A Fevers of the Mind Quick-9 Interview with EIC of Fevers of the Mind David L O’Nan

davidlonan1 – Fevers of the Mind

with David L O’Nan (interviewing himself?)

Q1: When did you start writing and first influences?

David: I believe I began writing after having my older brother read his poetry to me. I would constantly read his stuff. He was always obsessed with song lyrics (Prince, U2, The Cure, The Smiths, The Beatles, etc) I really got into the Beatles around 12 years old, and began to write bad love songs & songs against war that were pretty cheesy. I’ve always had a storytelling imagination. I began reading Anne Sexton as a teenager and always have been a big song lyric absorber. With A.D.D. I wasn’t always the most patient with reading.

Q2: Who are your biggest influences today? Well once I started writing & reading aloud more at coffeehouses, I began learning & reading more poetry & writers. Burroughs, Kerouac, Sylvia Plath, Tom Waits, Townes Van Zandt, Phil Ochs, Bob Dylan, my favorite Leonard Cohen, Ilya Kaminsky, so many contemporaries I interact with in the Poetry & Writing Community.

Q3: Any pivotal moment when you knew you wanted to be a writer?

David: I still want to be a writer/poet. I am still learning at 41 years old the ins and outs. I guess I had that inkling around 12, then again at 20 writing angsty stuff (mad about women letting me down) and then 24/25 when I began frequenting a coffeehouse in Evansville. I began writing a scrapped up novel “The Bible Belt Bachelor” in the same vain as “On the Road” I had a break in writing through most of my 30s and then when my dad got sick with ALS I began writing more & more. Self published some stuff & began Fevers of the Mind.

Q4: Who has helped you most with writing?

David: My brother, my wife, the Penny Lane Coffeehouse, Reading aloud for several years (not so much anymore), Jean Kizer, Jerry Masterson, Heidi Krause, Twitter vss 365 getting me motivated again, Poetry Community, Leonard Cohen

Q5: Where did you grow up and how did that influence your writing & did any travels away from home influence your work?

David: I grew up in a small town in Kentucky called Sebree.

So, I do have many poems based on small town living in a Southern/Midwestern town. I carry over some personality (ies) from the town and interact them into new characters and situations at times. I have lived in Evansville, Indiana most of my adult life & now in Henderson, KY and I still write the same way. Perspectives from where i’m writing from doesn’t necessarily come from where i’m living. I have visited & lived for a short time in New Orleans, so much of my big city themed poetry comes from time living there, or visiting Nashville, Louisville, Lexington, St. Louis, Indianapolis, Bloomington and other Midwestern cities/towns.

Q6: What do you consider your most meaningful work you’ve done creatively so far to you?

David: This will be a slightly weird answer. I helped contribute poems to an anthology about ALS “Voices for the Cure” ran by Paul Rowe and the late Eric Valor. I am unsure if it ever came out, but the poems I placed in there are about my father and his battle with ALS. Some of these poems have seen the light of day in my self published work or also on this site. 2 poems by David L O’Nan about my father’s battle with ALS in 2016

I’m also proud of my poems that I’ve since revised for the upcoming Leonard Cohen anthology which the first versions of the poems were in the first Leonard Cohen Anthology “Avalanches in Poetry Writings & Art Inspired by Leonard Cohen) All of the poems (revised) from Avalanches in Poetry Writings & Art Inspired by Leonard Cohen by David L O’Nan

I’m also proud of my most recent poems that have been published online. “By the Almond Tree” in Anti-Heroin Chic Mag Check out my poem “By the Almond Tree” currently in the new issue of Anti-Heroin Chic (heroinchic.weebly.com)

My beat poem “Clearly” I wrote in 2005ish after reading Ginsberg for a couple of minutes Poem by David L O’Nan : “Clearly!” (2005) (Poetry, writings)

And my story poem “I Honoured You in Pennyrile Forest” a Best of the Net Nominee last year from Icefloe Press


I’m very proud of the community I’ve helped shape together with many writers for this site with active contributors, interviews, the Fevers of the Mind Poetry Digest Issues/Anthologies.

