If interested in having me for a reading, class visit, or conference/festival, please contact me at lorcaloca AT aol DOT com

Thursday, December 31, 2009

The Kundiman Poetry Prize

Kundiman and Alice James Books are accepting submissions of poetry manuscripts for The Kundiman Poetry Prize postmarked between November 15, 2009 and January 15, 2010. The Kundiman Poetry Prize welcomes submissions from emerging as well as established Asian American poets. Entrants must reside in the United States.

The winner receives $2000, book publication and a New York City feature reading.

Complete info here

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Call for Submissions

PALABRA, a magazine of Chicano & Latino Literary Art,

invites Chicano & Latino writers to submit short stories, flash fiction, poetry, standalone novel excerpts and short plays that explore new avenues of Chicano & Latino writing. Innovative/cross-genre/hybrid work is welcome. Especially interested in work that is fresh and takes literary risks.

Fiction and novel excerpts to 4000 words, flash fiction 3 maximum of up to 750 words each, poems 5 maximum of any length and style, plays to 15 pp. Work can be in English, Spanish, Spanglish or any combination thereof. Simultaneous submissions are okay. There is some pay. Submissions are accepted from September 1 through May 31.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Hottie of the week: James Murphy

LCD Soundsystem

Call for Submissions

from Cynthia Cruz

I am in the beginning stages of putting together an anthology of poems and prose written by women about their experience of being hospitalized for an eating disorder. If you have any writing (poems or prose) on this subject(does not have to be "narrative"), please send to me at cindyskylar@yahoo.com. with subject heading "anthology."

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

I hope you applied to this

Olive B. O'Connor Fellowship in Creative Writing

Deadline: arrive by January 1, 2010,

Writers of poetry, fiction or nonfiction who have recently completed an MFA, MA, or PhD in creative writing, and who need a year to complete their first book, are encouraged to apply. The selected writer will spend the academic year (late August 2010 to early May 2011) at Colgate University in Hamilton, New York.

The fellow will teach one creative writing course each semester and will give a public reading from the work in progress.

The fellowship carries a stipend of $34,750 plus travel expenses; health and life insurance are provided.

Complete applications, should consist of a resume; three letters of recommendation, at least one of which should address the candidate’s abilities as a teacher; and either a maximum of 30 double-spaced manuscript pages of prose or 20 single-spaced pages of poetry. Writing sample may be a completed work or an excerpt from something larger.

Send complete applications to Creative Writing Fellowship c/o Department of English, Colgate University, 13 Oak Drive, Hamilton, NY 13346-1398.

good news!

congrats to jason schneiderman for winning the 2009 richard snyder prize from ashland poetry press.

from Identity Theory Editors' Blog

This should be a golden age of literary journals. And it is, for some larger forward-looking publications. McSweeney's, the New Yorker, Tin House, and others have found compatibility between financial sustainability and what my old boss Henry Jenkins calls "spreadability", removing barriers to sharing content so that fans can build communities around that content.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009


the other night i dreamt i made out with dean young. he has cold hands and a hot tongue.
oh bless the innocents! i was recently asked by an mfa student to write him a letter of recommendation. how sweet! and foolish! i told him no. i told him he should seek out someone who really knows his work, or at the very least, a poet with more visibility.
i don't want to be famous. that's why i'm a poet.
love love love love this song: blind by hercules & love affair. the lead singer on this track is antony from antony and the johnstons.
page proofs always make me break out in a sweat.

Hottie of the week: anthony swofford

read his bio here.

kinda of silly, but oh well: my year (really half a year it seems) in facebook status updates

Monday, December 21, 2009

steve fellner speaks!

"Fat poets like myself are the most wonderful things in the gay community."

"I like misshapen poems."

"You must have a small cock to ask me that question."

"Another truth: I want revenge."

" At least a dozen people come to my blog a day."

"Gay men are never safe."

Sunday, December 20, 2009


hey, you.
almost done with my xmas shopping. bought a scooter, a swiss army knife, pjs, some video games, action figures, clothes and books for my nephews and nieces on friday.
lights and music are on my mind...
at what point do you move on beyond petty grudges? there's a female blogger who just won't stop her personal vendetta. i hope she realizes that no one else is going to join her campaign, and that her vendetta is overshadowing her poetry. i myself will never buy another book by this poet.
best poetry books of 2009 include titles by d.a. powell and lucia perillo.
i bought a smurf tote today!

Go Team Voltron!

Huge congrats to my Bread Loaf roomie Alan Heathcock who just sold his story collection to Graywolf Press.

Go Team Voltron!!!!

Lexi Rudnitsky/Editor’s Choice Award

The Lexi Rudnitsky/Editor's Choice Award is an annual collaboration between Persea Books and The Lexi Rudnitsky Poetry Project. It is open to any American poet who has previously published at least one full-length book of poems. The winner receives an advance of $1,000.00, publication of his/her collection by Persea, and the option of an all-expenses-paid residency at the Anderson Center, a renowned artists' colony in Red Wing, Minnesota.

Full guidelines here.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

I will be wearing lipstick this spring

i'm so loving this photograph. it's a sneak peak at M.A.C.'s Viva Glam 2010 spring campaign. the campaign will feature cyndi lauper and lady gaga. each diva will get her own shade of lipstick: viva glam gaga and viva glam lauper. all profits will go to the MAC AIDS Fund.

i will be wearing viva glam lauper all spring!

Friday, December 11, 2009

I found the cover art for my first book!

update ur blogrolls, peeps

brent goodman has moved here.

There Are Two Worlds

Perhaps the ankle of a horse is holy.

Crossing the Mississippi at dusk, Clemens thought
Of a sequel in which Huck Finn, in old age, became
A hermit, & insane. And never wrote it.

And perhaps all that he left out is holy.

The river, anyway, became a sacrament when
He spoke of it, even though
The last ten chapters were a failure he devised

To please America & make his lady
Happy: to buy her silk, furs, & jewels with

Hues no one in Hannibal had ever seen.

There, above the river, if
The pattern of the stars is a blueprint for a heaven
Left unfinished,

I also believe the ankle of a horse,
In the seventh furlong, is as delicate as the fine lace
of faith, & therefore holy.

I think it was only Twain's cynicism, the smell of a river
Lingering in his nostrils forever, that kept
His humor alive to the end.

I don't know how he managed it.

I used to make love to a woman, who,
When I left, would kiss the door she held open for me
As if instead of me, as if she already missed me.
I would stand there in the cold air, breathing it,
Amused by her charm, which was, like the scent of a river.

Provocative, the dusk & lights along the shore.

Should I say my soul went mad for a year, &
Could not sleep? To whom should I say so?

She was gentle, & intended no harm.

