I have a poem in the new issue of Right Hand Pointing titled “Missing”. It was inspired by the image above which I stumbled onto one day on the internet. Do you ever feel that way? Huge thanks to the editors for accepting this poem. I really like this zine because they focus on short poetry and flash fiction, both of which are my favorite styles for reading and writing. Do give them a visit.
I also have three poems in The Miscreant and more huge thanks to Amanda Harris, the editor there. I like the slant toward darker writing you find in this zine. After all, we need a place to exorcise our demons, don’t we? Submissions are open right now so send something in!
My poem “Translation” is in the summer issue of Olentangy Review. It’s inspired by the last scene in Lost in Translation, one of my favorite movies, because it kinda drives me crazy wondering what he said to her at the end. Aaaarrrrgh! What did he say? Thanks to Darryl and Melissa Price for publishing this one.
One of my favorite poets, Robert Okaji, recently participated in Tupleo Press’s 30/30 Project. His incentive for his readers to donate was offering to write a poem from a title provided by the donor. I provided the title “With Summer Purpled Awe” and he wrote the following poem. (The title is from a line in a poem I recently wrote.) I am in awe of his poem and how he tailored it to fit so very perfectly for me with its Louisiana references. It’s just gorgeous.
With Summer Purpled Awe / by Robert Okaji
This poem was sponsored by Charlotte Hamrick.
No one wants to be forgotten
or remembered for the wrong reasons,
but how do we attain that sweet spot
between regrettable and a barred
door clanking shut? I was born in
Louisiana. What happened next
is that song living at the edge of
memory, just beyond grasp, its
lyrics gnarled and tangled in the
roots of an old cypress along a
muddy creek. Yeah, that one. I
won’t sing it in this lifetime.
That tune’s never coming back.
You stretch out your hands
and a reflection cuts you in half.
I should have grabbed you and the dog,
and headed to Texas. They’ve got hills
there that the tide won’t reach, and
trees that won’t die from salt
poisoning, whose branches
won’t be festooned with children’s
clothing and bits of people’s torn
lives, and the stench won’t linger
longer than regret and the effect
of poor choice and dumb luck.
There, then gone. I scream
until my voice rasps away
but you are still out there,
still floating, still afraid
and angry and beautiful, hair
forming a halo around your
face, no tears, no sound
but water lapping, and
the flies zeroing in.
Next time there will be no party.
I’ll wait alone to greet the rain.
The wind will scour me
as I embrace what comes.