I was saddened to read, belatedly, about the passing of Wanda Coleman shortly before Thanksgiving. Her writing is sprawling and energetic, her presence in the L.A. poetry scene iconic. She was like a walking electrical substation, discharging her lightnings as she sauntered along. She could do anger, raw humor, scorn—but her ground note was joy.
I owe her a debt of personal gratitude because she was the judge who chose a book of mine, Bed of Coals, for the Colorado Poetry Award back in 1995. The University of Colorado Press brought it out only in hardback, but it looks as if the long-awaited (perhaps only by me) paperback edition will finally be released sometime next year. (More on that when the time is rightr.) I dearly wish Wanda were going to be around to see it.