If the ankle of a horse is holy, & if it fails
In the stretch & the horse goes down &
The jockey in the bright shout of his silks
Is pitched headlong onto
The track & maimed, & if, later the horse is
Destroyed, & all that is holy

Is also destroyed: hundreds of bones & muscles that
Tried their best to be pure flight, a lyric
Made flesh, then

I would like to go home, please.

Even though I betrayed it, & left, even though
I might be, at such a time as I am permitted
To go back to my wife, my son--no one, or

No more than a stone in a pasture full
Of stones, full of the indifferent grasses,

(& Huck Finn insane by then & living alone)

It will be, it might be still,
A place where what can only remain holy grazes, &
Where men might, also, approach with soft halters,
And, having no alternative, lead that fast world

Home--though it is only to the closed dark of stalls,
And though the men walk ahead of the horses slightly
Afraid, & at all times in awe of their
Quickness, & how they have nothing to lose, especially

Now, when the first stars appear slowly enough
To be counted, & the breath of the horses make white signatures

On the air: Last Button, No Kidding, Brief Affair--

And the air is colder.

Larry Levis

Thursday, December 10, 2009

david lau: one of my favorite new poets

Yucca Flats
Protest in Philippines
The Tupperware Concerto

another great cover

my bits can beat up your bits

i spend way too much money at starbucks. i can't help it! i'm addicted to peppermint mocha lattes!
nate klug's pic over at the poetry foundation web site bugs me. a lot. granted, he's very cute. i wouldn't kick him out of the garden of eden. but i dislike the expression on his face. he's looking at the camera as if we just disturbed his morning coffee or something! and the forefinger buttressing his temple and the fingers curled before his chin are pretentious and moldy gestures. i hate it when poets pose like that! we have been blessed...the poet has gazed in our direction...let's kneel at his feet...
With his eighth book, "Never-Ending Birds," David Baker won't let us forget. The world in these poems -- birds and all -- is one Ted Hughes and Emily Dickinson would have recognized: intricate, violent, sublime.
i need to get a life. i know it.
i told someone the other day that i'm going to wear bunny slippers in my author pic. not on my feet. on my head.
i do like this short but oh so tight poem by nate klug

Monday, December 07, 2009

summer bits

cold day in arizona today. rain and cloud shadow.
i'm applying to yaddo and macdowell again. maybe i will get in again; maybe not.
i need a new watch.
don't you love it when some bloggers claim they don't do colonies because they have no need for them? ha. we all know the real reason they have no need for them: they know they can't get in.
listening to philip glass a lot.
i work again tomorrow. i'm liking my part-time gig at home depot. i'm a people person!
i wonder what c. dale is drinking right now?
tiger woods is one horny dude.
facebook this!

hottie of the week: terrance hayes

The Kundiman Poetry Prize for Asian American writers

Kundiman and Alice James Books will be accepting submissions of poetry manuscripts for The Kundiman Poetry Prize postmarked between November 15, 2009 and January 15, 2010. The Kundiman Poetry Prize welcomes submissions from emerging as well as established Asian American poets. Entrants must reside in the United States.

The winner receives $2000, book publication and a feature reading.

Complete guidelines here.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

laura van prooyen on paula bohince

Set in rural Pennsylvania on a family farm, the narrative comprises three parts. Section One recalls the primary speaker’s complicated childhood, Section Two confronts the circumstances of her father’s brutal death, and Section Three explores her adult life on the homestead. The poems reveal a landscape permeated with loss and violence as they weave together the obsessions of the book

susan settlemyre williams on victoria chang

We know, in general terms, what to expect from a first book of poetry. The poet has been writing it all her life. Second books don’t behave predictably at all. Accessible narrative poets go in for complicated word salads; autobiographical poets turn to someone else’s life. As with adolescents, the voice changes—and sometimes squeaks and breaks on its way to reaching maturity. Even at this stage, however, wise poets don’t jettison everything that worked right in their first collections. Victoria Chang, a wise poet, manages both continuity and innovation in her second book.

ron slate on peter campion

...His occasional fussiness with language points us away from a strange obsession to its willful manipulation. But his insistence on inserting an unexpected word also underscores the role of this carved language as the most reliable stay against the types of confusion in The Lions.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

american poets in the 21st century

you gotta love the internets!

this is a great online companion to the american poets in the 21st century anthology published by wesleyan university press.

you will hear some fine poets read their own work.

mark levine! myung mi kim! da powell! kevin young! karen volkman! susan wheeler!

i'm going to use this site next time i teach.

bad boy bits

am i a bad boy?
blackbird singing in the dead of night...
these posts are getting boring to write! i need to pick a fight with someone! yes, that sounds like a plan. i already have a blogger in mind. oh, yea!
can i shock you? i don't like the beatles.
i should buy some brass knuckles.
i watched the first episode of "launch my line" on bravo last night. i think bravo has finally jumped the shark. talk about manufactured drama. two thumbs down!
peppermint mochas are divine.
can't stop listening to "to go home" by m. ward. what a lovely song. and yes, i know it's a cover.
the moon is crazy.
really like this poem on poetry daily and this poem on verse daily.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Domestic Mysticism

In thrice 10,000 seasons, I will come back to this world
In a white cotton dress. Kingdom of After My Own Heart.
Kingdom of Fragile. Kingdom of Dwarves. When I come home,
Teacups will quiver in their Dresden saucers, pentatonic chimes
Will move in wind. A covey of alley cats will swarm on the side
Porch & perch there, portents with quickened heartbeats
You will feel against your ankles as you pass through.

After the first millenium, we were supposed to die out.
You had your face pressed up against the coarse dyed velvet
Of the curtain, always looking out for your own transmigration:
What colors you would wear, what cut of jewel,
What kind of pageantry, if your legs would be tied
Down, if there would be wandering tribes of minstrels
Following with woodwinds in your wake.

This work of mine, the kind of work which takes no arms to do,
Is least noble of all. It's peopled by Wizards, the Forlorn,
The Awkward, the Blinkers, the Spoon-Fingered, Agnostic Lispers,
Stutterers of Prayer, the Flatulent, the Closet Weepers,
The Charlatans. I am one of those. In January, the month the owls
Nest in, I am a witness & a small thing altogether. The Kingdom
Of Ingratitude. Kingdom of Lies. Kingdom of How Dare I.

I go on dropping words like little pink fish eggs, unawares, slightly
Illiterate, often on the mark. Waiting for the clear whoosh
Of fluid to descend & cover them. A train like a silver
Russian love pill for the sick at heart passes by
My bedroom window in the night at the speed of mirage.
In the next millenium, I will be middle aged. I do not do well
In the marrow of things. Kingdom of Trick. Kingdom of Drug.

