ONLY HEAVEN Selected for Bartleby Snopes Eleventh Issue

Nice news for 2014. My story “Only Heaven” was selected by editor, Nathaniel Tower, to be included in their Eleventh issue (late January). I’m thrilled to have another story available in print. I’ll post with further updates on the publication and purchase. Below is the tenth issue of Bartleby Snopes.

bartissue10

Still awaiting word for four stories that are “in process”. I hope 2014 brings some more good news for me, regarding acceptances.

Happy New Year!

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Blogging to the Dead and Great Reviews

Blogging to the Dead and Great Reviews

Reviews here: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/349315
“Emotional roller coaster” and “Clever” used to describe my YA novel. A few great reviews on Smashwords. One reader even said my (or Seth’s) take on electromagnetic wave theories was on the mark! So maybe this YA novel has a fighting chance. Enjoyed writing it. The entire novel is written in the form of a Blog; it’s a free read but can be purchased in print. It piqued lots of interest from agents, but, sadly, it never made the cut. I’ll quit the self-deprecation. Just glad to see a few have read and enjoyed!

Musings on reality by V Woolf

imageBreathtaking–I can never get enough of Virginia Woolf’s writing…
What is meant by “reality”? It would seem to be something very erratic, very undependable—now to be found in a dusty road, now in a scrap of newspaper in the street, now a daffodil in the sun. It lights up a group in a room and stamps some casual saying. It overwhelms one walking home beneath the stars and makes the silent world more real than the world of speech—and then there it is again in an omnibus in the uproar of Piccadilly. Sometimes, too, it seems to dwell in shapes too far away for us to discern what their nature is. But whatever it touches, it fixes and makes permanent. That is what remains over when the skin of the day has been cast into the hedge; that is what is left of past time and of our loves and hates.
Virginia Woolf

A Connecticut Gem

A Connecticut Gem

Exquisite poety, poignant, pure, raw by David Morse a Connecticut resident.

Come Back to me, you said –from his chapbook “Honor the Stones” Dogwood Press

Back to pale sky, snow striping forest like a goat’s jawbone in ashes, back to Connecticut at the tag end of December.   Bare trees stitch sky and earth together like thorns through cold lips of remembrance. I want to telephone you, tell you I’m home safe – as if you’d somehow waited for me, though I told you not to wait, said goodbye. Come back to me, you said.

Now I am back and you are gone I want to dial your number under this bone cold sky and fill your ears with stories of Sudan, warm you with red clay the color of rust and share mangos from western Nile; unfold for your fingertips the magic carpet of Nairobi scams.   People-packed matatus careen pell-mell in and out of traffic, weaving blue smoke choreographed by guys who slap the roof and yell to lure not-so-sure customers into hip-hop blare, slide the door open and slide the door closed in a ballet to keep the fourteen seats filled.

All this: the refugee who fled helicopter spotlight, saw his eight brothers killed still looks for mother and sister, camp surrounded by coils of  concertina wire, Maasai with milk white bulls dying of thirst, unfamiliar birdsong, the Rift Valley’s skewed shadows stretching like wings into evening: I want to lay it all at your feet, now that I am back, but you are gone far away your hands folded into the safety of dust.
“Honor the Stones”, from David’s chapbook. Available from Dogwood Press.

Waiting for Spring

I take the first pew in this rough church, seat myself on flat stones and look up at fractured bedrock bulging skyward, vertical black stripe painted by groundwater curved into a bow, picture the arrow flying across the valley and try not to think about Darfur, or the woman at the embassy of Sudan whose job is to delay requests for visas, or flies dabbling in a dead baby’s wound, women’s eyes dulled by rape and loss of everything; helicopter gunships, devils on horseback. This is Connecticut, green land waiting for spring to untie the black knot of winter. Soon will come choirs of spring peepers, skunk cabbage. Last night on a hill I inhaled the soft sweet fragrance of maple sap funneling moonlit steam into the shape of Africa.

 

Hooked on Jack Gilbert

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Read an excellent interview with Jack Gilbert in Paris Review Magazine http://www.theparisreview.org/interviews/5583/the-art-of-poetry-no-91-jack-gilbert and now I’m hooked. Here is one of his poems written in 2012 in defense of joy, pure and simple, amidst the pain and suffering. Brilliant.

A Brief for the Defense

Sorrow everywhere. Slaughter everywhere. If babies
are not starving someplace, they are starving
somewhere else. With flies in their nostrils.
But we enjoy our lives because that’s what God wants.
Otherwise the mornings before summer dawn would not
be made so fine. The Bengal tiger would not
be fashioned so miraculously well. The poor women
at the fountain are laughing together between
the suffering they have know and the awfulness
in their future, smiling and laughing while somebody
in the village is very sick. There is laughter
every day in the terrible streets of Calcutta,
and the women laugh in the cages of Bombay.
If we deny our happiness, resist our satisfaction,
we lessen the importance of their deprivation.
We must risk delight. We can do without pleasure,
but not delight. Not enjoyment. We must have
the stubbornness to accept our gladness in the ruthless
furnace of this world. To make injustice the only
measure of our attention is to praise the Devil.
If the locomotive of the Lord runs us down,
we should give thanks that the end had magnitude.
We must admit there will be music despite everything.
We stand at the prow again of a small ship
anchored late at night in the tiny port
looking over to the sleeping island: the waterfront
is three shuttered cafés and one naked light burning.
To hear the faint sound of oars in the silence as a rowboat
comes slowly out and then goes back is truly worth
all the years of sorrow that are to come.
Jack Gilbert