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Books :: What is Poetry?

Published April 04, 2017 Posted By Denise Hill
poetry projectThis historical tome edited by Anselm Berrigan has just been released from Wave Publishing: "The Poetry Project at St. Mark's Church was founded in 1966 for the overlapping circles of poets in the Lower East Side of New York.These interviews from The Poetry Project Newsletter form a kind of conversation over time between some of the late 20th century's most influential poets and artists, who have come together in this legendary venue over the past 50 years." Poets/artists interviewed include: Akilah Oliver, Allen Ginsberg, Anne Waldman, Barbara Henning, Bruce Andrews, Charles North, David Henderson, Eileen Myles, erica kaufman, Harryette Mullen, Judith Goldman, Larry Fagin, Magdalena Zurawski, Peter Bushyeager, Red Grooms, Sheila Alson, Tina Darragh, Victor Hernández Cruz, Will Alexander, and many more. The book can be ordered directly from the publisher for the discounted price of $17/shipping included.

Irish Pages :: Isreal, Islam & the West

Published April 03, 2017 Posted By Denise Hill
irish pagesEditor Chris Agee included a handwritten note with v9 n2 of Irish Pages, "This issue is already highly controversial. . . " Why? The focus: "Israel, Islam & the West" with feature content: Gerard McCarthy on the refugee crisis in Greece; An unpublished survivor’s account of Bergen Belsen; “A Trial” by Hubert Butler; Writings on Iran, Bosnia and Islam; Avi Shlaim on “Israel and the Arrogance of Power”; Dervla Murphy’s “Hasbara in Action”; John McHugo on Syria; Chris Agee on “Troubled Belfast”; Ghazels of Hafez; Lara Marlowe on Mahmoud Darwish; New poems on the Middle East by Seán Lysaght, Naomi Shihab Nye, Ciarán O’Rourke & Cathal Ó Searcaigh; and “I am Belfast”, a photographic portfolio by Mark Cousins.

Lit Mag Covers :: Picks of the Week

Published April 03, 2017 Posted By Denise Hill
themaThe cover photograph for the Spring 2017 issue of Thema by VHoward fits this issue's theme perfectly: "Take the zucchini and run." And also gave me a jolt of hope for summer's soon arrival!
willow springsThe Spring 2017 cover photo of Willow Springs is by Polish-born photographer Marta Berens from her ongoing series Suiti - documenting the culture of the people of Alsunga, Latvia.
carveWhile the ship in the bottle is the focal point of Justin Burks's image on the Winter 2017 issue of Carve, it was actually the Kit-Cat Clock that drew me in. Burks is a graduate of the Art Institute of Dallas and founder of Birdhouse Branding, a creative agency that helps develop and design brands, websites and illustrations for individuals and organizations.

100 Thousand Poets for Change 2017

Published March 29, 2017 Posted By Denise Hill
100 tpcSeptember 30, 2017 marks the seventh annual global event of 100 Thousand Poets for Change, a grassroots organization that brings poets, artists, musicians, and photographers together to call for environmental, social, and political change, within the framework of peace and sustainability. The local focus is key to this global event as communities around the world raise their voices through concerts, readings, workshops, flash mobs, community picnics, parades and demonstrations that speak to the heart of their specific area of concerns, such as homelessness, ecocide, racism and censorship.

The 100 Thousand Poets for Change website now features a Global Action Calendar open to everyone for posting creative actions planned to take place around the world, as well as the Resistance Poetry Wall, an open call for posting poetry about the recent USA elections. Poets from around the world are invited to post.

100 Thousand Poets for Change wants everyone planning now for their local September events and asks that organizers register their events on the 100 TPC website so your actions can be recognized.

The Telling Room

Published March 28, 2017 Posted By Denise Hill
telling room blog"The Telling Room is a nonprofit writing center in Portland, Maine, dedicated to the idea that children and young adults are natural storytellers." Focusing on writers ages 6 to 18, The Telling Room offers programs at their downtown writing center, engaging local writers, artists, teachers, and community groups in afterschool workshops, writing assistance, fieldtrips, the "Super Famous Writers Series," and publishing.

