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2 Reviews

by Larry Goodell of Ricardo Snchez and by Ricardo Snchez of Larry Goodell 2 Letters by Ricardo Sanchez & Snakes, a poem
by Larry Goodell

a duende booklet 2012

Ricardo Sanchez from The Face of Poetry, 1979 photo by LaVerne Clark

a duende booklet 2012 po box 571 placitas, new mexico 87043 larry

It was in the Southwest Poetry Conferences (SWPC) organized mainly by Randall Ackley from the late 60's to the mid 70's that the fertile gatherings of Hispanic, Native American, Anglo and other groups came together and shared their first work and, in my opinion, lifted Southwest poetry beyond its borders to worldly significance. larry goodell

Review by Larry Goodell of Ricardo Sanchez Eagle-Visioned Feathered Adobes

1991 Cinco Puntos Press, El Paso

A Review by Ricardo Sanchez of Larry Goodell Firecracker Soup

1990 Cinco Puntos Press

2 Letters from Ricardo Sanchez Snakes, A Poem by Larry Goodell In Addition . . . SWPC, April 1975

Ricardo's New Mexico

" leaving this land today also finally leaving those dreams I once had about coming to what I felt was my home, realize that it is merely the home of my ancestors, my home shall ever exist just beyond every horizon I encounter, I really don't have a land that is mine, and I might just not even have a people to contain me and my soulmind's questings...." ---Ricardo Snchez Eagle-Visioned/Feathered Adobes looks at northern New Mexico, the old New Mexico, from the eyes of an insider: Ricardo's family roots are New Mexican though he was born in El Paso and has spent a good share of his life in Texas. So he is "an insider looking at the inside from the outside," as a friend observed to me. Ricardo can see New Mexico without its romantic Lawrencian curtain that surrounds Santa Fe and Taos. He can see the Indian-rip-off Anglos, Indian-rip-off Chicanos, Chicano-rip-off Anglos, etc. etc. He can see those sold out to higher institutions, to art galleries, to tourists, their history and past sold out to mainstream America, their identities swallowed by Taco Bell America inorder to assure them a profitable future.


And he does so in the dance of language, the facile spoof and drive of English, Spanish, Spanglish combinations, whatever slangs are appropriate including his own word and phrase coinage, satirical slip and play of the tongue. He's a kind of vocal picaresque in Eagle-Visioned as he is in Amsterdam Cantos, travelling and noting, with the shine of honesty ever on his brow. How many miles do you have to go these days to find an honest man, an honest woman, let alone an exciting and original writer? Miles and miles! The true originals stand out on the landscape, and those who don't see Ricardo Snchez as one of the leading originals of our time have probably been so swallowed up in their own institutionalized prejudices and academic morasses that they couldn't tell the difference between their ass and a hole in the ground. * So we in the living poetry profession have pride in one another as we go forth leading the tide of language, spilling truths and attracting audiences. It doesn't matter if the New York publishing houses pick us up or not: it would be nice, it would perhaps pay some bills, but we try as we can to seduce the publication world and, who knows, perhaps some of us will crack that knot someday. As it is we must be in praise of independent small publishers who take every risk indeed in publishing the real avant guard of the people. We are a power in our own land and the genuine touch of creativity will at last prevail. * Students rebel against your academic smidgens and demand more Ricardo Snchez books! Here is real joy from pen through mind to paper. Here is a vocal barreling baritone of word-play and fact. Here is the actual American language of our birth at serious play in the fields of our long sought for home. William Carlos Williams applauds, as Whitman from that campfire way ahead of us. Lorca is looking on pleased from his sky door. Ricardo Snchez is teeter-tottering with Allen Ginsberg. He's at loose with Gertrude Stein and Alice is serving them cookies. The romantic dream each of us has is out and the real American present presents itself in Ricardo's writing. How could today's Southwest literature be thought of without his presence near the fulcrum?


