NEW! The Fevers of the Mind Press Presents the Poets of 2020 available in Deluxe Edition, Kindle/ebook, and Split Editions Volumes 1 & 2 on Amazon. An interview with musician Austin Lucas included in Deluxe & Volume 1

The Fevers of the Mind Press has a huge collective of poets, writers, interviews, recommendations & more in the new book https://amzn.to/3sjgWnz (Deluxe edition) https://amzn.to/35EJ8Yl (Volume 1) https://amzn.to/2LyiedF (Volume 2)

Volume 1 includes contributions from myself (David L O’Nan), HilLesha O’Nan, Rob Z photography, Ankh Spice, Catrice Greer, the Poetry Question & Chris Margolin, Jenna Faccenda, Ethan Jacob O’Nan, Icefloe Press, Robert Frede Kenter, Moira J Saucer Darren Demarree, Abdulmueed Balogun, Bradley Galimore, Anisha Kaul, Foy Timms, David Ralph Lewis, Paul Brookes, Sidney Mansueto, Lawrence Moore, Karen Mooney, Jenny Mitchell, Makund Gnanadesikan, James Lilley, Richard Waring, Vern Fein, Ediney Santana, Rachael Ikins, Samantha Terrell, Al Matheson, Ceinwed C E Haydon, Will Schmit, Dai Fry, Barney Ashton-Bullock, M.S. Evans, Megha Sood, Jane Rosenberg LaForge, Matthew M C Smith, Lucy Whitehead & Merril Smith as well as an interview with Americana/Indie/Punk musician Austin Lucas

Volume 2 includes contributions from myself (David L O’Nan) HilLesha O’Nan, Rob Z Photography, Troy Jackson, Book Reviews for Hokis, David Hanlon, Susan Richardson & Norb Aikin, Karlo Sevilla, Steve Denehan, A.R. Salandy, Steve Wheeler, Sher Ting, December Lace, Ken Tomaro, Kushal Poddar, Tan Tzy Jiun, Amy Barnes, Jason DeKoff, Raine Geoghegan, Jim Young, Tim Heerdink, Damien Donnelly, Kristin Garth, Mela Blust, Jackie Chou, Rickey Rivers Jr, David Hay, Kari Flickinger, John Ogunlade, Z.D. Dicks, Julie Stevens, Gayle Sheridan, Wil Davis, Samantha Merz, Iona Murphy, Gerald Jatzek, KC Bailey, Samuel Strathman, Mike Whiting, Peter Hague, E Samples, Ann Hultberg, Jane Dougherty, Michael Igoe, Maxine Rose Munro, John Everex, Lacresha Hall, Kelly Marie McDonough, Gabe Louis, Linda M Crate

Deluxe Edition is over 300 pages and includes all of the Poets, writers, interviews, musicians, photography & more.

Poetry: No Miracles to Come by Gerald Jatzek

photo of clouds covering the sun

Were three kings came from the west,

one had stars burned in his chest,

one was cursed, one was blessed

Three kings.

Were three kings came in a tank,

names were bombs and bread and bank,

played the fool, the freak, the crank

Three kings

Were three kings, their songs were sung

by someone who had lost his tongue,

on laurel garlands they were hung

Three kings

Photo by Trevor Gerzen (Unsplash)

About Leonard’s Inspiration to Lennon Stravato from Avalanches in Poetry Writings & Art Inspired by Leonard Cohen

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I remember the moment as if it happened today. I remember it as if it was the moment which precedes every moment. At 10 years old I rode my bicycle to the South Huntington Library, in Long Island, New York. This library of the neighboring town had a superior selection, compared to our local Harborfields Public library. I walked in, found the poetry section, pulled a book off the shelf, and opened up to a random page. The book was “Selected Poems 1955-1968” and the author was Leonard Cohen, a “singer” whose music I had heard countless times, along with that of Bob Dylan, as a passenger in my father’s car. It was on page 233 that my life changed. It was a simple poem, entitled “A Person Who Eats Meat.” I read: “A person who eats meat wants to get his teeth into something. A person who does not eat meat, wants to get his teeth into something else.” The deep 10 year old that I thought I was, paused for a moment, reflected, found it fascinating. I returned to the final lines: “If these thoughts interest you, even for a moment, you are lost.” The cosmos had gently slapped me in the face, and it used Leonard Cohen’s hand. The message was very simple: dig deeper, little boy. When the cosmos speaks that clearly to you, only a fool would ignore it. I, who aspire not to be a fool, had no choice but to comply. I have not stopped digging.

