Thursday, June 28, 2012

Don't Eat Fortune's Cookie



Love this.

Michael Lewis, a former art history major at Princeton, gives the 2012 baccalaureate speech at his alma mater entitled "Don't Eat Fortune's Cookie."

My favorite part:

"...don't be deceived by life's outcomes. Life's outcomes, while not entirely random, have a huge amount of luck baked into them. Above all, recognize that if you have had success, you have also had luck—and with luck comes obligation. You owe a debt, and not just to your Gods. You owe a debt to the unlucky."
(Read the book Moneyball before you see the movie. Liar's Poker is on my list of summer reads.)

Submissions Party
















On Tuesday night, a few folks from my writers group gathered for a Submissions Party. We brought extra copies of poems, envelopes, stamps, journals we’ve received during the past—and desserts (can’t leave out desserts!)—in an effort to jumpstart the process of sending submissions.

Part of the evening was spent swapping war stories: receiving our poems back without a rejection letter or slip; publications that take a year to respond; online submissions that get “lost”; comments sent by editors missing a sensitivity chip; multiple rejections from reputable places that publish inferior work (I know, poetry is in the eye of the beholder). You get the idea.

Just vocalizing our hopes for publication makes the process seem more real. And now, we are more accountable to each other than ever before. The stakes are higher because we’ve invested in each other. Not only have we committed to submitting work, despite our individual self-doubts, real or imagined, we have raised the stakes as to where we want our work to appear.

It will be interesting to have another submissions party later this year to see whose poems have been picked up by which journals. I'm incredibly optimistic about the odds of success, however. There’s something about putting our goals into the universe as a collective and seeing what comes back that just feels right.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Poetry Challenges in the Spirit of Frank O’Hara’s Lunch Poems

From the MoMA Website:
On June 8 and 15, poet-scholars Stefania Heim and Wayne Koestenbaum shared their favorite “lunch poems” by the beloved poet Frank O’Hara—who worked on and off at MoMA from 1951 to 1966—in the Museum’s Sculpture Garden at lunchtime. They effortlessly elicited O’Hara’s humor, earnestness, and timelessness, while also giving the public the chance to experience what his creative process might have looked and felt like.

Both Heim and Koestenbaum pose a challenge to all of you: go out onto the streets of New York and write your own lunch poems according to their prompts and guidelines.
I think it's a great challenge whether you live in NYC or not. Whether you fudge and write them at dinner, or whenever, this could be fun!

Stefania Heim’s Challenge:


LUNCH POEM RECIPE
(Please use as many of these as possible in constructing your lunch poem)
1.A description of the contents of your pocket or bag
2.One food item you or someone you see is eating
3.One foreign phrase, place name, or the name of a foreign head of state
4.One instance of personification
5.The current day and time (ideally this should interrupt other action in the poem)
6.The weather and your opinion about it
7.One sentence you hear someone say
8.One existential question
9.A comparison of someone you see to a famous person
10.One thing you wish you were doing
11.One literary reference
12.Your current attitude toward love

Or see Wayne Koestenbaum’s challenge--18 prompts/assignments in the spririt of Frank O'Hara's lunch poems. Some really great ideas to spark creative thinking.





Confession Tuesday

Happy Summer! Happy Tuesday! Share a bit of yourself with us and we promise to do the same.
















I'm still a little sore from the trip to Misery Islands, but not where you might expect. The area around my collar bones ache. It’s the spot where most people get a neck massage. I think it was because I was really tense. Had to quell my thoughts of tipping over and dying at sea–that tension had to go somewhere. I did remember to breathe, however.

Having made the trip, I feel a great sense of accomplishment. Sometimes I make such arbitrary goals. Going to Misery was like finding Atlantis for me. It’s real. It exists. And I was there.

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My task now is to re-read the "Misery Islands" poem to see if there's anything I want to tweak. But I think the poem holds up well considering I wrote it without visiting the islands. I like the poem's  mythic quality.

I'll also start the process of selecting the book cover. I'm open to a photo or something more conceptual. I'll work with a graphic designer on the cover, and then I'll submit it to my publisher for approval.

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For the record, I only capsized once. It was close to shore and it was because I couldn’t maneuver around a surfer.

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Not only did I make it to Misery, I also re-grouted the bathtub on Sunday.

