While it can never be too late, it can be not enough, or just enough, or meaningless. But when most things are stuck somewhere between our dreams and the idea of reality, we tend to cling to some extrinsic hope – real or not.
Is it worth all the struggles and hassles and deductions only to die in the end? Should it all just be sped up? But more importantly, what happens when you don’t have a choice?
we get a straight forward here’s-what-I’m-thinking-and-maybe-I-should-have-just-done-it-earlier thread running from cover to cover. Things don’t always work, but sometimes you need to open the book and find out for yourself.
In this way I am an outfielder, mobilized on the balls of his feet, crouched, glove hand and free hand never far apart, poised for the seed of poetry to head my way following the sharp crack of wood at the plate.
Sometimes your body is not a wonderland. Sometimes your body wants to be wrapped in clothing or bedsheets or not the arms of someone who will no longer know your name.
I have authored a devil in me to cull in meto lace these boots with rainbows and wade […]
There is not a right or wrong way. There is only advice. There is only a suggestion of what you might need – if you were here, and I was not alone.
Music provides a table of contents for life. It doesn’t always make sense, but it’s the order of things and it tries to present some pretty scenery.
Poetry has spread itself thick throughout my life much like this mint. I’ll write a line, put it in my pocket, roll it around a bit, and then hours or days or months later, it’ll have rooted itself and grown into something.
When language and bodies and heritage and history don’t make sense, it’s not easy to find yourself within the world. When the words your family speak turn to those once spoken. When your parents silence your voice, and all you want to do is remember the sound of theirs.
What do you do when you have a sentence where the same 10 years acts as the minimum and maximum? When there is no light? A spoonful of food? Pepper sprayed and left without water for weeks? You pace in your cell.
It’s the wondering if we have purpose or if we are allowed to change, or if we are stuck with the who that we are even we are not who thought we could be.
The landscape intensified into a fever dream of hail and sun, deep woods, shadows on the sea and boomeranging, shrieking swifts in the sky. I was watching Six Feet Under…[and] listening to PJ Harvey.
Because at first we are skeletal; we crack, break, and hurt; we lose and win, and lose again until the only choice we have is to either heal, or heel.
“…the attitude and actions of horses have not changed. They live, love, falter, get dragged around, manipulated, fed, ridden, and eventually buried. Sound familiar?”
Sometimes we forget that when we say “I love you” to someone, it is life changing. It affirms and confirms what you feel and what will hopefully be reciprocated. But love can be two-faced and effacing.
“We are maps to the present and the past. An erasure poem of everything that has been a part of our life. It’s cloudy, dense, and filled with fog. And then everything repeats…”
Today, writing this in a parking lot while my son gets ready for a hockey game, I have the word “miracle” stuck in my throat. But, poetry is not the miracle. Life is. And poetry has allowed me to embrace that.
“…he has taken all the pieces, the histories of hands, waterfalls, sanity hammers, shepherds, and suitors, and built the puzzle only to watch it fall to the floor, and have to put the pieces back in the box.”
For me, writing evolved into a way to better comprehend, articulate and even reshape the world. Now the work that excites me is writing that is exploratory
Wars are waged. Bodies are born and bathed and dying. Language is lost. Friends and lovers, too. If we are “guardians of God’s words” then what is it exactly that we are guarding
We are stuck in age-old definitions of gender and personhood and parenting and life. Somewhere in between those definitions is the person we, ourselves, long to be, and who we should “just be.”
It is how both can have their salvations split in two in a single process. I think it was Jericho Brown that said: “Poetry has its own language”. Nothing can be truer in my opinion.
It’s an encyclopedia of the seedy, the attractive, the “I” of life within modern times and modern body. It’s sort of like the words many want to say, but then get caught up in the moment, and can’t remember what they were thinking anymore.
It’s the way the ants that crawl from skin become guides and senses. It’s the way that when you meet another splinter, the bugs are meant for each other – in sickness and in health.
The whole time, I thought I was alone. But there were people just as pained and confused as I was. I found my community. I found my church. I kept returning every Sunday, sharing work I had written during the week.