In a lung-shaped suburb of Virginia, my sister will be childless
Inside the ice storm, forcing the narcissus. We will send
Each other valentines. The radio blowing out
Vaughan Williams on the highway's purple moor.
At nine o'clock, we will put away our sewing to speak
Of lofty things while, in the pantry, little plants will nudge
Their frail tips toward the light we made last century.

When I come home, the dwarves will be long
In their shadows & promiscuous. The alley cats will sneak
Inside, curl about the legs of furniture, close the skins
Inside their eyelids, sleep. Orchids will be intercrossed & sturdy.
The sun will go down as I sit, thin armed, small breasted
In my cotton dress, poked with eyelet stitches, a little lace,
In the queer light left when a room snuffs out.

I draw a bath, enter the water as a god enters water:
Fertile, knowing, kind, surrounded by glass objects
Which could break easily if mishandled or ill-touched.
Everyone knows an unworshipped woman will betray you.
There is always that promise, I like that. Kingdom of Kinesis.
Kingdom of Benevolent. I will betray as a god betrays,
With tenderheartedness. I've got this mystic streak in me.

Lucie Brock-Broido


i worked 8 hours today! my feet are sore.
currently reading:
tsim tsum: sabrina orah mark
if birds gather your hair for nesting: anna journey
why do all the crazies talk to me at starbucks?
the light is blue

Saturday, November 28, 2009

victoria chang interviews dan beachy-quick

...I think that lyric tradition offers a way in which both language and music may co-exist, opposites that nonetheless do not destroy each other, but continually reduce the other’s dominance as a representative mode. It is work, but a strange kind of work—one that lets the notion of work subside into listening.


The lightning struck him and left a scar.
The wind stopped blowing and the wheat stood up.
Self-tensed self, who is this I that says I ?
I had a scar in the shape of  lightning
That split in half when I opened my mouth.
The sun  just a circle of  heat in the sky
Throwing absence in the shape of clouds
Down on the field. Another life placed
In the middle of  the life I called my own.
A lesser god commanded the front: return.
A little god knocked about in the germ.
The third person put me outside my own sphere.
A small god chanting lightning in the synapse.
Wind blows the wheat down. He calls it prayer.

dan beachy-quick

Monday, November 23, 2009

acknowledgement bits

once again: congrats to luke for winning the caption contest. you all can't see me, but i'm almost smiling.
last night i spent time working on my acknowledgement page. why? because some contests require you to send in an acknowledgement página along with your ms. the nerve!
i've been lucky. so many people and institutions have supported my work. it boggles my mind. i've been given many gifts.
my acknowledgement page is going to be long. how long? levi johnston long! okay, bad pun.
the easy past was thanking the institutions. Yada yada yaddo. But coming up with individual names was stressing me out. i didn't want to forget anyone, which is crazy considering the ms hasn't been picked up yet, and i have like months and months to revise the acknowledgment page.
but i found a solution!
this is how i came up with the names for my acknowledgement page. i gave myself two minutes, and with out really "thinking" about it, i wrote down the names of the people i feel indebted to, people who have opened doors for me, people who have pushed me through doors.
skyscrapers are scraping together your voice...
there's the obvious names on the list. teachers. poetry buddies. editors. etc. but there's also the names of a few people who did what i'm sure they consider "small" things for me, but those acts of kindness meant a lot to me. geez, i'm tearing up a little.
and yes, some bloggers made the cut. some bloggers have been tremendously kind to me and my work.
oh, my gosh. this amazing hunk just walked by me. give me a few minutes, folks! i need to catch my breath.
some of you have asked: eduardo, have you sent out your ms this fall? alas, my friends, i have not. but i'm getting closer to letting it go.
how about i make a deal with you?
when my ms gets picked up, i will probably have to wait a few days or weeks to tell all of you. but how about this: when you see my acknowledgement page published on my blog that will be your sign that my ms has been picked up.
look, ma! i can't keep a secret.
you know what else boggles my mind? the anthologies that have reprinted my work. a lot of these anthologies are taught or will get taught at the college level. i might not have a book, but there some college kids out there being assigned my work. that's so freaking cool and odd, no?
i'm not bragging. you all know i'm a big ball of self-doubt and hesitation.
and because keith wants to know: i have a poem in this anthology that comes out in 2010.
big ball! i called myself a big ball. truer words have never been typed.
spring book contests, here i come!
this is the poem that annie finch was kind enough to include in the anthology. i think it's one my best poems. it's the second poem in the ms.
i'm in love with all of you tonight.

Today is the FINAL caption showdown: The Caption Off

congrats to luke! i'm not a sore loser. really. i'm not.

Thursday, November 19, 2009


i hate it when bloggers brag about lit journal acceptances. who cares? i don't.
i can't wait for new moon this friday.
jordan, jump on the platitude bandwagon!

dark is the night.
i'm a little bummed. i can't apply to go back to bread loaf until i get a book published. shucks! that might be YEARS from now! ha. i had such a great time there this summer. but you can't apply for a waitership if you've already been there as a scholar. makes sense. too bad. i will be dreaming about you, bread loaf.
tonight is the finale of project runway and i could care less.
i have a poem forthcoming in this journal. i'm very happy about this.
i work in a pumpkin patch.
song of the moment: "one wing" by wilco.
One of the biggest challenges for a writer is to risk failure, I think. And in risking failure, you just might write stunning new poems. But chances are, these new poems might not be embraced by the people that embraced your work before. I've been obsessing about these issues for a while now as I try to push myself to overcome stasis in my writing.
i'm right there with you, victoria.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

hottie of the week: barbie cyndi lauper doll (coming january 2010)

I gotz to have this!

pity the bitter poets

sometimes there's no difference between indignation and self-promotion.
community is not a noun; it's a verb.
haven't we learned anything from chicana poets/ scholars? we can use our intelligence, our creativity to leap over adversity.
if you don't like what you see going on around you, get up and do something about it. don't just whine and whine.
i think of community as a mansion with many rooms. find your room. but don't isolate yourself. walk the hallways, knock on other doors, welcome others into your room.
don't play the victim card again and again.
if your book didn't get the attention you thought it deserved, then welcome to the club. how many books come out each year? how many get ignored or pushed aside? plenty.
if people only talk about your tantrums and accusations and not your work, then you are in trouble.
community is not a noun; it's a verb.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

2010 Andrés Montoya Poetry Prize


Latino/a poets who have not had a book professionally published. Authors of chapbooks and self-published works are eligible, but the manuscript submitted should not have been published as a whole in any form. Manuscripts may be submitted elsewhere simultaneously, but authors must notify the Institute for Latino Studies immediately if a manuscript becomes committed to another press. It is understood that, in the absence of such notification, the winning author is committed to publishing his/her manuscript with the University of Notre Dame Press. A manuscript committed to another press is not eligible for the Andrés Montoya Poetry Prize. There is no entrance fee. Employees and students of the University of Notre Dame are not eligible.