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Getting there took about an hour, but getting back too longer and it was hard. I mean HARD! I consider myself in good shape, but kayaking is all upper body strength. When I told Dawn and Marilyn all I could think about was a title of one of Anne Sexton's books, The Awful Rowing Toward God, Dawn recited Emily Dickinson's "Wild Nights, Wild Nights”:

Wild Nights – Wild Nights! (249)


Wild Nights – Wild Nights!
Were I with thee
Wild Nights should be
Our luxury!

Futile – the winds –
To a heart in port –
Done with the compass –
Done with the chart!

Rowing in Eden –
Ah, the sea!
Might I moor – Tonight –
In thee!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Misery Islands

Yesterday I kayaked to Misery Islands! Twelve miles roundtrip!

Accompanied by Dawn Paul and Marilyn McCroy, we set out early to explore Great Misery and Little Misery. For those who don't know, Misery Islands are a pair of islands off the coast of Beverly, MA, in Salem Sound. In the 1910s and 1920s, there was a resort with cottages built on Great Misery. But a brush fire destroyed the buildings, leaving many stone structures and foundations is tact.

When I heard the story of the islands, Great Misery in the shadow of Little Misery, it became a metaphor for my divorce. Eventually it became the title poem of my second book, Misery Islands (CavanKerry Press 2014). But I had written the poem without ever stepping foot there. So I felt like I needed to go before the book was published. And, I thought it would be cool to get photos of the structure for a possible book cover.

Now, I have been famously quoted as saying, "I hate nature." I really have no problem with nature, it's the mosquitoes, ticks, poison ivy/oak/sumac that freaks me out. And kayaking? The truth is that I really like kayaking. But haven't been in one in about 10 years. I can't imagine living inland. There's something calming about living so close to the water. And in New England, to paraphrase Dawn, the water is so cold that kayaking is one of the best ways to experience the ocean. 

The islands are now property of The Trustees of Reservations. Much of the island is wild. Lots of meadows with daisies and beach roses. They cut large paths so people can explore or spend the day at the beach. Quite frankly, I was surprised how many families with boats were there. But you can see out to the Atlantic for miles from all sorts of vantage points. And thankfully, I managed to avoid all the poison ivy along the trails. Ugh. 

I took more than 100 photos yesterday; wish I could post them all. The structures are amazing. Could not have asked for a better day or better company for my first trip to Misery.

Enjoy these photos!


Marilyn and Dawn at Lynch Park












Friday, June 22, 2012

Happy Friday




It's 93 degrees outside and my kids pick today to set up the lemonade stand. Got to hand it to them, they know when to pounce on an opportunity.

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I have a post up at Mass Poetry based on my talk at the Peabody Library.

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Tomorrow, I am headed out to Misery Islands with Dawn Paul! My second book, Misery Islands, is based on these mostly uninhabited islands off the coast of Beverly. It's a 3-4 mile kayak trip. There's a chance of thunderstorms in the morning, but with any luck we should get out there without incident, and spend a little time exploring the ruins and taking pictures for my book cover. I'm so excited! 

Dawn promises I won't drown or tip over at sea. Here's hoping our experience at Misery Islands is a pleasant one.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Wednesday Roundup

Per usual, I am writing at the Salem Athenaeum with my group for a few hours before the day gets started. It will be 90 degrees for the next three days. Woo hoo!

Whenever people complain about the heat, I remind them that in seven months the tempertures will drop about 90 degrees.

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Wesley McNair talks about his latest project: an innovative online exhibit featuring correspndeneces between Wesley and Donald Hall from 1976-1983.

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ForeWord Review reviews Kevin Carey's new book The One Fifteen to Penn Station.

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Sandra Beasley: "My super-ambitious side wants to think that all it takes is a couple of days to pull out of a bad stretch, but sometimes it takes longer."

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Sandy Longhorn: "Fact: There is no magic formula for creating a book of poetry. If anyone tries to tell you differently, they lie."

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"Are You Serious About Your Writing?" by Dan Sklar

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Confession Tueday

Happy Tuesday, folks! Welcome to Confession Tuesday. Share a little of yourself and we promise to do the same.













The kids are I have come down with Summeritus!


Symptoms
  • insatiable need to play, laugh, stay up late, stick toes in ocean
  • must be around other people
  • cravings for foods cooked on a grill
  • chronic bubble-blowing and water-gun fights
  • inability to use technology for extended periods of time
I hear it happens around the summer solstice. Maybe you're suffering from it, too?

Treatment
  • sunblock 
  • flip flops
Take two freeze pops and call me in the morning!