It’s the mirror as a reflection of who you think they want – the makeup, the high heels – but really it’s the only way to be seen. No(Body) asks you to question the idea of being capable within the moment. It’s the attempt to be Beyonce, or not death.
Adam Sol’s How a Poem Moves: A Field Guide for Readers Afraid of Poetry, is a window into how poems move rather than what they state. It’s a personal approach to understanding how someone else’s words make you feel.
There is a misconception of place, time, and atmosphere of the Heartland. It’s not always calm. It’s not rolling hills and farmland and nice people who do nice things for other nice people, and continue their existence in a silo of that same nice feeling.
Yes, I’m a poet and proud of it, and I don’t think I’ll ever want to be anything else. It’s what I would have said in answer to that old chestnut, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Wow! How many people actually get to have their dreams come true?
If life is lived, vicariously, through dreamscapes and if the moon hotel’s bellhop is “trolleying [the moon’s] baggage on a brass birdcage cart,” then we are destined to hold the weight of the universe on our backs.
It’s being told that “making love is for making babies / and gays are intrinsically disordered,” and realizing all the misguided beliefs behind that statement. Realizing that your love for another is in no way a disorder.
If Death brings a flash of life before our eyes, and we see each detail of what and how we’ve lived, and everything that was once background became foreground, then Where the Road Runs Out, the new collection from Gaia Holmes is that flash.
Some poems will remain within the confines of the therapist’s office. Some poems will never be known to anyone other than myself. Some poems I share with the world.
This is a notice that life is genuinely what you make it, and that if you live it while looking at it, you might miss what is actually in front of you.
The power of poetry, then, is its ability to show us ordinary things in an extraordinary light.
It’s a world where men paint women, and women have no say. It’s the world in which she knows “you wanted to fuck her unconscious / and have her wake to your fists.”
This is the tale of gutting it out until you think you want to tap out. It’s a glimmer of hope because, damnit, you’ve worked too hard for there to not at least be a glimmer.
This is a collection of survival in spite of all that happens in life. It’s the learning of “the sound liquid makes as it works through the body’s waterways.” The unrelenting feeling that while life is draining from one body, another is taking it back.
I believe the intensity of a poem, the dense nature of a line, the possibilities of syntax, and all aspects that make up a poem work together to become a fitting medium for tragedy.
“…it’s the constant feeling that some person, some feeling, some moment is lurking in the shadows, waiting for the opportune time to make their move…”
Generally, I will take another sip of water (but it’s really vodka) and make deep eye contact with […]
I don’t only want people to be entertained, but also for them to feel something. And the fastest way to do that is through poetry; you are framing a feeling and passing it on, even if it’s only for a brief moment.
It’s the push-and-pull of one language and culture erasing the other; it’s the beauty and decay of both. It’s the changes that feel like too much change. The Sea that Beckoned is the tightrope walk between being ourselves and the self we may yet become.
To them, she is not real. She is who they will fantasize about when home with their wives. She is the babysitter driven home by every father. She is the toy of their desire. She is within reach, but untouchable from above them.
Poetry is the real game of exposure. Really great poetry shows holes, the smallness, the seeking. We seek a connection to others that comes often from exposing moments on a page that you might be most embarrassed to put down on paper.
Brumett walks through “butcher paper bed sheets” because sometimes that’s how it feels to evolve. Sometimes you have to discover the clitoris and learn about dolphin masturbation in order to get to the part where we can leave legacies and deal with cleaning out memories from closets.
But, body is language. Code talking is language. Coding is language. Even “math is poetic in nature;” It’s just that people aren’t too interested in listening to that which they don’t care to understand, let alone anything poetic.
If done well, a poem can be far more powerful than a photograph, because you are capturing not just the image, but the emotional context and resonance of that thing.
all this can be yours is a patchwork quilt of what should have been said by all the dicks in the room.
You have to be ready for this collection. You have to prepare to feel. You have to be able to breathe. You have to know that War/Torn is a journey, and a metaphor that digs well beyond the surface.
