This month begins with gatherings, fireworks, flea markets, and summer sales, but for me July is a quiet month. It’s a time of retreat and renew. I write less and read more. I walk and ride my bike with no mileage or stats in mind. I am present at my art table, finishing projects such as Tertia Natura, a simulated field guide to coral in leather and mixed media. I plan new projects, which this year means both small creations and the next book to follow The Feast Delayed.
Last July’s journal entries dwell in uncertainty as the pandemic sprawled. What will I realize next year as I reread this months reflections?
In the meantime, work comes to fruition. Poems and prose are forthcoming in Heron Tree and Attitcus Review. Poetry readings are in the details stage, so please check back for dates.
Wishing you intentional days and time to reflect.
Spring has finally arrived in Minnesota. The trees are blossoming, a crane appeared at the pond this week, and the daffodils are giving way to sedum and phlox. Cautious optimism about re-openings are kept in check with news of struggles and shortages throughout the world. These changes are all reminders of how interconnected the world is.
I’m fortunate to be hearing from readers near and far who have received their copies of The Feast Delayed (Terrapin Books), published on May 3. I’ve met writers and artists through recent readings and look forward to upcoming events.
The new issue of The Briar Cliff Review arrived last week. Grateful to see my essay “Empathy Lessons” in good company.
“The Kite” was the May 10 poem in SWWIM this month.
Through the pandemic, Global Poemic has published poems and images exploring the broad experience of the pandemic. My poem “Open Again” appeared on May 13 with a photo by Sally Lelong.
Upcoming: June 5, 2:00 p.m., I’m reading at Red Wing Depot. The Poet Artist Collaboration exhibit is open through June 21.
More reading are in the works. Stay well, check back, and read a poem or two.
April is National Poetry Month, an ideal time to write a poem a day with National/Global Poetry Writing Month. Today is April 8, and I’m seven poems into the challenge. Writing a poem a day frees me from the need to polish immediately. It’s all about the practice of observing, reading, discovering new poems and poets, and moving with the momentum of the challenge.
Some publication and book-related events are happening this month.
My new poetry collection, The Feast Delayed (Terrapin Books), is available for pre-order and will be released on May 3.
Gleam: Journal of the Cadralor accepted two poems for Issue Two, forthcoming later this month. I’ll join editor Lori Howe and a fine group of poets for a virtual gala opening and reading on Saturday, April 24, 2021 at 6 pm CDT. The event is free and open to the public via Zoom. Details and link available here.
Red Wing Arts (Redwing, MN) is hosting virtually its annual Poet Artist Collaboration Opening Reception on Friday, April 30, 7 pm CDT. I’m honored to have two poems in the exhibit, which will be paired with visual art. Details and link available here.
More readings are in the works, and publications are forthcoming. Please check back for updates.
Spring arrives slowly in Minnesota. One day daffodils and crocuses are pushing their tips through bark mulch, and the next day they are under 5 inches of snow. This push and retreat has been a good lesson for writing.
I’m happy to be in a season of push. The Feast Delayed (Terrapin Books) is available for pre-order through local bookstores and online shops. More information is available at Terrapin Books.
A poets and artists collaboration is happening now at Red Wing Arts. Two of my poems will be paired with artwork for a gallery exhibit April 30 – June 20. Check back for details about the virtual gallery opening event on April 30.
New work is forthcoming in Heron Tree, SWWIM, and few other wonderful journals. Updates coming every month.
Stay well, read, write, and enter spring at your own pace.
New or coming in late winter/early spring, depending on where you’re reading:
Tinderbox Poetry, 6:6 is now live. In addition to the wealth of poems and reviews, I’ve reviewed Alyse Bensel’s Rare Wondrous Things: A Poetic Biography of Maria Sibylla Merian, Green Writers Press, 2020. Readers seeking science, art, poetry, and biography, this is a book for you.
In March, I’ll join writers and visual artists for Ruminate Happenings. During this annual fundraiser, March 6 – 13, 2021, participating writers and artists go live on Instagram to create poems, stories, short essays, and art for ticket holders. I’ll be live on March 7, 9:00 – 10:00 a.m. PST writing poems in response to images and memories from ticket holders. If you’d like an artifact created just for you by any of the participating writers or artists, get your ticket here.
The Feast Delayed, a new full-length collection is forthcoming from Terrapin Books in April 2021. Check back for the cover reveal in a few weeks.
A few other creative things are in the works, so please check in again.
Like many friends, I’ve been waiting for this transition, rehearsing the sound of “2021,” and preparing to leave a difficult year behind. So here we are: January 2021. A new calendar isn’t magic. The old problems exist. But measurable change is possible and happening.
Meanwhile, the year has begun with new publications that introduced me to new editors and writers while connecting me to longtime friends in new ways.
Eastern Iowa Review posted “Winter Self,” a prose poem in which I am “a cave dweller in January.” This issue’s theme is “Winter,” and new selections will appear periodically through the coming weeks.
In the the inaugural issue of Book of Matches, a brilliant new journal edited by Kelli Allen and Nicholas Christian, my poem “The End of Early” is in stunning company.
The coming months will bring several more publications, including The Feast Delayed, a full-length poetry collection forthcoming in April 2021 from Terrapin Books.
Please check back for updates.
August is usually a quiet month of transition as I reflect on summer travel and prepare for a new academic year. This summer, travel was limited, and classes begin in mid-August. With less time to write, I’m grateful to prompts, themes, and opportunities such as Rattle’s Poets Respond, Poets and Writers’ The Time is Now, and so many more coming my way on social media.
Thanks to all who responded to “Convergence” on River Teeth’s “Beautiful Things.”
More publications are forthcoming, so please check back.
In the meantime, be safe, be well, be creative.
This month I’m going to stop asking, “What day is it?” and just go with rhythms of the humid hours and short nights.
Along the way, moments of wonder arrive on Monday mornings when I read River Teeth‘s “Beautiful Things.” Compressed, dense, never ordinary, these essays are 300 or fewer words. In late July, “Beautiful Things” will publish one of my flash essays. To subscribe at no cost or read archives, visit River Teeth.
Canceled. Canceled. Canceled.
That’s been the theme song of 2020. Meanwhile, many organizations and publishers are opening virtual spaces where artists and communities may gather to share pandemic experiences, to grieve and speak back to racial violence, and to sustain creativity as a response to destruction. I’ve been following The Social Distance Reading Series hosted by The Vermont School and Green Mountains Review, where poets are launching new books.
My time at home, though Zoom-intensive, has enabled observation and reflection, time to write and keep my hands close to ink, paint, and paper.
A new poem is forthcoming in Passager, with others on the way. Stay tuned, stay well, and create.