Tag Archives: poems

Poems Published—Adelaide Magazine

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Four poems have been recently published in Adelaide Magazine.

It’s great to see these poems finally get a home. They are older poems, and have been looking for a final destination for some time. After receiving a long, cold winter of rejection slips, it was warming to see this come through. Thanks to the staff of the magazine for making my work look good.

These are the poems that were accepted: ♥

“Out of Bed”
“A Letter Leaves”
“Mesh”
“Grief Bone”

You can see and read the poems here, online.
The edition of the magazine is also available for purchase from Amazon.

It’s very pleasing to see some work coming back to me with good responses. Just sending it out, is a big huge positive, so the entire process is rewarding. But like many writers, the golden feeling of acceptance is truly unique, and I enjoy it, though I like to think I’m not driven by it. I’ll just keep plugging along, working on what comes.

A happy start to 2019’s venture into writing and publishing.

How is your venture doing?

Thinking of you, and your fine works.

Love,
Penney

Keeping the Line Open

Above is a grouping of lines I wrote by hand, in an effort to keep my mind all the more open and receptive to what comes.

I have taken to writing more frequently, and that has been restorative. Instead of straining to make it good, I’ve been trying to make a mindful effort to keep it open. What do I mean by that? By default, I tend to be a tight-little-fist of person. I think you know the type.

When it comes to writing, I have, in the past, wanted completion. I wanted all the images to work, to be what they are when they emerge, need tiny amounts of editing, and set them to roam the earth. I still believe in what I hesitate to call “an organic process” of writing, but I also have adapted my thinking.

What if there could be just a line?
What if it wasn’t a full poem?
What if it could be exactly what it is, and nothing more?

At first, I was uncomfortable with this idea. Of course, I wanted to develop it, to make it several stanzas, to complete the thought more. Could I still be considered as “in a work session” if I only emerged with a line? Why was the idea of ‘not being done’ uncomfortable to me?

I sat with this feeling and explored a little. I realized that I had been forcing a lot of phrases into poems that haven’t had the legs to support itself. By insisting that thoughts be complete, I had made a lot of subpar poetry. This, in itself, isn’t bad, as one needs lots of bad poetry to get to a good poem. But, it was making my words weak, my themes watered down, my time and attention spaced out and distorted, and I began to see a pattern of reviewing my writing—everything was sounding the same, and not in a pleasing way.

I have been reading The Poet’s Companion by Kim Addonizio again, and that has reignited feelings of wanting to create fuller-bodied poems, spending time with them as one would savoring a meal or a fine wine. I feel for me, that means my process needs to slow down, open up, and not be restricted by time or the emotional pressure of finalizing.

I am greatly looking forward to what this shift in mindset brings me. Already, I have gained a peace and pleasure in writing I haven’t felt in a decade.

What do think you could do along this same path? In what way can you open your writing, and let it be enough for the moment?

Much creativity and rewarding exploration to you,

Rejections Are Progress

I am still submitting poems, when I have some clarity. A steady little stream of rejections have turned up over the past two weeks. I am encouraged, because the replies to rejections have become more encouraging and slightly personalized. I believe this is due to submitting to the same magazines, multiple times, so they have some familiarity with my name. This, in my mind, comes to multiple great successes.

First, that I am submitting when I’m not really in the best physical or emotional shape–yay, to me, for persevering.
Second, I am becoming familiar with the magazines–that’s good, it means I’m becoming more a part of the community.
Third, the magazines are remembering me!
Fourth, I am seeing a positive outcome after investing in submitting poems over the years–this gives me confidence not just for the acceptance of the poems, but also acceptance of myself as a poet.

Here are some of the rejections I’ve received recently:

This, from The Account:
We appreciate the chance to read this submission. Though there is much to admire in these poems, unfortunately none is quite right for us at this time.

And from YesPoetry:
Sadly your poems do not meet our criteria at this time, but we wish you luck in placing it elsewhere. We encourage you to submit again!

And from THRUSH
We are pleased to have read these new pieces from you; in particular we enjoyed: Back, however, we have decided to pass on inclusion.

***

To Summarize What Was Said: 

“There is much to admire in these poems.” That’s a great compliment!
“We encourage you to submit again!” An invitation to try again. Okay!
“In particular we enjoyed Back.” Feedback on a piece that was liked. Good to know of their sensibilities, and good to know in general.

 


I am very happy with these realizations. I am updating my spreadsheet with rejection notices, but I am smiling as I do so.

Keep on writing, and sharing that writing. I’m rooting for you!

Poetry Journal: Excerpts from July

As I’ve been reading The Poet’s Companion, I have been writing poems. I thought I’d take a moment to share some poetry journal excerpts with you. Re-reading this book has brought up memories and sensations I wasn’t expecting. The first and last time I read it, I was in the middle of abuse and turmoil. Looking over certain passages, reading example poems such as Ellery Aker’s mind-blowing “What I Do,” I have felt old familiar feelings of hurt and unrest. I remember what drew me to poetry in the first place.

I have gotten caught up in poetry as “a work” and an academic achievement in recent years, but The Poet’s Companion kindly reminds me that truth and vulnerability are where the beauty is. It reminds me that writing about experiences and observations are about articulating a shared human experience. Being brought back to these Greater Truths about writing is a little scary, but in a good way, as if I’m about to find out who I really am, after all this time, uncovered.

Here are some stanza selections from July 2018. Most of these poems are out in the submission process right now, which I why I can’t share the entire poem. They are where they should be, doing their poem job.

