Roses

by Jose Sotolongo What kind of name is Octavian, anyway?” he had asked his mother when he was twelve and starting to look at girls.      He combed his hair meticulously in front of the bathroom mirror, turning this way and that, checking the shave job, getting ready for his date.  It was ten in the morning.      “You going out again?” his mother called in through the thin bathroom door.      “I haven’t been out today yet.”       “I mean this Saturday, today, again.  You promised your father you’d help clean the windows.”  It was May, and the screens … Continue reading Roses

Strike

by Jody Forrester             On August 15, 1970, in Salinas, California, seven thousand lettuce pickers went out on strike against the Teamsters and growers who refused to recognize their newly formed union. Before the sun rose that morning, Maria Dolores Sanchez, a United Farm Workers organizer, phoned me seeking reinforcements for the picket lines. We first met at an anti-war demonstration in San Francisco and exchanged telephone numbers for just this sort of call. Within an hour of activating the San Jose activist phone tree, five cars, all filled, gathered in front of my eastside apartment. Most held steaming cups … Continue reading Strike