Monday, July 17, 2006


raúlrsalinas is a literary luminary who has shared podiums and microphones with giants such as Miguel Piñero, Pedro Pietri, Oscar Zeta Acosta, John Trudell, Jose Montoya, Ernesto Cardenal and Lawrence Ferlinghetti, among many others, raúlrsalinas has also been a tireless crusader for human rights and social justice, as reflected in his work with the Amerian Indian Movement and the Leonard Peltier Defense Committee and his writing clinics for at-risk youth in countless juvenile detention facilities and community centers nationwide.

Author of three poetry collections Viaje/Trip (chapbook), East of the Freeway, and Un Trip Through The Mind Jail, plus the forthcoming Indio Trails: A Xicano Odyssey through Indian Country (Wings Press) as well as two spoken word CDs Los Many Mundos of raúlrsalinas: Un Poetic Jazz Viaje con Friends (Calaca Press/Red Salmon Press) and Beyond the BEATen Path (Red Salmon Press). His literary work has appeared in numerous anthologies and journals. He is also an adjunct professor at St. Edwards University, Austin, Texas. In 2002, raúlrsalinas was the recipient of the Louis Reyes Rivera Lifetime Achievement Award presented on behalf of La Causa student group at Amherst College, Mass. and The Dark Souls Collective. In March of 2003, he was honored with the Martin Luther, Jr., César Chavez, Rosa Parks Visiting Professorship Award given by the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor.

Born in Texas on March 17th, 1934, raúlrsalinas is one of the few remaining poetic voices from a special circle of writers that includes Jose Antonio Burciaga, Ricardo Sanchez, Piñero and the recently passed Pietri. A people's poet who has dubbed himself, effacingly, the "cockroach poet," Salinas has traveled the globe as a representative of indigenous philosophies and revolutionary-humanist ideologies. Through it all he has remained faithful to the word as a curative, a restorative magic to be used for healing and redemption.

For the last several decades he has mentored aspiring writers, both in and out of his humble shop in Austin, Texas, Resistence Bookstore.

(Edited from an article by Alejo Sierra) -- DAO


Manuel Ramos said...

Raul is one of those legends who actually is entitled to that title. Thanks, Daniel, for posting about him, and I know that all of us here at La Bloga wish him well in his current struggle with health problems. Ray Rojas at Pluma Fronteriza,, has the most recent info as well as contact addresses for messages of support.

Anonymous said...

(last letter regarding raulrsalinas; address at end)

Saludos desde South Austin,

We would like to thank all our comrades, family, friends, & supporters for the good strong healing energy & prayers sent to our elder raul. We also want to thank everyone for their messages, cards, and gifts.

raul is on the slow road to recovery & is resting at home. As each day goes by, he is gaining strength & clarity, but he is still limited in mobility & energy.

He went to see his doctor today for a check up on his condition. His doctor gave him a "thumbs up"/approval to go ahead & conduct class tomorrow at St. Edward's University. But he warned raul not over do it. He also give him permission to slowly & to cautiously (at turtle speed) start going back to work at the bookstore with limited travel around the surrounding area.

So despite the good news about getting back into the swing of things, raul will not return to the office until sometime next week. He is being very cautious & conscious of getting energy and strength before getting back to work. After this coming Wednesday, he will gradudately begin to return everyone's phone calls, e-mails, and messages.

Also, raul will be going in for his first "banding" of the esophagus veins procedure on August 3. For the time being, family & close friends will closely moniter raul's health; i.e. make sure he eats well, drinks lots of water, & gets some excercise to keep the blood circulating.

Once again, if you would like to leave a message for raul, you can e-mail them to &/or call me Rene Valdez at 512-416-8885. I will relay any messages to him.

We thank everyone for their support, energy, & prayers in this time of struggle!

Con Respeto y En Lucha,

Rene Valdez
Resistencia Bookstore
Red Salmon Arts

Contributing Bloguistas: said...

Glad to hear the news that rrs' health is being managed. Back in 1974, maybe it was 1975, I shot several portraits of the poet reading at USC's Flor Y Canto, and, as I recall, some backstage stuff featuring rrs and several others, that may have included Alurista, Roberto Vargas, Ricardo Sanchez, maybe Zeta was backstage at the time. As I go through my archives, I'll revive the images and share them.