Their works serves reluctant writers as well as established writers, children and adults, and a diverse community which includes a growing population of immigrants and refugees. The Telling Room offers internships in multimedia, publications, events, communications, and teaching, and is currently looking to fill a full-time, paid position for Executive Director (review of applications begins August 2017).

Kimberly Bunker :: Writing as Work & Inspiration

Published March 27, 2017 Posted By Denise Hill
kimberly bunker blogIn her feature article for the Glimmer Train Bulletin #122, fiction writer Kimberly Bunker opens "The Fear of Not Saying Interesting Things" with: "For some reason, this doesn't stop me from talking, but it often stops me from writing." She continues, commenting on both the necessity of work as well as inspiration for writers. "I think it's possible to cultivate a mindset that's receptive to but not obsessive about ideas, and to be methodical about pursuing the ideas that seem worth pursuing—i.e., finding a balance between waiting for lightning to strike, and getting behind the mule." Read the full article here.

2017 Bellevue Literary Review Prize Winners

Published March 27, 2017 Posted By Denise Hill
Published by NYU Langone Medical Center as part of the Department of Medicine's Division of Medical Humanities, the Spring 2017 issue of Bellevue Literary Review features the winners and runners-up of their 2017 Bellevue Literary Review Prize:

abe louise youngGoldenberg Prize for Fiction
Selected by Ha Jin
Winner: “Do I Look Sick to You? (Notes on How to Make Love to a Cancer Patient)” by C.J. Hribal
Honorable Mention: “And It Is No Joke” by Conor Kelley

Felice Buckvar Prize for Nonfiction
Selected by Ariel Levy
Winner: “Of Mothers and Monkeys: A Case Study” by Caitlin Kuehn
Honorable Mention: “Jacket” by Jennifer Hildebrandt

Marica and Jan Vilcek Prize for Poetry
Selected by Kazim Ali
Winner: “Poem For A Friend Growing Lighter and Lighter” by Abe Louise Young [pictured]
Honorable Mention: “In the absence of birdsong” by Michaela Coplen

Books :: 2016 Iowa Poetry Prize Winner

Published March 22, 2017 Posted By Katy Haas

odd bloom seen from space timothy daniel welchOdd Bloom Seen from Space by Timothy Daniel Welch will be published in April 2017. Winner of the 2016 University of Iowa Press’s Iowa Poetry Prize, Odd Bloom Seen from Space, according to the publisher, “looks at the self amid the ashes of fleeting exultation and uncertainty.” The poems in this debut collection offer wisdom and surprising humor, making for a collection that is “gorgeous, original, and baffling.”

Readers can find out more about Odd Bloom Seen from Space on the University of Iowa Press website. While there, they can find an excerpted poem, “On the Isle of Erytheia,” and preorder copies.

Books :: 2016 May Sarton NH Poetry Prize Winner

Published March 21, 2017 Posted By Katy Haas

louder than hearts zeina hashem beck blogBauhan Publishing LLC hosts the May Sarton New Hampshire Poetry Prize each year, awarding their sixth annual prize to Zeina Hashem Beck for her collection Louder than Hearts. The collection was chosen by Betsy Sholl, former poet laureate of Maine, who says Louder than Hearts “has it all—compelling language and a sense of moral gravitas, personal urgency and the ability to address a larger world with passion and artfulness.”  She continues, calling the collection “timely in the way it provides a lens through which to see life in the Middle East, and hear the musical mix of English and Arabic.”

The collection will be released in April, but in the meantime, readers can read more about Zeina Hashem Beck, or they can try their hand at the May Sarton NH Poetry Prize themselves: submissions are open until the end of June.

Books :: CSU 2016 Book Award Winners

Published March 20, 2017 Posted By Katy Haas

csu contests blog postEach year, the Cleveland State University Press holds the Open Book Poetry Competition, the Essay Collection Competition, and the First Book Poetry Competition (all three open until March 31, 2017). The three 2016 winners are set to be published at the beginning of April 2017.