Q7: Favorite activities to relax?

David: General Anxiety/ADD/OCD/parenthood…relax? I try to read some, I watch wrestling, basketball, listen to music like crazy, taking walks with my wife, play in the park with my kids. Youtube wormholes, research/history.

Q8: What is a favorite line/stanza from a poem of yours or others?

David: From Leonard Cohen’s “Stories From the Street”

We are so small between the stars
So large against the sky
And lost among the subway crowds

I try to catch your eye

Q9: Any recent or forthcoming projects that you’d like to promote?

David: Why Sure! Thanks for asking…ummm Fevers of the Mind Anthology Issue 5: Overcome will be coming out soon (currently editing) I have 6 self-published books that i’m revising (added pics to the poems, changing them up some, some revised poems) “The Famous Poetry Outlaws are Painting Walls and Whispers” “Our Fears in Tunnels” “Taking Pictures in the Dark” “New Disease Streets” “The Cartoon Diaries” “Lost Reflections” still on Amazon currently…will be replaced by new versions when announced. Stay tuned. Raw forms of these books are still out there for now. There are several past issues of Fevers of the Mind Poetry Digest: Issue 1 (June 2019) under Fevers of the Mind Poetry & Art Digest, Fevers of the Mind Issue 2 In Memoriam, Fevers of the Mind Issue 3: The Darkness & the Light, Fevers of the Mind Press Presents the Poets of 2020, the aforementioned Leonard Cohen inspired Avalanches in Poetry Writings & Art Inspired by Leonard Cohen with artwork from Geoffrey Wren Wonderful Artwork from Avalanches in Poetry Writings & Art Inspired by Leonard Cohen by artist/writer Geoffrey Wren

The 2nd Leonard Cohen Anthology will be worked on in the next month “Before I Turn Into Gold” and also Fevers of the Mind Anthologies will be coming out at least every other month as far as I can keep it going.

Personally, I have more poems/stories coming out soon with Icefloe Press. A project on facebook “Curved Air” edited by Theresa Haffner. Possibly something with the Midwest Writers Guild. I’ve recently had work in Anti-Heroin Chic, Punk Noir Magazine. In the past I’ve had stuff in 3 Moon, Nymphs Publishing, Royal Rose Magazine, Elephants Never, Headline Poetry & Press, Dark Marrow, Voices for the Cure ALS Anthology, Spillwords, Ghost City Press, a feature in Cajun Mutt Press, I’ve had some stuff of mine read by Damien Donnelly on his podcast “Eat the Storms” https://eatthestorms.com/ and will have more read by Damien in a couple of weeks. Stay tuned!

I don’t send too much out due to RSD and I put tons of time in editing, writing, my brain scrambling in and out of exhaustion. Follow us on twitter @feversof @davidLONan1 Facebook Author Page is DavidLONan1 (I don’t use it much) I don’t have Instagram…sorry.

Here are some links:

There are a million I think on this site… just search my name if interested in my poems.





https://www.blackboughpoetry.com/freedom-rapture-edition (a review by me about this within)















“Before the Bridges Fell” by me David L O’Nan Poetry book is out today on Cajun Mutt Press

Available Now: Before I Turn Into Gold Inspired by Leonard Cohen Anthology by David L O’Nan & Contributors w/art by Geoffrey Wren

Bending Rivers: The Poetry & Stories of David L O’Nan out now!

Current bio for Fevers of the Mind’s David L O’Nan editor/writing contributor to blog.

A Fevers of the Mind Quick-9 Interview with Leah Callen

with Leah Callen:

Q1: When did you start writing and first influences?

Leah: I’ve loved poetry since I was little. I always wished I could pen a poem as magical as Now Sleeps the Crimson Petal by Tennyson or Winter Night by Pasternak or The Moon Wakes by Lorca. But I think my first real influences were teachers. My grade 6 English teacher gave me the collected works of Keats and Shelley to encourage me to write. And my creative writing teacher in high school believed my poems had potential and published them in a little class chapbook. I started writing more seriously and furiously one summer in my twenties when I was sick with strep throat, at my Nana’s house in rural Ontario. She made me homemade rice pudding and lent me her antique typewriter. She tried to feed me in body and soul. And I started speaking in verse.

