Friday, August 25, 2017

New Poems

I have two poems up--one about my ovaries--yay!!--and one about a rather feminist Cinderella, at Rag Queen Review.  Be sure to check out the fabulous poems by Alessandra Bava and Sarah Nichols.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

The Indianapolis Review

I've got a poem in the brand spanking new journal The Indianapolis Review.  It's a gorgeous journal with fabulous artwork, a conversation with Adrian Matejka, and other poems by really fantastic poets.  One really nice thing that happened:  someone happened to really like my line "peonies that could fill bras" and drew an amazing and beautiful rendition of that image and shared it with me on Facebook!  How cool is that?!?

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Crab Creek Review Finalist!

I'm very excited to share that my poem, "Self-Portrait as Seven Deadly Sins," is a finalist in the poetry contest at Crab Creek Review!  Diane Seuss was the contest judge and wrote very nice things about my poem as well as the winner and other finalist that you can read here.  I absolutely adore this journal and am so pleased to be part of it.  You should get a subscription to the magazine so you can read the wonderful work they publish. 

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

My "Self-Portrait as Tide Pool" is up at a very new journal, The Curve.  I'm super excited to be the first featured poet!  Hope you enjoy. 

Friday, June 2, 2017

God Comes Over

I have three new poems up at Calamus Journal and you can read how God comes over to clean my house here.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

The Johnson Girls



My new chapbook, The Johnson Girls, is now available for purchasing.  The poem that's available to read has its last line chopped off, unfortunately.  So you should buy the chapbook to find out how it's suppose to read!!!

Did I mention my maiden name was Johnson?  And that my sisters and I drove a white Monte Carlo everywhere?  You should read these poems.  :)

Saturday, April 1, 2017

Donika Kelly's Poem for April 1st

Love Poem:  Chimera


I thought myself lion and serpent. Thought
myself body enough for two, for we.
Found comfort in never being lonely.

What burst from my back, from my bones, what lived
along the ridge from crown to crown, from mane
to forked tongue beneath the skin. What clamor

we made in birthing. What hiss and rumble
at the splitting, at the horns and beard,
at the glottal bleat. What bridges our back.

What strong neck, what bright eye. What menagerie
are we. What we've made of ourselves.


from Bestiary.  Donika Kelly

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Commit To

Image of the Day:  Grey day in the city--and traffic, construction, utility work.  Driving just sucks.


What I'm reading:  Security Mom by Juliette Kayyem.  Landscape with Headless Mama by Jennifer Givhan.  Poems and fiction in the journal Cherry Tree, which I highly recommend.

I've got stacks and stacks of books I really want to read and yet can't seem to successfully read one completely.  I start reading a book, am enjoying it, and then hear about a book that sounds fantastic and go buy it on Amazon and then it sits in a pile in my house. I really don't see this changing any time soon, either.  I annoy myself.

So I took an on-line course for the month of August and didn't do very well in it.  I managed to write two poems out of the assigned four, and didn't comment nearly enough on the other participants' work.  Fail.  I think a weekly on-line course is as much time as I can commit to.  I've gotten a slew of rejections, but many have been very kind, asking me to submit again.  I also have a few acceptances which is also nice.  I have three poems here at Border Crossing, which is filled with amazing poems and writing. 

But I've started another Poem-A-Day group for September.  I've been getting like four or five poems from these monthly spurts of poetry and then stop for various reasons.  Which is something, I guess.


The Truth You Heard


The truth you heard is wrong, is happy-hung
absurd inside your dumb and rusty heart,
love-sick and goat-jaw at the seams, wet tongue
of God a quick surprise of stop and start
and does-not-care, and if inside the breath
on which you fall asleep a prayer abides
within your chest, the crusty shibboleth
of violent ends, of trust in smallish lies,
perhaps you start to doubt the stumbled halls
of dreams that render in dissolve, in mise
en scène
of box inside of box, so small
and so serene. So, then, the lie: a tree,
a sin, a careless whim, a flesh of rain,
and so the world, the loss, the lovely pain.


John Blair

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

For All You Returning Teachers

To the Student Who Asked Why He Earned a "C" on an Essay about Love
       
Because love has its own grammar,
its own sentences,
some that run-on too long,
others just fragments.
It uses a language
not always appropriate
or too informal,
and often lacks clarity.


Love is punctuated all wrong,
changes tenses abruptly,
relies heavily
on the first person,
can be redundant,
awkward,
full of unnecessary repetition.


Every word is compounded.
Every phrase, transitional.

Love doesn't always know the difference
between lie and lay,
its introductions sometimes
lack a well-developed thesis,
its claims go unfounded,
its ad-hominem attacks
call in question
its authority.


With a style that's inconsistent,
a voice either too critical
or too passive,
love is a rough draft
in constant need of revision,
whose conclusion
rarely gives any sense
of closure,
or reveals the lingering
possibilities of a topic
that always expects high praise,
and more often than not
fails to be anything
but average.


Clint Margrave

From Verse Daily Archives

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Strewn All Over

Image of the Day:  The mugginess felt on my skin and the cicada's metallic whine, like a hot wire searing my brain.

Happy July--it's hot and humid and the bugs are fierce--especially the black flies in the woods where we take our dog for her daily walk.  I haven't posted in a while--summer is particularly difficult to do so. 

But I won a scholarship to the Poets on the Coast writing retreat and I'm thrilled!! This is my very first writing retreat and I'm excited about going.  It will be quite a journey, both physically and mentally I'm sure.  I keep thinking of all the things I want to bring and how I want to write every second I'm there.  I know that's not possible and I have no idea what I am going to write, but at least I'll have time to explore. 

And I also purchased my very own (another first!) writing desk and know exactly where I want to put it in my house.  I have been using the kitchen island as my spot to write, but that's not exactly working.  I'm excited to have a place to put all my tools together--books and journals and computer--and have them not strewn all over the house. 

I've gotten some rejections recently:  from Adroit journal, but they at least singled out a poem they particularly liked; from Apple Valley Review, which had no commentary at all about my poems; and Outlook Springs, which included an amazing amount of nice things said about my submission.  So that was nice.  I got an acceptance from an anthology so we'll see how that comes along.

I've also signed up for a MOOC class on Whitman and Writing about War.  I haven't had a chance to finish viewing the first class, but what I've seen so far seems interesting.  Also I signed up for an on-line class at the Poetry Barn which starts in August and I hope I get a few poems from that. 

by Gregory Kimbrell
Nocturne (Tremors of the Earth)
       
Dear shadow, electric lights burn once more
throughout this remote valley, though night
arrived hours ago. Darkness will be restored
shortly. My only photograph of my brother
fell from the bedroom mantel and woke me
from the dream in which I visited his grave.
I always wanted to believe that the dead lay
in undisturbed sleep. You, shadow, become
still, listening to the footsteps and blunders
of the fearful who retire one after the other
in their homes above you. In the plane tree,
the owl straightens its feathers, compacting
its prey into a sphere of bone and gray hair.





Math Woes

You can read all about my math woes in this new poem here at Whale Road Review .  And read all the other fabulous poems!