In One Form to Find Another by Jane Lewty was chosen as the 2016 Open Book Poetry Competition winner, selected by Emily Kendal Frey, Siwar Masannat, and Jon Woodward. Advance praise refers to the collection as “an heroically unsettling and compelling textual reenactment of feminine embodiments’ lament, contemplation, and recalibration of disturbed histories . . . ”

daughterrarium by Sheila McMullin, selected by Daniel Borzutzky, won the 2016 First Book Poetry Competition. Borzutzky says of his selection, “I admire daughterrarium for pushing too far, for making me cringe with its representations of what one human can do to another, of what a body can do to itself.”

James Allen Hall’s I Liked You Better Before I Knew You So Well won the 2016 Essay Collection Competition, chosen by Chris Kraus. From Kraus: "In these essays, Hall lives alongside, and empathically lives through, his family’s meth addiction, and mental illnesses . . . and considers his own penchants for less than happy, equal sex with an agility, depth, and lightness that is blissfully inconclusive."

Check out the individual links to learn more about each prize-winning collection, and pre-order copies of all three.

Books :: Hell's Gate

Published March 16, 2017 Posted By Katy Haas

hells gate laurent gaude blogIn mid-April, Gallic Books will be publishing Hell’s Gate by Laurent Gaudé. Gaudé’s The Scortas’ Sun is the winner of the Prix Gouncourt, the French literary award given to an author of the best imaginative work of prose each year. Hell’s Gate is a thrilling story following a father as he chases redemption for his murdered son. It explores “the effects of bereavement and grief on a family, and the relationship between the living and dead.”

Check out the Gallic Books website for more information about Hell’s Gate. Read advance praise, check out a downloadable PDF extract, and give yourself a chance to read work by one of France’s most highly respected playwrights and novelists. 

Cento Poem :: "Dear America" by Charles Jensen

Published March 15, 2017 Posted By Denise Hill
charles jensenDear America,

A cento of Adrienne Rich

You’re beginning to float free
Toward a new kind of love
Burning itself, burning down
The blueprint of a life.

I wanted to choose words that even you
Intend to refuse shelter
With a lie. And each
A beautiful tumor
Feeding on everything.
. . . 

[Read the rest and listen to the poet read his own work on Terrain.org]

Books :: 2016 Orison Poetry Prize Winner Published

Published March 15, 2017 Posted By Katy Haas

ghost child of atalanta bloom rebecca aronsonThe winner of the 2016 Orison Poetry Prize, Ghost Child of the Atalanta Bloom by Rebecca Aronson, will be published next month on April 4, 2017. Hadara Bar-Nadav, who selected the winner, calls the collection, “[e]xplosive, turbulent, haunting magnetic,” saying that “[m]ortality and death undergrid Aronson’s fantastical visions, where a child becomes a seagull, a woman turns tarantula, and a house threatens to fill with blood.”

Find sample poem “Wish” at the Orison Books website, where you can also find out more about Aronson and pre-order copies, which are currently on sale, a couple saved bucks you can set aside for even more poetry.

Books :: 2015 New Measure Poetry Prize Winner Published

Published March 14, 2017 Posted By Katy Haas

this history that just happened hannah craig blogParlor Press’s annual New Measure Poetry Prize (now open for 2017 submissions until the end of June) awards a poet a cash award of $1,000 and publication of an original manuscript.

The 2015 winner, This History That Just Happened, by Hannah Craig, selected by Yusef Komunyakaa, was published at the beginning of the year. Komunyakaa says of his selection, “This History That Just Happened places the reader at the nexus where rural and city life converge, bridging a world personal and political, natural and artful, in a voice always uniquely hers.”

Craig has also won the 2016 Mississippi Review Prize and her manuscript was a finalist for the Akron Poetry Prize, the Fineline Competition, and the Autumn House Poetry Prize. Stop by the Parlor Press website to learn more about Craig and purchase her debut poetry collection digitally or in print.

