Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Haiku North America 2011: Rochester, New York, July 27–31

From Michael Rehling: Organizers of the 2011 Haiku North America conference are pleased to announce that Rochester, New York, will now host the 2011 HNA conference, to be held July 27–31, 2011. The conference will maintain the theme of education in haiku and will take place at the Rochester Institute of Technology, cosponsored by the National Technical Institute for the Deaf, by the Postsecondary Educational Network-International funded by the Nippon Foundation of Tokyo, and by the Rochester Area Haiku Group.

Led by Jerome Cushman, the local organizing committee also includes Carolyn Dancy, Deb Koen, and Deanna Tiefenthal, with local and long-distance help from Francine Banwarth, Randy Brooks, and others. Anticipated activities include an Erie Canal boat cruise, banquet, regional readings, a memorial reading, anthology, T-shirts, and possible visits to nearby cultural attractions, including the National Museum of Play and a guided tour of historic Mt. Hope Cemetery, the oldest Victorian municipal cemetery in America and burial site of Susan B. Anthony, Frederick Douglas, and poet Adelaide Crapsey.More details will be provided at www.haikunorthamerica.com and on the HNA Facebook page.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Can you help me get published?

This is for all who wonder about becoming a published poet or have been asked to help someone become a published poet.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Poets, this is a must read.

Have you ever wondered why you received your poems back from a journal with no note, acceptance or rejection? Have you waited more than two years for a response? This is worth reading (and forwarding). http://blog.writersdigest.com/poeticasides/2010/10/21/AnAppealToPoetryEditors.aspx

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Just Poets Reading Series

Nancy Chalker-Tennant will be the featured reader Thursday, October 14 for the Just Poets Reading Series. The reading starts at 7:00 pm and will be followed by an open mic.

A bit about Nancy: Nancy Chalker-Tennant is both a poet and visual artist who teaches in both disciplines in the Rochester, NY area where she lives. While she is concentrating on poetry, her work has included painting, printmaking and small editions of hand made “artists’ books” some of which are in the collections of The Museum of Modern Art, Whitney Museum of American Art, the Yale University Library, and The Ruth and Marvin Sackner Archive of Concrete and Visual Poetry. Nancy is the recipient of several grants including a Mid-Atlantic National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship and New York State Council on the Arts grants, among others. Her poetry has been anthologized in Le Mot Juste.

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Home from Poland

After nearly five weeks in the land of my paternal ancestors, I am finally home.

This trip to Poland has been more than worth the time and effort. I am most grateful to Axis Mundi, the arts organization that sponsored the writer's residency through the Art Factory in Bialystok; Don and Betty Orr, who shared their home and their perspective on Polish life from the point of view of North Americans living there for more than 10 years; Jolanta Wolagiewicz who introduced me to numerous contacts in my search for information on old Polish legends and folktales; my family and friends, who came to the rescue both personally and professionally allowing me to devote the time to take this trip; and the Arts & Cultural Council of Greater Rochester, which financially supported my travel. I am also grateful to my fellow writers-in-residence: Toni Denis, Kelly Hayes-Raitt, Eveyln Posamentier, Mairin O'Grady, and Dianna Mertz for their support and friendship throughout this adventure.

Uncovering one's roots affords the opportunity to make some sense of that which has often been taken for granted or gone unnoticed altogether. Background scenery--poplar, birch, and plum trees decimated by blight in Western New York thrive in the old country. Willows have more reason to weep in Poland, a nation all too often trounced upon by its neighbors. Poland is a nation long on tradition and determination. This is not a backward culture stuck in the time of cart and horse. This is a culture which has rebuilt itself time and again for a better future. This is a culture whose people, some whose courage enabled them to remain steadfast through the worst their enemies could do and others whose courage pressed them on to new lands where they worked to preserve their culture and language as they blended into foreign societies, have the resolve to persevere. It is this perseverance that remains in the genetic memory of those of us who lay claim to Polish ancestry, this unwillingness to be resigned to the acceptance of what is unacceptable.

Monday, September 20, 2010


I am happy to include the following poem, in both English and Polish, by Edyta Ślączka-Poskrobko, with her permission.