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The last few years have been such a transition for us as a family that I had forgotten how much I enjoy entertaining at home. So that's what we've been doing for the last few months, but it's really picked up over the past few weeks. We've been grilling on our new gas grill (which I put together) quite a bit. Last week I made flatbread pizzas--if you've never grilled a pizza you MUST try it. Last night, we grilled chicken and burgers with other poet moms for a potluck. Love it! We've also been to lots of cookouts and gatherings recently so the summer is really getting off to a great start.

Today I'm feeling grateful for the community of friends we're lucky to be a part of. Thanks for helping bring laughter back into our home.

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Thanks, C, for the "porn corn!"

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Looking over my poetry to-do list, a few things have fallen off. The one thing I seem to be doing consistently, however, in not writing. *sigh* Did get some revisions and submissions out of the way, so that's a plus.

Poetry to do's

  • Write two poems
  • Start big project (will go into details another time)
  • Read two manuscripts for friends
  • Organize poems to revise/submit for publication
  • Write one article
  • Start research for third manuscript
This list feels light. What am I forgetting? Hmmm ...

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I bought a very cool new journal, which is actually an artists' travel sketchbook. It's got this cool magnetic flap that keeps the pages from getting frayed, and a built-in pencil holder--which I promptly replaced with my favorite pen.

Also, I have a journal given to me by a dear friend that I'm going to use for morning thoughts/gratitude pages. I just have to remember to use it first thing.

Hoping the change in routine will help me be a more consistent writer.

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Porn corn. Say it loud, say it proud.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Dustin Brookshire: To the One Who Raped Me







 
Dustin Brookshire
To the One who Raped Me (Sibling Rivalry Press 2012)
Preorders available on 6/19
$12.00; 34 Pages
ISBN: 978-1-937420-20-8

$1 from every chapbook sold directly through the publisher
will be donated the Dekalb Rape Crisis Center.




I don’t do reviews very often, but I am pleased to feature Dustin’s Brookshire’s chapbook, To the One Who Raped Me, on my blog.

This collection is a straight-forward account of rape.

In 2006, Dustin Brookshire was raped by a former boyfriend. To the One Who Raped Me is a book not just of sexual abuse--an experience that can only be described as hellish--but an attempt to reconcile the past and present. Television and movie images of sexual abuse are used to contrast Hollywood images to real-life trauma. Interspersed between poems with titles such as “Law and Order SVU,” “Wreckage,” and “My Therapist Asks What Image Haunts Me,” are statistics and commentary on rape, which act as section breaks.  

"There are 525,600 minutes in a non-leap year. That makes 31,536,000 seconds in every year. So: 31,536,000 divided by 248,300 comes to one sexual assault every 127 seconds, or about one every two minutes."
These breaks work well to give the reader a moment of pause and reflection.

Dustin’s poems are economical and direct. His acute self-awareness overcomes any hint of sentimentality. His narrative style speaks volumes in handling the delicate subject of male rape as one poem flows into the next. He makes this very personal experience feel significant and relevant, reminding us of the deep importance of poetry and how it helps us make sense of difficult subject matter.

My favorite poem in the collection is the title poem, which is also the final poem.

 
TO THE ONE WHO RAPED ME

I cringe now when there's a rape scene
in a movie.  My stomach cramps
like a bully has hit me.
I turn cold.
Beads of sweat form a crown
of shame across my forehead.

I want your mother to know—
to question where she went wrong.
I want you to stare into her eyes
as she asks you.  Feel her pain.   

I often think of ways you could die—
car wreck, allergic reaction, a robbery.
My therapist says it is normal
to have these thoughts, to want you
to die, but  important to admit
your suffering won't bring me happiness.

What I want is impossible:
to erase the moment after,
when you looked at me and smiled.  



Sibling Rivalry will take preorders starting June 19, with a publication date of August 7. For every chapbook purchased through Sibling Rivarly’s website, the publisher will donate $1 to the Dekalb Rape Crisis Center.

Bravo to Dustin for turning his pain into poetry, and helping others in the process of healing. Visit Dustin's blog at DustinBrookshire.com.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Kibbles and Bits

Happy Fathers' Day, dad! Love you.

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What pops up in rotation on iTunes? John Mayer's "Daughters." Seems appropriate for Fathers' Day.

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Now that kids are out of school, we've been busy with lots of year-end parties and play dates. I'm at Starbucks for a few hours while the kids are hanging out with friends. Happy for a low-key day. Happy to read a little, write a little.

