why jews celebrate x-mas

why jews celebrate x-mas
i. it’s the only time of the year all my mom’s people could get off work.
ii. it’s a production.
a. my grandma’s spread took days to lay out:
swedish meat balls in a hot and sweet brown sauce.
brisket in au jus (of course). mustard dip. farfalle
primavera. caramels, cookies and plenty of vodka.
iii. the main event was held just off the dining room
iv. the adults gathered for highballs and martinis (even though my
grandfather, a liquor salesman, never drank.)
v. this was the night he worked all year for.
vi. a room of family and a wall of presents, that cost money he made.
vii. proof he provided for his children and grandchildren.
viii. things you could touch and say my papa gave me this, this thing.
ix. this is the night, he felt most american
x. most fully


from the forth coming collection, Schtick, Spring 2013, Haymarket Books

pre-order here: http://www.amazon.com/Shtick-Kevin-Coval/dp/1608462706


“More Shit Chief Keef Don’t Like” Drops this Friday 7pm @Young Chicago Authors, 1180 N. Milwaukee

from the Preface:

Every institution in Chicago fails Black youth. Our city, as the young poet Malcolm London writes, is “a tale of two hoodies”: a segregated and systematically inequitable city, “a Jekyll-and-Hyde sort of burg” Nelson Algren would say. A town where white kids exist in an increasingly idyllic new urban utopia and Black and Latino kids—whose parents are working and not, due to the lack of jobs and job opportunities on the West, South and East sides, and the increasing abduction of men of color for prison industrial slave labor—weave and dodge through a war zone. Chicago is in America and this is not a new story. It’s a story as old as the country itself, stuck on repeat, blaring out a loud speaker.

Come to the chapbook release party FRIDAY Oct. 19 7pm @ Young Chicago Authors 1180 N. Milwaukee

Purchase a copy &/or Classroom set of the book from Haymarket Books here.



Teachers’ Strike in The Chicago Tradition

The revolution will not be standardized.

The assault on public education started here.

It needs to end here.

Karen Lewis, CTU President


of course the teachers march

in Chicago. they know

& inherit

& honor the history

of the many standing

against the tyranny

of the few


this is a union town

Most radical of all American cities:…

Big Bill Haywood’s town

Nelson Algren would say


this is a fight

against a mayor who is anti-union

who sold unions out in NAFTA

and the Clinton white house


the teachers strike for the heart & future

of public education

in this city

in this country.


they strike

after decades of republican-democrat strides

toward charters. toward the right

of public education being privatized.


they strike against Arne Duncan

Obama’s architect of standardized education

that privileges the privileged, whose kids are in the suburbs

or University of Chicago lab schools


the teachers strike

in the Chicago Tradition

allied with trade unionists

and Pullman Porters. in solidarity

with the Haymarket Martyrs

and Republic Window workers.


the teachers honor those who died

in the 1937 Memorial Day massacre

when cops shot steel workers.

they honor those who build

the country, who ensured the 8-hour day


in the name of;

Lucy Parsons

Albert Parsons

& Rudy Lozano

in the name of;

Gene Debs

Mother Jones

Addie Wyatt &

Jane Addams

in the name of;

Stud’s Terkel

his red socks

in solidarity, he rocks, from the grave.

he would’ve been on this picket line

with the teachers

fighting the good fight

in the long haul

standing with the many

against the tyranny of the few.

standing with the teachers

firmly rooted on the shoulders of giants

in the great & honorable

Chicago Tradition:

the good fight

fighting for the future

of All



in solidarity