I`d like to see beatiful Lhorien
again, in its passed glory
rest among the golden leaves
which fell down from Mallornes

listen to song of quiet river
which carried Elves' memories
and forget about my grief
and take the helm but oars

But there`s no forest any more
and memory is stray around
in gold Knyszyn-forest's deepness
in its clearings and wilderness

here under the bright blue sky
my heart changed into the wind
with Sokołda`s rapid current
wants to meet your hands again

But your hands not on the river
you are sailing far away
wind in shrouds whispers quietly
come back here come back, I beg you

I am waiting in Lhorien
like a gate closed long ago
but I`ll open myself as soon
as you say the password: darling

translated by
Paweł Poskrobko (the son of Edyta Ślączka-Poskrobk0)


Chciałabym Lhorien przepiękne
ujrzeć znowu w dawnej chwale
siąść wśród złotych liści cudnych
co z Mallornów pospadały

wsłuchać się w śpiew rzeki cichej
co wspomnienia Elfów niosła
i zapomnieć o swym żalu
w ręce chwycić ster nie wiosła

Lecz już nie ma tego lasu
i wspomnienie się tak błąka
po knyszyńskiej puszczy złotej
jej polanach i jej łąkach

Tu pod modrym niskim niebem
serce moje w wiatr zmienione
wraz z Sokołdy nurtem wartkim
chce napotkać twoje dłonie

Twoje dłonie nie na rzece
Twoje żagle na jeziorze
wiatr na wantach cicho szepce
wróć tu do mnie, wróć ja proszę...

Ja w Lhorien krainie czekam
jak zamknięta ongiś brama
lecz otworzę się gdy tylko
hasło rzekniesz: ukochana

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Corrections to my last post.

The poet referenced in my September 7 post contacted me with some additions and corrections. I am so grateful that she did since I was unable to get all the information with my lack of knowledge of Polish. I am especially grateful since we poets don't get enough recognition for our work and I am more than happy to share more about her with my readers.

First of all, the art gallery is not part of the Bialystok university, but an independent institution – the Ślędzińscy museum. As for the poems, they were written by Edyta Ślączka-Poskrobko, her mother (Barbara Noworolska) and her father (Zbigniew Ślączka), not her grandfather as I had previously written on my blog. He was the grandfather to her son, who played his compositions on the piano – Paweł Poskrobko. The reading itself was titled Rodzinne Poezjowanie.

If Ms. Edyta Ślączka-Poskrobko allows, I will later post one of her poems that has been translated into English.

Tuesday, September 07, 2010


Hello from Bialystok, Poland. As many of you know, I am here on a month-long writer's residency. Five other writers, one of which is also a poet, and I are absorbing Polish culture and the amazing richness of the cadence of the Polish language.

I am flattered that the people here view me as one of their own, a tribute to my half-Polish heritage. The complication is that it is assumed I speak the language when I only know a few words. Still, it is wonderful to be embraced so.

My poet-colleague and I attended a Polish poetry reading on Sunday. The reading was held at a small art gallery on the grounds of the University of Bialystok. The featured reader, a middle-aged woman who speaks no English, read not only her own work but that of her mother and grandfather. Her son also played a few piano compositions of his own. The poet herself was the embodiment of eccentricity, wearing neon green tights under her summery floral dress, a neon green shawl over her shoulders and a straw fedora on her head.

It might interest you to know that there seem to be some universal consistencies at poetry readings. No one, except for the host, sat in the first two rows of seats. There were late-comers. Someone's cell phone rang in the middle of the reading. Felt like just another second-Thursday-of-the-month reading at B & N. Speaking of B & N, I hope you'll join Anita Augesen who will be guest hosting for me Thursday night. Poet Victoria Korth will be the featured reader. As always, an open mic follows. The reading starts at 7:00pm. I hope you can make it.

Thank you in advance to my patient clients while my assistant works to keep your databases updated. In addition to helping me, she works full time and is a wife and mother. Thanks also to pet sitters and other family and friends for keeping everything in order at home so that I have no worries other than running out of paper while I'm here.

Please check back periodically for more posts as this adventure continues to unfold.

Do widzenia, for now.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Announcing the Black Mountain North Symposium, Rochester, NY, October 1-3, 2010. This conference celebrates the experimental arts tradition in upstate NY, while also commemorating the centenary of Black Mountain College rector Charles Olson and the life of poet Robert Creeley. In the collaborative and multidisciplinary spirit of the original Black Mountain, Black Mountain North will feature poetry and visual arts panels, as well as readings and performing arts performances. Distinguished speakers include poet and troubadour Ed Sanders, Black Mountain historian Mary Emma Harris, and Black Mountain College alumni Martha Rittenhouse Treichler, Basil King, and Martha King, among many notables. See http://www.blackmountainnorth.org/. For questions, contact John Roche at jfrgla@rit.edu.

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Cleveland State University Poetry Center First Book and Open Competition Award Results

The Wick Poetry Center at Cleveland State University has announced the prize winners for both its Open Book and First Book competitions:

Winner of 2010 Cleveland State University First Book Prize, selected by Rae Armantrout forthcoming Spring 2011, is The Grief Performance by Emily Kendal Frey.

Winner of 2010 Cleveland State University Open Competition, forthcoming Spring 2011, is
The Firestorm by Zach Savich.