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I have been thinking for a while that I need to get away to a writers' retreat or artists' colony. Would like to go for a week, but a weekend in the summer will do. Any suggestions on an East Coast retreat that doesn't have a big application process? I'm looking for someplace I can go on short notice. Would like some interaction with other writers, but not complete isolation.

Also, are there any kid-friendly writers' retreats? This has come up again and again in conversation with other poet moms. Does such a place exist?

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Just found out that Rodney King died this morning. So much pain in his life. Hope he's at peace now.

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Now playing on iPod: Marvin Gaye's "Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler)."

Friday, June 15, 2012

Best Facebook Poetry Status Update EVER!

Photo by Katie Fanara




















YES!

"I want a poetry house with a poetry room where I can sleep in a poetry bed in my poetry pajamas, then wake up to my poetry alarm, take a poetry shower, put on my poetry clothes, poetry socks and poetry shoes, then take a nice long poetry walk with my poetry dog, after which I would eat my poetry breakfast and get to work writing poetry until my poetry lunch, then write again until poetry snack, then poetry supper with my poetry partner, at which time I might go to a poetry event or get to read some of my poetry, then go home and watch a poetry show or two, have a nice poetry conversation, write some more poetry, and finally get back into my poetry bed and dream a dream that will become poetry."

~Lori Desrosiers


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Confession Tuesday

Heeeeello Tuesday! Time for your confessions. Unburden yourself. Share a little with us and we promise to do the same.

I'm sitting in Starbucks with an extra hour on my hands before chaperoning my daughter's first grade class through the streets of Salem. Then off to work. Could not have done this in my previous job and work schedule, so I am feeling grateful for a lot of things this morning.

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Yesterday I was listening to Oprah's Soul Series on satellite radio. While she was speaking to her guest, she mentioned that she had a "trust team." These are people she turns to for advice, in a way that goes beyond mentorship. Who's part of Oprah's Trust Team? Maya Angelou, Sidney Poitier, Bill Cosby, and Quincy Jones. You can't go wrong with a trust team like that. But it got me thinking about the idea of a trust team.

We always need mentors; I know I've had a few in various stages of my life. Still do. I also have a terrific circle of friends and, in particular, poet friends, who are just there for me no matter what. But a trust team offers guidance and friendship beyond the mentor-mentee relationship. They tell you the truth from a seasoned perspective. Virtual or in person, I guess I've had a team for a while without actually calling this group of friends a team.

Do you have a trust team in your life? If so, how have they helped you?

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While at dinner before his reading at the Salem Poetry Seminar, Afaa Michael Weaver told me that the "poetry boogeyman is coming to get me." I have no idea what he meant but now I'm freaked out.

Hmmm ....

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Submitted poems yesterday to three publications. Felt good to get those babies out into the world. Like pushing babies out of the nest to see if they will fly.

Of course, I would never do that to real babies ...

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Kathleen Flenniken's Plume arrived in the mail yesterday. Can't wait to read it. It's a well-made book. I like the cover, the interior pages, and the artwork. I like the way the pages feel. I have no doubt the poems match up to the package.

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Seriously, this is the only type of boogie man I want knocking on my door.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Filling the Well



















This is my room with a view. Notice the nautical-themed wallpaper and and the choo-choo train lamp.

Jennifer and I escaped for a long weekend in Gloucester, MA, to "fill the well" as we like to say. We leave our families for a few days to eat, sleep, talk, and think about poetry and the po biz. This year, the weather is cooperating. And while we've spent most of our time indoors, it's been an extremely productive time. Here's what I have learned:
  1. I need more than a weekend. I'm more determined than ever to do a weeklong workshop/retreat.
  2. I wrote one poem and revised five. Is that good? I think so.
  3. Had the chance to plot out my third book with a loose timeline 
  4. No matter what, I need to be a more consistent writer, as in write a poem a week 
  5. Time to start submitting to journals again. (*sigh*) 
  6. Read Sandra Beasley's book I Was the Jukebox and loved it.
Jennifer, on the other hand, has plotted out her next project and has written several drafts. Can't wait to see the process during the next year.

One thing I did pick up at a local bookshop was the spring and summer edition of Poetry Northwest, the science issue. Excellent. Pick it up if you get a chance. Especially enjoying Bob Hicok's poem "Ecstasy."

Sad to leave the retreat but I'm feeling inspired and energized about my work. Here's hoping we can get away again before year's end.

Saturday, June 09, 2012

In Retreat

After a poetry-filled week courtesy of the Salem Poetry Seminar, I have retreated with Jennifer Jean for our annual weekend poetry overnight. It is a beautiful day in Gloucester, MA. Here are a few photos. Details tomorrow. 