Final Judge: Silvia Curbelo

Deadline: postmarked no later than January 15, 2010.

Complete guidelines here.

such an amazing book cover!

j. michael martinez: heredities: winner of the 2009 walt whitman award.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

apply! apply! apply!

Philip Roth Residence in Creative Writing, Stadler Center for Poetry, Bucknell University

Named for the Pulitzer Prize-winning Bucknell graduate and initiated in the fall of 1993, the Philip Roth Residence in Creative Writing offers an emerging writer four months of unfettered writing time during Bucknell's fall semester, without formal academic obligations. The Residence is designed to grant the writer time to complete a first or second book. The resident presents a public reading of his or her work and otherwise constitutes a literary presence on campus during the fall. Providing lodging on campus, an office in the Stadler Center for Poetry, and a stipend of $4,000.

To be eligible, an applicant must be more than 21 years of age, must reside in the United States, and must not be enrolled as a student in a college or university. (Persons enrolled in a college or university at the time of application are eligible). Some record of publication is desirable. Please note that the 2010-11 Roth Residence will be awarded to a poet. The term of the Residence is late August through mid-December 2009.

Complete guidelines here.


congrats to bino realuyo for winning the 2009 philippine national book award in poetry.
do you want to hear some of the 2009 bread loaf readings? well, you're in luck! some of the readings are now on iTunes. click here. you can hear me read as part of the tuition scholar reading. i start reading around 15:34. and yes, i was nervous. and no, i didn't say the f*word.
susan rich is now blogging.
two poems: rane arroyo.

Call for Submissions: Packing House Reviews

Deadline is this Saturday, November 21st. But don't worry, you have time to submit via email.

Complete guidelines here.

now available

They Speak of Fruit by Gary L. McDowell
29 pages

The first title from CooperDillon containing poems which originally appeared in such wonderful journals as New England Review, Anti-, Copper Nickel, Bat City Review and others.

You can buy it here.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

hottie of the week: the thought-fox

The Thought-Fox

I imagine this midnight moment's forest:
Something else is alive
Besides the clock's loneliness
And this blank page where my fingers move.

Through the window I see no star:
Something more near
Though deeper within darkness
Is entering the loneliness:

Cold, delicately as the dark snow,
A fox's nose touches twig, leaf;
Two eyes serve a movement, that now
And again now, and now, and now

Sets neat prints into the snow
Between trees, and warily a lame
Shadow lags by stump and in hollow
Of a body that is bold to come

Across clearings, an eye,
A widening deepening greenness,
Brilliantly, concentratedly,
Coming about its own business

Till, with sudden sharp hot stink of fox
It enters the dark hole of the head.
The window is starless still; the clock ticks,
The page is printed.

Ted Hughes


my bits bring all the boys to the yard...
i'm wreck. i'm not cut out for contests. i can't do it. no way, jose.
victoria has some poetry book suggetions here and here
i'm getting old. each time i eat pizza i get heartburn.
very cool cover!
i'm going to miss two more book contest deadlines this week.
rigoberto loves chapbooks.
another cool cover!
voyage, voyage.

recent Google searches that led to my blog

henrietta goodman
Nuestra Señora de las Iguanas
Forrest Gander
a creative couplet with 50 lines
Kapoor la fiesta columbia
are most Eduardos tops?

good news!

Emmy Pérez wins 2009 Alfredo Cisneros Del Moral Foundation Award

The Alfredo Cisneros Del Moral (ACDM) Foundation is pleased to announce the winner of the 2009 ACDM Award: poet Emmy Pérez (McAllen, TX). This year’s award totals, $8,912.

Emmy Pérez is the author of a poetry collection, Solstice (Swan Scythe Press, 2003). She holds degrees from Columbia University and the University of Southern California. Her work has appeared in Prairie Schooner, North American Review, Notre Dame Review, New York Quarterly, Borderlands: Texas Poetry Review, Indiana Review, Crab Orchard Review, and the anthologies The Wind Shifts: New Latino Poetry and The Weight of Addition: an anthology of Texas Poetry. She is a contributing editor for The Writer's Chronicle, Latino Poetry Review, and Texas Books in Review. Currently, she is an Assistant Professor and teaches in the MFA program at the University of Texas-Pan American in the Rio Grande Valley.

The Alfredo Cisneros Del Moral Foundation was created in 2000 to honor the memory of Sandra Cisneros' father, an upholsterer. "My father lived his life as an example of generosity and honest labor," Cisneros has written; "Even as he warned us to save our centavitos, he was always giving away his own. A meticulous craftsman, he would sooner rip the seams of a cushion apart and do it over than put his name on an item that wasn't up to his high standards. I especially wanted to honor his memory by an award showcasing writers who are equally proud of their own craft."

Monday, November 09, 2009

the WILLA list

Women in Letters and Literary Arts started The WILLA List to note great books by women that Publishers Weekly missed in their all-male top ten "Best Books of 2009" (they included just 29 women authors on their extended list of 100!). The wiki format allows anyone to create or edit an entry, so we can all work together to chronicle our favorite books by women in 2009. Please add your favorites in alphabetical order in the correct category, but please be sure the book was first published in 2009. We will do our best to verify each new listing.

click here to read & to add to The WILLA list

Sunday, November 08, 2009

robert vasquez on mad men

I've viewed AMC's Mad Men for at least a few episodes (partly because of the success the show had at the latest Emmy's), and I think I've ascertained the series appeal: Like many 1950s fare, people of color aren't visible or viable as equals, and homosexuality exists elsewhere.


sunday bloody sunday.
i took a pre-employment urine teat the other day. i hope i pass. just kidding!
donald justice poetry prize: deadline extended to december 1st.
did i just write "teat" instead of "test?" what a typo!
correction: i took a pre-employment urine test the other day.
The worlds of poetry and pro hockey rarely intersect...
gawd, there is a hot guy here at starbucks. his shirt reads: give me a beer. should i walk up to him and say: how about a queer?
pool is now an online journal.

Call for Submissions: ReBound Series

Submissions are now being accepted for our second annual ReBound Series. Please read

The ReBound Series expands the mission of Seven Kitchens Press to bring new and/or underappreciated writers to a broader audience by reprinting out-of-print chapbooks in select new editions. Each title in the series will feature an introductory foreword by a nominating writer (who will be given the opportunity to edit the introduction); self-nominations will not be accepted. As with all our titles, the authors (if available) will work closely with the editor in the production process; each chapbook will feature a full-color cover and ISBN, and will be printed in an initial set of 125 copies.

Complete info here.

