Saturday, March 22, 2008

The Blog Poetic

Alexis Orgera posts reviews of poets and has entertaining article. I’m glad she posts reviews of poets so that when I see a chapbook or book mentioned somewhere it might just be in a review by a blogger somewhere (like Alexis). Always a plus to know what a poet’s work might be like when you’re wanting to take a chance on buying it. Check it out at:

Thanks for dropping in, please stop by tomorrow for another featured poet…

Friday, March 21, 2008

Poetry Tips Question 3: How Do You Seek Out Inspiration?

Jim Murdoch:

I don't. It seeks me out. If I don't have any then I write without it. It's nice to have it but it's not essential.

Barbara Smith:

Er. I was told 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration. And that's pretty much true. Keep on writing and working at stuff and you get better at writing better stuff. No big secret. Writing is like a muscle that you tone through use - though watch out for RSI. ;)

Rob Mack:

Sometimes it just arrives out of the blue. Other times it seems to happen in the middle of writing something entirely uninspired i.e. you create your own inspiration. But if you try too hard to seek out inspiration, it will stay hidden away. That’s the one sure thing.

Juliet Wilson:
Inspiration is everywhere, its recognizing it and using it that is the challenge.

Ben Wilkinson:

Pass. Everyday life, books, personal interests, newspapers, personal experience (more often than not twisted and reinvented), possibilities (both personal and universal), how shit-scary life and the world can be, other poems, things all over the bloody place. It tends to turn up at random rather than in my actively seeking it out. And it's normally a case of whether or not the subject lends itself well in my mind to a good first line or two, or a strong image or metaphor or something I can scribble down in a notebook. Sometimes I write about the strangest things, or things I never thought I'd write about. A breakthrough piece for me (in that it was my first poem published in the TLS) came in the form of a short sequence on the scientist Nikola Telsa. Break the rules. There's no such thing as an un-poetic subject: it's just whether or not the poet is up to making it into one.

Cuitlamiztli Carter:

To set up a rough metaphor, modern magicians don't so much segregate their lives into the "magickal moments" and the "mundane moments."Instead, they view each moment via a new lens. Every moment has both magickal potential & magickal significance. Likewise, inspiration is everywhere you are - as much as that sounds like a sophism, as one discovers what her or his poetic goals are, and dwells on those goals,they will begin to see connections in events, scenery, conversations,etc. that will provide them ways to express those goals.I would also say, less mystically, to read, read, read. The more you put other people's ideas into your brain, the more you can use them as a springboard. Also, it will make you aware of what's already been explored, so you can make sure your work is fresh.

Hazel B. Cameron
By reading anything other than poetry or listening to interviews...usually one phrase catches me out and I have to stop and write a poem. I often get inspiration when it’s impossible to write – like in the shower, a business meeting or whilst driving.

Thanks for reading, please stop by tomorrow for another featured blog!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Gloom Cupboard Print Edition Open Submissions

Richard at Gloom Cupboard just sent me an e-mail requesting that I inform you all that there are open submissions for the second print edition!
Here are the guidelines:

“After the astonishing success of the first Print Edition we are pleased to announce that we are now accepting submissions for the second. There are a few simple guidelines we need you to adhere to. If you want to submit then send at least three poems, up to three pieces of flash fiction or short stories that do not exceed 1000 words.
We require words that challenge, provoke and stimulate with no restrictions on style or content email: poetry/flash fiction/short stories to the email 'Submission'

Send what you deem to be appropriate”

I also have a link to Gloom Cupboard on the sidebar so please utilize it to visit Gloom Cupboard anytime and good luck on your submissions.

Please stop by tomorrow for answers from the Poet Hound audience to Question 3: How do you seek out inspiration?

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Monday, March 17, 2008

Eric Darby's Poetry Site

My husband stumbled onto Eric Darby’s performance on a web-site he frequents. I have to say, I’m hooked! Darby is awesome. Definitely check out and listen to his poetry slams at the site below you will not be disappointed. It certainly inspires me, I hope it does the same for you.

Thanks for checking in, please stop by tomorrow…

Sunday, March 16, 2008

William Logan

Mr. Logan was born in 1950 and has published over seven books of poetry. He divides his time between Florida and Cambridge, England according to the book I checked out at the library. This book is titled Night Battle published by Penguin Books. I’ve taken a while to get used to his poems, actually. I pick up the beautiful covers that often accompany his words and don’t always connect with the words inside.
This is one of those times where you revisit a poet often because you may not always “get” them and finally you make a connection after several times of attempting to read their work. This is the first time I’ve taken a book of his home with me and finally felt I could read the poems with greater ease. This particular book has quite a few rhyming poems which I am always a fan of. I love free verse just as much, but rhyme has an ability to flow into a rhythm that feels natural. After all, the majority of us are used to rhyme when it comes to song lyrics, and rhyming in poems always feels natural to me.
I have several “dog-eared” corners of poems I enjoyed in his book. Again, I wish I had the ability to request permission to print an entire poem but I usually don’t start far enough ahead to ask permission. One poem I enjoy is “Florida in January” because, of course, I live in Florida and it describes January perfectly for my area. An example of the lines are: “the cold of winter is somehow colder here/ the trees bleaker, with their rags of Spanish moss,/ the very air clipped and impatient.” It goes on to say “But, inshore, a crusty alligator steams,/nosing into reeds let to let off passengers/or take on canvas sacks of mail,” Obviously this poem doesn’t have the rhyme scheme but it has great imagery and I love the line about alligators taking canvas sacks of mail. Almost a Richard Scary kind of detail in a children’s book.
“Small Bad Town” has the rhyme scheme I mentioned earlier and is broken into quatrains with a snapshot of small-town life in each one. For example: “of the local housewife/burning from her soaps./Time sends invitations/in little envelopes.” It plays between the human and animal life in this small town which I enjoy since most people forget that wildlife shares the same space without our realizing it. It’s a great idea for a poem, I think.
The whole book is divided into sections and I enjoy the poems in all of them. Some are still hard for me to grasp, but I continue to challenge myself into reading them and I suggest you do the same for any poet who may initially grab your interest but stump you at some point. I must have read the poem “Niobe” several times because I couldn’t get the story line straight within it. There are several characters and I had trouble identifying who played what role in the story.
I challenge all of you to challenge yourself in your reading of poetry. Do not deny a poet because you don’t understand them, just pick the books up again from time to time and read through several until finally one “clicks.” You’ll be pleasantly surprised. In the meantime, check out the links below and please read William Logan’s poems when you stumble upon them.

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