Reach Out and Read

Published March 14, 2017 Posted By Denise Hill
reach out readBegun in 1989, Reach Out and Read is a program wherein medical professionals “prescribe” books and reading aloud to children “as a means of fostering the language-rich interactions between parents and their young children that stimulate early brain development.” Now, the Reach Out and Read model exists in all 50 states, with almost 1,500 sites distributing 1.6 million books per year. The program serves 4.7 million young children and their families each year, “including one in four children living in poverty in this country.” The organizers hope to grow each year, envisioning that support for books and reading will become a regular part of every child’s checkup. For more information about programs near you and information about how to get involved, visit Reach Out and Read online.

Master's Review Winter Short Story Award Winners

Published March 13, 2017 Posted By Denise Hill
Winners and honorable mentions of The Master's Review Short Story Award for New Writers have been announced. The winning story is awarded $2000, publication (online this spring), and agency review from Amy Williams of The Williams Agency, Victoria Marini from Irene Goodman, and Laura Biagi from Jean V. Naggar Literary Agency, Inc. The second and third place stories win $200 and $100 respectively, publication, and agency review as well. Previous winning works can be read online here.

Winner
“Operation” by Scott Gloden

Second Place
“White Out” by Caitlin O’Neil

Third Place
“Malheur Refuge” by Rick Attig

Honorable Mentions
“Little Sister” by Yin Ren
“Million and a Half” by Kevin Klinskidorn
“The Weight of Gravity” by Denise Schiavone
“The Caveman” by Rachel Engelman
“Good Listener” by Ally Glass-Katz

The Master's Review is currently accepting submissions for its annual Anthology Prize. This year's judge is Roxanne Gay.

Diode Celebrates 10 Years

Published March 09, 2017 Posted By Denise Hill
starlight errorDiode celebrates ten years of publishing "electropositive poetry": poetry that "excites and energizes"; poetry that uses language that "crackles and sparks." Issue 10.1 features works from over 40 poets as well as two full-length collections, Starlight & Error by Remica Bingam-Risher and quitter by Paula Cisewski, several chapbooks, interviews and reviews. All of Diode's is available for readers to enjoy online. 

Broadsided March 2

Published March 09, 2017 Posted By Denise Hill
broadside march 2017This month's featured collaboration from Broadsided Press , "Final Descent into Phoenix" with poem by Julie Swarstad Johnson and art by Kara Page, has been months in the making. "We chose Julie Swarstad Johnson's poem for publication from our open submissions over a year ago," notes the Broadsided Editorial Team. "We sent it out to artists to see who would 'dibs' it in November, in January artist Kara Page sent us what she'd created, then our designer found a way to bring both together into a single letter-sized pdf, and finally we asked poet and artist what they thought of the results," with the conversation between artist and poet published on the Broadsided website.

Broadsided posters are available for free download and postering all about town. Become a Broadsided Vector today!

Books :: 5th Annual Black Box Poetry Prize Winner

Published March 09, 2017 Posted By Katy Haas

what was it for adrienne raphel blogEach June, Rescue Press accepts submissions for the Black Box Poetry Contest for full-length poetry collections open to poets at any stage in their writing careers. The latest Black Box Poetry winner will be released later this month (March 15): What Was It For by Adrienne Raphel. Judge Cathy Park Hong calls the debut full-length collection “feral and full of feverish delight.” She continues, “Raphel takes Victorian nonsense verse into the twenty-first century and transforms it to her own strange and genius song.”

Readers can learn more about What Was It For at the publisher’s website, where they can also find Raphel’s bio with more information about the writer and pre-order copies.

2nd River Chapbook Series

Published March 08, 2017 Posted By Denise Hill
pamela garveyThings Impossible to Swallow poems by Pamela Garvey is the newest in the 2River Chapbooks Series. 2River chapbooks can be read online, or to make your own print copy, click "Chap the Book" to download a PDF, which you can then print double-sided, fold, and staple to have a personal copy of Garvey's chapbook. There are currently 24 chapbooks available for free download for readers to enjoy.

