This blog will be moving to: http://jikkenkobo.org/luminations


Luminations must return...


Of course, I don't support any presidential candidates, but I am finding the representation of the Democratic nomination process interesting because the US media especially doesn't know whether they should be calling Obama a looter or Hillary a bitch. Thus, they oscillate between the two. The recent 'news' from CNN - which is bound to circulate to the other news networks, lest any of them actually think for themselves - are some obfuscating figures about 'black and white voters.' The line is something like, in Ohio 1 in 5 voters said that 'race matters' (whatever that means) and that of those, 60% voted for Hillary... A bit of number crunching brings me to the staggering number of 12% of voters. So 12% of voters hold the opinion that 'race matters.' I feel better informed already...


I'm still hoping to find a way to post here more often. I do miss my blogging days! However, I just heard this news about Will Alexander and wanted to post it here.

Poet Will Alexander is ill with cancer

from Harlequin Knights

As you may have heard, poet Will Alexander is quite ill with cancer and is undergoing chemotherapy. He's spent his life largely off the poetry grid, taking on odd jobs, and has no financial support or, needless to say, health insurance.

To send help directly to Will, send it to:
Will Alexander
400 South Lafayette Park Place, #307
Los Angeles, CA 90057

(I've edited the original post since Poets in Need seems only to offer limited assistance)


Kansas Mutual Aid Relief Workers forced out of city by police

On Saturday May 19, five members and volunteers affiliated with Kansas Mutual Aid, a Lawrence based class struggle anarchist collective, made the trek back to Greensburg to again help in relief efforts in the tornado ravaged city. A week earlier, four KMA members had traveled to Greensburg on a fact finding mission to assess the situation there. What KMA members found was a militarized, entirely destroyed city where relief efforts were moving tragically slow. Today's trip back to Greensburg by KMA members and volunteers was intended to solidify the bonds we had created in the first trip, and establish a base of operations for future relief efforts. KMA spent the morning working on a house with members of AmeriCorps, and then proceeded to meet with contacts with the Mennonite Disaster Services. [You'd almost think they don't like the competition] We then headed out of town to a church just outside of city limits that we were told would be a place we could probably set up a base camp for our work. The church had been converted into a fire station by the state, so we continued down the road and met a farmer who was willing to work with us and let us use his land. Soon after meeting the farmer, we were approached by officers with the Dickinson County Sheriff's Department. After a brief exchange, the officers left, and we were told to report to the Kiowa County Emergency Response Command Post to receive official permission to set up our base of operations. We were notified that if we did not do so, we would risk having our operation ceased by the state. Two of our delegation went to the Command Post, while the other three of us went to the County Courthouse to pick up some water and provisions being offered by the Red Cross. While we were picking up water and food, I was approached by an Olathe Police Officer named Ty Moeder who knew my face and identity. I was ordered to take my hands out of my pockets and follow the officer to a side street "to avoid making a scene". I and the other people with me followed the officer, and were repeatedly ordered to keep our hands out of our pockets, where they could be seen by the officer. Soon more officers approached, as well as at least one member of the Kansas Bureau of Investigation, and some people from FEMA. Surrounded by agents of the state, we were ordered to produce our identification. When I asked the police why we were being detained, Officer Moeder responded "We need to check to see if you are affiliated with the anarchists." At this moment, our remaining two comrades approached to see what was happening. They were detained as well, and made to produce their identification. Officer Moeder asked how we had gotten in to the city. "We drove in," someone replied. "They weren't supposed to let you in at the road block," responded Moeder, seemingly frustrated and perplexed by that answer. "They even gave us a day pass to drive in and out," we shot back. A waiting game ensued for the next several minutes, with more officers approaching, now numbering almost fifteen. A Lawrence police officer approached, and was ordered to take photos of the car we had driven that was parked down the street. Officer McNemee from the Lawrence Police Department took extensive photos of the car, even of the inside contents of the vehicle. Officer Moeder ordered me to step away from the rest of the relief workers and speak with him. "You're being ordered to leave and not return. This is not negotiable, not appealable. You can't change it. If you return you'll be arrested on site. And believe me, you don't want to push that right now. This system is pretty messed up, and you wouldn't be issued bail. You'd disappear in the system." I asked repeatedly what we had done and why we were being ordered to leave the city. "You're part of a dangerous anarchist group that will only drain our security resources," he responded. "We've been monitoring your website and e-mails, we know what kind of agenda you have." "So this is about our political beliefs?" I asked. "No," he responded. "This is about you being federal security threats. Kansas Mutual Aid is not welcome in this city, end of story. I know you are going through legitimate means to work in the city, and you're story seems picture perfect, but we know who you are, and you're not allowed here." We were ordered back into our car and escorted out of the city by several police vehicles with their lights flashing, and left just outside the city. We returned to Lawrence just moments ago, unhindered in our resolve to provide support to the people in the disaster area. We will continue to work in whatever capacity we can in the areas around the city that we may still be allowed into, and provide support to those entering the city. The area is a police state, to be certain. Police and Law Enforcement from across Kansas and the country are making the rules about everything. Relief workers were banned from Greensburg today because of their political beliefs and work against oppression and tyrannical state control. A longer, more in depth update with an announcement for future action will come soon. Please spread this story far and wide. In love and solidarity, Dave Strano, on behalf of KMA kansasmutualaid@hotmail.com http://alliedresistance.org/kma/ Also, I just found this earlier report about KMA's activities in Greeburg: http://www.rationalreview.com/content/29258


Long story short: I found a great deal on webhosting ($10 for a year + domain + tons of disk space), thus jikkenkobo was born. Jikkenkobo (koubou) was a multidisciplinary group of artists founded by Toru Takemitsu and Joji Yuasa. From what I've discovered about them (they are seldom mentioned in any art history written in English, probably because they don't fit the mold of 'imitate and refine' Japanese) they were a fairly domesticated lot, very unlike their cousins several years later in fluxus. That shouldn't be discouraging though! The name as I use it stems from about 2002. When I attempted to bring together a disparate group of artists in Tokyo, a very close friend suggested naming the group jikkenkobo as homage to the original group and its spirit. The name stuck even though the group fizzled after 2 or 3 meetings.


I haven't used this blog for much talk about me and I plan to keep it that way. There are thousands of brilliant blogs and millions of vanity-press blogs. Luminations should me at least modeling the brilliant ones... I always aim for much more than is realistically possible - hence my complete burnout at the end of every semester. Nevertheless, I aim to update Luminations much more frequently in 2007. Bring it back to its former... activity(?). Luminations started as blog I updated at lunchtime while I was working in Tokyo. I would often have time to plan out a post or project while riding the yamanote line in the morning and sometimes on the way home in the evening. After moving into a much slower paced life in Iowa, the potent mix of train noise and movement, chatter, announcements, and all the brilliance public transport added to life has been pretty much wiped out. So... It's back to the blog to work backwards in a way: how to thrive in dead city, midwest USA. I am also in the (very slow moving) process of building a new magazine to edit on my own terms. The Iowa Review Web is now just a mark on my resumé, but I'm not ready to drop my publishing projects yet. I've not yet developed a clear picture of the journal. Art+politics-'social realism'-bombast=?? is where I am now.