Thursday, December 9, 2010

Poetry archive: Googlepoems and Puffin Circus

Googlepoems is a fledgling zine of "formal and informal verse about, derived from, or inspired by the great search" - i.e. internet searches. My poem Could I have a word is currently at the top (November 25, 2010). Enjoy the info on the sidebar!

Puffin Circus is another fledgling zine which has been publishing small monthly issues since August. (I have a fondness for puffins and a memory of seeing them ride the air currents down a cove on Runde, a bird island off the west coast of Norway, their orange feet tucked up behind.) Well, Puffin Circus was asking for winter poems for the December issue and I sent them two, "Vanguard" and "Snow and Ice." They're here, on page 5.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Organizing a book of poems

I'd been circling around the problem of organizing a manuscript for several years. My poems are all over the map, both thematically and formally. I tried several ways of grouping them by themes – political, humorous, nature/mystical, experimental, but nothing would work.

One day I realized that I had published 72 poems in sundry magazines, and it came to me to arrange those poems alphabetically by title and see what happened. What came out was a nice random mix. Subsequently I took out some poems that I didn't like all that much, and added some favorites that I've had trouble getting published – figuring that I might as well stop submitting them and just put them out there.

I decided on "Unglobed fruit" as a title poem, and that it should come last. I switched it around with "Unjubilee" and cut out everything in the alphabet after U. In the August issue of The Centrifugal Eye I found a lovely stitchery by Patricia Wallace Jones that seemed to echo several themes in the title poem. Pat was delighted for me to use it as a cover image.

At my advanced age I can't go gallivanting about the country giving readings, as any publisher would want, so I'll be self-publishing the book with Lulu. Editors of four of the zines I've published in have kindly written blurbs – which, much to my surprise, all fit on the back cover. At this writing I'm waiting for the formatted text. More later.