I saw poetry as much more complex and rewarding than I had originally thought it would be over the years. Poetry is the one form that can take the readers to another level of meaning and power.
Giantess is like an a cappella Americana album — it’d be nice to hear the picking of the strings, but they aren’t needed to dance with these words.
Directness is difficult. It’s not easy to be bluntly-gentle. But that is exactly what Whiteside has done in his newest collection of poems from Bull City Press.
POWER OF POETRY #35: “Facts/Dreams” – Matthew Mayfield: “….I strive to be that ONE person who keeps you closer to Life and one step away from the trigger.”
REVIEW: UNMONSTROUS – JOHN ALLEN TAYLOR (YesYes Books):
It’s rare to read a piece that so beautifully captures the anger, emotions, beauty, and need for survival while trying to navigate all the evils of the child-to-adult journey.
REVIEW: Most of My Heroes Don’t Appear on No Stamps
Walker gives us our “Window Seat” to the world, as we consider why we are where we are – the good and the bad, the understood and ignorant, the anger and excitement, the love and passion of the way the world is today.
Over the course of your correspondence, you begin to discuss your dreams. Begin, in fact, to have dreams […]
The physicality of life and the ache that it can bring – through love, death, sex, and survival – makes Robbin’s writing visceral and emotive and painful and beautiful all at the same time.
I am trying to write poems that stand inside of uncertainty and still find things to praise. And I don’t think it matters if I praise my sore legs that keep walking me home from work each night, or if I praise the relief of night rain in my first Carolinian July, or if I praise an idea of a home I miss, or if I praise the mild infection in my right nipple for not being cancer, or if I praise my friend who has stomach cancer but keeps living beyond the rational limits doctors have suggested—it is all praising living. It is all beholding the terrible beautiful uncertainty of being human and saying thank you. I don’t think there’s anything more beautiful than gratitude, and poetry helps me to access it.
THE POWER OF POETRY – Amy Saul-Zerby In order to explain the power of poetry to […]
LEE ANN RORIPAUGH – SOUTH DAKOTA’S POET LAUREATE Poetry is the shape-shifting ouroboros of language, image, sound, form, […]
The Power of Poetry – Sara Henning I’d like to tell you a story about life’s untamable […]
Two years ago, as part of my hometown’s annual literary festival, I competed in a teen poetry […]
THE POWER OF POETRY — A.M. O’Malley I first found poetry when I was nine years old in […]
Warrendale, a Chance Medley with Lines from “Brother of Leaving” The Warrendale neighborhood sits on the far west […]
Poetry, like any art, is about connection, either to our inner-self or to another being. In the darkest […]
The Power of Poetry: Revenge of the NerdsBack in the day when I was still a fledgling emcee […]
The Power of Poetry – Donney Rose I came into poetry in a way that […]
I self-published a book of poems when I was 19. Print-on-demand websites like Lulu were just beginning to […]
I have test anxiety and I feel like I am being tested most of the time. When […]
Faith is found here, not in a destiny raiding and parceling out knowledge and the earth, but […]
“The Power of Poetry: I Want to Keep Happening” Sarah Xerta I’m hesitant to write about the […]
THE POWER OF POETRY – Ronnie K. Stephens There is no origin story, here. No single point on […]
Photo Courtesy of Conrad Erb, LiveConnections “I Used to Hate Poetry” — Denice Frohman For many poets and […]
The Power of Poetry Last week I was sitting in a classroom at Lesley University, listening to […]
THE POWER OF POETRY: THE VINEYARD OWNER — Lewis Mundt I. Let me tell you two stories. The […]
Outside The Narrow Garden — Paulie Lipman On an episode of “The Green Room With Paul […]
“BRAVE NEW VOICES” — KHARY JACKSON I am writing this while at the annual Brave New Voices poetry […]
The Power of Poetry as Catharsis and Healing — SaraEve Fermin The brain is a muscle that can move […]
The Poetry of a Perfect Cocktail – Sam Slaughter I’ve never been a poet. The closest I’ve come—“songs” […]
