John Turi?s Tequila Mockinbird-Poetry and Prose
† † Twenty one pages into John Turiís Tequila Mockinbird-Poetry and Prose, the reader is reminded of the authorís disclaimer that the pieces in this collection are entirely "works of fiction." Turiís first words in, "There is Nothing" state, "There is nothing good that comes from reminiscence." So is it true what he claims: that this collection is purely a work of fiction? Not quite.
† † Granted this collection isnít self confessional, nor does it travel through spiritual or philosophical ruminations; nevertheless, Tequila touches upon the themes that run through Turiís psyche and emotional depths. In fact for such a short collection, Turi manages to run a gamut of themes-death, social commentary on rape, personal relationship dynamics, and finally to writing itself-all without losing a beat.
† † Turiís disclaimer can be taken to heart as much as Mark E. Smithís statement that his lyrics arenít about himself. This is especially true in his explorations of the male psyche, such as "Oedipus Doula," where clearly Turi manages to have done plenty of self exploration even as the ease of flow in his verse may lead the reader to think otherwise:
† † ďThe suffering of man is the key to his search
† † To drive the force of cock back into the woman
† † † † † † Is the only power a man thinks he is worth
† † Even if it is to a passing whore
† † † † † † Whose goal is give them selfÖ
† † ÖThe journey began when the first stench of breath
† † † † † † Was sucked
† † When man was flung into the world
† † † † † † To find her again
† † And when the time came for man
† † † † † † To show his rewards to the queen
† † All she could say was-
† † † † † † No, she is not the one, keep looking
† † The cunt who deserves my son waits
† † Smell her out and then come backÖĒ
† † Turiís prose manages to hide within the veil of fiction more easily. He makes good on his claim that Long Beach is the only city worth writing about, as he envelops these stories within with imagery of this city. His works are more character oriented, obviously, but the same themes touched upon the poetry portion are expanded and given new life and dimension using the characters in each story.
† † In the prose section the reader gets to meet the people who experience the emotions within the poetry. It is these people who ultimately make up the one central person that encompasses the emotional state of Turiís persona. It is this persona in turn that manages to make Tequila Mockinbird-Poetry and Prose a raw and focused exploration of the more bleak aspects of intimacy in human beings.
Tequila Mockinbird-Poetry and Prose, 2005 Medium Rare Books, ISBN 0-9745927-7-3
| Francisco J. Dominguez emigrated from Mexico to the United States at the age of 13. Since then, he has written and published a book of poetry, Estranged by the Airfields of Vienna. Fran's creative work is mostly comprised of short prose and free verse. As an immigrant, his endeavors are based on an outside-looking-in perspective. Fran is the art editor for poeticdiversity, and has been writing poetry for more than 10 years. He lives in Long Beach, California.