Kazim Ali: Write Something on My Wall: Body, Identity and Poetry

Here in a camp where young Jewish children were given music lessons, dance lessons, art lessons, then ushered quickly to their deaths, even the imaginary holds real menace: “He drew a German shepherd inside a cage/and blacked the cage with a crayon//It was sealed shut/but he could hear the dog barking at night.”

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Full Moon and Little Frieda

A cool small evening shrunk to a dog bark and the clank of a bucket -
And you listening.
A spider's web, tense for the dew's touch.
A pail lifted, still and brimming - mirror
To tempt a first star to a tremor.

Cows are going home in the lane there, looping the hedges with their warm
wreaths of breath -
A dark river of blood, many boulders,
Balancing unspilled milk.
'Moon!' you cry suddenly, 'Moon! Moon!'

The moon has stepped back like an artist gazing amazed at a work
That points at him amazed.

Ted Hughes

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

interview: justin marks

...I had started a new manuscript, but I hadn’t given up on A Million in Prizes. I had, however, given up on contests, for basically all the reasons you mention. My intention was to focus on small presses. I was convinced I could find someone to believe in the book and publish it. I was also seriously thinking about publishing it myself. I think the whole idea of “vanity publishing,” at least among many contemporary poets, is being given the lie; that is, really great poets are starting small presses and publishing their own books

Call for Submissions

Witness seeks manuscripts for a special portfolio titled "Blurring Borders." In addition to general submissions, we invite work that addresses border crossing (both literal and figurative), immigration, and diaspora communities.

complete guidelines here

Women In Letters And Literary Arts

For Immediate Release November 2, 2009

Why Weren’t Any Women Invited To Publishers Weekly’s Weenie Roast?

Publishers Weekly recently announced their Best Books Of 2009 list. In their top ten, chosen by editorial staff, no books written by women were included. Quoted in The Huffington Post, PW confidently admitted that they're “not the most politically correct" choices. This statement comes in a year in which new books appeared by writers such as Lorrie Moore, Margaret Atwood, Alice Munro, Mavis Gallant, Rita Dove, Heather McHugh and Alicia Ostriker.

“The absence made me nearly speechless.” said writer Cate Marvin, cofounder of the newly launched national literary organization WILLA (Women In Letters And Literary Arts), which, since August, has attracted close to 5400 members on their Facebook web page, including many major and emerging women writers. “It continues to surprise me that literary editors are so comfortable with their bias toward male writing, despite the great and obvious contributions that women authors make to our contemporary literary culture.”

WILLA’s other cofounder, Erin Belieu, Director Of The Creative Writing Program at Florida State University, asked, “So is the flipside here that including women authors on the list would just have been an empty, politically correct gesture? When PW’s editors tell us they’re not worried about ‘political correctness,’ that’s code for ‘your concerns as a feminist aren’t legitimate.’ They know they’re being blatantly sexist, but it looks like they feel good about that. I, on the other hand, have heard from a whole lot of people—writers and readers--who don’t feel good about it at all.”

PW also did a Top 100 list and, of the authors included, only 29 were women. The WILLA Advisory Board is in the process of putting together a list titled “Great Books Published By Women In 2009.” This will be posted to the organization’s Facebook page and website. Press release to follow.

WILLA was founded to bring increased attention to women’s literary accomplishments and to question the American literary establishment’s historical slow-footedness in recognizing and rewarding women writers’ achievements. WILLA is about to launch their website and is in the process of planning their first national conference to be held next year.

(Note: until recently, WILLA went under the acronym WILA, with one “L.” If you’re interested in the organization, please Google WILA with one “L” to see background on how this group was originally formed.)

For more information contact:

Erin Belieu

Cate Marvin

Sunday, November 01, 2009

hottie of the week: chef nate appleman

the numbers

victoria chang breaks it down:

Since 1985, the Whiting has given out 69 awards to poets (this includes poets/nonfiction, and poets/other genres too).

*61% were male, 39% were female

*11% were awarded to African American poets

*3% were awarded to Asian American poets

*1% were awarded to Native American poets


had a job interview with home depot today. for seasonal work. it went well.
Peonies may indeed be the sluttiest of flowers…
i had a good halloween night. i took the kids trick-or-treating. my nephews dressed up as a werewolf and a knight. my niece was a witch. afterwards, i "charged" each of them a fee of four candy pieces. they were not happy.
so i didn't send to two contests. this is old news to my facebook buddies. i froze with fear with just the thought of slipping my ms into a large, padded envelope. paging, dr. freud! though i am making progress: before i couldn't even print out my ms.
o robert hayden!
aren't you tired of this contest drama? i sure am.

review of oscar casares' amigoland

... "Amigoland" reads fluidly. It is clear and easy to read, but it requires plenty of patience.

Friday, October 30, 2009

good news: jericho brown

jericho brown won a whiting award! i'm so happy for him!

you should check out the boxcar conversation between him & james allen hall:

... Because I am a human, I have to speak: I only do that with any kind of success when I am writing poems.

beautiful cover (forthcoming 2010)

suzanne frischkorn

the day before (bits)

tomorrow is the first deadline for a contest that i want to enter. i think i'm going to make it. i think.
the starbucks' sound system is playing a jewel tune. yuck.
i'm really stessing about the third section of my ms. it's a nine-part code-switching sequence. it employs spanish/ spanglish/ english and it's full of references to mexican pop culture/ history. it borrows language from robert hayden and corridos. it's a poem i wrote for chicano/a ears. in fact, if the reader doesn't know spanish/ mexican history then i doubt the reader will "get" the poem. and i kinda like that. one goal of the poem is to induce a sense of linguistic loss/ confusion in monolingual readers.

i think some monolingual contest screeners/ judges might toss out my ms because they don't "get" the sequence. but then i remember there are books out there with code-switching poems: bird eating bird, matadora, some clarifications y otra poemas, poeta en san francisco. these collections give me hope.
jewel is singing that she has small hands. who gives a flying fuck, jewel.
why am i so full of self-doubt? i know all poets suffer self-doubt, but i think i would medal in the self-doubt olympics.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

open reading period: Tarpaulin Sky Press

One week remains for the Tarpaulin Sky Press open reading period. During the month of October, Tarpaulin Sky Press is reading manuscripts of poetry, fiction, and cross-genre work. Manuscripts should be postmarked between October 1 and October 31, 2009.

click here for full guidelines


So in total, 76 presses had the opportunity to consider it over 5 years...
wow. you have to admire kelli's tenacity.
i hope i have her drive.
today i really hate my ms. i know some of my buddies are going to tisk tisk me writing this on my blog. but that's how i feel today. a few days ago, i was in love with it. the poems, the order, the title, all of it. but today, as i flipped through it, the poems called out for revision, the order called out for a new order, the title called out a new title.
i know this will pass.
some people have asked: do you have to be so public about your contest anxieties?
i love this poem by katy lederer.
wow. did i just write another woe-is-me post?
a few editors have asked for work in the past few months; i said no because the poems weren't ready. but i have four poems ready to go now. is it okay to send to those editors after you declined their initial offer?