Books :: Diode Editions First Full-Length Book Contest Winners

Published March 08, 2017 Posted By Katy Haas

starlight error quitter blog postDiode Editions recently held their very first full-length book contest and have announced two co-winners: Remica Bingham-Risher’s Starlight & Error, and Paula Cisewski’s quitter.

Starlight & Error retells through the lens of imagined memory the legacies of love between aunts and uncles, mothers and fathers, children and their children’s children. The poems ask how we transcend the mistakes of those who made us, and who will save us.

quitter is a “thoughtful protest in form, line, and ideology.” The collection invites readers to ask ourselves what we’ve tried, and if we’ve tried hard enough, challenging us to continue looking for solutions.

Learn more about the prize-winning collections at the Diode Editions website where readers can read advance praise and order copies.

21st National Poet Hunt Contest Winners

Published March 07, 2017 Posted By Denise Hill
macguffinThe Fall 2016 issue of The MacGuffin features the winners of the 21st National Poet Hunt Contest along with commentary from Judge Li-Young Lee.

First Place
"Pedro" by Elisabeth Murawski

Honorable Mentions
"Things to Know if You Live Here" by Marc Sheehan
"A Woman, Conjured" by Janet Greenberg

The 2017 contest will be judged by Naomi Shihab Nye.

Cover image: "Happy Summer from My Ivory Tower" by Roopa Dudley.

Books :: Award-Winning February 2017 Publications

Published March 07, 2017 Posted By Katy Haas
sun urn retribution binary blog postIn February, Black Lawrence Press released Retribution Binary by Ruth Baumann, which advance praise calls “a study in wreckage and palpable absence” that is “Part dreamscape, part gutter-bucket realism” (Marcus Wicker).  Retribution Binary is the winner of the Black River Chapbook Competition, and Baumann is no stranger to winning chapbook prizes, winning the Salt Hill Dead Lake Chapbook Contest in 2014 and the Slash Pines Chapbook Contest in 2015. Copies of Retribution Binary can be found on the Black Lawrence Press website, where readers can learn more about Baumann, and read an excerpt.

Also released last month was the winner of the 2016 Georgia Poetry Prize, Sun & Urn by Christopher Salerno, chosen by Thomas Lux. Lux calls the collection “madly imaginative, and, ultimately, a brilliant and deeply human book,” imploring readers to read it three times. Salerno’s fourth poetry collection, Sun & Urn is now available from the University of Georgia Press website, a book made from “the wild stuff of grief and loss.” Check out the press’s website for more information.

Lit Mag Covers :: Picks of the Week

Published March 06, 2017 Posted By Denise Hill
hotel amerika"Calmly on Fire," a found photograph and collage on paper by Lorna Simpson, makes it difficult for readers to look away from Hotel Amerika Winter 2017.
into voidPublished in Ireland, this spring 2017 issue of Into the Void cover features "Two Boys in the Woods" by Refael Salem.
animal magazineUnusual beauty seems to be my theme this week, finishing off with "Red Heart Boat" by Andy Levine on the cover of the online Animal: A Beast of a Literary Magazine.

Books :: The Lost Novel of Walt Whitman

Published March 02, 2017 Posted By Katy Haas

life and adventures jack engle walt whitman blogThe University of Iowa Press brings readers a real treat: the lost novel of Walt Whitman, Life and Adventures of Jack Engle. While we’re familiar with Leaves of Grass, Life and Adventures of Jack Engle was serialized in a newspaper under a pseudonym, read with little fanfare, and then disappeared.

It wasn’t until 2016 that it was found by Zachary Turpan, a literary scholar. While following a deep paper trail into the Library of Congress, he stumbled upon the only surviving copy of Witman’s lost novel.

Now, after lying in wait for over 160 years, Life and Adventures of Jack Engle is available for modern readers both digitally and in print at the University of Iowa Press website.

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