Q2: Who are your biggest influences today?

Leah: Lisa Richter, Shaindel Beers, and Kim Fahner are all amazing artists and humans. I’m lucky to know quite a few talented poets. And I’m just inspired by any poet putting their best on the page. A Fevers of the Mind Quick-9 Interview with Shaindel Beers

Q3: Where did you grow up and how did that influence your writing & have any travels away from home influence your work?

Leah: I grew up in a few places because my dad was in the army. Spent time in Ottawa, Kingston, and the UK. I honestly can’t say how that has influenced my poetic voice except that I do not feel strictly rooted to one spot. Later, I lived for twenty years on the west coast and the sea has definitely shaped me. I’m new to the prairies and my poetry is changing again. I think I am different from other prairie poets because of this newness. I feel my poetry is getting more feral here and I’m just going with it.

Q4: What do you consider the most meaningful work you’ve done creatively so far?

Leah: I wrote a poem about my father before he had heart surgery as a way to honour him. It is likely the most heartfelt piece I’ve ever written. It was a challenge, but it felt right. I hope to give it a home in my first collection which I am hammering away at right now.

Q5: Any pivotal moment when you knew you wanted to be a writer?

Leah: I studied creative writing in university with the intention of becoming a professional poet. But I fell for playwriting and screenwriting too. I decided to pursue these degrees after participating in a poetry therapy workshop for cancer survivors at the Callanish Society in Vancouver, BC. I became friends with the incredible poetry therapist, Kirsten Andersen. She told me I was a writer and I believed her.

Q6: Favorite activities to relax?

Leah: Just let me wander in nature. Nothing gives me more peace. I love animals and feel more comfortable with them than most people. Music also sustains me. Dancing and singing set me free. And I love to swim like a fish.

Q7: Any recent or forthcoming projects that you’d like to promote?

Leah: I have poems coming out soon in The Malahat Review, Event, and Sequestrum. Please keep an eye out for me. Thank you.

Q8: What is a favorite line from a poem of yours or others?


I’ll quote a favourite line by Leonard Cohen:

“There’s a piece that was torn from the morning
and it hangs in the Gallery of Frost.”

What a gorgeous metaphor for what we creative artists try to do.

Q9: Who has helped you most with writing?

Leah: I learned a helluva lot about creativity and craft from professors in my two creative writing degrees at the University of Victoria, and at a Sage Hill poetry colloquium led by George Elliott Clarke at a monastery a few miles from Saskatoon. True story.

2 poems by Andrew Cyril Macdonald: “September burial” & “Out of night silence speaks”

macro shot of brown leaves
photo by Wilfried Santer

September burial

Debauched syllables recount him
through soft glimmers held to 
when summer perceives 
its sister approaching.

Because of this we seek hope 
in the frolic of leaves
birches transcend with 

as taut shades partition
namesakes through homes 
shapeless a riverbed’s leaning.

Now its flesh alone recounts of
what under quiet moon are
these bones to harvest

just as we lay them 
dark in memorial.

Out of night silence speaks

Circumstance remarks 
tilted words forward shot 
if from the shadows overcome.

Their attire vaults with 
a trumped set that
wears its peace

along folded arms to wait for.

It’s our best sparkle streetlights offer
of wronged feelings 

in the lingered afterglow
six drinks propose us.

3 Poems by Andrew Cyril MacDonald : Vegas chapel,  A quick forbiddance, In part disjoiner

A Fevers of the Mind Quick-9 Interview with Ivan Peledov

with Ivan Peledov:

Q1: When did you start writing and first influences?

Ivan: When I was about 17, perhaps. As far as I remember, my first influences were Osip Mandelstam, Nathanael West, Thomas Wolfe, Chuang Tzu, The Greek Anthology, classic haiku, Nikolai Gogol, various folk tales, the music of Alexander Scriabin, and the early German Expressionists.

Q2: Who are your biggest influences today?

Ivan: Everyone and everything.