Monday, October 26, 2009

caption contest round one

UPDATE: I won this round. Thanks for the votes. And congrats to everyone else who made it to the next round.

the caption contest is now live! i'm a participant this year!! click here to read the captions!


please note how i graciously refrained from asking you to vote for me. that deserves a vote or two!


you have until 6pm pacific time to vote.

Friday, October 23, 2009

The First Family

photo by Annie Leibovitz

Call for Submissions (CRAB ORCHARD REVIEW)

CRAB ORCHARD REVIEW: Special Issue: Land of Lincoln, Writing from and about Illinois

CRAB ORCHARD REVIEW is seeking work for our Summer/Fall 2010 issue focusing on writing by Illinois writers and writing from writers outside Illinois about the people, places, past and present of Illinois.

All submissions should be original, unpublished poetry, fiction, or literary nonfiction in English or unpublished translations in English (we do run bilingual, facing-page translations whenever possible). Please query before submitting any interview.

For our general submission guidelines, click on the link above or below.
Mail submissions to:

Land of Lincoln issue
Faner 2380, Mail Code 4503
Southern Illinois University Carbondale
1000 Faner Drive
Carbondale, IL 62901
United States of America

The submission period for this issue is August 1, 2009 through October 31, 2009. We will be reading submissions throughout this period and hope to complete the editorial work on the issue by the end of February 2010. Writers whose work is selected will receive $25 (US) per magazine page ($50 minimum for poetry; $100 minimum for prose) and two copies of the issue.

Address correspondence to:

Allison Joseph, Editor & Poetry Editor
Carolyn Alessio, Prose Editor
Jon Tribble, Managing Editor

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Hottie of the week: Bernard Malamud

bits (for naren)

i'm drinking a tall cup of ameicano coffee. did i mention that it's 5:20PM?
enter the dragon: c. dale young.
i'm working on a new poem. finally! i've spent these past two months revising and revising. i'm looking forward to winter; i tend to write the bulk of my new material during january, february and march. strange, no?
Review: 'The House on Mango Street' at Steppenwolf Theatre
i really dig this new pic, suzanne!
i've been dreaming about nyc these past few days. in my dreams i'm walking the streets, sitting in a cafe, going to musuems, browsing the shelves at st. mark's bookstore, people-watching in central park.
cyndi lauper, my diva, is appearing in the next installment of celebrity apprentice. she looks so cute in these pics!
my mind is buzzing. must be the coffee.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Kara Candito reviews Anna Journey

Journey’s incantatory language, coupled with reoccurring tropes of flowers, foxes, mirrors and mythical creatures give me the sense that I’m stumbling through a fairy tale funhouse, where flowers have names like “Lucifer’s Panties” and grackles collide with the ghosts of dead grandparents. These fantastical images are tempered by witty takes on the contemporary clichés of childhood danger—from smashed windows to menacing white vans to a wasp hovering “near a bulge in the picket fence”—Journey juggles the mythical past with the mundane and material present with an authority all too rare in emerging poets.

Call for Submissionsm (from Steve Fellner)


Phil Young and I have been asked to co-edit an anthology for Benu Press; its working title is Love Rise Up.

We both have been invested in the literary world for some time. I wrote and published a book of poems entitled Blind Date with Cavafy (Marsh Hawk Press, 2007) and a memoir entitled All Screwed Up (Benu Press, 2009); Phil has published in literary magazines such as Antioch Review.

The editor who commissioned this project asked that we focus on contemporary poets and poems that succeed on the following levels:

1.) The poem deals with social justice, not simply a social issue. In other words there has to be some action or suggestion of resistance or dealing with a social issue, not just having a social issue somewhere in the background.

2.) The poem offers an element of hope. This hope can be somewhat ambiguous, but at least some level of hope has to be detectable to the average reader. Think “Daybreak in Alabama” by Langston Hughes.

3.) The poem is an “accessible narrative or lyric that contains elements of genuine drama or comedy.”

4.) If the poem were a movie, it would have to receive somewhere between a G and PG-13 rating.

We would really like to include a poem of yours in Love Rise Up. If interested, please send us a poem(s) for us to look at as a Word document.

We’d happily look at new work or previously published. My co-editor and I are responsible for paying all fees, so I would appreciate a waiver, if at all possible.

Contributors will include Martin Espada, Denise Duhamel, Rigoberto Gonzalez, David Kirby, Sean Thomas Dougherty, Barbara Hamby, Cheryl Dumesnil, Fady Joudah, Rebecca Livingston, Alison Joseph, Laura Kasischke, among others.

When the anthology appears (in Fall 2010, tentatively), all contributors will receive one copy. Please call 585-395-5040 or e-mail sfellner@brockport.edu and pyoung@brockport.edu if you have any questions.

If you know that you will be offering us something, we’d be indebted if you let us know by the middle of November.

Feel free to send this to anyone who you think may be interested. In fact, we’d be, once again, indebted if you did.


Steve and Phil

Steve Fellner and Phil Young
26 Winston Woods
Brockport, NY 14420

boxcar poetry review

the latest installment of boxcar poetry review is up.

please check out the great conversation between james allen hall & jericho brown.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

sunday bits

i can't stop watching criminal minds reruns on a&e. i have a crush on all the male actors on the show. all of them!
kelli needs help picking an author photo. i voted for photo #2
shara lessley writes:
Mentors and well-intentioned folks have advised me time and again to only submit to prizes 1, 2, 3, 4, and (maybe) 5. And for two years now, I've done this with mixed results -- finalist, runner-up, semi-finalist, generic rejection. While I'm grateful for coming close, I'm reminded that some of the most interesting and engaging manuscripts I've read floated in la-la land for an average of 7 or so years before getting picked up for publication by both high profile ("big") prizes, as well as smaller presses. Does this change the poems' or poet's value? Absolutely not...

my silly and unrealistic fixation on big prizes has also been stoked by the advice given by mentors/ teachers. most of them have advised me to aim for the big contests. i'm rethinking that advice. reactions to my post, stern emails from poetry buddies, and a jolt of common sense have all contributed to this shift in my thinking. i'm still going to aim for the big contests, but i'm also going to look into non-contest options for my collection.
coming soon to this blog: a mini-interview with john olivares espinoza
Rejected, rejected, rejected. And thank goodness.
thank you, shara.

Friday, October 16, 2009

book contests: the remix

deborah ager posts some questions to consider as you get ready to submit (submit, i tell you!) to contests.

