Sunday, February 29, 2004

i'm back on the train today
back to New York
another 20 hours on the train
i'll tell you more later

Bonafide Rojas
bastard with no real address

Sunday, February 22, 2004

When The City Sleeps


we run wild until our feet bleed
we bomb your streets
we grow up quickly to survive
we ride trains from the Bronx to Coney Island
we walk until the sun wakes up

we hang on the corners
we run from cops
we take control of  kingdoms
we leave our fingerprints on granite
we find our purpose in the music

we break tradition on corner stones
we yell for the gloaming
we grow in numbers as the hours pass
we spread like wildfire
we plan your downfall

we defend ourselves
we hide in the shadows to save ourselves
we push back our fate
we search for God in the traffic lights
we wander until we find meaning

when the city sleeps

we wax poetic drunk on our own innocence
we lock the rhythm of new york in our bones
we look at ourselves in the hudson river
we smoke life on the Brooklyn Bridge
we jump off the Empire State building

we are artists with brick canvas
we change your views on us when one of you ask us why?
we are with your daughters
we steal our childhood back
we are elegant in our ignorance (some of us)

we are loud, brash and obnoxious just like you
we lay down on Broadway to watch the stars
we rest in 24 hour diners and only order fries
we leave our names behind so you can try to find us
we wear noise pollution like a pair of headphones

we hold up the heavens with our angel headed hipster slang walk
we write quotes for middle america to take back home
we draw new sunsets on the side of buildings to breathe
we cut it open and drink from her veins
we sit on garbage cans and lay on steps

we catch the first train in and the last train out
we rest on park benches and count the stars
we rack our livelihood up our backs and sell it to survive
we are our own gods and hope someone will pray for us
we feel more comfortable waiting until dusk calls us again

we wait for her to rise
we watch her buildings stretch into the sky
we take notes of her beauty and tell the people
we hold her heart in our pockets
we dot her eyes and cross her streets

when the city sleeps...

Friday, February 20, 2004

back at the Apple IMAC. talked to Bassey about the Fela Kuti Jump and Funk parties. i've missed every single one so far. but soon i will make it and dance until i have heart attack. ZOMBIEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE
EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE

i'm out to Chicago tomorrow on the Amtrak. hella long ride but hey better than the bus. right. right.
i'll get to write, sleep, use the bathroom in peace, eat some veggie burgers and maybe read.
and i'll get to see my son "THE WORLD FAMOUS JOHN PABLO ROJAS" keep the legacy alive.

he's going to be the illest. he's already holding his hands on his own
the kid is 3 months old. what the hell? i couldn't talk until i was 3
or walk until i was 4. (no one ever said i was slow but i know the TRUTH!!)

aight i'm out my back hurts.
one love to all my people

Bonafide Rojas
your favorite nuyorican poet
(unless you love Willie Perdomo and then i totally understand he's mine too)

Thursday, February 19, 2004

im in my favorite place in NYC. The Apple Store on Prince. i love coming here check my mail then keep hanging. Apple is so much cooler than IBM, who the hell owns an IBM anymore, or those stupid gateway computer (no offense to my people who have gateway, a computer is a computer indeed). BUT the MAC G5 is the best or whatever number they are up too. chekc my mail, go on aol, check porn, this place is the best indeed.

Bonafide in the Ville as usual.
out!

Wednesday, February 18, 2004

i walked around new york city as i always do, felt a bit lonely, don't know what exactly is wrong with me sometimes, but hey i could be a republican...for real. i picked up William Carlos Williams's "Paterson".

The Yeah Yeah Yeahs make me hyper and i like that. shit i was bored today. but i'm better now (i think)
maybe i'll write more tomorrow, maybe don't get used to this habit of me writing a blog, i still like paper.

godspeed you black emperor
Bonafide
plus much respect to my HOMEBOY ANGEL for coming through with his girl on their first year anniversary. for real that's friendship.
yeah so this weekend was The Pelo Bueno Book Release Party and i felt great to see everyone. I REally have to say that the Acentos Crew is really family, first they were there early and there real late, they were practically the only poetry people who i invited that actually came out. So much respect to Oscar, Fish, Rich, Jessica, Ed, and Shaggy. My Boys TCK (Top City Krew) was there, it was really a reunion for us, i haven't seen all of them or been in the same room with them since 2000 i think, i really dont want to have that kind of stretch. This Thursday in downtown Brooklyn at a spot called "Premium Goods" C train to Lafayette, My boy, Kel 5mh has a gallery show check: http://www.soulsuite.com/Kel5MH.htm for more info. But yeah it was dope on Sunday, i wish everyone i invited would of came through but you know "Que sera sera". A-Rod is a Yankee, i have to be dreaming. READ: e.e. cummings, Listen: Elbow (Cast Of Thousands), and i hope everyone is well. my son is beautiful and i cry when i see him.