And when they ask me what happened to you, I will tell them without hesitation that one day […]
Poems are magic spells written by witches. Ten years ago I had a dream that the Icelandic musician […]
You Talk Too Much – Cristopher Gibson “CRISTOPHER!” Is what I recall most about school, the […]
Power of Grief – Kieran Collier I. My mother passed when I was 14. I […]
The Power of Poetry – Duncan Shields Poetry uses language to surpass language. That is the central thought […]
WHAT POETRY MEANS TO ME – CLEMENTINE von RADICS What Poetry Means To […]
The Poet is the Amplifier of Longing – John Ebersole Every poem I write is written by […]
The Super Powers of Poetry – Jessica Helen Lopez Listen here. When I write poetry I take on […]
Sam said the gas tank could go on for thirty miles after the gas light came on so […]
THE POWER OF POETRY By Blythe Baird The first time I was exposed to spoken word poetry, […]
Sprinkle my ashes across the north side of Chicago & the surrounding suburbs. the south side has […]
A Pond, a Stick I just finished grading final portfolios for two of my poetry courses, here […]
To say I hate you would imply a world in which I kissed more than your […]
The Power of Poetry Tongo Eisen-Martin Poetry does as much as the reader is ready for. Does […]
The Transformative Power of Poetry – Ethan Smith On language When I first started writing intentionally for poetry […]
“Power of Poetry” by EBONY STEWART I remember being eight or nine when my parents finally […]
If I string the night between two fence posts, one side heaven and one side hell, […]
I am baby-faced – I am baby-boned – I am the miracle of every death around me. […]
From “A Letter From My Well-Adjusted Adult Self (Whenever That Will Be) To My Current Mid-Twenties Self” To […]
My body wants to meet your body in a dark alley and say things in Braille. When […]
We are made and unmade by those we love: expectant white backdrop against which shots are […]
From “Stadium” ….I am not diminished but rearranging how I see. In my head, I’m humming Foo Fighters’ […]
from “Fairy Tale” She was just beginning to get her wings back when she hit a rock and crashed […]
from “Crown” In this photograph, I am a girl child. My thoughts come out in my hands […]
“An awful silence reigned throughout those subterraneous regions,” Just be yourself is not such good advice. In […]
[Facebook] splits at seams : instructions to reduce your look Avoid: just : these : five : food : […]
from Petocha Virginity is $$$ in a vintage velvet pouch Touch her if you can for virginity […]
DISASTER Men kept smiling at you today, but you felt like a disaster. You were an influenza epidemic, […]
See me taxidermied – a prom date after four wine coolers. Ooh la la! Such romance. You see […]
It’s Just So Strange He used to love me, and now he’s just a stranger who happens […]
Lately, I’ve been reading some poetry collections that feel as if they were written solely for the doctoral […]
I had the esteemed pleasure of getting to see Mighty Mike McGee twice in the last week […]
There is something about C.D. Wright’s 40 Watts (Octopus Books) that tugs at my heart strings – strings that are […]
I had the opportunity to go to the book release – at the Independent Publishing Resource Center […]
I want to look at myself in five years and be gratified. Now you know the perversity of […]
Jesse Parent looks like he would hurt you, and then hug you, and probably sit you down to […]
When I showed Hieu Nguyen’s “Buffet Etiquette” to my high school juniors, one of my students stood up, […]
Let’s get real for a moment: we have all had dark thoughts. Sometimes those dark thoughts overtake us […]
I met Ross Robbins in Portland, Oregon at Powell’s Books. We were both sifting through the shelves […]
I’ve seen Robert Duncan Gray in his underwear, screaming poetry from the top of his lungs, and […]
Leah Noble Davidson tells you exactly what she wants you to hear. It’s stark. It’s creative. In […]
Living just over the bridge from Portland, Oregon, I’ve had the esteemed pleasure of watching Alex Dang […]
Taylor Mali is one of the best known poets of the last decade. He’s been a part of […]