Who will Sara place in her #TPQ5? Find out inside!
It’s okay to be comfortable. To live life day-by-day, and keep it simple. It’s okay to feel like we move through life as a slow drawl – not slow, but easy.
If there’s one thing that probably rings truest for me among all the things I could say about the power of poetry, it would be that poetry has the capacity to make us better people.
Maybe, sometimes, it’s because a particular poem needs revisiting more than once to understand what it’s trying to say. Or maybe it’s because the power of a poem is beyond the actual words, and needs time to discover.
From those we love, to those we’ve loved in mirrors, we are left to sift through and decide between thoughts, facades, and realities. This is our path to survival, to strength, to moving on regardless of those who’ve hurt us.
Which books does Charles Jensen, author of Nanopedia, have on his #TPQ5? Find out in today’s edition!
In poetry, you find the life stories of each of us and as a reader, you interpret each poem in your own way, despite the real meaning behind the poem or regardless of the reasons why the writer wrote it.
It’s an acknowledgement of those we’ve lost in the fire, and those we’ve gained because of it. That, it’s never the drug, but rather the longing to quell the quiet.
This is the poet, reflecting inwardly, recalling moments when ‘the sad trickles in like morning rays’ with the empowering and uplifting revelation: ’you can rise to face it’.
Find out who is in Samuel Guest’s #TPQ5?
Add your own from the link at the bottom.
“….the act of creating, of writing or of speaking a poem into existence, is an act of discovery, of discovery of meaning, an act of self-discovery—who I am at this given moment in time?
Who does Weasel, founder of Weasel Press put in his list of top 5 authors? Find out in this edition of The TPQ 5.
Who’s in your #TPQ5?
What does Lyd Havens put in their list of top 5 books? Find out in this edition of The TPQ 5.
She becomes the alpha and the omega, earth and firmament as we become willing travellers on her journey through the hills of Ireland and the drumlins of memory
Who does Angela Gabrielle Fabunan put in her list of top 5 authors? Find out in this edition of The TPQ 5.
“We Blacks in space are Hoovers.
Who gonna be cryin’ in the 23rd century? / Not this hole’s grand grands. We define / the light until we all done letting stars be bright / ‘N suck up all the credit for nothing / they do ‘cept sit there burning.”
“…remember that “if you double a bubble / you will have two bubbles / but this information isn’t worth / a pile of rubble.” We don’t always want what we find, but we are often the reason we’ve found ourselves there.”
What does Ronnie Stephens put in his list of top 5 books? Find out in this edition of #TPQ5.
Who does rob mclennan, Founder of Above/Ground Press, put in his list of top 5 authors? Find out in this edition of The TPQ 5.
Monsters are truly everywhere. Usually, though, they look just like us.
It’s the slant-rhyme hymnals with a push-away-from-God-and-man chorus you can’t keep out of your head. These are hymns for the hopeless who long to be significant.
Who does award winning author, Ran Walker, put in his list of top 5 authors? Find out in this edition of The TPQ 5.
Some ask us how many beats our hearts have left. Others just cut to the core of all our fears, to the ‘kelp-nest of wires’ as her fifth born slumbers ‘tiny and certain’
I can’t go to work and say to a colleague: I stay up late at night imagining animals being hit in the road over and over…
Who does Alexandra Meehan put in her list of top 5 books? Find out in this edition of The TPQ 5.
We can certainly watch The Shining as a movie about ghost leading a man down a path of madness, but isn’t it scarier to think the ghosts are figments of his imagination, and his madness’ provenance is in the anger he ignores and represses?
The reason isn’t always so obvious, but wear masks and costumes at each stage of life. We are, in most moments, who we choose to be. And in others, we become, well, others.
Who is in your top 5 list of writers or books? Allow us a glance into who or what inspires you. Complete the form inside to submit your list.
Deglane successfully submerges us into the mind of a person troubled by depression, anxiety, trauma, and a Lexapro-fogged brain with an overarching story of hope.
