Poverty Hero Project

Poverty HerosLiterary and Visual Art honoring a new literary Hero - The Poverty Hero.

The Poverty Hero Project was a literary and visual art project launched in 2001 by artists at POOR Magazine in collaboration with Community Defense Inc. The three lead artists; Lisa Gray-Garcia, Leroy Moore and Dee Gray facilitated a series of 10 eight week workshops on the creation of this new form of literary hero.

These workshops culminated in a 55 page full color anthology published by POOR Press and a series of 12 radio narratives broadcast on PNN's KPFA radio show.

To get a copy of the book or CD of the radio shows please contact: POOR Press (415) 863-6306

The Poverty Heroes Project continues by honoring the lives of youth, adults and elders who have struggled, resisted, lived through poverty, racism, disability, criminalization and violence locally and globally.

To Terry, From Jack

June 2000

Your inspiration, encouragement and ethics will be with me forever. I will miss you. AND I promise to spell better in the future; perhaps.

To Trent, From Terry

June 2000

I mourn his loss tremendously. Not only because he was a good, decent, and committed activist, but also because he was the single most exceptional and talented writer I've ever seen come out of the homeless movement. His writing had enormous potential to create social change. He was able to write every kind of story on every subject and make it compelling, vivid, and inspiring.

To Trent, From Joe

June 2000

Last night on Friday, a man was found dead on San Francisco’s hard streets. I saw him once in a staff meeting; the name he went by was Trent. He was part of Media Alliance and participated in Community Newsroom at POOR. He had addiction problems; I don’t know the drugs used: it’s a non-issue. But Homelessness is ultimately what killed him.

To be homeless, focusing your mind on more than immediate food, shelter, and clothing is difficult enough to many, for some nearly impossible.

To Trent...From Tiny

June 2000



It was a small tree in the corner of a piece of partial nature only allowed to be there because it was the landscaped frame for a PGE processing plant ,,proving that poor people like us are not important unless we are sponsored by a corporation....


To Trent


Bent to that
demon wind
blowing from within
and without.

Without a home
curled tight to the needle,
cops slide you in to the
bag like you weren’t.


The Coalition on Homelessness and four kick- ass local bands linked claws on a Saturday night in August at the Hotel Utah in a joint effort to buy shopping carts for homeless folks.

If you have never had the pleasure of seeing the sun gleaming off the black, chitinoid armor of a Free Kart rolling down past the tourists in U.N. Plaza, you have not yet truly lived. If you can for a moment imagine a cross between the Stealth bomber, an angry dung-beetle and the Batmobile, you'd be getting close.

Hate McMuffin

On Friday, July 30 at around 7:45 am a long-time homeless resident of the Haight St. area was beaten by a private security guard at the McDonald's restaurant at Haight and Stanyan. His crime was asking for a receipt for a breakfast he purchased, in order to comply with the company's beverage refill policy.

Blood on the Clownsuit

He is a big man. He kills for a living. The more he kills, it seems, the bigger he get - and he has killed in over 40 states. He is Doug Ferrari, stand-up comic.

At six foot five, Ferrari is an imposing monolith of mirth with a track record in the volatile comedy industry that reads like the guestbook at Spago. He has performed with the best - from Robin Williams and Rodney Dangerfield to Elvis Costello and Sun Ra.


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