For a complete list of finalists and semi-finalists visit http://www.csuohio.edu/poetrycenter/2010openbookresults.html.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Web Site for Women Writers

Whether you are looking for an opportunity for self promotion or would like to share your work with others for critiquing, check out www.shewrites.com. This online community of women writers from all genres recently reached 10,000 members. As a member you will be able to post your publication news on the site's weekly digest. You will also be able to join any groups relevant to your interests, ranging from spiritual writing, publishing and editing, and many more. Your participation can be as little or as much as you wish. Please take a look at She Writes and let me know what you think by posting a comment on this blog.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

May Update

Update on contests, presses, and journals reading now: Nearly 20 chapbook publishers are reading via contests. Some of these are looking for manuscripts from specific demographics such as Midwestern poets only, poet-residents of NY and New England only, or LGBT poets only. More than 35 full-length book contests and presses are actively reading. While most college sponsored literary journals either have or are about to close to submissions, there are others that read exclusively from spring to fall. Plenty of journals read year-round though they may take a little more time to respond between now and autumn. Email me at info@poeticeffect.com if you'd like me to help your manuscript find a home.

Here's an online journal of high quality: Valparaiso Poetry Review, http://www.valpo.edu/vpr/. The current issue features work by Brian Turner, Sean Thomas Dougherty, and Michael Blumenthal.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Ha(nay)ku Reading

Over the winter, five teams of poets embarked on another form poetry project conceived by M.J. Iuppa, this time writing chains of ha(nay)ku. The form is simple: six words in any combination over three lines. Some teams, as decided by their captains, saw all of their team members' poems before writing their own in response. Since it worked so well last year with the Adelaide Crapsey project, I decided not to allow my team to see any poems other than that of the immediately preceding person's.

While there won't be a chapbook like Cinquainicity last year, there will be a reading Tuesday, April 27 at St. John Fisher College. The reading will begin at 7:30pm in the Hughes rotunda. For more information on the location visit http://www.sjfc.edu/.

My team members include Dave Tilley, Elaine Thayer Olsson, Ron Bailey, Ann C. Putnam, and Suzanne Slack.

Monday, April 12, 2010

AWP 2010 Thoughts

Denver did a great job hosting AWP.

Best readings: Mary Biddinger, G.C. Waldrep, Oliver de la Paz, and Major Jackson. Kudos to Diode Poetry and FishHouse.

Hot topic: Delivery system of the literary magazine. Print, online, Kindle, or IPad? Would you like an app with that?

Controversial trend: Submission fees for lit mags.

Grayest area: Copyrights. Think multimedia. Electronic rights. Then there's Kindle and IPad again. What about YouTube? Read your contract before you sign.

More Q's than A's.

It was a pleasure to meet and chat with Margo Stever (Frozen Spring) and Diane Wakoski (The Diamond Dog).

Best meal: Dinner at Laguna's with Jules.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

March Update

Spring has arrived early in western New York. Crocuses bloom through melting snow just as many literary journals have ended their winter reading and many Poetic Effect clients will soon be seeing their responses in the mail/email. Currently, more than 250 print journals are considering poetry submissions. Many of these will close to submissions when the tulips and lilacs are in full color here in May. Full-length book manuscript contests are at their peak with 35+ reading right now. More than 20 chapbook contests are running as well. If you would like to get into the Poetic Effect spring queue, get in touch soon info@poeticeffect.com.

Congratulations to Poetic Effect clients who have recently had work accepted by Southern Indiana Review, Pearl, Inkwell, Chaffin Journal, Roanoke Review, Worcester Review, Blueline, River Oak Review, Soundings Review, Eureka Literary Review, Avocet, South Dakota Review, Clackamas, Yalobusha Review, Red Wheelbarrow, Coe Review, and others.

AWP, the largest conference for writers and writing programs, will be held in Denver next month. I will be blogging about various panels and other writing-related news. I hope to see some of you there.

The Just Poets Reading Series and Open Mic will be featuring James Cook (tonight), Sue Ann Wells (April), Suzanne Slack (May), and contributors to Le Mot Juste 2010 (June). The reading series is held at 7:00 pm the second Thursday of every month (except December) at Barnes & Noble, Pittsford.

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Leah Zazulyer Reading

Poet and translator Leah Zazulyer will be reading from her work Friday, March 5 at Greenwood Books, 123 East Ave., Rochester, NY. The reading, which begins at 7:00 pm, is one of many events held as part of the city's ongoing First Fridays.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Reading at Yesterday's Muse

Kathy Van Schaick will be the featured reader at Yesterday's Muse in the village of Webster, NY, Friday, March 5 at 7:00 pm. Bring your own work for the open mike that follows her reading.

Kathy is a board member of Just Poets in Rochester, NY and serves as the Managing Editor of Le Mot Juste, the annual Just Poets anthology. She also volunteers at a local hospice as well as public radio.