Thursday, June 07, 2012

Natasha Trethewey Is the New U.S. Poet Laureate!!!










The Library of Congress is to announce Thursday that the next poet laureate is Natasha Trethewey, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of three collections and a professor of creative writing at Emory University in Atlanta.

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Cannot tell you how excited and happy I am for Natasha.  Not sure if I've ever told this story, but it seems like a good time.

Back in February 2008, Natasha came to Babson College to read as part of the Thompson Poetry Series. We had not met before, but I had the opportunity to escort her around campus. She was kind and gracious and just as warm as she could be. Great with students, as you might expect.

At the time, I was getting together my author photo and blurbs for Underlife. My publisher had requested a foreword. Asking a poet for a blurb is one thing, but asking for a foreword? That's a commitment to the poet and the trajectory of her work.

It took me all day to get up the nerve to ask Natasha; I fully expected her to say no. Why would she write a blurb for a poet she just met? Well, she told me that Rita Dove had written the foreword to her first book, Domestic Work. And Natasha knew how difficult it was to bring a first book into the world. I think she felt it was the right time to pay it forward. She agreed to write the foreword, and I am eternally grateful.

I can't fully explain it, but that simple act of saying yes was like becoming part of a lineage.

Poets, we are lucky, lucky folks to have such a talented, skilled, and generous writer in this position.

Congratulations, Natasha! XO

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Girls! Girls! Girls!

















Girls? More like Chatty Cathies! [pictured: Danielle Jones-Pruett, Lis Horowitz (back to camera), Colleen Michaels, and Dawn Paul.]

On Wednesdays, I usually spend the morning at the Salem Athenaeum writing and revising with members of the Salem Writers Group. But because the Salem Poetry Seminar is using the Athenaeum space, we gathered at Danielle's home instead. Yes, we wrote. Yes, we talked about talked about poetry and publishing. Yes, we talked about Danielle's color-coded-by-month card catalogue for submissions (it is a thing of beauty!). Yes, we ate coffee cake! And yes, we laughed a lot!

What I love about our group--which today is all female but normally we do have a Y chromosome or two in the mix--is that whenever I feel stuck or frustrated with my own work, these poets always help me find the answer. Always. Whenever I have days that lead to blog posts like yesterday's Confession Tuesday post, I can talk it out with my poetry peeps.

This is my community.

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Books currently on order from Amazon:

Sandra Beasley - I Was the Jukebox
Kathleen Flenniken - Plume
Tracy K. Smith - Life on Mars (I read a borrowed copy--wish I had owned it before the Pulizter lunch. Drat!)

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There was universal feeling among the ladies that if an unfortunate accident were to happen to one of us, Sandra's Beasley's poem "I Don't Fear Death" should be read at the funeral.

Tuesday, June 05, 2012

Confession Tuesday

Happy Tuesday, folks. Time to fess up! Share a little of yourself with us and we promise to do the same.

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Recently, I've been hearing the frustration from many of my poet friends who have had their manuscripts repeated rejected, or worse--ignored by publishers and contests.

We've all been there: the little rejection slips that seem to find us months after the deadline date. Many of my peers have abandoned current projects in favor of starting new work. I know some who are absolutely gun-shy when it comes to the process and won't subject themselves to the scrutiny. Publishing is painful and not for the thin-skinned.

It's depressing.
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I consider myself someone who understands how the system works. I try to stay on top of changes in publishing trends. It doesn't make the submission process any easier for me. I get rejections like everyone else. What trend-watching does for me is help me to realize a balance between what's attainable and what's not.

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All that being said, I feel I'm on a creative upswing. I feel buoyed by my local writing community with new energy and enthusiasm for the work. Moving toward warmer weather does a lot for improving my mood. I feel like I've been having these conversations with my poet friends and I don't feel alone in my efforts. And, the level of success (and success here is a relative term) we've achieved is notable and rewarding.

A rising tide raises all boats.

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I wrote a much longer blog post this morning. But after getting the kids off to school and swinging by the grocery store, I thought better of it and whittled it down.

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Not sure where any of this is coming from. Could be the rain.

 

Sunday, June 03, 2012

Salem Poetry Seminar, June 5-8

Looking forward to this week of poetry in Salem. If you are around, join us for one or all of the evening readings. Check out the full schedule below.

