Ethiopians, Mayans, Bunnies and Bukowski…

The Evolution of Ethiopian Absolutism

The Evolution of Ethiopian Absolutism: The Genesis and the Making of the Fiscal Military State, 1696-1913“Since the early 1970s, the Ethiopian society witnessed swift, incredibly dramatic and profound changes in Ethiopia, the country to which the Bible’s description of heaven was said to refer. It had turned into a nightmare in a span of two decades. The myth of Ethiopia as the breadbasket of the Horn of Africa was shattered by hunger and starvation taking its toll of millions of lives.” In The Evolution of Ethiopian Absolutism: The Genesis and the Making of the Fiscal Military State, 1696–1913, Tsegaye Tegenu chronicles the Ethiopian move toward the standing army. “The author sets out to identify and explain the resource base of the Ethiopian state during its process of organizing into a centralised power in the period 1696 to 1913, and he succeeds considerably in this respect by marshalling a vast array of Ethiopian and foreign sources…”

Charles Bukowski Documentary is a must for poets…

Buy this DVD at!In the introduction to “Robert Kaufman: San Francisco Beat” my “extremely offensive” suggestion was that Jack Keroac had a little too much Robert Kaufman to lean on in San Francisco. This suggestion is extremely offensive to those who are almost instantly fatigued about the scope and depth of African contributions to European thought—including the word “thought” itself (study Thoth and get back to me). You can make a dynastic Hollywood entertainment executive who has multiple generations living off of Black genius become uncharacteristically enraged about the “historical partnership” his family has with that relatively poor Black family with its actor, musician, scientist, athlete, etc.

Buy this book at!The family of Charles Bukowski has their own rage and no Black people to blame for it. South of Keroac’s San Francisco in lonely Los Angeles, Bukowski went through his own authentic version of Black slavery—just let him tell you about how his German-American father compulsively beat him mercilessly. Bukowski is very open and honest about this in John Dullaghan’s documentary Bukowski—Born Into This. The title of this piece comes from the excellent, explicit poem “Dinosauria, We” from The Last Night of the Earth Poems.

The frank discussion in this film about how this writer had to make a living should be a requirement for all documentaries about the people we are taught to call “artists.” The storytelling in the film was so strong that it should be very, very difficult for fresh, young Bukowski fan to romanticize the life of the artist—especially the price paid for authenticity in expression. When your relations—especially your parents—can afford to send you to any reputable creative arts school then consider yourself a wealthy artist and compare your lot to that of Bukowski and shut your monkey-ass up!

And of course I am always fascinated about any old footage of Los Angeles. It was interesting to see black and white shots of the streets of 1970s Los Angeles…

Buy this book at!Apocalypto is an insult to Maya culture, one expert says…

Julia Guernsey: My first reaction was to the extraordinary, gratuitous violence. And the ending with the arrival of the Spanish (conquistadors) underscored the film’s message that this culture is doomed because of its own brutality. The implied message is that it's Christianity that saves these brutal savages. I think that's part of Gibson’s agenda, sort of, ‘We got the Jews last time (in The Passion of the Christ), now we'll get the Maya.’”

How to Draw a Bunny is a death lesson for young “artists”…

Buy this DVD at!John W. Walter’s How to Draw a Bunny introduces Ray Johnson to me. Ray Johnson is a viable but deadly alternative to Basquiat when the “artist” discovers true disdain for the social aspects of the art world. I’m not going to give away the deadly part to those who won’t read a biography and have not seen the DVD. Ray Johnson was to the museum and gallery world what Andy Kaufman was to the comedy club and television stage: these guys don’t really stop and get out of character. Even when money is about to be exchanged Ray Johnson would turn the financial transaction into a performance art piece. Depending on your artistic level of desperation you might call this cash-related behavior utterly stupid or a profound act of courage.

Most of ‘us’ cannot understand the depth of the rage for the “true artist” and their honest hatred for the very concept of a museum and the Styrofoam-cup aesthetics of a gallery show. Most of ‘us’ would accuse this “true artist” of being a liar, only pretending to hate because of some kind of childish reaction to childish rejection—and as soon as this “true artist” gets a chance at the limelight all of that hate suddenly vanishes. This samo story is very true but there are those in this creative world who are willing to die for their sincerity. The sad part is that eventually the gate keepers in the art world really don’t care. It’s not because these gate keepers are “holding back” their love and saving it for the right person. Life energy does not work that way. So let’s not waste our lives on those who really can’t afford to value human life.


Dan Schneider, 2007-07-12 17:51:52


rasx(), 2007-07-12 20:16:33

Dan, so do you think I'm insulting the legacy of Andy Kaufman by lumping him in with Ray Johnson?

Loida, 2007-07-14 16:49:22


For Immediate Release

Contact: Loida Mariano Bryan World Productions, LLC. Tel: 323.856.9256 Fax: 323.856.0855 email: GV6 FILM REVIEWS Press, Los Angeles, CA-- Multi Award-Winning Indie Filmmaker Bob Bryan is proud to announce the release of his new Documentary GV6 THE ODYSSEY: Poets, Passion & Poetry, The Complex & Compelling Face of Poetry. GV6 is the newest addition to the already highly lauded & distributed Graffiti Verite' Series 1-6. This Critically Acclaimed Poetry Documentary was created (according to the filmmaker) specifically for Adult & Young Adult audiences. GV6 THE ODYSSEY: Poets, Passion & Poetry (the film) truthfully explores the psyche', raison d'etre and the raw reality of 21st Century Contemporary Poets and their creative process and struggles.