In the nearly three decades since that time I not only hung on Leonard’s every word, but I also delved deep into world religions, theology, existentialism, and my own, at times rather tumultuous, life. His early work, which often contained suggestive and darker allusions, reflected his era, and was well suited to my teens and early 20s. His later work, which I have enjoyed as something of an adult, spoke to the ages. Leonard masterfully used the voice of God, and man in ecstasy and terror, in the face of the divine. He balanced delicately and piercingly the interplay between the sacred and the mundane, the holy and the demonic, the essential and the existential, meaning and meaninglessness. His lyrics: “a million candles burning for the love that never came,” “behold the gates of mercy, in arbitrary space, and none of us deserving, the cruelty or the grace,” “He wants to write a love song, an anthem of forgiving, a manual for living with defeat” are eternal and timeless descriptions of the human condition. They have also become the core themes of my own interior landscape. It is no wonder that as Leonard described poetry as “the constitution of the inner country” that his work has had such an enduring impact on me personally, and my writing, which attempts to communicate in what I called, in a poem published in the Bards Annual 2019 Anthology, “the inner dialect.”

For many years, writing has been a passion of mine. In early 2019 I penned a screenplay which has just completed production. I also previously published dense political articles for The Hill newspaper in Washington, D.C., though I no longer standby those opinions. It wasn’t until 2018, however, two years after Leonard’s passing, that I began to find my own poetic voice. Sitting on my patio, I lamented that I might not hear a new Leonard Cohen song ever again, I wrote the following, as one of my first poems, entitled “The Master”

Because his death was something, my heart could not withstand,
I asked the master for a final poem, and offered up my hand
I said “for many years, I’ve been a student of the word,

And if you speak to me, I’ll help your voice be heard”

Then the master softly spoke “did you think those words were mine to tell?

You must know that I procured them, from deep within that great communal well.

And there, young man, you may go fishing, but if anything retrieved,

I’m afraid you’ve got that burden, from which I’ve been relieved.”
And then the master did retreat, back into that great abyss

From which all beings spring, and into which we are dismissed.

Yet in departing, he did leave a final remnant, a tiny piece of dust

As if to say, that’s all a man can give, the beauty’s not from us

So, I sat there for a moment, and then found some fresh new pages,

Knowing that is all a pilgrim has, when he goes to meet the ages

And dutifully I will wait here, with that paper and my pen

And my little promise, that when the spirit speaks, I’ll transcribe all I can

___________

Midway through 2019, in response to a text message in which a friend mistakenly thought Bob Dylan had passed away, I went into a deep reflection about the loss of Cohen and the inevitable loss of Dylan. Early that day I dwelled for a period of time on Cohen’s suggestion that there are both a divine and a human will in each of us, and between the two exists the religious enterprise. I penned the following:

If the prophets all go home,

with no heir to hold their torch

may the oceans be reduced to foam

and we build museums with remorse

For if the will that burns in each of us

is not the one we choose to serve

to life itself we have become treasonous

And we get the hollowness we deserve

I heard Dylan and Cohen speak and sing

the voice of god was in their tunes

but the bells of freedom that did ring

belong to each and every moon

And while the spirit still blows where it will

and we cannot command it as our own

it may yet select our hearts to fill

and in our art make temporary home

And that is why I sit here with my pen and pad

Knee-deep in that finest meditation

indifferent to claims that I’ve gone mad

or that poetry is an unsuitable vocation

I never bought that brand of sanity

where culture was confused with marketplace

products are preferred above humanity

and unlived dreams are commonplace

But if that will which burns in each of us

becomes the only one we serve

self-doubt shall not bind the holy impetus

and that torch’s flame will be preserved

_______________________________

Finally, in response to my own lines above, I decided it was time to dedicate myself to poetry. In a poem that is in part the inverse of Cohen’s famous hymn “Hallelujah,” where unlike David, I do not please the Lord, and with allusions to “If It Be Your Will” and “Joan of Arc,” I wrote, what at the time of this writing, is my most recent poem.

I once reached into the ether

for sublime words that I could share

But each one did fall beneath her

to whom my best would not compare

She said: you are drenched in varnish

but all my people have no glare

Hear me, for I birthed the prophets

and you, young man, are not their heir

Well, I trembled at this trumpet

it shook me to my soul

but I was not made to crumble

and instead I raised my goal

So, I gathered all my kindling

then I trekked up old Mount Sinai

and said, if you be so willing

have this fire as our alibi

She said earth is temporary

just as those who seek its favor

they that seemed extraordinary

were forsaken like that savior

I said I know the truthsayers

and though unfit to walk their path

Indeed, I’ve come for this affair

as all, but you, to me is wrath

She said then join me in this fire

but know that varnish won’t survive

there is no room for false attire

if you wish in Truth to be alive

I pledged myself to love, not pride

to live and die in just your name

So here, right now, I’ll climb inside

I won’t resist this perfect flame.

She Played Loretta Lynn During the Tornado by David L O’Nan

A neanderthal growl at the Valentine’s Disco

I became immune to all the jealous howls

I was dancing with the town’s beauty crown winner in between fish sticks and french fries.

