Maya Marshall’s debut interrogates the current sociopolitical nature and its threat to reproductive rights, choice, and Blackness. – Caitie L. Young
They don’t like us outside
But now we ain’t gonna be inside
From the inside, I can see your insides
Looks like y’all don’t like yourself inside
y’all should’ve kept your opinions inside
– Reggie Johnson
Not into too many surprises
Unless it’s a special occasion
And whenever I’m with you
It’s a cause for a celebration
– Reggie Johnson
Paul Tran’s long-awaited debut collection, All the Flowers Kneeling, is a fierce reminder that Tran is one of the most talented and visceral poets writing in America today. – Ronnie K. Stephens
Running from the fears
When it’s coming from the inside
No more counted out
No where for me to hide
Who knows what happens when
Pain and perseverance collides?
– Reggie Johnson
Order your copy of A.R. Salandy’s Half-Bred! Only 100 copies available!
Discussing mental health in the classroom can be incredibly daunting, especially as educators face public criticism and accusations of indoctrinating students. – Ronnie K. Stephens
Sometimes I feel overwhelmed and I just need to breathe
Inhale exhale put my mind at ease
– Reggie Johnson
Each section speaks to a specific season, emphasizing the passage of time and its effect on our understanding of the world around us. – Ronnie K. Stephens
If I was going to try and convince someone that poetry is our most important verbal art, I would start with The Hurting Kind. – Ronnie K. Stephens
This month, I’m sharing some of my favorite pedagogical practices to introduce during National Poetry Month, as well as some of the poems I return to in my classes year after year. – Ronnie K. Stephens
This entire collection is a canal–a wrenching chasm opening for rebirth–a witness to the psyche, split apart, in a world ruled by men who abandoned their humanity for the sake of domination. – Melissa Ferrer
The nightmare is when all the magic stops
Boogeyman syndrome, stay away
– Reggie Johnson
Stewart is at her best, masterfully blending her understanding of craft with her keen ear for orality to offer a collection readers will be talking about for years. – Ronnie K. Stephens
Join Chris & Courtney of The Poetry Question in a sit-down conversation with Joan Kwon Glass, author of Night Swim (Diode Editions), about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry!
Join Chris and Courtney in a sit down with @CropTopAssassin, author of The Porch (@yesyesbooks), in a conversation about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry!
There’s a deep hurt I feel when I share my food with others and they respond with, “That looks gross!” – Alex Dang
Chris sits down for a one-on-one with Reagan Myers, author of Afterwards (Button Poetry), to talk about passions, process, pitfalls, poetry… and YA lit!
Chris sits down for a one-on-one conversation with Taylor Byas, author of Bloodwarm (Variant Lit), for a conversation about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry!
“I wonder if I can write an entire manuscript centered around the lines from [the Growing Pains] theme song. And that is what I did”. – Claire Taylor
“Hendrix does not shy away from the complex, daily horrors that were ushered in, and the microscopic to multidimensional trauma that came from hearing the city cheer nightly, like a ritual or like war”. – Rachael Crosbie
“I have also tried to be somebody that I’m not. It hurts to crack yourself into multiple parts. It is the loudest noise. It breaks you”. – Alex Dang
The song served as a reintroduction for my love for writing. For the first time, I was able to combine my love for both music and writing together.
My love for music dates back to me being a kid, where whenever my mom needed to occupy my time while she was busy, she would turn on the music videos.
All in all, it’s a one for one exchange of the original myth, albeit more fleshed out, modern, and quietly queer. – Lannie Stabile
This chapbook showcases a voice reclaiming words meant to hurt, detailing the traits wanted in a lover, and reminding the reader “not to accept what’s in front of you / at face value.”
She says her time is money
And I don’t have time to waste
Tired of dealing with the same dudes
Done with the copy and paste
Babygirl just like wine and I’m trying to have a taste
I been doing this here since Wayne’s dedication
I been doing this here, hear the dedication
I’ve been doing this hair, na look at the transformation
Went bald on everyone
And look how things shaping up
If you ain’t growing with me
Then you had to be cut
I used discarded camera and computer parts to print into clay tablets. I bleached chicken bones, spray-painted various objects, drew large-scale oil pastel scenery, and cut up old books all for art installations.
