from Broken Pencil #48

World Ball Notebook is a series of reminiscences that come together as an embryonic whole. It’s a book artfully structured to evoke the world weary, cynical, yet somehow optimistic view of East L.A.’s Sesshu Foster. This isn’t the sweeping canvas of his previous novel, the masterful Atomik Aztex, it is, instead, a book of quiet, weirdly hilarious, yet searing moments. Mixing poetry, prose, memory and music, Foster evokes an exhausted, depleted America full of people looking for the next scene, justifying their self obsessions (“the way i fight back against it all is by maintaining a totally organic vegetarian diet”) and driving “the freeways as if hounded by wordless, mindless fury.” But this isn’t a book about the big picture. It’s a slowly stitched together collection of small incidents that gradually start to seem more defiant than random, more funny than futile. “When officer lilly of the beehive state says there is a strong smell of alcohol, I’m going to search your vehicle, you translate this to mean, I refuse however to recall the frogs flattened on this highway of a summer, I must live in this present.”