The Profanity of a President

The Profanity of a President

On Trump,
White Supremacy,
the Bible, and
Political Theater

Lilies of the Valley

Lilies of the Valley
By Kit-Bacon Gressitt


 



My mother planted lilies of the valley along her garden’s edge. It was one of her rare mundanities, and the memory has remained with me. One early autumn day, wearing orange clamdiggers, matching gloves, and shoulder-banging earrings, she carried a bag of bulbs, a spade, and a small braided rug to the garden.

She rolled out the rug to kneel on, to protect her knees from the damp earth. She had shattered them both in an accident years before I was born. A truck, oblivious to the winter’s effect on the winding country road, skated around a bend and over the top of my parents' little car. I’ve imagined her lying there, bright red blood sketching her outline in...

Speak Tenderly to the City

Speak Tenderly to the City

An annual remembrance of the Oklahoma City bombing, April 19, 1995


By Kit-Bacon Gressitt

Ladies and gentlemen and children: See before you the crumbled concrete and teddy bears, the wreaths and forlorn love notes, the postcards and classroom projects, the flags and bobbing balloons, the flowers and final farewells to one hundred, sixty-eight souls.
 

Regina and the Racist

Regina and the Racist
By Kit-Bacon Gressitt

 

“When my son was murdered, I read Job,” Regina said.

Regina was my ride-share driver, fifty-something, and a seat-full of voluptuous curves. She was chatty and she talked with her hands vociferously, which was only a little scary. After each burst of information, they’d reclaim the steering wheel.

Usually, Regina told me, she has a gig driving a charter bus up to Boston and back, but then she has to wait four or five unpaid hours before she can return her passengers to Philadelphia. And if they don’t tip well, she’s better off with Uber or Lyft. She has a lot of friends, but they’re not all real friends, “Not like the real close ones, you know?” She has fewer of those, but...

‘Shelter-in-place’ a bummer? Six horrible thoughts to distract you ...

‘Shelter-in-place’ a bummer? Six horrible thoughts to distract you ...
... and one freebie By Kit-Bacon Gressitt

I wonder if all the new-to-homeschooling, fundamentalist parents are trying to teach their kids that the Grand Canyon is only 4,325 years old and was made when God became enraged with Man and smote the Earth with a mighty flood. Imagine how much worse it would be if U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos actually tried to help. Please be careful what you wish for: If the virus gets Trump, it could get the rest of us, and our molecules might end up commingling with his. What will people do if every streaming service goes dark? … ! There’s a really sweet woman down the road, an elderly gal we all watch out for,...

COVID-19 Essentials: A List

COVID-19 Essentials: A List
 

By Kit-Bacon Gressitt

  Chocolate, except chocolates can be infested by meal moths and weevils prior to packaging, and imagine the horror of opening a nice bit of the stuff to find pale little larvae dancing on your comfort food. OK, Nutella it is. Adult beverages, an uninspired choice and one that’s prone to depressive responses. Nonetheless, a nice hot toddy can infuse unexpected entertainment value in the profoundly mundane. Spam, at least according to my significant other. Upon reconsideration, I take issue with this one: I have serious concerns about mushy animal product and its devastating effects on the Earth—and the animals. Boxing gloves, essential weapons in the TP Wars, although printed newspapers could make a comeback. Recycle and reuse! ...

March is Women's History Month

March is Women's History Month
  Join Writers Read on March 10, 2020 for A Celebration of Women an open-mic evening featuring poets Kathy O'Fallon and Penny Perry  



Date: Tuesday, March 10, from 6:00 to 7:45 p.m.

Location: Fallbrook Library, 124 S Mission, Fallbrook

Bring your favorite celebration of a woman to share, in poetry or prose.

 

For more information, contact K-B Gressitt at kbgressitt@gmail.com or 760-522-1064.  

Writers Read Presents Matt Coyle

Writers Read Presents Matt Coyle
February 11, 2020 Join Matt Coyle author of Lost Tomorrows Preceded by open mic for original poetry and prose

Date: Tuesday, February 11, from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m.

Location: Fallbrook Library, 124 S Mission, Fallbrook

Anthony Award-winning author Matt Coyle will read from his sixth book in the best-selling Rick Cahill crime novels, Lost Tomorrows.

Matt knew he wanted to be a crime writer when he was fourteen and his father gave him "The Simple Art of Murder," an essay by Raymond Chandler. Eventually graduating with a degree in English from University of California at Santa Barbara, Matt's foray into crime fiction was delayed for thirty years as he spent time managing a restaurant, selling golf clubs, and in national sales for a sports licensing company.

Writing at night for over a...