I can be your new edition
Can you stand the rain
And when the grey clouds roll away
Does the sun reveal your pain
But as the moments move forward, nothing breaking through the quiet, we are met with the release of breath the speaker has been holding for far too long
This week’s #REPLAYS takes on “Love Line,” the newest track from British producer Shift K3Y, featuring Tinashe.
If this is what it means to be godly, why would anyone stay? And if you are already considered to be straying, why not have some fun with it?
“Home-Going Celebration” is a sly poem that bubbles with contradictions. An elegy rooted in mourning, the language pops with the dizzy rush of one sip too many.
I’m inspired a lot by stand-up comedians, so a lot of my work is me pretending I’m on stage telling a joke, trying to draw the audience in. – Shawn Berman
Because so many false narratives are being told about Black bodies, it is so crucial to tell the truth about what happens to us and the crimes that are committed against us. I think the true art is sharing the horror in a way that isn’t just trauma porn, but it’s art for a purpose.
REPLAYS: MET HIM LAST NIGHT – DEMI LOVATO & ARIANA GRANDE
Bogeyman in my mind
Trying to creep into reality
Defeated him in the past
So right now he mad at me
REPLAYS: PinkPantheress – Pain
And I 99.9% mean when I say
I’m glad I washed my hands of any
And everything surrounding the pain
REVIEW: HOW OFTEN I HAVE CHOSEN LOVE – XIAO YUE SHAN (FRONTIER POETRY)
Shan’s natural metaphors connect the experiences in this collection to a deep relationship with the physical world, grounding these stories into the earth.
CHAPBOOK CONTEST: SUBMISSIONS OPEN!
Submit your chapbook manuscripts to The Poetry Question! Guest Judges: Sofia Fey & Chris L. Butler.
“CONFUSION, DESPAIR, OR HOPE” – TALK TO ME: JIYE LEE
I hope to get the same emotions across whether that be confusion, despair, or hope to the readers and to enforce that in such a way it leaves them thinking about the poems for a while.
REVIEW: DUNCE – MARY RUEFLE (WAVE POETRY)
The poem claims to forbid but finds that grief is not powerful enough to truly erase the names of things.
BROWN STUDY: “SELF PORTRAIT AS A MERMAID OR DEAD GIRL” – GAIA RAJAN
I started thinking about who owns grief, how memory and grief affect the body, and soon enough, the poem turned into an elegy for someone I’ve lost.
REVIEW: STRANGERS – ROB TAYLOR (BIBLIOASIS)
Even if it can be painful, love will not settle down into abstraction. It reaches its fingers into the world, pinches and pulls.
REPLAYS: MY TIME IS NOW – TONE
Whether it’s released during an album’s rollout, planned or unplanned, music listeners ultimately hear that the time is now.
GETTING THE GURLZ W/ SOFIA FEY & KHALISA RAE: AIREA D. MATTHEWS
“…in America, the plight of black womxn is fraught with neglect and abuse, where some who behold both our intellect and beauty can’t seem to assert us as either”.
REPLAYS: PEACHES – JUSTIN BIEBER
We’ll be the one Justin sang about
saying love was until the end of time.
HUSTLE & BUSINESS OF POETRY – KHALISA RAE AND SOFIA FEY
Ranging from tips & tricks, to gripes, to gratitude, we have a lot to say! Welcome to the Hustle & Business of Poetry.
“LETTING THE POEMS SAY MORE THAN I WAS AWARE THEY WANTED TO SAY” – TALK TO ME: KATE FOX
I think the rewards of communicating through neurodivergence are not using up energy on masking and hiding. Plus then embodying the fact that humans think/feel/experience the world differently.
REPLAYS: BRYSON TILLER – LIKE CLOCKWORK
In an industry where the price of fame can change a person for better or worse, Bryson Tiller has remained himself through it all.
REVIEW: MEDUSA RETOLD – SARAH WALLIS (FLY ON THE WALL PRESS)
The epic sets apart internal and external narratives through the usage of italic sections, but these lines start to blur as the story unfolds, reinforcing that our internal lives are inseparable from the outside world.
What will KDK include in today’s #TPQ5? Find out inside!
“IT’S RIGHT UNDER OUR FEET THE WHOLE TIME” – TALK TO ME: JENI DE LA O
there are thousands of Amanda Gormans submitting poems right now, being read and rejected right now, by readers and editors who simply haven’t the refined palate to discern a truffle from button mushroom.