Ricardo Snchez is a local poet, a Texas poet, a New Mexico poet. He is a regional poet, a Southwestern poet. He is a Chicano poet. Ricardo Snchez is a national poet whose deep voice is behind every word he has written, and whose honesty recalls Jack Kerouac's and causes every pretender and fake to writhe in his seat. came to revisit ancient birthplace of my family, came to find the residue of words and feelings which once gave us strength and a sense of life, have found shards of culture, machined kachinas, fabricated santos and retablos, and a panoply of dichos which have been miraculously recycled; were we ever that simplistic or did we buy a media hype in order to sell pieces of culture like we did our land--in order to survive, so we claim---and is this land still enchanted?

And later on in this poem "Came to Revisit" Ricardo says, here and there a few artists dare to see beyond the mockery and in seeing denounce everything... let your art be an affirmation which cuts through the gelatinous morass of the heart of a-slum, damn, but the torturous tortuga is a litany of basted ultimatums, ovulate your vision from the organ mountains in your south to the manzanos, sandas, sangre de cristo, and onto the passages and caones of the north, cut through the quagmires and swamps of stultification, cast shadows which criss-cross past, present, and future, suture time and space onto the filaments of creativity, damn, see your tiring city as it reposes in vestments which almost sybaritically

proclaim liveliness, realize that Santa F can be more than an ambulent cultural/anthropological shard or artefact, write, paint, and sculpt a universe beyond shidoni and art fests where arts fester and can no longer pester one to think... And finally from the end of the poem Assemblages, this sampling of a quintessential book of New Mexicaniana, the world sits placidly selling modernistic images of ageless relics, plasticized turquoise. . .& ornamental idiocies...I drink to the blasphemous morphology of put on nativeness, while hybridded words swirl upon distorted historicity... avec-moi, queridos autores y artistas in this neoteric land of discoed enchantments & condiments, we bathe in pozole

and chorizo mestizo con papitas, refried denizens, zoologically illogical in our logic... El Pueblo de la Santa F, Nueva Espaa Mexicanada.... This book is about fifty-fifty English/Spanish. If you know no Spanish at all it will still excite and provoke and inform you, and since there's a glossary provided it can help you to pick up some good current Spanish. Hurray for the bravery of the honest! /January 1991, Placitas, New Mexico Larry Goodell

Eagle-Visioned/Feathered Adobes by Ricardo Snchez ,Cinco Puntos Press, El Paso, Texas, $8.95. This review originally appeared in the Albuquerque Journal Sunday, May 31, 1992, Page 8, Section G, Books. Please see for works and many other items available concerning Dr. Sanchez.




This poet sings with a joyous sense of language

here is a shaman grousing in the thin, reedlike body of Larry Goodell. There is a song unwinding in the nasal, reedy voice as he enunciates a poetics of madness and joy, of celebration and realization and the words seem to dance from him.

language while beguiling the audience with his many quick transformations. Each poem he delivered had its own costume which created a new ambiente of nuances and symbols. Goodell, the poet read with a joyous sense of language, while also helping people understand that poetry has a serious side to it that is not at all puffery or rigidity. The cutting voice would intone and then become a bird in flight into a deeper and more resonant festivity of life, and the serious questions became palatable, easier to fathom. A few weeks ago, Goodell hosted me in Albuquerque. It felt great to again be in the company of a poet who takes poetry seriously and who does not take himself so seriously that he becomes another academic RoboPoet. There is a panache in Goodell's work, a sense of life that is organic and not programmed. There are many sides to him, and his poetry reflects the actual and not the virtual, and that is a relief. Skilled, talented, well-read, auto-didactic as well as formally educated, Goodell creates images which take one into primal settings, then he easily transports the reader into cityscapes which reek of real settings. Truth comes easily to him, and his life reflects integrity and a devil-take- what-it-must attitude, an unbending yet gentle understanding that he need not be beholden to anyone.

