorry, I tend to find the more art/rock to get kind of boring which is why I shy away from Sufjan Stevens (sorry Ken). They rocked out in their own fashion engaging the predominately teenage audience. And we all know how fickle they can be. My only problem is they on occassion wrote very typical Christian lyrics. Other than that I see big things for these guys. If you get the chance to check them out I highly recommend it.

UPDATE: Found a Video For You To Check Out.


posted by Out Of Jersey | 11:11 AM | 3 comments

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Why I Am Wary About Leading Anything!

My church has been trying to get a group started for young adults for the past year. It has mainly been inconsistent and not too successful though people have expressed an interest in seeing a group get started. Primarily the job was left to our youth director, but with his time appropriately being spent more in the development of our youth program it has been pretty hit or miss. So he asked myself and another couple to take charge of the group. Great. I'd love to get my teeth into something and help it get started from the ground up. Great, wonderful, fantastic. So have picked a date for the end of november and I lined up a guest speaker and figured we were all set. Until I emailed Ken with the details. He responded with more questions than I had even considered. Last night I realized I have no idea how to lead anything! If it's a one shot deal like a party I am good to go, but to start a group and to come up with ideas and fill in details....? Not my gift. I am more of the ask me to do something and I'll do it. Don't ask me to come up with ideas. Even when I come up with ideas I am used to them not always being listened to, which I am fine about. It reminds me of a time when I was in college and we were visiting my family. One of my uncles came back from abroad and gave my grandparents a religious icon. They were trying to figure out where it was from. I recognized it as a byzantine icon from a recent history class I took. I told them as such and they kept discussing what it was. I stated my thoughts again. Nothing. Finally they asked one of my other uncles who chimes in, "I think it's Byzantine." To which everyone patted him on the back about how smart he was.

That's why I don't want to lead anything!


posted by Out Of Jersey | 5:21 AM | 2 comments