#TPQ5: MAGGS VIBO
What’s Maggs Vibo included in today’s #TPQ5? Find out inside!
REVIEW: TRICKS OF LIGHT – THADDEUS RUTKOWSKI (GREAT WEATHER FOR MEDIA)
He seems to consider care to be of utmost concern, not just for family, but also for strangers.
#TPQ5: EVAN WILLIAMS
What will Evan Williams include in today’s #TPQ5? Find out inside!
POWER OF POETRY #128: JANE ROSENBERG LAFORGE
Our classmates were the children of rock stars, writers, critics,visual artists, film editors and movie executives. But everyone in the neighborhood seemed famous to us, just for having been there.
#TPQ5: MIKE HICKMAN
What will Mike Hickman include in today’s #TPQ5? Find out inside!
REVIEW: WISCONSIN DEATH TRIP – JESSIE LYNN McMAINS (BONE & INK PRESS)
They are unafraid to show the awfulness and bitterness, old beliefs and traditions, terrible acts inflicted by the people who inhabit the snowy state.
Review of Worn by Adrienne Christian (Santa Fe Writers Project, 2020)
And when she writes of family, it’s of more exclusion – the striking disconnect from those with whom we are supposed to be connected.
#TPQ5: ERICA ABBOTT
What will Erica Abbott include in today’s #TPQ5? Find out inside!
“AN EXERCISE IN LEARNING TO SURRENDER.” TALK TO ME: JONATHAN KOVEN
I think there’s a level of trusting that people will empathize with my story, and if not my story, then the music of my words.
REPLAYS: Streets by Doja Cat
Whether it’s released during an album’s rollout, planned or unplanned, music listeners ultimately choose the success as we see in Doja Cat’s single, ‘Streets’.
#TPQ5: CARSON SANDELL
What will Carson Sandell include inside in today’s #TPQ5? Find out inside!
POETRY IN CINEMA: WE DON’T TRUST THE NATURE INSIDE US
Spoken over the shots of a child spilling milk and a mother in tears, the poem reminds that we are made by moments that can not be undone.
REVIEW: THE SAMURAI – LINDA M. CRATE (YELLOW ARROW PUBLISHING)
Or perhaps she felt this unfamiliarity with her body all along and only made sense of the reason why after her discovery of the reincarnation. – Robin D. Hendricks
REVIEW: SENTIMENTAL VIOLENCE — GABRIELLE HOGAN (GHOST CITY PRESS)
As we all know, though, joy does not exist without violence — not for Tonya, and not for any of us.
REPLAYS: ESCOBAR – Xponentbeatz featuring Kriiispy & Halfofyou
This column will take a look at songs from week of which I can’t get enough, and deep dive into my own thoughts in regards to them.
#TPQ5: SAMUEL ADEYEMI
What will Samuel Adeyemi include in today’s #TPQ5? Find out inside!
“WHICH REQUIRES ME TO BEND LANGUAGE TO MY WILL” – TALK TO ME: TAYLOR BYAS
I absolutely code switch because there isn’t an aspect of my life that doesn’t request that sort of labor from me. It’s built into my life, and therefore it manifests in my poetry. – Taylor Byas
#TPQ5: GAIA RAJAN
What will Gaia Rajan include in today’s #TPQ5? Find out inside!
@gaia_writes @Nic_Sealey @fannychoir @carmenmmachado @mfernandespoet
#TPQ5: RILEY DANVERS
What will Riley Danvers include in today’s #TPQ5? Find out inside!
REVIEW: LATE SUMMER FLOWERS – JULIAN DAY (ANSTRUTHER PRESS)
Yes, it really is just a ravine, but Day shares the significance of the place, the things that happened there. Place of sport and suicide. Place of celebration.
POETRY IN CINEMA: A MATTER OF LIFE AND DEATH – JESSICA MOOKHERJEE
The long drawn out arguments over life and death, over decisions of who to love – are almost meaningless in the ‘heat of the moment’ and when faced with imminent destruction.
#TPQ5: KATE (8) VAN PETTEN
What will Kate (8) Van Petten include in today’s #TPQ5? Find out inside!
#TPQ5: TYLER PENNOCK
What will Tyler Pennock include in today’s #TPQ5? Find out inside!
