Sidewalk Cleaning: Alfred's Plaque
Here is Alfred, proud and excited, enjoying the honor of having his poem "Corrido Blanco" included in the Berkeley Poetry Walk. I have borrowed the photograph from Lorna Dee Cervantes's blog. Lorna was there sharing in Alfred's excitement. Last month as a way to memorialize him, three of Alfred's students--Robert Reyes, Harold Terezón, and Yo--got together to brighten up his plaque. Here are some photographs from our sidewalk cleaning/reading in memory of Alfred Arteaga.
This photograph is a "before" picture. That's Harold looking down at all the crud, grime, and even gum on Alfred's plaque.
Harold and I get to work. All three of us took turns scrubbing and reading from Alfred's works. Robert is taking the photographs; that's why you haven't seen him yet.
Harold starts to put some real muscle into the task.
Some reading. Some thinking.
From left to right: Yo; Robert; Harold. A woman going to the 24Hour Fitness down the street was kind enough to take this photo.
"After": Here is Alfred's plaque. Read it.
After the sidewalk cleaning/reading we went to Triple Rock and had some pints. We talked of doing it (the celebrating of Alfred's plaque) again. There's his birthday, May 2; there's the anniversary of his death, July 4; there's any day we might be walking down Addison St. At the bar we shared our best memories of him. Alfred loved everyone, and everyone loved Alfred.
Javier O. Huerta's debut collection Some Clarifications y otros poemas (Arte Publico 2007) received the 31st Chicano/Latino Literary Prize from UC Irvine. He is also the author of American Copia (2012). A graduate of the Bilingual MFA Program at UT El Paso, Huerta is currently a PhD student in the...