Wishing you creative vulnerability,

 

 

 



Reasons for Poetry & What Inspires

I’ve been devoting time to writing poetry. The morning works for me, so does early evening before bed. This may not be the case for other poets.

Some people write poetry as a academic exercise. Others because they want to do something ‘spiritual’ or mindful, and tap into what they feel, and sense. I have no objection to this, I think writing poetry, and any way you can get the practice into your life, is a wonderful thing. For me, poetry writing has not been optional. I’m very much in the I-do-this-to-survive / confessional / more-like-Anne-Sexton part of the spectrum.

Here is a list of what causes me to write poems. It’s usually fueled by some kind of intensity—but that can take many forms.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dreams
I usually have dreams that I can write easily into a poem. My dreams tend to be highly symbolic. Very often I’ve written dreams in full description, and that’s been enough for a complete poem. Sometimes, it is a dominating color in a dream, or a theme. There is a treasure of image, sound, emotion, and downright psychological awareness from dream material. If you haven’t taken the time to explore your own psyche in this way with poems, I recommend it.

Emotions
The typical teenager pouring their heart out onto the page, feeling forcefully, isn’t a archetype without reason. Emotions can be a huge source of energy and used successfully as writing material. They can be used to connect you to potential readers, they can help you experiment with the language, they can strengthen your sensitivity and enable you. Joy, sadness, loss, grief, all aspects of the human condition can be described with the words of your choosing.

Limitations
I deal with several mental illnesses, which are mostly managed. But they do have periods where they creep in or takeover my life. Writing enables me to use language to expel my thoughts. Sometimes, I use poems as a therapist. Or I use poems to make metaphor from what seems intangible. Using poetry to label difficult sensations, during times of trial can really aid in grounding and perspective. You might feel improved after writing out your pain, or at least feel legitimized—because the mark of your reality has now morphed into an art.

Memories 
Our brains are amazing and keep so many details. Special memories or persistent memories are good writing material. I have also used poetry as a sort of journaling, to keep a feeling or memory intact—say a special day with someone. Maybe you really want to remember seeing the beach for the first time, for example. It can used as a time capsule, keeping your experience alive with a word picture.

If you’re seeking something to write about, try thinking over some of the things I’ve mentioned. Maybe an experience, a dream, or a feeling can open you up to a field of language you never knew lived inside.

 

 

Three Poems – Eunoia Review

Three Poems – Eunoia Review

Today, I am happy to have three poems published at Eunoia Review! “The Classification of Rainbows,” “Requires Heavy Lifting,” and “Pavee” have found their home. I am pleased to see all three together, in such a well-represented venue. I have been a fan of poems published here for some time, and I feel privileged to be among those poets. (If you’re in a poetry-reading mood, and want to catch up with my other publications, click here.)

eunoia-review

“Nature is Nurture” published in Burningword Journal

“Nature is Nurture” published in Burningword Journal

I have been sending poems out like a crazy lady lately. I must have thirty different sets of poems out in the world, in various inboxes of some very tired and underpaid editors. I found out via a tweet that my poem, “Nature is Nurture,” was published today in Burningword Journal. Yay, so happy. This is encouraging after a rather long string of rejections lately. I am also heartened because this is a recent poem—written only a month ago. Below is a screenshot taken from the publication.

Nature is Nurture - Poem

Dead King Magazine: Two Poems Accepted

Dead King Magazine: Two Poems Accepted

Dead King Magazine

I sent five poems to Dead King Magazine two weeks ago. A few days ago I received a lovely acceptance letter. I leaped out of my chair. I have been sending out submissions pretty regularly the last few months, processing lots of rejection letters, just waiting for the eventual good turn, and it happened.

Out of the five poems listed, they decided on two, “Waiting for the Anger to Stop,” and “A Phone Call Unanswered.” I’m pleased because they were recently written, within the last six months — and one of them within the last few weeks — which reassures me that I’m on an encouraging growth path with my writing. I’ve worried over time that I’ve lost my sense of direction, gotten rusty, clumsy, out-of-touch, or too experimental, or, worse, not experimental enough. I’ve been writing for 14 years, fairly steadily; I’ve put in a lot of time and heart. I know that writing poetry has expanded from the realm of interest, past hobby, and is now into “work” territory — where I can hardly think of doing anything else, aside from drawing.

It’s nice to see some response from that effort — even if it is just a magazine acceptance, and in the grand scheme of things as awesome as that is, it doesn’t amount to much in the scope of it all. The strange thing is, I can’t even answer why I’m sending out my poems. It’s not to be well-known, because that’s unlikely. It’s not for recognition, or acceptance, or fellow poet acknowledgements — I think it’s what I hinted at before — challenging myself and seeing what sticks. After all this time, and development, wouldn’t it be nice to know where I stand in skill?

After all, what is creative growth but pushing and pushing? Reading others who are in your field of interest? Learning, contributing among them, and seeing what comes back to you — fully-formed, or split? What is there to take away? What expansion can be had? Who sees you? Who can benefit from the words? The observations? Other people who see as you do. Other people who know what it takes to make the words work — and those people are poets — and the people who are poet lovers. I know of no other art that seeks for the distillation of truth at this intensity. And it does. Originally starting as a therapy for me — and it still is — poetry is where I turn to first. When I try to make sense, when conflict and emotions scatter in mid-air, are hard to catch and hang onto, I pin them down the best I can with poetry. It’s what I have. And it’s what I want to give to others. That peace. That distillation of experience, tangible, and distant, but close enough to look at, interpret.

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