In an Old Milwaukee second

A whole army of testosterone belching

In hopes to swoon the girl

With liars, lies telling how sexy they are

But, here I am dancing to a deadbeats line dance

A neon rodeo bull with one light that flickers

And the wind began to blow.

In what we’ll call a few minutes.

She said honey let’s get outta here

She sounded just like a smoke chimney crashed into Dolly Parton.

I almost slipped on a thrown up corn dog and beans

Kind of cut my leg on my pocket knife.

My cowboy hat flew off underneath some jackoff’s Pinto.

He drove right over it as I flipped him the bird.

I saved all my grocer money to get me the new 1985 Toyota 4×4 Pickup

I had her in that truck and the first storm siren went off.

She called me baby.

Her bouncy hair was ready to go

We arrived by the river,

At my daddy’s old trailer

Smelled like Walleyes and wood varnish

She saw his vinyls and said “I got to listen”

The first song we heard was “All Shook Up”

More, and more drinking

That girl became immobile

That room began to drown in hairspray fumes

She began fainting and the wind began screaming.

Just the whistle would begin to rip off the roof.

I began crying.

Because I knew I was dying.

This trailer had no give.

As the door flew off into the river.

She got up stumbling.

Said “honey, I think it’s time for some Loretta Lynn”

The trailer began spinning

The electricity began popping

In darkness with glass in my eyes

Yet, I see her shadow dancing

As my body feels nothing, but wind ripping through my lungs

And First City continues to play

A day or so later

I wake up to a squirrel resting on a knot on my head

And I look over to see a beauty queen drifting down a muddy creek.

That tornado breaks all, but the spirits still sing a Loretta Lynn song.

Wolfpack Contributor EIC Bios: David L O’Nan &; HilLesha O’Nan

An Interview with Brett Siler of Rebore Records in Fevers of the Mind Poetry Digest Issue 2

Q1: When did you first learn that you had a love, niche for music? What was your first favorite style of music (NKOTB obviously)? When did you get your first guitar?

“For niche music I would say when I became a teenager. I got into BMX and would buy BMX videos and the soundtracks to them would be a lot underground music, mostly punk rock. I just went down the rabbit hole from there. I made friends in with people in high school that also liked punk and we started going to pretty much any local show we could; most of which consisted of punk, hardcore and metal. I later got into lots of other styles of music but that was where it began. My first favorite style of music when I was a little kid was probably classical. I loved Tchaikovsky, particularly Swan Lake and The Nutcracker. As a teenage when I would say punk rock had a life altering impact, particularly Black Flag. I got my first guitar when I was in 3rd grade but I didn’t really have to focus you need to learn an instrument then (what 3rd grader does?). I’d much rather play with Ninja Turtles at that age. I later started playing guitar more obsessively at 13.

Q2: What made you lean towards learning production, engineering side of music? Was it out of necessity, or did you study/learn from others?
initially when I was a young teenager I just wanted to record my own music. I recorded my first bands album on a cassette tape answering machine. I later got a cassette 4 track as a teenager which I recorded the Sludgephone album on (Rebore’s first release). When I was 18 I had the classic ultimatum of going college or get kicked out. A nearby college had Audio Engineering as a major. That sounded less scary than being homeless. So I went school for that. I used the loan money to buy recording equipment. I also figured if I was charging money to record people I should get good at it so I started obsessively studying it. Recording my own band for free was also a big motivation.. I mostly learned from just doing it first hand, and reading books and internet forums; more so than college. I eventually dropped out of college and just pursued recording on my own. So It was a little of both out of necessity and learning from others, and just trial and error.

Q3: I have most of the Stationary Odyssey stuff, and fascinated by the strange visuals in the videos. Who came up with the strange visuals such as Zombie-Santas and such in the video “My Baby is Black”

I believe that was our friend Shawn Knight’s idea. He in an amazing band called Child Bite (as well as a few other rad projects coming out). He also released the very first Stationary Odyssey album on a label he ran called Boy Arm Records. Super talented dude!

Q4: Tell me about Rebore Records. When did you first establish the label. Discuss some of the artists who have recorded under your label. I guess this isn’t much of a question, as it is giving you the soapbox on your label

Rebore Records was established in December of 2013. I was doing a similar thing called Dyspepsidisc with Aaron Tanner previously but that dissolved and I started Rebore up with my buddy Nick Schenk. It’s a home for my friends and my recordings. Luckily my friends are super talented! There’s no real theme genre wise for the label. I trust and respect my friends as people and artists. I just want to help them and be supportive.