Everything becomes a work of poetical art, very political in its sense of the power and magic of language not at all politics or the vying for a position, but the kind of politicizing empowerment which has no need or fear of systems and totemic idiocies. There is a fine line between madcap poesie and chaos in Goodell, and it is a delectable and enjoyable poetics, one which speaks to language in its vastness, in its power to redefine reality, to somehow make space elastic so that the plastic cutey-pie inanity of popular media cannot devour the spirit. It is a poetry which first moved me in the early 1970s at events which spoke to the beauty and spiritual value of language(s). Poets would gather in such places as Santa Fe, Albuquerque, El Paso, Cd. Juarez, Phoenix, Durango (Colorado) and outposts in Sonora to concelebrate the poetry of the U.S. Southwest and Northern Mexico. It was the SouthWest Poets' Conferences a series of annual readings organized by Randall W. Ackley, Simon Ortiz and yours truly. Goodell, the shamanloco in residence, performed a poetics which dared to play with

"Firecracker Soup," Goodell's latest book in a goodly number of publications was recently published by Bobby Byrd at Cinco Puntos Press. It is an enjoyable read, a journey into madcap notions of life as well as controlled verses wielded by a bard who has firmly established himself as a poet of power, wit, inventiveness and gringo-loco poetics. Far from being cute or sterile, Goodell is simply a shamanistic-gava-coyote on an excursion through a New Mexico which becomes the universe of embroiling and

perambulating verse. His madness is rational, just as the words are cutting or inventive, and the images traverse this part of the world easily yet pointedly and pensively. In between the chuckles, serious questions poke at one. It is more than fun and games and more than studious reflections: It is poetry which entertains and moves one, while provoking one to ponder. Ricardo Snchez, El Paso poet and writer.

this review originally appeared in the EL PASO HERALD-POST, Monday,

July 23, 1990, from Time Out, by Ricardo Snchez


El Paso, Tx 79930 1 Feb. 1991 Estimado Larry -

Letter #1

Reading the review you wrote of Eagle-Visioned has been enjoyable, carnal. . . though I doubt that the Albert-Turkey Journal will publish a line like "couldn't tell the difference between their asshole and a hole in the ground." But you alreadv know that. . . The line about "Alice is serving them Hashish fudge" might get me some unwanted attention from the spies of the land, and am doing too much political work to want that. . . I attended the Washington, DC, peace march against the latest war in the Gulf. . .about 300,000 people from throughout the nation were there and there was much passion against the politics of Bushbo & Co. Things are again heating up, carnal, and it is a healthy sign. Recorded a poetry cassette last week in Baltimore with poet Kenneth Carroll, a firebrand dude from D.C. Met Alan Barysh, a writer who still wears the passion of engagement and confrontation. . . has been doing it since the 60s, and it feels great to know that a sense of cause is still alive and vibrant. All in all, things flow, Larry. . .will be doing readings in Dallas, Washington State, New Orleans and the Palladium in New York City's East Village this spring. . .am also teaching a Chicano Lit course for the El Paso Community College and an ESL course as well. . .have completed two sizable poetry manuscripts in the past few months, along with a couple of prose collections (one of the prose ms's is in Spanish and the other three in English). . . Enjoyed hearing from you, bro., and wish vou the best of all possible worlds. . . sorry I couldn't be at your reading here, but familial things kept me away. . .do send me cooies of the review once it's oublished. . .I value your words, your ability to transform a stage into life. . .take care & keep me posted. Ricardo (signed)


Washington State University, Department of Comparative American Cultures, Pullman, WA 99164-4010 Seore Larry Goodell, Editor of Duende Press, Placitas, N. M. Estimado Larry

Letter #2

of poetry dancing metaphors,.forensic nuances, and crystalline sounds, I heard the death wail of "academic verse" in your letter while thinking of the life-giving enchantment of public poetry where the spirit melds with the intellect, ay & oy vay, ese, ze body pirouettes to the ritmos of verbos y palabras serpentinely celebrating the madness of your poesie. . .you be a poete maudit, tambin, my brother, a shamanistic caterwauler brawling with the concrete poesies of urban maniacal entrechats and entrenchments - where be the condiments? those delicious slabs of reality, why in the poetry of Goodell shaking those academic tontonones into realizing that the word is sacred but not religious, not institutional at all. Do send me copies (not just one!) of the review once it is published, if possible. . . if you have an unpublished one right now, do send it for my perusal (whatever that means, portends)... I have a couple of manuscripts (Big Cotulla, an extended prose work in English that is magical realism, stream of consciousness, quasi-autobiographical, and Magda/Carta/Magda, an epistolary novel in Espaol y cal) for which I seeking a publisher - small press or other - and also some poetry mss...what are the possibilities at Duende? If not at Duende, do you know of anyone who might be interested? The prose works are cutting, at the edge - the kind that will ruffle some feathers and move others, for I have shared them with quite a few persons who found them good reads...but I have seriously been away from the publishers for a long time...mostly have been contacted by those who published want to reach out.... Life is good, yet strange in this desolate part of the universe... far from chile verde & poetic locutions...miss much, yet find other venues enjoyable...todo es vida in its own take care, carnal, and receive my regards for you and yours... Sincerely, Ricardo Snchez, Ph.D. (signed) Assoc. Prof./Pullmaniac Performance Poete Maudit


