Friday, December 6, 2013

Bad Laundry Days, Cerealism and Four Chambers debut issue

I almost didn't go to the Four Chambers launch party last night at the FilmBar, because "free form socializing" is almost like Kryptonite to me. Seriously, that's one of the reasons I became I writer in the first place -because I wasn't hanging out in bars with friends. It's ironic that poems I've written, now drag me into many of the awkward situations that I was always too anti-social to endure.
But I actually had a lot of fun with some great people, so I'm glad I forced myself to go.

Besides, I was very happy to see the new local literary magazine get off to such a great start and grateful to have two of my poems included with some of my local friends and some talented out-of-state writers. It was an excellent mix.

One of my poems is "Dear Wife's Panties" and the other one is "Breakfast Shaped Smacks of First Light" which began with the inspiration of a photography exhibit that I saw 5 years ago at the West Valley Art Museum. Phoenix photographer Ernie Button was showing a collection called Cerealism.

Button said: "I noticed that the 'adult cereals' like Fiber-One or All Bran, had the color and feel of the desert Southwest. I would blow up pictures of Arizona skies as a wallpaper, and create these settings to photograph," he said. "I've taken about 45 pictures in the series."

Grape Nuts Dune #9

 French Toast Canyon
An excerpt from his Artist Statement:

    "Art is shaped by a person’s life experiences and I am no different. I was raised by a single mother during my single-digit years that struggled to keep her family and young children together. We didn’t have a lot of money so it was the small things that made a lasting impression on me as a child. Those times were difficult on both her and us: powdered milk instead of real milk, free lunch program instead of lunch money, two jobs instead of one to make ends meet. Something like cereal was a luxury item. A brand name cereal was more of a rarity as they were consistently more expensive. Something like King Vitamin (a popular 70’s cereal) or Cap’n Crunch made for pure breakfast heaven."

So after seeing that exhibit, I wandered around the grocery store cereal aisle with a notebook and jotted down every word/phrase/impression that caught my eye. Eventually, I was able to turn those fragments into a poem.

Check out all of the other writers in the debut issue over on the Four Chambers website.


  1. Shawnte -
    You are endlessly entertaining, and I like the peek into how your mind works and poems occur.

    And, that cereal art is brilliant.

  2. Yes! I could have stared at those images for hours. I wanted to get lost in those worlds that were simultaneously alien and familiar.

  3. Adult cereal
    reminds him of the desert;
    it is a dry eat.