Q5: I know you have also done some acting in movies, have you explored doing more acting, or do you see yourself as more of a musician than an actor? What do you enjoy doing more

That all came about after befriending Mitch Massie. We had similar taste in movies (both of our favorite movie is Gummo) and he was very supportive of my bands I was in at the time of meeting him, Gratis and Stationary Odyssey. He asked if I want to be in a movie he was making called The Anathema Report (the soundtrack is released on Rebore and is one of my favorite releases on there). That started a 10 year relationship of acting in 3 full length movies and somewhere around 60 music videos he made! He is extremely talented and hope to work more with him. Plus, he is one of the funniest people I’ve ever met. I worked on a few other peoples things here and there but 95%
has been with Mitch. I’ll be in something my friend Zach Zint is making starting this weekend. I mostly see myself as a musician, but I do think I started getting good at acting after doing so many videos. As far as what I enjoy more…I just enjoy creating in general and being apart of things that I cool so I enjoy both.

Q6: I know you are more into the music side of songs & musicians. I know that you are a big punk, metal, alternative rock fan. However, being this is also a Poetry & Art Magazine, what are some of your favorite lyricists or lyrics? Is any Fugazi related?

Fugazi has amazing lyrics! I think Tom Waits is a great lyricist. Dennis Lyxzen lyrics off of Refused “Shape of Punk to Come” are excellent. Jello Biafra’s work in Dead Kennedy’s and LARD. Dimtri Minakais and Ben Weinman’s lyrics on Dillinger Escape Plan’s “Calculating Infinity”. I’ll give examples of lines that I really like by each artist. Fugazi: “You hear something outside? It sounds like a gun Stay away from that window, boy It’s not anyone that we know Only about ourselves and What we read in the paper Don’t you know ink washes out Easier than blood?”

Tom Waits “T’aint no sin to take off your skin and dance around in your bones” (William S Burroughs song that song, not sure if he wrote those lyrics or if Tom Waits did.. Burroughs rules)

Refused: “I got a bone to pick with capitalism and a few to break Grab us by the throat and shake the life away Human life is not commodity, figures, statistics or make believe”

The Locust “Is this the dumpster of your dreams?”

Jello Biafra “Peeling back the foreskin of liberty”

Dillinger Escape Plan “Alfresco slapsticked Foam mouth sunshine”
Q7: How do we get out of Evansville? Let me word this differently. Evansville, Indiana hasn’t always been known to have a huge art, music & poetry scene. What can small cities such as Evansville do to be more proactive in creating opportunities for bands, poets, art in whole? It always seems once we have a decent venue for music or poetry then it disappears rather quickly.

That is a big and hard question. I think one thing that is stacked against Evansville and cities like it is, it is economically depressed. Most people here don’t have very much money and are usually working some shit job. Music and art programs are usually the first to be stripped from schools, so there isn’t much education on music, art, poetry; so, there are going to be less people interested in it. Evansville is also very isolated. Culturally there isn’t much emphasis on being creative. It’s mostly focused family, Christianity, work. The reason a venue disappears rather quickly is because it gets crushed by the economic realities, we all have to deal with. I think without the material infrastructure to cover even just basic needs it is very difficult for there to be a sustained art scene.

Q8: Tell me about Plasticizer. How did this idea come up? Was it to see how fast you can bang out a good song? Plasticizer came up because all the bands I were in ended. I just started writing music own my own under that name. I was trying to impose a short time frame to finish a song at first just so I didn’t sit on the project forever. I hit a huge wall with that band because of a string of severe bad luck pretty much put everything to a halt. I was evicted out of my studio and living space then quickly moved into a place that caught fire and destroyed everything I own. I’ve spent the last three years working so I can get back to creating again. It’s been very hard. I hope to be able to get back to it very soon.

Q9: Everyone should listen to the Halloween Special from Rebore Records. Tell people how you can order music, your website, social medias, all the Brett Siler and Rebore Records people need to know. I agree everyone should listen to it! You can currently order our music from https://rebore.bandcamp.com/ , we are also the bigger social media site, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Youtube Even better is if you sign up to our email list! ReboreRecords@gmail.com!

Q10: Are there any big projects you are currently working on, or just completed? Is there any colleague’s work you would like to promote? I’m currently working on finishing up a movie score that I am very happy with so far! Should be done with that very soon. After that I would mostly like to focus on Plasticizer,but I have a million side projects sitting on my hard drive, that I’ve collaborated with friends. Also have some albums from older bands I was in that are finally going to be released!

Q11: Talk about the music they play late in the Meijer. I know you have strong opinions on the Shania Twain, Edwin McCain, some current goof pop, or maybe out of nowhere you’ll hear that strange Benny Mardones song. Why is there no “My War” by Black Flag?

HA! One of the funniest/cringier song I heard there was some Reel Big Fish. I feel like people would get to amped hearing My War and trash the store and steal all the groceries.

Q12: Any writing contribution for this edition? Perhaps your own Canterbury Tale or such? *crickets chirping* I’m gonna write the Nu Bible

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