Q3: Where did you grow up and how did that influence your writing & Have any travels away from home influence your work?


I grew up in the USSR, which taught me a couple of platitudes: that true socialism is either cruel or plain boring, but never fair and beautiful, and that you have to resist any influence from that sort of country, unless you have decided to become a totalitarian schmuck.

I love almost all the countries, states, cities, and towns I have had a chance to travel to. My favorite and most inspiring are Guatemala, Savannah, Providence, Buenos Aires, Paris, Jamaica, Memphis, Voronezh, Kyiv, Tbilisi, Konotop, Barcelona, New Mexico, Belgium, New England, Philadelphia, Costa Rica, etc.

Q4: What do you consider the most meaningful work you’ve done creatively so far?

Ivan: What I am doing right now is always the most meaningful, especially when I am not doing anything at all.

Q5: Any pivotal moment when you knew you wanted to be a writer/poet?

Ivan: This question makes me think whether I have ever really wanted to be a poet. As John the Apostle used to say, The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so do you have to be pigeonholed in order to catch it?

Q6: Favorite activities to relax?

Ivan: Listening to music, hiking, Tarot reading.

Q7: Any recent or forthcoming projects that you’d like to promote?


My book of poems titled “Habits of Totems” has been recently published by Impspired. Here are the links:

Q8: What is a favorite line/stanza from a poem of yours or others? Favorite piece of art/photograph?


Art Alley, Rapid City, SD. The photo is mine, but I don’t know who did the graffiti.

Q9: Who has helped you most with writing?

Ivan: the Ghosts.

2 poems by Ivan Peledov : “Aside from the Flowers” & “Before and After”

Bio: Ivan Peledov lives in Colorado. His poems have been recently published in SORTES, Mad Swirl, Arc Magazine, and Angel Rust. He is the author of the book Habits of Totems (Impspired, 2021). He can be found online on Twitter @habitsoftotems or on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/ivan.peledov.

A Fevers of the Mind Quick-9 Interview with Yrik Max Valentonis

with Yrik Max Valentonis:

Q1: When did you start writing and first influences?

YMV: I started seriously writing in High School. I had my first poem published in a local lifestyle magazine in 1983. My earliest influences were E.E.Cummings, Lord Byron, and Anne Sexton. At first, I was attracted to Cummings use of the space on the page and his designs, but as I read him more closely, I truly fell in love with the musicality in his poems. Byron, of course, was the heroism and Romantic ideals. He will always be an iconic Rock Star for poetry, he lived those exuberance and excesses. And he exemplified the faults, failings, and problems of being a Rock Star. Anne Sexton, with her perfectly crafted rhymes and meters, showed me how to Artistically bear one’s innermost raw emotions. No matter how personal, tragic, or unique her subject matter was, she crafted it into an approachable and universal imagery.

Q2: Who are your biggest influences today?

YMV: I have been reading a lot of VisPo and Asemic writing lately. The past few years, I was reading a lot of Bizarro works. I still read comic books (new and old – big name & indie).

I have been reading as much as I can by Harryette Mullen, Kevin Young, and Amy Catanzano. I love their approaches to language.

Harryette has a great eye for common place imagery which can become philosophic and transformative. Her rhythm and meter sing and chant these images into a new existence.

Kevin is able to weave personal narratives, history, and cultural theory into a blues song/poem. He is a compelling story-teller who can dig into the core of his subject.

Amy has been doing interesting writing into current Quantum Physics research. She’s been actually going to research facilities and spending time with diverse scientists and poetizing the hypothesis and theories.

I’ve been privileged enough to have met and spent time with each of them.

Q3: Any pivotal moment when you knew you wanted to be a writer?

YMV: When I was a child I learned that actual people created the books I read. At that young age I knew I wanted to be a writer. After my MFA, I figured out that I wasn’t a writer of popular fiction, and I preferred the freedoms of expression that I had with small presses.

Q4: Who has helped you most with writing?

