GuerrillaReads No. 91: Ifalade TaShia Asanti

Ifalade TaShia Asanti is a poet, performer and seer. In her poem, Sistah I Sing For You, she writes

i drum at sunrise for the common ancestors that walk with us
for the garbage in our oceans
wombs of broken glass
trust crushed in seas of betrayal

GuerrillaReads caught up with Asanti at LA’s first ever Blk Grrrl Book Fair where she did a guerrilla reading of her poem The Oracle. Learn more about her on her website.

GuerrillaReads No. 90: Savannah Mae Jenkins

Watch out, 50 Shades of Grey, here comes Fluid: Out of Darkness Comes Light, a collection of grown and sexy stories about the locomotive power contained in the 7th chakra. In this guerrilla reading, Savannah Mae Jenkins, who co-authored the book with Tiffany Maxwell, gives us just a taste of what’s inside the covers. It’s the first mildly NSFW reading I’ve ever posted to GuerrillaReads, so watch at your own risk – you might get scalded.

GuerrillaReads No. 89: Peter J. Harris

Peter J. Harris is an African American cultural worker who has published poetry, essays, and fiction in a wide range of national publications since the 1970s. He has worked as a publisher, journalist, editor and broadcaster. He’s also been an educator, and workshop leader for adults and adolescents.

Harris’s work often explores the lives of Black men, and this guerrilla reading is no exception. GR caught up with him at the Blk Grrrl Book Fair in South Central LA, where he read from his latest book, The Black Man of Happiness.

GuerrillaReads No. 88: Charles Degelman

Charles Degelman has been an antiwar activist, political theater artist, musician, communard, carpenter, hard-rock miner, and itinerant gypsy trucker, and eventually grew up to be a writer, editor, and educator living in Los Angeles.

He recently returned to his guerrilla roots for this reading of his new novel, A Bowl Full of Nails, set in the counterculture of the 1970s. Nails was a finalist in the PEN/Bellwether Prize for Socially Engaged Fiction, founded by Barbara Kingsolver. It will be published by Harvard Square Editions in February 2015.

Degelman teaches writing and media studies at California State University, Los Angeles. You can find out more at his website.

GuerrillaReads No. 87: Jeremiah Walton

Guerrilla reader Jeremiah Walton graduated from high school in spring 2013, and hit the road hitchhiking the following fall. He is founder of the small press Nostrovia! Poetry.

He’s currently traveling cross country with Sam Lennon and Captain Thornton running a traveling bookstore, Books & Shovels.

Read more at Walton’s website: Gatsby’s Abandoned Children.

GuerrillaReads No. 86: Rhonda Langley

Fresno’s own locally-grown writer Rhonda Langley knows quite a lot about about music, gardening and writing. More than that, she loves to share the things that matter to her. She’s written a number of books, both fiction and nonfiction.

In this guerrilla reading, Langley reads from her novel, Good Friday, and captures the sights and sounds of Fresno, California. Especially the sounds. Listen for the lovely songs of the birds that accompany her reading.

You can read more about Langley on her website.

GuerrillaReads No. 85: George Cattan

George Cattan is a life-long political junkie. He was born in Palestine, lived for many years in Syria, and has been writing about political struggles his whole life. He writes in Arabic, and we are fortunate to have this video of him reading in English translation from his memoir.

“Politics,” Cattan tells us, “is like an addiction.” In this reading, he explains how his thinking about politics has evolved over more than seventy years of life experience.

Cattan read for GuerrillaReads as part of a program run by Orange County-based Tiyya Foundation, which provides basic necessities for refugees and displaced American families.