POWER OF POETRY #125: THE POWER & RISE OF UNDERGROUND VOICES – Mbizo CHIRASHA
“From the time of our birthing to these days of maturation, we are all shaped, serenaded and entertained by sweet ancient lullabies, drum beat throbs and early morning birdsongs.”
REVIEW: LET’S PHOTOGRAPH GIRLS ENJOYING LIFE – JASMINE GRAY (BROKEN SLEEP BOOKS)
This small poetry collection hits hard, it makes us voyeur and complicit in the diminishment of what gender and sex are.
Rev by @jessmkrjy
REVIEW: INDIGENOUS – JENNIFER REESER (ABLE MUSE PRESS)
In this work full of masterful lyricism, you will find a history once hidden, a story passed from one generation to the next, and traditions held in the hearts of Indigenous peoples.
REVIEW: THE RITUALS OF MUMMIFICATION – JOSEPH D. REICH (SAGGING MENISCUS PRESS)
Each piece almost feels a ritual, setting you firm in the notion that you are not alone in your experience, or your discontent.
#TPQ5: ANGELA GREGORY DRIBBEN
What will Angela Gregory Dribben, who loves living and writing down in a bottom in Southside Virginia, include in today’s #TPQ5? Find out inside!
#TPQ5: MICK THEEBS
What will Mick Theebs, Poet Laureate of Milford, CT, include in today’s #TPQ5? Find out inside!
POWER OF POETRY #104: MARTHA WARREN
“But instead of giving up, I think of this: My most successful poem ever, in my opinion, was so because it provided comfort.”
#TPQ5: BILL ARNOTT
What will Bill Arnott, author of Dromomania and contributor to numerous journals and anthologies, include in today’s #TPQ5? Find out inside!
#TPQ5: MARK FIDDES
What will Mark Fiddes, who has two sons and two poetry books, include in today’s #TPQ5? Find out inside!
#TPQ5: MO LYNN STOYCOFF
What will Mo Lynn Stoycoff, writer and visual artist from Central California, include in today’s #TPQ5? Find out inside!
#TPQ5: AMY JANNA LeBLANC
What will Amy Janna LeBlanc include in today’s #TPQ5? Find out inside!
“Poetry, I feel, is a tyrannical discipline. You’ve got to go so far so fast in such a small space; you’ve got to burn away all the peripherals.” — Sylvia Plath Poetry has always, and will continue doing I hope, held a special potency. In what are often very short
POWER OF POETRY #101: CHRISTOPHER MIGUEL FLAKUS
“Through poetry we can reduce the mythic to the mundane and elevate the ordinary to the sublime. We can understand ourselves, and each other, in a deeply necessary and fundamental way.”
REVIEW: THE LIFE OF THE PARTY- ADRIAN SOBOL
It’s in the checkout magazine’s interest to make you wait & consider options, the difference between content, contentment, & continent—which one, you think, is big enough for you?
POWER OF POETRY #100: BRIAN S. ELLIS
“These poems are seeds that will one day grow into religions, cultures, planets, multiverses. Snowballs that become avalanches.”
POWER OF POETRY #99: MATÉ JARAI
“Poetry is confession for the Godless. If my mind is a fury, if I can’t make sense of my own feelings, I scribble or I type, and whatever comes out, ‘quality’ doesn’t matter, it’s real and it’s there.”
POWER OF POETRY #98: SK GROUT
“It seems I cannot escape poetry, even if the thought fleetingly crosses my mind.”
WE HAVE THE GREATEST COMMUNITY
This is not a post about poetry. This is a post about reaching out to the community for help in a time of need. The outpouring of love and help thus far has been beyond overwhelming. We are humbled and grateful.
OPEN SUBMISSION: TPQ POETRY PAMPHLET SERIES #1
Submit your manuscript today!
#TPQ5: WARREN CZAPA
What will Warren Czapa, longlisted for the Troubadour International Poetry Prize, include in today’s #TPQ5? Find out inside!
#TPQ5: TAYLOR MALI
What will Taylor Mali, 4-time National Slam Poetry Champion and former voice of all Burger King commercials, include in today’s #TPQ5? Find out inside!
Poems can express themselves as fixed and as plastic, as grounded in space and liminal, heterotopic. They can be lively and spectral- palms kissing at the intersection of here and every elsewhere imaginable.
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?