First, in case we aren't Facebook friends, you might not have heard my happy news. My poem "Widowing" one the 2011 Crab Creek Review Poetry Contest. The contest judge of Dorianne Laux, who had some amazingly generous thoughts about the poem. It's a big huge giant honor to be selected and I'm seriously still flying high from the news.
I also attempt being a formalist poet over at Whistling Fire. Check out my poem "The Ordination of Woman" that the published last week.
In online literary news, a bunch of journals have released their latest issues including Toad, Boxcar, PANK, and Sweet. I plan to sit down with all of these issues and read read read this weekend. I love them all. I'm a particularly big fan of Rachel Bunting and Mary Biddinger, both who are featured in Toad. Also, Adanna Literary Journal, a lovely new feminist print journal, has featured the work of some of their latest contributors online. Check out Carol Berg and Mary Stone Dockery, two upcoming Weave contributors.
I just got my copy of Gregory Sherl's Heavy Petting. Super excited to read it. I've flipped through it and caught a few pages, but I've been super busy with starting new jobs this week. I'll be honest, I don't read a ton of male poets. It's taken me a while to find people I like, and sometimes I find myself being uber-critical, and I have to step back and try to take in the experience and perspective of another. Sherl's poetry, often about relationships and sex, is open, funny and honest. It's quirky, which seems to be "the thing" in the hip-poet world at the moment, but not so quirky that it misses the emotional boat ride. These poems resonate. Some are also pretty sexy. I like sexy poems. Also, can I just say, nice job YesYes Books! Your design and print work is simple, yet stunning. Check out the review of Heavy Petting at Read This Awesome Book.
Let's see, what else?
Read this interview over at Poets & Writers with John Murillo, where he discusses voice and reading your poetry.
In the intersections of technology and all things literary we find two great bits of news. One, the Poetry Foundation has an app for your smart phone. Pretty sweet to be able to pull up any poem you want, whenever. Also, for you Kindle users out there, you can now check out books from certain libraries that use a service called OverDrive. I haven't tried it yet, but if you do, please let me know how it works. I think this has the potential to be HUGE.
Pittsburgh, I miss you. I miss autumn and pumpkins and the gorgeous hillsides ablaze with color. The last reading I attended in Pittsburgh was City of Asylum's 2011 Cave Canem reading. It was fantastic and featured readings from poets Toi Derricotte, Cornelius Eady, Natasha Trethewey, and special guest Amiri Baraka. If you missed it, never fear. I've posted the video of Amiri Baraka's reading at the end of the post. You can also read an interview with Baraka in the latest issue of Sampsonia Way. While his poetry often sparks controversy, I think that is one of things I see less of in the world of poetry these days. Let's all go write some poems that piss people off this week, okay?
Oh boy, there is still more literary deliciousness!
Issue 06 of Weave was reviewed by NewPages. Says reviewer Hazel Foster, "this issue offers an accessible mix of prose and poetry." I agree! Also, "Weave is a great example of how an independent print magazine can succeed. Subscribe, submit, find a comfortable place to devour and enjoy." Thanks so much. Oh yes, subscribe or purchase by tonight and you can get half off anything you buy. Just use the code "BICOASTAL" at checkout.
On an unrelated note, everyone in California is wearing these shoes. I want them too now. They look super comfortable. I'm going to Nordstroms tomorrow to try on a pair I think. I need some comfy walking shoes. Also not literary, but still fun, are these comics about bisexuality. Definitely relatable.
My last morsel of lit news comes from the United States Postal Service. Thanks for putting more poets on stamps. I can't wait to get my hands on these! Send me a postcard with one of these and I'll love you forever and ever.
Happy reading everyone.