Sunday, February 24, 2019

Thought for the Day

[. . .] a house without humans is a place you don't go, [. . .]
~ Hannah Craig

Quoted from Hannah Craig, "Abandoned House" in Poet Lore: A 2nd Century of New Writing, Fall/Winter 2018, page 55

Hannah Craig, Prizewinning Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Poet (Craig's debut collection is This History That Just Happened (Parlor Press, 2017), which won the New Measure Poetry Prize and is available online from the press and Amazon.)

Saturday, February 23, 2019

Saturday Short

Enjoy today's short, the poem video It Is Not, from Blank Verse Films. The poem used for the video, which was shot in New Mexico's desert, is by Valerie Martinez, who narrates.

Poet Valerie Martinez is the director of the history and literary arts program at the National Hispanic Cultural Center. She is also an educator, facilitator, and collaborative artist. Her collections include Each and Her (University of Arizona Press, 2010), And They Called It Horizon, Santa Fe Poems (Sunstone Press, 2010), World to World (UA Press, 2004), and Absence Luminescent (Four Way Books, 1999). On March 30, 2019, Martinez will participate in a panel discussion titled "The Art of Trauma" at the AWP Conference.

Valerie Martinez on FaceBook

Valerie Martinez Profile at Poetry Foundation

Thursday, February 21, 2019

New Artist Watch Feature at Escape Into Life

Julie Shelton Snyder, fuji-san is a girl, 2018
Silkscreen Monoprint
30" x 22"

© Julie Shelton Snyder


Today's new Artist Watch feature at the international online arts magazine Escape Into Life offers images of recent work by painter and printmaker Julie Shelton Snyder.

Julie, who was born in West Virginia and now makes her home in Brooklyn, New York, learned woodblock printmaking techniques in 2018 while an artist-in-residence in Japan. She aims to express in her work both the ineffable and the invisible, and views abstraction as her best means to do so.

Visit Artist Watch to see eight images of Julie's work and to read her Artist Statement and a brief biography. The column also includes Julie's social media sites.

Sunday, February 17, 2019

Thought for the Day

Attending to life is an act of love.
~ Katie Rubinstein

Quoted in "Word for the Day", January 2, 2019,

Katie Rubinstein, Associate Director, A Network for Grateful Living

Thursday, February 14, 2019

A Hershey's Variation (Poem)

A Hershey's Variation

Wherein Hershey recalls those Cutie Pie
lips of his beloved Baby Ruth,

remembers how his sweet Kisses
were hers to win at the Mars Bar's

contest the summer before last:
He'd sworn he could count out

all his competition, first faulting
Juicy Fruit for making a mess

of his girl's Hot Lix lipstick, then
asking LifeSaver to disqualify

Junior Mints on account of the boy's
delicate youth. (Hershey's no Dum Dum.)

He'd watched Good and Plenty take
on Atomic Fire Balls and Hot Tamales;

shook his head when they upped his
odds by 100 Grand. But no worries.

When he saw among contest registrants
Sour Punch and Goobers and Nerds,

he just laughed, calling them
3 Musketeers with Cotton Candy hair

and Jelly-Bellies — traits no Perugina
he knew would dare call Amazin' Fruit.

True, Hershey didn't have a body at all
like the bodies of the Chunky Singles,

or hair the color of a little Bit-o-Honey,
and Rolo had, truth be known, eliminated

Heath Bar to advance to finals, beating
Almond Mounds and Smarties, too,

who'd had to sit out the second round
after bragging about their Whoppers.

If he played things right, Almond King
and that too-old Sugar Daddy would

be gone in a heartbeat. As for Mr. Good
-bar, well-known for mean, dirty dealings,

he'd go the way of the Jolly Ranchers,
a gang pretending to be Charleston Chew,

and those Airheads who'd made a play
for Peeps After Eight and Peppermint

Patty. Don't you know? Their reward
was a couple of Tootsie Rolls and a boot

straight out. Original Herb, judge
for the "Best Kisser" round, kicked

Nestle's Crunch from the bunch,
citing too much rippling muscle in those

carameled arms to deserve little
Baby Ruth's affections. Soon, Kit-Kat

withdrew for reasons unknown, then
Butterfinger missed his lady's mouth

by a wide margin of error. Hershey,
alone now, and the last one standing,

gave it his everything. And what a PayDay
it turned out to be. Just that one look

into Baby Ruth's eyes — they were pure
Starbursts — and Hershey was smothering

her (but gently) in dark chocolate Kisses
to wild applause. And Baby Ruth, who

once again proved she could tell
a winner from a loser — she'd taken

her cues from Sweetarts', after all,
that doll who'd had Dots for Kit Kat,

the contest's runner-up who'd marked
the occasion with a riot of free Snickers

and a side of Twix — she wrapped
herself 'round Hershey in Ricolo hall,

pledging him both heart and soul.
O Henry! she moaned. Let's Take 5!


Some of you may remember "Hershey's Got No Baby Ruth" in which the candy made its first appearance.

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Thought for the Day

If you aren't learning, you have not been paying attention.
If you have nothing to say, it is because your heart is closed.
~ Tony Hoagland

Quoted from "Application for Release from the Dream" in Application for Release from the Dream: Poems (Graywolf Press, 2015)

Tony Hoagland (1953-2018), American Poet

Sunday, February 3, 2019

Thought for the Day

[. . .] the things that burn worst in one heart
one must keep silent to keep. [. . .]
~ Christian Wiman

Quoted from Christian Wiman, "The Parable of Perfect Silence" in Poetry, December 2018, page 234

Christian Wiman, Poet, Essayst, Editor, Translator; Professor, Practice of Religion and Literature, Yale Divinity School

Christian Wiman Profiles at Academy of American Poets and Poetry Foundation