African-Italian poetry writer/Spoken Word performer based in San Francisco.
Allen has been doing creative writing since childhood, but it wasn't until his early twenties that he decided to get serious with it. For two decades, he has performed his original writtenwork live and is now a member of Poor Magazine's Po' Poets Project and the Revolutionary Poets Brigade. Similarly, Allen's work has appeared in numerous underground 'zines, newsletters, newspapers and webzines since the early 1990s, such as STRUGGLE, INDIGO, ROSEBLEED, FLIPSIDE [ R.I.P. ], HAIGHT-ASHBURY LITERARY JOURNAL, STREET SHEET, STREET SPIRIT, PEOPLE'S TRIBUNE, THE BURNING SPEAR, POOR MAGAZINE, SYNCHRONIZED CHAOS and MODESTO ANARCHO. Allen's work now appears in "Revolutionary Poets Brigade: Volume 1" [published by Caza De Poezia] and his first book "Boneyard"
And also his newest addition, Unwritten Law: Poems [1994-1011].
Prior to transitioning towards writing poetry, I wrote primarily song-lyrics. They were usually composed before music could be put to them. After working with various musicians I knew, of the 200 song-lyrics, only 6 had music added to them. Of those 6 finished songs, only 2 survived what I call "The Great Purge of 2000". None of the Heavy Metal bands I worked with made it past the garage.
Then, the McCook brothers – Billy, Josh and Shane – my blue-collar White post-high school friends, talked me into writing poetry. For girls they wanted to impress. My very first attempts at poetry were vague. I had trouble—on paper—trying to find the right words to say anything. I've gotten much better at poetry writing by mid-1992.
Between the late 1980s and the late 1990s, I have thrown my life's writtenwork into six notebooks – one big, black ring binder for original song-lyrics, five for original poems. During that time-period, I have had my writtenwork published in numerous underground 'zines & newsletters and even hard-bound anthologies by the National Library of Poetry and Sparrowgrass Forum. I have also, on the advice of guitarist friends, done Spoken Word performances at numerous houseparties, bars/taverns hosting open mic nights and nightclubs as an opening act for local & national musical groups [mostly in the Hardcore Punk genre].
By early 1998, backstabbing by four dozen folks in my own old local underground scene caused me to leave it. Hurt and friendless. I still wrote and submitted original works, but never did Spoken Word performances again.
By early 2000, I threw out six whole notebooks of creative writing. Twelve years worth. In the trash. In a moment of rage. After forcing out one abortive poem with a good starting line. It was the most thoughtless move I've ever made. Hella dumb.
Still, if it weren't for the power of photographic memory, the poems contained within "Boneyard" would've been lost to me forever. Three-fourths of everything else drawn from my pen, well – never survived the Great Purge.
Thank you, McCooks. Thank you, Paco. Thank you, Predice. Thank you for getting me started on my current path.