Friday, February 06, 2004

DARK SOUL PRESS ADVISORY



FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
FOR FURTHER DETAILS
FEBRUARY 4, 2004
CONTACT SHAGGY FLORES
AT 703-585-5264


Nuyorican Poet Bonafide Rojas Releases Pelo Bueno --
Independent Publishing Company to hold historic book release at famed
New York Bowery Poetry Club



Dark Souls Press, a Nuyorican owned independent publishing company dedicated to promoting the visual, oral, and literary traditions of the African Diaspora, announced the long awaited book release of Pelo Bueno: A Day In the Life of A Nuyorican Poet by Bonafide Rojas. The historic book release party will occur on February 15, 2004, at the Bowery Poetry Club in New York City.



Famed Nuyorican poet Bonafide Rojas, a native of The Bronx, NYC, is a poet/musician/photographer/teacher who is at the forefront of the current Latino literary renaissance. He was the 2002 SLAM THIS! Poetry champion and was also a member of the 2002 NYC | Union Square Slam team and the 2003 Chicago Wicker Park Slam team. He has worked with Teachers and Writers (NY), ASPIRA of NY (NY), ENLACE (NY), Muevete! (NY), Youth Speaks (CA), the Guild Complex (IL), Young Chicago Authors (IL), and the Louder Arts Collective (NY).



Nuyorican poet Bonafide Rojas follows in the tradition of Julia De Burgos, Clemente Soto Velez, Pedro Pietri, Victor Hernandez Cruz, Tato Laviera, and the many others who have pushed a Puerto Rican literary canon. His work can be found in Bum Rush the Page: a Def Poetry Jam (Three Rivers Press, 2002), Role Call: A Generational Anthology of Social and Political Black Literature and Art (Third World Press, 2002), The “Centro Journal,” an academic publication of The Center for Puerto Rican Studies (Hunter College, 2001) focusing on the next generation of Nuyorican poets, Blu Magazine’s “Puerto Rican Issue - Roots and Culture”, and Freedom to Speak, the first anthology by Poetry Slam, Incorporated.



Pelo Bueno, through poems like Creed of a Graffiti Writer, Invisible Ones, and 25 Years In, lets the reader see the maturity of a Latino writer spitting in the wind, his Nommo creating poems that resurrect ancestors and endorse empowerment. The book features artwork by fronterizo artist Francisco Enrique Delgado, an introduction by African Diaspora Scholar & Writer Louis Reyes Rivera, and an introduction by publisher and Nuyorican poet Shaggy Flores.



Here’s the voice of the new Nuyorican, the poetic tales of Rican life at the millennium. Bonafide is rooted in those familiar old mean streets of El South Bronx y El Barrio; he tells and retells the daily rituals of the hood then and now, drugs and dominoes, police brutality and graffiti immortality, Sandra María Esteves cultural ceremonies and Pedro Pietri life-in-death obituaries. What makes him Bonafide is that he celebrates all parts of his quirky self, his long hippie hair and love for rock and roll, his adoration of Che and Julia de Burgos and Neruda and Baraka, Sonia Sanchez, Gandhi and Jimi Hendrix. In Pelo Bueno, we see the invisible and hear the silenced and the mute. Here, for a change, naps and kinks and ‘fros, braids and cornrows is not pelo malo. That’s good hair, rich, full, sculpted pelo bueno.-Juan Flores

Puerto Rican Scholar, Author of From Bomba to Plena




The book release party for Pelo Bueno demonstrates that while many in the Nuyorican canon would be content with poems that only speak to their personal experiences, Rojas chooses to personalize issues of oppression and cultural preservation. His dialectic focuses on several themes—the immigrant experience in America, tales of wasted talent in an Andy Warhol Era, and visions of war in faraway lands. Through his use of language, the rhythms of Hip-Hop and Rock & Roll speak with a Bronx Boogie attitude that reflects his Nuyorican roots. A child of the Puerto Rican Diaspora transplanted to the streets of Nueva Yol, Mr. Rojas uses his words as blades, cutting through the absurdity and deceit that often plague our judgment.



The blade-edged gospel of the city, in the deft and capable clutches of Bonafide, jolts and transports the congregation. This is no typical urban griot spewing worn rhythms. Bonafide sizzles with unflinching focus, and crafts uncommon stanzas using a language that virtually burns with his signature. There is no voice like this.-Patricia Smith

Author of Close to Death & Big Towns, Big Talk


The book release party, hosted by the Bowery Poetry Club in New York City, starts at 8pm on the 15th of February. The Bowery Poetry Club was created by legendary poet, writer, and scholar Bob Holman as a place where cutting edge poets could develop and share their craft. Poets performing that night include Willie Perdomo, Crystal Lee Endsley, Monique Jarvis, Jane Alberdeston Coralin, Roger Bonair Agard, Tish Benson, Lemon, Louis Reyes Rivera, Oscar Bermeo, Fish Vargas, Guy Lecharles Gonzalez, Soulfighter, Crystal Senter Brown, Ed Garcia, Caridad de La Luz - La Bruja, Benjamin Hughes, the Dark Souls Collective, Rich Villar, Shaggy Flores, and many more of today’s hottest poets!



Signed copies of the book will be available at the book release party. Advance copies can be ordered at www.shaggyflores.com. Admission to the event is only $10.00.