Do I want the press to do most of the promotion for me? Am I comfortable seeking out readings and engaging in promotional activities, or do I view promo work as “bad”?

i do not expect the press to do much publicity-wise. most presses don't have the staff or the resources to aggressively push their authors. i know i will have to work hard to push my first book. and i'm fine with that. in fact, i'm looking forward to it. i've been observing how other writers promote their books, and i've learned a lot. when my first book comes out, i'm going to knock on a lot of doors.

How important is a big-name press to me? Do I need the name of a big press to get a teaching job?

big-name presses are important to me. see my previous post. sigh.

must we talk about teaching gigs? i'm not on the market right now, but i will be the moment my ms gets picked up. i'm a curriculum vitae, hear me roar!

i know many writers who've been published by "small" presses who've landed tenure-track positions, so i know a big-name press is not a requirement for employment.

so no: i don't need a big-name press to get a teaching job.

Will the press send my book out to contests, which would help increase readership and notice? If yes, which ones?

i know some presses actively send out their books to post-publication contests; some presses have to be poked and prodded to lift a finger. i will make sure my press knows which contests i want my book sent to, and if they don't have the time/ staff to send it out, then i will send it out myself.

which ones? the good ones! ha.

If entering a contest, is the judge known to be fair or to pick his/her students?

i believe that a judge should never pick a former student. never! marvin bell is judging the whitman this year, so i'm not sending. and someone just told me that alberto rios is judging the donald hall prize next year, so there's another contest i can't enter. aren't you sick of my holier-than-thou attitude?

Would I buy and enjoy books from the press offering the contest?

yes. i'm sending to five contests this fall. i buy and enjoy the books put out by these five presses.

Do I like the book design of the press in question? What role do I want to play in cover selection?

yep. i do like the book designs of the presses i'm sending to. that's one of the big reasons i'm sending to them.

i would like to have a vote when it comes to cover selection. some presses want imput; others don't. i've heard that the presses i'm sending to do give their authors a voice when it comes to cover selection.

Are the books from the press bought by libraries? You may want these additional sales or to have a more permanent “home” for your poetry book in an academic or public library.

i would like for my book to find a home in libraries. who wouldn't? but i really don't know what criteria libraries use to purchase poetry books. i've seen titles from well-known presses and smaller presses on the shelves of my local library. i'm guessing reviews in library journal, publisher's weekly, and kirkus reviews play a big part in getting the attention of library book buyers.

And the Winner is...

David Parnelio
Email me and i'll mail you the anthology, David.


a thousand congrats to Kelli Russell Agodon for winning the White Pine Poetry Prize.

i dig the title of her book: LETTERS FROM THE EMILY DICKINSON ROOM.

it comes out next fall.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Beloved on the Earth: 150 Poems of Grief and Gratitude

This engaging anthology of 150 poems brings together a range of responses to the experiences of death, mourning, and gratitude for lost loved ones, composed by a variety of poets, both emerging and well-known. These poems can provide insight, solace, and understanding.

I have a poem in this anthology, which is published by Holy Cow Press.

I have an extra copy of the anthology. Do you want it? It's a fine read.

Leave your name in the comment box and I will randomly pick a winner.

3 bits

imported more cds to my itunes library last night. it was a night of lady voices: kylie, whitney, rocio durcal, fiona apple.
we need more snowe.

Friday, October 09, 2009

love this poem

Dead Wren

Opening your little gothic wings

on my whitewashed chest of drawers,

I almost fear you, as if today were my funeral.

Moment by moment, enzymes digest

your life into a kind of coffin liqueur.

Two flies, like coroners, investigate your feathers.

My clock is your obelisk, though only this morning

you lunged into my room, extravagant as Nero,

then, not seeing yourself in the sunlit glass,

struck it. Night—what beams does it clear away?

The rain falls. The sky is pained. All that breathes suffers.

Yet the waters of affliction are purifying.

The wounded soldier heals. There is new wine and oil.

Here, take my handkerchief as your hearse.

Henri Cole

Click here to hear Mr. Cole read some of his poems.

2 reviews

Craig Santos Perez on Tara Betts:
Another element that shades Arc & Hue is the poet’s humor. Imagine a poem in the voice of a “crazy aunt” who dreams of giving her nieces vibrators. Imagine a poem in which Pablo Neruda writes an email to Slam Poets. Can you guess Neruda’s email address?

Ron Slate on Kara Candito:
Candito’s attitude toward power is ambiguous, but not her display of it. Hers is a baroque indifference. Are her speakers femme fatales or nubile victims?

Thursday, October 08, 2009


i'm really tired of being nice to every blogger. aren't you?
i told a fib. i'm not only entering 4 contests this fall. i'm entering 5.
of course, i plan to send to open reading periods.
i love small presses. i support small presses by buying their books.
i laugh when bloggers post about their upcoming "important and huge" readings in nyc. talk about delusional.
i will send my ms to some smaller presses. but only presses that produce lovely books.
new pet peeve: bloggers who post about each and every freaking acceptance. especially acceptances to piss-small journals that nobody reads. believe me: no one is seeking out your work.
man, i'm in a bad mood.
these past few years i've sent out packets twice a year. i'm a slow writer so i usually don't have much product to move. but i also don't really care about journal publications these days. oh, don't get me wrong. i love reading my work in good journals. but all of my attention these days is focused on my collection, not on finding homes for individual poems.
here's a small list of journals i would love to crack in the future:
virginia quarterly review
kenyon review
american poetry review

some people might accuse me of being delusional.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Hottie of the week: Ezra Klein

i want his up-to-the-minute take


Cynthia Cruz's second collection has just been picked up by Four Way Books. It will be published in 2012.

I'm so happy for Cynthia!

I'm so happy for myself! I can't wait to read it. Ruin is one of my favorite books in recent years.

I taught it at Colgate.
I go back to it again and again.
I wish I had her eye.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

and then there were four


i've narrowed down the contests i'm entering this fall to four. count them: one, two, three, four.

i know i should be entering more. i was going to enter the whitman, but one of my ex-teachers is judging. damn you, marvin bell!

four! i'm not naming the contests, but i'm sure you can guess which ones they are.

i'm a bit ashamed of my reluctance to enter more contests. it's not a question of money. even though i'm broke, i would find a way to pay for the contest fees. i hate to say this: but i want to win one of the "big" contests. i know this is silly and dumb and unrealistic. i should know better. correction: i do know better. i have friends languishing in contest purgatory. friends with good/ great collections that never get picked for the big prize. and these friends aren't limiting themselves to a few contests. no, they're entering a lot of them. and yet, they're still struggling to find homes for their collections.

and here i am only entering four contests. i'm a special kind of fool.

why i'm so freaking hung up on winning one of the big book awards? well, i can think of two reasons.

