I have always loved poetry. A Child's Garden of Verses by Robert Louis Stevenson was one of my favorite childhood books. Once I could print, I began writing my own verses in a ring-bound notebook. As you can see, the pages of Stevenson's book were not sacred to my altered book persona. LOL. I still own this book.
As my regular readers will have noted, I still occasionally write poems. Sometimes for inspiration I read books about writing poems. This is one of my current reads, both authors are poets. I have signed up to attend a 6 week poetry workshop beginning next week. I hope to meet some friends who love books, writing and poetry.
Of course I read the work of professional poets. I love Mary Oliver who lives on Cape Cod. I have heard her read in person several times. One time was on my birthday. I asked her to sign my copy of American Primitive.
Through the years I have had a number of poet friends who send me their poems. P.Y. often sends handwritten poems accompanied by a sketch. Here though she has sent a zerox of her poem published in a literary magazine. She has had many single poems published, but not a chapbook or manuscript.
My friend Mort and I had a long-distance romantic relationship. We met in person a number of times too. Poetry was his life, how he defined himself. He had a number of chapbooks published by Kent, Ohio presses. Here is one he wrote about our romance.
Often he too sent me poems, freshly minted or older, written on scraps of paper. I have them all saved in acid proof sleeves in an album devoted to him. He died in 1998.
My friend old pajamas writes haiku and tanka. His wonderful book Biting the Buddha is still available for sale. Check out his blog for new poems and details on ordering his book.
And there has been exciting news from Willow, who often publishes her poems on her blog. She is one of ten semi-finalists in a chapbook competition held by The Finishing Line Press. All semi-finalists will have their poems published in a chapbook. The first place winner will be announced this spring. Her post about the award explains the origin of the term chapbook. In case you wonder. Cheers Willow!!!