Tag Archives: poetry

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,

Poetry Journal Excerpt: July, Part II

I am reading through more of Kim Addonizio’s The Poet’s Companion, (PDF version here.)

I am struggling to write. I see her fantastic prompts, and just come up completely blank. The month of August was not very fruitful with writing, but July was. In an effort to encourage myself and others, I will share excerpts from poems from July. These poems are currently in the race for acceptance from literary magazines. I have managed to be fairly regular with submission.

I know the season of poem writing will return in earnest. Even when I’m not writing, my brain is assembling images and thoughts. This is often the case for novelists, and I’ve heard them say that they are always working–always looking for characters and dialogue. I would say I am always working also, but I am looking for that moment which ties to larger themes—in the past, present, or future.

Here are some stanzas from what was rough draft writing in July 2018:

So, onto those next moments…

Wishing you inspiration, and moments of your own from which to write, ♥

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!

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.

 

 

Reuniting with Poetry with Kim Addonizio

I am back to writing poetry, and that feels wonderful! I purchased some books which have re-inspired me. I know I’ve mentioned Kim Addonizio’s The Poet’s Companion before, but now I have it in ebook format, so I get to explore it all again.

This book is solid. If you’re planning on getting back into writing poetry, want to read some great examples of poetry, want to learn, or just to read and be inspired, this is your book!

Happily, I also found a more recent poetry-encouragement / education book by her, which I am looking forward to savoring Ordinary Genius: A Guide for the Poet Within.

*Don’t know who Kim Addonizio is?
Here’s a sample poem from The Poetry Foundation titled, “First Poem for You.”

Wishing you well today, and I hope you are finding some inspiration, too.

 

 

 

Why My Creative Goal Failed

I posted toward the end of December, rather hastily, that I would draw and write a poem-a-day until the remainder of the year. In celebration of the arrival of 2018, and to spur myself onto productivity greatness, I declared my intentions to Facebook and social media. I was met with enthusiasm and encouragement, while dopamine-dumping and happy-feeling, was not enough to keep me motivated. In fact, a few days later, on DAY FOUR, I FAILED.

Why did I fail, you might ask?

I failed because I stopped. I stopped creating. I stopped working toward my declared goal. I just, plain, didn’t do it. There are many reasons for this. Here is a list of some of the reasons, most of them I discovered in hindsight, after thinking about WHY I didn’t do what I said I was going to do. Let this be a lesson, to myself and others for the future.

  1. I neglected to consider my timing. Nearing the end of the year, with lots to do, what made me think adding pressure to an already pressured time of year was the answer?
  2. I didn’t monitor my resources. How was I feeling? What was going on in my life? What other things were taking up my attention?
  3. I set unrealistic standards. Performing two creative endeavors each day? TWO?
  4. I made it too complicated. Requiring that I do two creative things in a set period of time = not brilliant.
  5. I put a time limit on it. Ever enjoy playing a timed quest in a video game? Or had to meet that school paper deadline? Um, why did I do that to myself?
  6. I gave into perceived peer pressure. The drive for the New Year, Facebook Friends posting their creations, art and inspiration for 2018 abounded, and I bit that poisoned apple. Hard.
  7. I was doing opposing activities. Art-making and word-making do not go together for me. I know this. Why did I think I could do right brain work and left brain at the same time?
  8. I failed to self-assess.  Asking questions such as: How has my mental health been lately? Or my physical condition? What could distract me from this work?
  9. I didn’t look at my creative track record. Have I created anything lately? How did it go? How has my creative health been? I haven’t created in a long while. Why is that?
  10. I wasn’t invested. I declared an activity without thinking. I was riding on enthusiasm of the possibility of productivity, not being rooted in the reality of it.
  11. I didn’t plan. All too often, I have to remind myself that inspiration is great, but as I age it is not not not how I get creative work done. Set aside time. Focus. Make it work. Anything else is wasteful.

So, what does this come down to? Basically, I woefully neglected to care for myself as a person living my life, AND as a creative person.

They are two separate jobs. But, they feed into each other, demanding the same resources, and the same time. And the same mind, body, heart.

Do yourself a favor, and before you jump into the next big activity, ask yourself some real questions:

How are you? ♥
How are you feeling? ♥
And, What Makes the Most Sense for Me Right Now? ♥


Take care of yourself!
Best wishes for you this year, with hope and happiness,

 

Gold Man Review, Issue 7

My poem “I Want to Know the Ending,” was recently published in Gold Man Review, a yearly print publication! Whoo hoo!

The publication is available for purchase on Amazon.

There is also a little extra surge of happiness from seeing it in print. It looks great, and working with Gold Man Review, and the editor, has been a pleasure.

So excited to see this year end on such a positive publishing note. Can’t wait for 2018.

 

“A Black Opus,” in Cleaver #19

I am so excited to be posting that my poem, “A Black Opus,” was published at Cleaver Magazine in Issue 19. It was just released September 15th!

I love the artwork, the presentation is beautiful, and…as a bonus…I got to make an audio recording of me reading.

You can read the poem and get the audio HERE.

The audio is also available on Soundcloud, as part of Cleaver Magazine’s podcast On the Edge. I am so excited about all of it.

Thank you for being amazing, and for reading. Hope you enjoy the poem! ♥

“Momentarily” at Sweet Tree Review

My poem, “Momentarily” is in the Summer issue of Sweet Tree Review. I was drawn to their theme of ineffable connectivity.

As you likely know, connectivity is something I say and struggle with a lot. I also use poetry to get me to or into a connected state, so it was a pleasure to pursue that idea with this publication. The presentation is beautiful, and the other works included are lovely.

My poem is in a book! ♥

My poem “Self-Inflicted” appears in the first release from Twelve Point Collective entitled, “Every Beginning I’ve Ever Written is Kind of Sad.” (Volume I, Autobiographical.)

Photo credit: nicole_in_neverland / instagram

 

 

I love the illustration by Germán Salazar, shown with my poem—it really matches the subject matter well, but also adds additional symbolism.

I’m still reading and re-reading through the book, and it’s hard to pick favorites, as the theme blends so well with voices chosen.
I have enjoyed Carly Quisenberry’s “Love Poem for Me,” and Beth Copeland’s “Cleave,” and Madison Tompkin’s “The Fingertips of Ferns,” especially. ♥

I am also now a Goodreads Author! Whoo hoo! The book can be found on Goodreads, so check it out and add it to your Want to Read list!
I promise it’s worth it.

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

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