for Ricardo

My little delicate wisps of Wonder Bread were exploded by your coming at me through the air with Giant Lips flying and Chicanohood screaming I was a flea. But it wasn't Wonderbread it was Holsum Bread and then Mead's Fine Bread of Roswell and there was even Roman Meal Bread then: I was of an age of the passing from white bread to partially whole wheat bread, remember that remember that when we write the mythologies of our time AS WE MUST, as we are. We are not the vacuums but the pith. I was the pith of my Biology Class that Miss Martha Sue Noel taught probably the second lesbian teacher I had, tho we studied exhaustively and dissected cows' eyeballs we never got to angiosperms. Oh flowering plants, I've spent my life since Miss Noel's biology completing that study. I love angiosperms tho, true, mosses and algae have their place, as I hopefully have mine in the way of things.


I'm telling you Ricardo Snchez that you may come at me in the night with your high-flying turquoise jewelry clattering and your voice scourging falsehood of its falsies, obliterating for all time dusty pretensions of the mob, of the snobs, of the academic highchairs full of drooling faculty. You are a PH D and I am nowhere because my heart is pure? Pure as the deception of truth. The Perception. The ethnic urge to disparity. Two halves make a whole. So my heart is an old bag pump that keeps on pumping and there's no definition of energy plus, you've got it. And when I'm in front of an audience the audience tells me to lay my heart & soul out and I turn into a performance of the word of dance waving bananas in front of the costumes of history and becoming one with the muse, the mask, the anything I make from scrap--I'm homemade entertainment with puns building up a poem that, yes Ricardo, I sent out to you with mayonnaise dressing, with the earth-encrusted sandwich of my loneliness come to terms with the voice I have that danced through Europe's England and the avant-garde artists and wild poets' bohemian painter-splattered canvas yawp, folk tease, just singing the comic disaster of us all as only one person, just one lowly voice can, after the Popes, after the Kings after the democracies turned into bureaucracies and started killing themselves with 1984 Kafkas.


You came at me over the auditorium the first time I heard you and we all introduced ourselves to everything there was. The Southwest, so said crosscurrents, histories boiling up in each of us to boil over as now nothing boils over except violence, then it was creativity and change. And introduction to the seeming character of life and we all went out to introduce it over and over into everyone alive we touched and touched back getting older. A wild meeting in the air of our voices, yours and mine in the intertwining of snakes, history tells, the clatter of what is becomes singing out in words laid flat on the ground.

for Ricardo/1Feb90 a great tongue of music & king of melody of words . . . Larry Goodell

In Addition
small poem-note written on a copy of an article about Dr. Snchez . . . copies of a mailing to me from Dr. Randall Ackley concerning the upcoming Southwest Poetry Conference in Albuquerque, 1975


Eagle-Visioned/Feathered Adobes & Firecracker Soup many thanks to Cinco Puntos Press, El Paso, Texas

Please see for works and many other items available concering Dr. Snchez. Please see and for an extensive album of New Mexico oriented poets & artists for further links to activities of Mr. Goodell

duende books
po box 571 placitas, new mexico

Dr. Ricardo Snchez 1941-1995

A Review by Larry Goodell of Ricardo Snchez A Review by Ricardo Snchez of Larry Goodell 2 Letters by Ricardo A Poem by Larry Goodell In Addtion . . . notes by Dr. Randall Acklay on the Southwest Poetry Conference 1975

Photograph Rikrd-Sergei Snchez

a duende booklet 2012