The Bomb Drops on Ocean Beach.

by on June 16, 2010 · 13 comments

in Culture, Media, Ocean Beach

poet SA Griffin

Poet SA Griffin with Elsie in tow.

by Mike James

Poet and actor S.A. Griffin has just journeyed across America in a gas-sucking Ford Econoline van with his sidekick Elsie. At libraries, coffee shops and bookstores from California to North Carolina, S.A. would wheel Elsie out of the van and sit her in a corner. People were immediately drawn to her beauty, yet they probably felt an underlying apprehension knowing her tumultuous past. Within her they knew was where her redeeming soul resides.

She was not human; she was once a dull gray Cold-War Era military practice bomb, lovingly refurbished into shiny brightly colored receptacle of words. Transformed, she was given a name Elsie after S.A.’s late grandmother, a name that symbolized redemption and unconditional love. She was the Poetry Bomb.

For the past few decades, S.A. Griffin has been a sharing his view of the world through his Beat-infused poetry. A constant on the L.A. Poetry scene he has also selflessly promoted other poets as well.

The basis of his latest project, Couch Surfing Across America Tour of Words, featuring Elsie, The Poetry Bomb, was a means to share his passion of the written word with the rest of the country.

The idea lay dormant for a while until the chance find of the bomb itself on Craigslist. After much planning and preparation, S.A. and Elsie hit the road. Through the initial publicity, she was already partially filled with poems submitted by people from throughout the country. At each stop attendees were invited to submit their poems to be added to the growing stack within Elsie.

After over 10,000 miles the trustworthy, non-economical Econoline* has safely brought S.A. and the poem-laden bomb, Elsie, back to Southern California.

On Monday, June 21th at 6:00pm (summer solstice) Ocean Beach will be the final stop of the tour for S.A. and the Poetry Bomb.

They will be guests of the Drunk Poet’s Society’s weekly soiree at Winston’s.

S.A. will share the symbolism of the Poetry Bomb as well as read random poems from the road. Audience members are also invited to bring their poems to be added to Elsie.**

RSVP’s are encouraged.!/event.php?eid=127573440610052&ref=mf


*Donations to fuel the Econoline back to L.A. from Ocean Beach would be greatly appreciated.

** Poems should be on 8.5×11 piece of paper with name, city and state.

Mike James is one of the older brothers of Pat James, co-owner of James Gang Graphics. S.A.’s cousins, the O.B. James Gang brothers, share the same grandmother, Elsie, who loved Ocean Beach.

{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

S.A. Griffin June 16, 2010 at 9:54 am

Thanks cuz, you’re the best. Looking forward to coming to OB.

Yep, that gas guzzling Ford Econoline did work its magic, delivering myself and Elsie safely to folks all over the country. From L.A. to North Carolina, Chicago to Sacramento and Grass Valley, then home again. Elsie is seven feet long, so I needed something reliable that could carry her, whatever she came with, and five weeks worth of living for myself. I can tell you this, regardless of how much gas this very thirsty beast consumes, it runs like a top and fears no mountains! And Elsie rolled in supreme comfort on her very own fold out bed wrapped nicely in my son Spencer’s old quilt.

See you and all the Drunk Poets on Monday for Elsie’s final gig on the road.

Life is a blast, live it!

The Poetry Bomb loves you.


Jon June 16, 2010 at 10:19 am

Where can I get a suit like that?!


Sunshine June 16, 2010 at 1:09 pm

maybe he’d be willing to trade that mustache of yours for it.


joyce June 16, 2010 at 1:26 pm

is that mike james of the james gang……well, then….hi


Shane Finneran June 16, 2010 at 2:30 pm

Dang it…I’d definitely come check out S.A. at Winston’s if I wasn’t in the Midwest. I’m also going to miss the OB Street Fair…double dang it. Anyways, break a leg, and say “what up” to Sacreligious Dave for me!


Pat June 16, 2010 at 5:53 pm

That’s right Mike, Grandma Elsie did love OB.
So did Mom. I remember her sticking up for OB when people talked trash about it.
Even with it’s all it’s issues it was an unconditional love, like her love for us.
We had many family gatherings here, including family reunions.
I’m excited SA is doing the last show of his Poetry Bomb Tour here.
His first show was at Encinitas Library. Now he’ll finish in OB another San Diego beach town. SA, I’m glad you made it home safe. I’m proud of you for taking this idea and running with it. Looking forward to seeing you monday.


Gary Gilmore June 17, 2010 at 8:53 am

Hey Pat! Nice article… Keep up the good work.


Mike James June 17, 2010 at 12:36 pm

Thanks Gary,


Sunshine June 21, 2010 at 7:26 am

hey, this is tonight at winstons. anyone going?


S.A. Griffin June 21, 2010 at 7:28 am

Yeah, I’ll be there… getting ready to lift off from sunny, funny Los Angeles in a few hours. See ya there!


Patty Jones June 21, 2010 at 12:14 pm

Welcome to OB, SA – Don’t Beat Our Buns.


Pat June 21, 2010 at 8:00 am

I’m glad you’ll be there, since you are the bomb.
Looking forward to it.


Pat June 27, 2010 at 9:50 am

If any of you missed SA Griffin’s poetry bomb show last Monday at Winstons- here’s a link from drunk poets facebook site. It was a great show.


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