1. i want a pretty book! all the big contests are attached to presses that produce beautiful books. i'm not entering a couple of contests this fall because i don't like the look of the books those contests churn out. let me say it again: i want a pretty book. i want to open my first box of books and weep with joy.

2. prestige. gawd, i can't believe i just typed that word. i feel like a total tool for admitting this, but i want my first collection to win something big and prestigious. why? i want my first book to make a splash. silly, no? how many first books have come out to the sound of crickets? plenty! and how many of those books were big contest winners? plenty. so winning a big contest doesn't ensure a big splash.

and what the hell do i mean by "big splash?" no one notices first books. no one! only other poets. and who cares what we think? there's no demand for our books. the books that do get some buzz will probably be forgotten in the next 10 years. i know all this. and i still want to win one of the biggies.

i'm going to go cry now.

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Call for Submissions (For Norman Dubie and Tomás Q. Morín)

The editors are pleased to announce a call for submissions for A Face to Meet the Faces: An Anthology of Contemporary Persona Poetry.

We are seeking poems that work within the literary tradition of persona poetry: poems written as dramatic monologues, whose speakers employ masks, or whose character and voice are different from the poet's own.

Please submit up to 5 unpublished poems. We will also consider poems whose rights have reverted back to the author.

All submissions will be accepted electronically. Please send an email to the editors at facesanthology@gmail.com with the poet's name and "Submission for Persona Anthology" as the subject line, with the poems as an attachment.

Submissions will be accepted October 1, 2009 through January 1, 2010.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Out Now: Tsim Tsum: Sabrina Orah Mark

Tsim Tsum by Sabrina Orah Mark

Where Babies Come From

“Where,” asked Beatrice, “do babies come from?” Walter B. was hanging a painting in the crawl space. It was a painting of the babies. “Basically,” said Walter B., “babies come from rubbing babies together. They rub and they rub. Once, I heard them rubbing.” “Are you sure those are the babies where babies come from?” asked Beatrice. She was staring at the painting. It was a painting of the babies. Walter B. stepped back. “They seem,” said Beatrice, “to be different babies.” Walter B. tilted his head. A door slammed. They stood for a long time and examined the painting. Beatrice was right. These were not the same babies. These were different babies. Some of these babies carried twine. There were not the babies where babies came from. Some of these babies were not rubbing. Some of these babies had books about babies tucked under their arms. These were not the same babies. These babies would never be the babies where babies came from. These babies were different. And Beatrice was the first to call their bluff.

Call for Submissions

Shape of a Box, YouTube’s First Literary Magazine, will be open for submissions during the month of October 2009 for our 2nd year of publishing our video literary magazine.

We are seeking: poetry, fiction, non-fiction, stage/screen, graphic/comic work, cover art, reviews, interviews all under 5 minutes and/or 1000 words.

Complete guidelines here.

Monday, September 28, 2009


hot dang! the picture of pablo montero below is all kinds of hot. i'm melting, i'm melting...
lately, i've enjoyed verse daily way more than poetry daily. am i the only one?
imported more cds last night to my itunes library: the smiths, juan gabriel, don henley, sufjan stevens, morrissey, u2, leonard cohen, and alanis morissette.
everyday is like sunday. everyday is silent and grey...
the fear was in the northeast by g.c. waldrep.
once upon a time people left a lot of comments on my blog. now i'm lucky if i get one comment a post. i think facebook is to blame.
i did something naughty today.
contest season is here. and i'm scared! what if i'm one of those poets who spends years sending out before getting a hit? i don't want to be that poet. i mean no disrespect, but i don't want to be jennifer richter:
Her manuscript "Threshold" has been a finalist in twenty major book competitions, including the 2008 New Issues Poetry Prize and the 2008 Crab Orchard Series in Poetry Open Competition.

did i just jinx myself?
look who just won the 2009 crab orchard series in poetry!
do the right thing by adrian matejka.

Hottie of the week: Pablo Montero


Like most writers, I seem to be smarter in print than in person. In fact, I am smarter when I’m writing.

rigoberto gonzalez reviews Jennine Capó Crucet

Though the Cuban-American experience has been well presented by such luminaries as Oscar Hijuelos, Cristina García and Pablo Medina, Capó Crucet's characters benefit from a second-generation, post-exile energy that moves her characters one step away from international conflict and cultural displacement, and into a position of challenging the roles and expectations shaped by the influential components of Cuban identity.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Chills Down My Spine

next time i teach i'm going to use the third edition of helen vendler's poems, poets, poetry: an introduction and anthology, which comes out in october.

65 new poems make it one of the most inclusive introductory collections available. New additions include:

important canonical poets such as John Donne, Andrew Marvell, and Elizabeth Bishop;

well-known 20th century poets such as Charles Simic, Margaret Atwood, and Lucie Brock-Broido;

culturally diverse poets such as Victoria Chang, Eduardo Corral, Terrance Hayes, Srikanth Reddy;

new contemporary voices such as Shara McCallum, D.A. Powell, and Timothy Donnelly.

chills went down my spine when i found my poem in the table of contents. how cool is that?? freaking cool, i tell you!!!

Now, I just need to publish my first book. Ha.


Toward the end of my 12 years in New York, the novelty of poet misbehavior having long worn off, I attend a book party for an anthology in which one of my poems appears. I look around and see, at least to my mind, the Leading Poets of My Generation. There is the Editor of That Big Journal. There’s that Guy Who Runs the Best Small Press in Massachusetts. Those two have the run of the two Leading Poetry Organizations. There’s a Whole Group of People Who Went to Iowa; that Well-Dressed Trust Fund Poet appears in the latest Best American Poetry. There’s the Woman Who Knows the People Who Give Away That Two-Year Grant Who Got That Two-Year Grant. Those two will soon start Teaching Jobs Out West. Everyone, it seems, wears the latest clothes and glasses.

Lives of the Poets: Laura Jensen

from the Poetry Foundation:
...Jensen has been called “one of our very best living poets,” published three full-length collections of poems, and largely disappeared from the national poetry scene. She’s invited me to visit this library for a group reading from In Tahoma’s Shadow, an anthology of poetry by Tacoma poets that includes one of Jensen’s new poems, a fact that might confound the contemporary poets and bloggers who have made her into a Salinger-like cult figure. Yes, she still writes, and yes, she still publishes, just not how or where one might expect.

Thursday, September 17, 2009


the sun is out. thrilling news, no?
congrats to mark conway for winning the american poetry journal book prize. i met mark at the mcdowell colony in '06. he's the kind of person you want to meet at a colony: smart, funny, down-to-earth, full of po-biz stories.
from steve fellner's blog: The Possibility of Excessive Glibness as Romance in Eduardo Corral’s Poem “Caballero”
i want to be lady gaga.