Serving House: A Journal of Literary Arts
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SHJ Issue 16
Spring 2017

[A True Humanitarian]

by Doris Bittar

I thought we would have Steve Kowit around for a couple of decades—to listen to and enjoy. I am so glad to have known Steve for many years as an activist. Then a year ago [2014] he read his poems with Eleanor Antin for the exhibit Labor-Migrant-Gulf at Southwestern College. He was physical, challenging, pedagogical, outrageous, funny, and right on. I will cherish that memory for the rest of my life. Here’s to you, Steve. So grateful to have crossed your path. And so grateful for all that you have done in your writings, especially the recent ones—for rights of Palestinians and a humane vision of the Middle East. A true humanitarian and a fully realized human being.

—First published on 5 April 2015 in response to “Last Will by Steve Kowit” in San Diego Free Press (3 April 2015); appears here with author’s permission


SHJ Issue 16
Spring 2017

Doris Bittar’s

interdisciplinary projects examine decorative motifs and how they intersect with historical and geopolitical legacies. Related activities include teaching, curating, writing, and activism. Her art is housed in several public collections in the United States and abroad. She works with the American Civil Liberties Union, is a core member of Gulf Labor, and co-founder of Gulf Labor West. Bittar received a Masters of Fine Arts from the University of California, San Diego and teaches at California State University, San Marcos.

“...we have been born here to witness and celebrate. We wonder at our purpose for living. Our purpose
is to perceive the fantastic. Why have a universe if there is no audience?” — Ray Bradbury