Monthly Archives: April 2015

Lampost Banners Celebrate National Poetry Month in LA

Steven Reigns the first Poet Laureate for the city of West Hollywood is celebrated along with other poets (23 banners in all) in California. Story about Reigns and his work can be found in this article from the Advocate

“The city already has installed 22 lamppost banners along Santa Monic Boulevard to highlight poetry and poets. “Public art is consumed by more people than any work at a museum. I want big exposure for poetry,” said Steven Reigns, the city poet, who curated this month’s events. “The great thing about lamppost banners advertising museum exhibitions is that our streets are lined with great works of art. It prompted me to think this would be the best way to expose mass amounts of people to poets and poetry.”

(excerpted from

Those lucky enough to live in LA can wander the streets and in a Narnian milli-second hold on to a lampost and enjoy reading poems or sit in an outdoor cafe or pub and have drinks and enjoy this of so Californian scene! or check out the various workshops and readings.

Banner On!

Comments on the Guardian Article from Barbara Kraft

Barbara Kraft For anyone one interested in the last days of Nin’s life you might want to read my book Anaïs Nin: The Last Days published by Pegasus Books in paper and as an ebook by Paul Herron’s Sky Blue Press. The book has been very well reviewed and while I was interviewed by Sady Doyle she did not include me or a mention of my book in her article. I was with Anaïs Nin constantly the last two and a half years of her life and one evening, shortly before she died, at her request I got in bed with her and held her in my arms because she was in such terrible pain.From the press release:

“As Noel Riley Fitch, author of Anaïs:The Erotic Life of Anaïs Nin, writes of Kraft’s book: “An intimate and beautiful portrayal of the final years and painful death of Anaïs Nin … This compelling memoir is honest, critical, and full of perceptive insights into the relationships between Nin and her men.”Of all the young women I’ve worked with you are the one most like me,” Nin told Kraft as she lay dying.”

Kraft describes her initial meeting with Nin in February 1974, writing that Nin was poetry embodied and seemed to ‘glide’ over the rose-colored carpet of her Silver Lake home ‘like a swan skimming the surface of still waters.’ And in December of that year she begins what was to become a chronicle of Nin’s terrible two-year battle with cancer……As Kraft writes a few days before she died, Anaïs whispered her final dream into my ear… “I dreamed that I had all my dresses and capes laid out on the floor and that we were going to have them copied exactly for you so that when I am well we can go out together as twins…. But someone told me that was foolish because I could not get up and go out and that we could not be twins together.” Barbara Kraft

For those who followed the comments on Sadly Doyle’s article in the Guardian as the patron saint of social media, we thought we’d add Barbara Kraft’s comments here to the Guardian. Author of the riveting, remarkable reminiscence Anaïs Nin: The Last Days we recommend that you buy this book in paperback. Doyle lives up to her name when she chose sadly not to reference this luminous text.

We are sorry we do not have the man or woman power to handle comments on this blog. The site used to have a beautiful guestbook and also a news and event board. Sadly after some years both were over run by spammers, trolls and porno freaks. This despite passwords, registration and secure logins. Our stalwart web maven Cynthia Archer sat over morning coffee for a year wiping out the trash of the night before and saving the lovely or critical but always politic, polite and professional suggestions and comments but her Amazonian heroics over morning coffee began to effect her day. So we were forced to pull the plug. Believing like Nin about joy in the taste of coffee!

“Joy appears now in the little things. The big themes remain tragic but a leaf fluttered in through the window this morning, as if supported by the rays of the sun, a bird settled on the fire escape, joy in the taste of coffee–Joy accompanied me as I walked to the press. The secret of joy is the mastery of pain.”

—Anaïs Nin

Thanks for the shoutout Steven Reigns

At the Nin event in LA March 28th, the organizer and coordinator of the event Steven Reigns was kind enough to give a shout out for our site in the program along with putting up two photo views of the site in the introductory slide show to the event along with a picture of this writer when she first met Nin in person at the Celebration weekend. I don’t have that photo handy since I am traveling so have captured a photo from  I Ching Expert Extraordinaire, Adele Aldridge’s marvelous memory of Nin on our Celebrations page.

Steven also showed a picture of amazon com from those early days of the web when the style de jour was flashing banners and lurid colors! He showed a picture of  the in the early days taken from an article by Nicholas Carlson entitled What The Internet Looked Like in 1996 (he also wrote  Marissa Mayer and the Fight to Save Yahoo)

Because of Steven’s kind words, this site realized it owed a shout out to the young designers (who we found when they designed the web site for the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago) and so today we posted it on Imurg minutes ago, please  if you enjoy this site…go to and click share to send this info on!

This site was created pre-Google, 17 years, 8 months, 23 days Xeno Media in Chicago. First copyright@ 1998. Google white space not yet the industry standard (when Google site launched Nov 11, 1998 the web standard style was screaming banners. No white space. But the Nin site was designed before Google brought white space to the internet. Kudos to the Xeno crew from a grateful client who only insisted that our site have no ads or flashing banners.

A Diary Means Yes Indeed: Tristine Rainer and Diana Raab

In a Diana’s Notebook blog post about her friend Tristine Rainer, writer and transpersonal psychologist Diana Raab, author of Dear Anaïs writes:

“My dear friend, Tristine Rainer, a powerful an accomplished woman in her own right (see her website) was Anaïs’ friend and protegee and their relationship left an indelible mark on Tristine. Often at lunch, Tristine will quote what Nin would have said or done in a given situation. Recently, I had asked Tristine to share the most important thing she learned from Nin, and she said “I learned that a crazy young woman in her twenties can become a joyful, wise woman in her sixties. It was her [Nin’s] belief that we can transform ourselves and our lives through self-creation. And that diary writing was a way.”

Rainer is the founder and the Director of the Center for Autobiographic Studies. A pioneer in journal writing and narrative autobiography Rainer co-taught a course with Anaïs and is the author of Your Life As Story and The New Diary. Both books are bibles for the memoir/journaling movement initiated from the famous and sometimes infamous Diaries. (visit the New Yorker’s cartoon bank to see the witty Jack Ziegler cartoon on the subpoenaed diaries of Anaïs Nin).

Anaïs wrote the forward to Rainer’s The New Diary. More on the Rainer-Nin connection can be found on the Anaïs Nin Blog Sky Blue Press.

Gertrude Stein’s comment about diaries seems particularly apt here: “A Diary means yes indeed”.

A hearty shout out of Yes Indeeds to these two talented writers, fellow PhDs, friends and memoirists, Rainer and Raab who we met at the extraordinary Nin event held in Los Angeles last Saturday coordinated by West Hollywood’s first poet laureate, Steven Reigns. More on the conference Anaïs Nin’s Influence: Women Who Knew Nin. later when official photos are posted. Personal photos from the afternoon will be added in upcoming posts.

To Order The New Diary with the Forward by Anaïs Nin

Picture your story here and order Your Life As Story