Writers Read Presents

Writers Read Presents
Karla Cordero poet, educator, and performance artist How to Pull Apart the Earth  

Preceded by open mic for original poetry and prose

Date: Tuesday, January 14, from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m.

Location: Fallbrook Library, 124 S Mission, Fallbrook

Karla Cordero will read from her poetry collection, How to Pull Apart the Earth (NOT A CULT, 2018), which was recognized as a 2019 San Diego Book Award winner and finalist for the 2019 International Book Awards. A descendant of the Chichimeca peoples from Northern Mexico, Karla is a Chicana poet, educator, and activist, raised along the borderlands of Calexico, California. She is a two-time Pushcart nominee and was offered fellowships from VONA, Macondo, The Loft Literary Center, CantoMundo, and Pink Door Retreat. Karla teaches creative writing and composition at San Diego...

Joseph Caldwell: In the Shadow of the Bridge

Joseph Caldwell: In the Shadow of the Bridge
By Kit-Bacon Gressitt

 

When offered an interview with author and playwright Joseph Caldwell, it was not In Such Dark Places, his first novel with its gay protagonist, that launched me from my desk to dance a delighted jig. Neither was it Caldwell’s more recent and charmingly absurd Irish mystery series, The Pig Trilogy—nor anything in between. No, it was Caldwell’s notoriety as a writer for the cult classic soap opera Dark Shadows that transported me to the late 1960s when we—every kid in the neighborhood—happily raced home from school to grab a slice of baloney and settle in for a new episode.

All the more satisfying then, was reading in Caldwell’s new memoir, In the Shadow of the Bridge (Delphinium Books, November...

Celebrate Our Veterans' Stories on 12 November

The Veterans' Writing Group of San Diego County will read from their third collection Stories that Need to Be Told followed by a panel discussion

 Preceded by open mic for original poetry and prose Date: Tuesday, Nov 12, from 6:00 to 7:45 p.m. Location: Fallbrook Library, 124 S Mission, Fallbrook

The Veterans' Writing Group of San Diego County encourages and supports creative writing by military veterans of all conflicts. They meet monthly in North County to share their lives and stories—"sometimes funny, sometimes heartbreaking, always ringing true."

Join the group for their third visit to Writers Read at Fallbrook Library, as they read from their new collection, Stories that Need to be Told (December 2019). They will feature stories from women veterans, World War II, the Cold War,...

It's all open mic night at Fallbrook Library

It's all open mic night at Fallbrook Library
  Join Fallbrook Writers Read for our annual All Open Mic Night for poetry and prose Date: Tuesday, October 8, from 6:00 to 7:45 p.m.

Location: Fallbrook Library, 124 S Mission, Fallbrook

There's a lot going on in the world today.

Have you been secretly scribbling to maintain your equilibrium?

Or do you feel as though there might be more than words can accommodate?

We encourage you to try anyway.

Write it and share your words with a receptive audience in downtown Fallbrook. Come out of the closet and read! For more information, contact K-B Gressitt at kbgressitt@gmail.com or 760-522-1064.

T. Jefferson Parker and 'The Last Good Guy' Home in Fallbrook

T. Jefferson Parker and 'The Last Good Guy' Home in Fallbrook
By Kit-Bacon Gressitt

 

T. Jefferson Parker will be featured at Writers Read at Fallbrook Library on Tuesday 10 September,  6:00 to 7:30 p.m. (Photo by Bruce Jenkin)

T. Jefferson Parker settled in Fallbrook in 2000, and what better place for a New York Times bestselling author and three time Edgar Award winner to burrow into the quietude needed for the complex plots and deeply human characters he creates. In exchange for the space to write, Parker has honored the town and surrounding region by making them settings in his mystery thrillers ever since he landed here. Even one vaguely familiar Fallbrookian or another has made an occasional appearance.

“When I first came to Fallbrook, I saw a small town...

Writers Read Presents T. Jefferson Parker

Writers Read Presents T. Jefferson Parker
September 10, 2019 Join us for a discussion with T. Jefferson Parker about his new PI Roland Ford thriller The Last Good Guy

Date: Tuesday, September 10, from 6:00 to 7:45 p.m.

Location: Fallbrook Library, 124 S Mission, Fallbrook

>>Please note, there is no open mic this evening.

In this electrifying new thriller from three-time Edgar Award winner and New York Times bestseller T. Jefferson Parker, Fallbrook-based private investigator Roland Ford hunts for a missing teenager and uncovers a dark conspiracy in his most personal case yet.

When hired by a beautiful and enigmatic woman to find her missing younger sister, private investigator Roland Ford immediately senses that the case is not what it seems. He is soon swept up in a web of lies and secrets as he searches for the...