At this moment I’m typing in my apartment. A dog barks from a neighbor’s yard. A petal drops from the vase of wildflowers on my desk. And still I am in my parents basement playing with an eight-track recorder.
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.
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.
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.
“…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.
“Postpartum depression is still surrounded by stigma and shame is often directed at mothers. Horan does not shy away from sharing this darker side of motherhood…”
“…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.”
I kept thinking to myself about the idea that nature is—and will always be—in charge, and we’re destined to bend to its will
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
Havens has a savage wit and open wound for you to see on every page. Their lyricism surpassed only by the abundant imagery, you can almost feel the poems being written for YOU.
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.”
She’s taking understated moments from life and creating fantastic poems around them, bring a whole new meaning to day-to-day moments.
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.
Kirby’s poem had to be read twice and three times and more because it grips you by the throat and doesn’t let go.
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.
Reading Lyd Haven’s work makes me want them to win. Makes my real world seem to fade away, replaced with someone I want to see succeed despite and because of their troubles.
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.
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.
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.
Dominik Parisien’s poems embody chronic pain, elevating the traumas, and illuminating the act of breathing being the most essential part of living. He uses body parts, the act of breathing, religion, and science, to illustrate the struggle and the pain that the poetic voice endures.
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.
Alongside beautiful imagery there is stark loneliness, the desire to curl up apart from what we might naturally think of home, a metaphor perhaps for the isolation death might bring, or the boundaries that come with having an earthly body.
The power of poetry, then, is its ability to show us ordinary things in an extraordinary light.
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.
In short, this book is a microcosm of identity politics, giving faces and names to those who must learn how to exist in various spaces simultaneously.
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.
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.
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: 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 […]
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 […]
THE POWER OF POETRY — A.M. O’Malley I first found poetry when I was nine years old in […]
Poetry, like any art, is about connection, either to our inner-self or to another being. In the darkest […]
Faith is found here, not in a destiny raiding and parceling out knowledge and the earth, but […]
Photo Courtesy of Conrad Erb, LiveConnections “I Used to Hate Poetry” — Denice Frohman For many poets and […]
The Poetry of a Perfect Cocktail – Sam Slaughter I’ve never been a poet. The closest I’ve come—“songs” […]
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 […]
Poetry Speaks For Itself (except it can’t actually speak at all) —- Taylor Mali Deconstructing the difference between […]
The Power of Poetry – Duncan Shields Poetry uses language to surpass language. That is the central thought […]
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 […]
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 […]
I am hesitant to include quotes from the book in this review. Not that it is a […]
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 truth was a mirror the church led me to believe I discovered the impossibility of finding […]
The Transformative Power of Poetry – Ethan Smith On language When I first started writing intentionally for poetry […]
If you are looking for soft, pillow talk love poetry, this is not the collection for you. If […]
“The Power of Poetry” by JENNY DRAI 1. I remember the poem that made me want to […]
“Power of Poetry” by EBONY STEWART I remember being eight or nine when my parents finally […]
The first time I remember hearing the word “poetry” it came from a family member who was […]
“She told me that she bought the ring in San Francisco at an outdoor market. I like […]
“The Bones of Us” is part poetry collection, part graphic novel, and all well done. J Bradley and […]
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 […]
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 […]
Confession time. I hate the blank page. As a writer, this poses a bit of a problem. […]
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 […]
Jesse Parent looks like he would hurt you, and then hug you, and probably sit you down to […]
I was first introduced to Sharon Creech as a student teacher. Her ability to weave together story lines […]
Annelyse Gelman is a woman I’d love to get to know over a glass or, let’s be honest, a […]
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 […]
Enchanting. Honest. Humble. Uplifting. Delightful. Courageous. Finding just one word to encapsulate that which Sarah Kay brings to […]
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 […]
Review by Courtney Myers As I looked at piles of chapbooks spread across the coffee table, […]
Living just over the bridge from Portland, Oregon, I’ve had the esteemed pleasure of watching Alex Dang […]
Eight years ago, in November of 2005, I shared the stage at the old Bowery Poetry Club with […]
As my first contribution to this blog, I thought I should aim high and try to answer the […]