How are Poets able to conjure powerful provocative mental images, stimulate secret passions, stir-up complex and unresolved personal issues in their audiences? What motivates these Poets to Confess, Create and Bend “Reality” ?

GV6 THE ODYSSEY DVD examines and reveals the truth behind 31 Multi-Ethnic Award-Winning Published and Respected Poets and their Poetic Creations in a seamlessly woven, uniquely honest visual tapestry. Defly guided by Multi-Award Winning Filmmaker Bob Bryan, GV6 synthesizes One-on-One Poetry Readings, Graphic Iconography, Creative insights, and dramatic poignant Interviews.

The end-result renders a shockingly honest and fascinating snapshot of the Private / Public world of todays' POETS and their oftentimes grossly misunderstood and underappreciated artform POETRY.

Decide for yourself what's going on...but only if you value the complete, raw and unadulterated truth !


"Bob Bryan's documentary film, GV6 THE ODYSSEY: Poets, Passion and Poetry is a monumental achievement. 31 poets candidly open their souls ... a cohesive presentation with text, graphics and visual images to produce a stunning film depicting the universality of poetry."

  • A Review by David Fraser , Ascent Aspirations Magazine

" As an educational tool, GV6 THE ODYSSEY spans the subject thoroughly, covering topics from why poets write and how they write, to how poems work and what makes the art form relevant and necessary. Woven together, Bryan s interviews with all the poets become an in-depth conversation about the meaning of poetry and the meaning of life.

If you teach High School or College English and are afraid to discuss and teach poetry with your students, or if you are not a teacher but know someone who is, order this DVD and give it to them. Thats how I feel about the educational quality of this documentary."

-A Review by Mindy Nettifee, editor-in-chief

"Quite simply, as a writer myself, my eyes didn’t leave the screen until the video ended. It was like nothing I had ever seen or had the pleasure of hearing such sound principles before. It’s hard to understand poetry from books or a classroom, but from the poets minds and voices themselves it all makes perfect sense. That is why this is such a great reference tool, because the poets are passionate, the art is real, and today, not from some textbook."

-A Review by Chad Myers,

"I find that part relentlessly fascinating, to hear where the writer got his start, what brought him in, what keeps him going... using that opportunity to try adding something onto your own ideas and beliefs. The idea is to get you thinking about sides of poetry you might not have looked at before. GV6 brings out this opportunity brilliantly, offering more perspective than I think I've ever seen gathered in a single place."

-Gabriel Ricard is a Staff Interviewer at Unlikely 2.0

"The secret life of poetry, poets, and how they think, work and live, is confessed in a candid style that is sometimes funny, sometimes freaky and sometimes thought provoking. It has an educational feel and would be suitable for teenagers." -Jayne Fenton Keane

"A cyclone collage of images, words and ideas and of course humor. What poetry is; where it came from and where it may go? If its dead, alive or in transition? How many forms it has; if it needs one in the first place? Does any of it make the slightest difference? This film at times causes tears, reveals hidden hypocrisies, small biting and beautiful glimpses of what may be called "Artistic Truth."

-Jack G Bowman, MA MFT

VIDEO LIBRARIAN - The Video Review Magazine for Libraries "Both the nature and the power of poetry are the subjects of Bob Bryan’s documentary...GV6 offers a collage of readings, observations, and recollections from 31 poets – an extremely varied group. Many of the featured poets are also teachers, who speak not only of their own need to write, but also of the positive effects of introducing their students to poetry... the film succeeds in illustrating their passion and commitment. " --F.Swietek


"If you can buy only one poetry program this year, buy this odyssey of 31 poets who read, rant, and philosophize about what they do. This treasure trove of contemporary poets spans all ages and ethnicitiesjust having them together here is exciting. Each poet is articulate and passionate.Viewers who already love poetry will be grateful to have so much solid poetry at hand and hear it read so well by its creators. Those new to poetry or unfamiliar with the art will get a gentle and stimulating education. High school and college students, as well as adults, should respond well to the film as there is so much here to discuss and explore. The bonus features include complete readings. Recommended for all collections. Poetry lives here! "

A Review by Ernest Jaeger, formerly with North Plainfield Pub. Schs., NJ



Wise Words of Encouragement from the Poets Complete Poetry Reading by the 31 Poets What is Contextual Poetry by Dr. Thea Iberall, Poet What is a Chapbook by Brenden Constantine, Poet Poets Contact Info

GV6 Internet Resources





Listing of Academic / Educational & Public Libraries that already have the Graffiti Verite' Series

GV Authorized Distributors :

Fax your Purchase Orders, use PayPal (GV website order),, rent @ Netflix or have your distributor order the complete series for you.

Interested in distributing GV6 THE ODYSSEY: Poets, Passion & Poetry? See contact info below.

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Dan Schneider, 2007-07-15 15:46:57

Neither were great artists so it's like comparing the fat plumber who shows off his ass crack with the smelly bum on the subway who falls asleep on your arm.