Home in 'Fallbrook the Friendly Village'

Home in 'Fallbrook the Friendly Village'
By Kit-Bacon Gressitt



 

“Peligro,” I said. “La mujer fotografia tu auto.”

It was pitiful Spanish—I really need to learn the language—but it was my best, and I wasn’t convinced it was the right thing to do, but I did it anyway.

It all started with my early morning walk, accompanied by my not-quite-right dog and my quite-all-right neighbor.

We walk four or five days a week, enjoying the Fallbrook flora and fauna—a great blue heron family has been nesting in one of our taller trees. While the cloud formations waltz over the mountains to the north and east, we find a little political common ground in our conversation and commit, yet again, to avoid late-night snacks, a problem of the privileged.

This morning, we were...

Writers Read Presents Sara Marchant

Writers Read Presents Sara Marchant
author of the memoir Proof of Loss Preceded by open mic for original poetry and prose

Date: Tuesday, August 13, from 6:00 to 7:45 p.m.

Location: Fallbrook Library, 124 S Mission, Fallbrook

Sara Marchant's memoir, Proof of Loss (Otis Books, 2019), examines the profound revelations that sometimes accompany dying and death. Upon learning about her ex-brother-in-law's cancer diagnosis, Sara Marchant becomes his primary caregiver during his intensive treatment. Marchant's distinct, evocative, and at times humorous memoir grips the reader from all sides, illuminating Marchant's own tragic losses that had gone ignored for so long.

Marchant received her Masters of Fine Arts in Creative Writing and Writing for the Performing Arts from the University of California, Riverside/Palm Desert. Her work has been published by Full Grown People, Brilliant Flash...

A Brief History of War Resistance

A Brief History of War Resistance
By Kit-Bacon Gressitt


On this melancholy Memorial Day, I'd like to introduce my family's first recorded war resister: Benjamin Franklin Latta, of Hickman County, KY, my great-great-grandfather.

While two of BF's brothers leapt at the chance to serve with the Confederate Army, BF stayed out of the fray, working his farm, until the U.S. Civil War no longer enthused volunteers, and the North had to imposed mandatory service.

BF was drafted into the Union Army in August 1863 and called to duty on an unknown date. Private BF Latta flipped the Civil War the bird on December 15, 1864 and was arrested on July 28, 1865, after the war's conclusion. The Yankees...

Writers Read Presents Author Huda Al-Marashi

Writers Read Presents Author Huda Al-Marashi
June 11, 2019 Huda Al-Marashi author of the memoir First Comes Marriage: My Not-So-Typical American Love Story Preceded by open mic for original poetry and prose

Date: Tuesday, June 11, from 6:00 to 7:45 p.m.

Location: Fallbrook Library, 124 S Mission, Fallbrook, CA

Huda Al-Marashi’s First Comes Marriage: My Not-So-Typical America Love Story (Prometheus Books, 2018) reveals the complexities of life as a contemporary Iraqi-American raised in an immigrant family defined by conservative traditions.

From The Washington Post review: "Whether to have an arranged marriage or an American love story forms the core of First Comes Marriage, her charming, funny, heartbreaking memoir of faith, family and the journey to love. If Jane Austen had grown up as a first-gen daughter of Iraqi parents in the 1990s, she might have written...

Abortion and the Idiot Factor

Abortion and the Idiot Factor
By Kit-Bacon Gressitt Author's note: This essay is eight years old, and I could have written it today, given the de facto abortion bans recently signed by Governors Kay Ivey (Alabama Rep), Brian Kemp (Georgia Rep), Mike DeWine (Ohio Rep), Matt Bevin (Kentucky Rep), and Phil Bryant (Mississippi Rep). And now, Gov. Jon Bel Edwards (Louisiana Dem) has indicated he'll sign yet another restrictive law if it passes the state legislature. Update: Missouri's state legislature passed a "heartbeat" bill Friday, and Gov. Mike Parson (Rep) is expected to sign it.  

Damn it, enough already. I mean it. These idiots just don’t give up!

When they learn to control their dicks, then—maybe then—is when they’ll have the moral authority to dictate to others. … Uh,...

Mother's Knees

Mother's Knees
By Kit-Bacon Gressitt

Mother’s knees, they were misshapen by the lumps and scars of a lifetime.

There she sat, unaware of the lens, skirt pulled high to defy the wet Eastern heat that dampened doting offspring. The edema of unspoken words and fateful adventures swelled her joints and crippled her sidestep, yet still she twirled to the rhythms of her youth. Although achingly unsure in her final years, those knees had long served her well.

They held her aloft when she was barely tall enough to reach the outhouse seat—loath, she was, to rest on it for fear of all the crawling, stinging things her older cousins convinced her lurked there. And surely those knees propelled her toward the heavens when the plumbing...