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The Salem Poetry Seminar, sponsored by the Salem State Center for Creative and Performing Arts, is a free, weeklong seminar, offering students at the Commonwealth's public institutions of higher education the opportunity to study poetry intensively with accomplished teachers and writers. The seminar, to be held June 5-8, will bring 12 young poets together to study, with a "master class" held by acclaimed poet Afaa Michael Weaver.

Past participants have said that this seminar was a turning point in their writing careers, and have gone on to publish 10 books of poetry and to serve as editors of nine national literary magazines. Several have attended graduate school in creative writing.

Seminar poetry readings are free and open to the public. This year's reading schedule is as follows:

Tuesday, June 5, 7:30 p.m.

Salem Theatre Company, 90 Lafayette Street
Featured Readers: Kevin Carey, Charlotte Gordon
Student Poets: Steven Durta, Rebecca Mueller, Jacob Reecher, Kayla Russell

Wednesday, June 6, 7:30 p.m.

Salem Athenaeum, 337 Essex Street
Featured Readers: J.D. Scrimgeour, Claire Keyes
Student Poets: Felicia Connolly, Lillian Donnelly, Emily Hatch, William Regan

Thursday, June 7, 7:30 p.m.

Salem Athenaeum, 337 Essex Street
Salem Poetry Seminar Alumni Reading and Open Mic

Friday, June 8, 7:30 p.m.

Salem Athenaeum, 337 Essex Street
Featured Reader: Afaa Michael Weaver
Student Poets: Sara Afshar, Ashley De Souza, JD Debski, Lyndon Seitz

The Salem Poetry Seminar has had a profound impact on these young writers at the beginning of their careers. Program alumni return to Salem for alumni readings and several are deeply involved in Massachusetts Poetry Festival, a statewide gathering of poets and poetry lovers.

Saturday, June 02, 2012

Oprah's Book Club 2.0



Reading my Twitter feed this morning, this was the last thing I expected. Oprah bringing back her book club? Why?

Don't get me wrong, I love everything Oprah. Her enthusiasm for books and literature is nothing short of amazing. And when she championed a poetry issue in O Magazine two years ago, I was encouraged about the effort--until I saw the spread when poetry was used as nothing more than a backdrop to a photo shoot. That was disappointing.

Nevertheless, Oprah is back promoting books. In the July issue of O Magazine, her first pick is Wild by Cheryl Strayed. It is a nonfiction recollection of Strayed's hike and spiritual journey of the Pacific Crest Trail.

During the many years Oprah ran her book club, I read maybe a handful of recommendations (mainly because I can make up my own mind about what I read). But in this book club iteration, dubbed 2.0, she's using interactivity to bring the book club together. You can buy the books or use the e-reader versions specially created for the book club. With those electronic versions, you can share your favorite passages and see Oprah's favorite passages, and readers are encouraged to interact with the author and Oprah with questions submitted through Facebook and Twitter.

I may read Wild because I'm curious about why she picked this book. Is it that good? Whatever her reason for getting the book club gang back together, I'm thrilled. Maybe a book show will become part of the OWN Network. At least books will become part of the national dialogue again. And, for a handful of authors, they will hit the publishing jackpot by being one of Oprah's chosen few.

Friday, June 01, 2012

2012 Massachusetts Poetry Festival Recap - Video





Watch this video of the 2012 Massachusetts Poetry Festival, created by Riley Fearon. Thanks Riley!

Strawberries




















They came back on their own this year. How glorious. There's a poem here.

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I can't find my camera. With any luck, it is buried under a pile of papers. Usually I'm very careful with it but I haven't seen it for a week. My heart aches. Ugh. It's keeping me up at night. I mean I like my iPhone camera, but I'm really feeling lost without the camera. Oh, the angst!

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Happy to say that all week I've been writing and revising poems. I've written a few new pieces and have revised poems written earlier this year. Feels good to go into the summer months with a new focus and the desire to write. I think that's what's been lacking for me--desire. What has sparked this? For the past two weeks I've been relatively consistent with my writing schedule, and I've spent lots of time with my fellow poets. It's times like this when I really value the power of the poetry community.

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Congrats to Susan Rich on being a prize winner. Woo hoo!
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"People often ask me how to become a writer. The answer is to write for free. You won’t get paid for years. I wrote for decades before I saw any money from my writing."

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Today is National Doughnut Day. FYI, Dunkin' Donuts is giving away free donuts with the purchase of a beverage. Who am I to turn down a free donut?
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"Now rumor has it she ain't got your love anymore."

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