YMV: The best help I recently had with my writing has been proofreading my son’s college history papers. He has a very deep appreciation for James Joyce sentence structures. He can compact a great deal of information into a sentence and has no problem with a two-page long paragraph. I absolutely love reading it, but I know that his professors are wanting more traditional sentences and shorter paragraphs. In pointing out where and how to change his writing, I have learned a lot about how to edit and revise my own writing. I highly recommend proofreading, editing, and beta reading for other writers, especially if their style or genre is different than your own.

I have found that a lot of writers are very supportive and into building community. Lesli Richardson has helped me edit several of my books. She is always encouraging me to write more. I’ve been lucky enough to get book blurbs from writers whose work I have enjoyed reading for years: Geof Huth, Kristine Snodgrass, Jeff O’Brien, and Martin Millar. I am a total fan of each of them and was over the moon ecstatic that they were willing give me a bump. And J.D. Nelson introduced me to you. A Fevers of the Mind Quick-9 Interview with J.D. Nelson

That is just a sampling of people who have helped my writing. I love these folks for being so supportive.

Q5: Where did you grow up and how did that influence your writing & did any travels away from home influence your work?

YMV:  I grew up in St. Pete Beach Florida. It transformed from a fishing community to a tourist destination as I grew up. I was raised by my Grandparents and spent most of my childhood in company of retired adults instead of children. I see in my writing the love of hearing a long drawn out personal tale which may or may not have a point or conclusion; the rambling story which has a bunch of asides to explain historic significance, cultural nuances of the Old-Country, minor characters which briefly randomly appear, and an unreliable yet charming narrator have all become part of my writing style.

I lived in New Orleans for a little bit which reenforced building scenery and history into my writing. I was naturally influenced by Blues and Jazz.

Q6: What do you consider your most meaningful work you’ve done creatively so far to you?

YMV: The answer to that is always the piece I am working on right now, which currently is a chapbook of poems about hurricanes.

I have a graphic novel in verse, Goblin Childe, that I am still illustrating that I think can become my most accessible work. I have a long poem, Lost In Urban Landscaping, which encompasses my poetic style and exploration. So far, about a third of it has been published in various journals.   Poems by Yrik Max Valentonis : Lost in Urban Landscaping #2, #6, #46

Q7: Favorite activities to relax?

YMV: I play Dungeons & Dragons (and other RPGs) with my friends on a weekly basis for the past 15 years. I write many of our adventures (which some day I will edit and publish). I really enjoy the collaborative story-telling; because no matter how well I plan an adventure to go, the players will find a new way to approach it, at which point I have to go into a Jazz inspired improvisation to keep up with where they take the story.

I am active in a Viking Age reenactment group (Wyrd Vikings). We train in Historic European Martial Arts. We practice and spar with shield, sword, axe, and spear. I’ve been studying the Norse cultures and history of that time period, with a specific focus on the Skalds and their writing techniques. 

Q8: What is a favorite line/stanza from a poem/writing of yours or others?

YMV: from Desond Egan’s poem: The Pursuit of Diarmaid and Grainne

something you say unthinkingly sometimes
can chord the shadows of your words
surprising my most silent places
with a suddenness of music

Q9: Any recent or forthcoming projects that you’d like to promote?

YMV:  Last year Alien Buddha Press published my Bizarro Erotica novella, 120 Days Of Gomorrah, and this year they published a collection of my visual poems, Cranium Theatre.

And my poem, Tampa Brick Road, was selected in the City of Tampa’s National Poetry Month contest.


Bio: Yrik-Max Valentonis is the author of 120 Days of Gomorrah and Cranium Theatre. His comics and writings have appeared the chapbooks: iDEAL and this is visual poetry; the anthologies: the Alien Buddha’s Block Party, The Alien Buddha Goes Pop, the Alien Buddha’s House of Horrors #3, the Alien Buddha’s Snail Mail, Animal Blessings, Beer-Battered Shrimp for Cognitive Ruminations (forthcoming), Divided Again, Heat the Grease We’re Frying Up Some Poetry, the Last Time the Alien Buddha Got Sooo High, Sinbad and the Winds of Destiny, and Zombie Nation: St. Pete. He earned a BA in English & American Literature from the University of South Florida and a MFA in Poetry & Prose from Naropa University.