Tanka/Haiku style poetry showcase from Samuel Stathman

brown and black wooden guitar and black leather bag

photo from Unsplash (Europeana)

1.

cartographer’s bone
picked with the equestrian
stampeding ensued
bicoastal defamation
rewrite historical maps

2.

in dull recesses
find the neon imago
mother’s milk to drink
reawaken unified
not god but cultured creature

3.

small wind instruments
tickling the widow’s ear
heady blandishments

4.

sky’s furrowed tendrils
lightening revives the dragon
exhumes vile bones
goliaths of an old tribe
discarded relics

5.

black air raising hairs
prickling the needle neck
red limbless ocean
eels traversing coastlines
Persephone on lookout

6.

rending of the sea
ghosts preying on destruction
aligned with their posts
islanders abandoning ships
swashbuckler’s bad omen

7.

grandiose ghazal
sultry arabian night
fiddler’s heaven
dripping wax overexcites
opium cloud dynasty

8.

meditative snowfall
unconscionable tension
cathartic release
noon hour crowds dissipating
solace behind coloured glass

9.

thrush’s old singsong
head north before nerves kick in
10.

plows in the distance
prizeworthy lineation
stones heaving in the mud

11.

galvanized breezeway
intimate pyrotechnics
bubbles among stars

12.

nightmarish dungeon
somnambulist skeletons
mourn finality
last rites for fallen angels
black flower necropolis

13.

ashram for your thoughts
yellow moths grow from tall grass
mood can be anchor
draw an ocean with a glance
smell the brine off flying fish 

14.

winged ritual
birds scaling belltowers
wind breaking current
gleam of passing vehicles
splitting the time barrier

15.

vermillion sluice
zombie rats lining spillways
deadbolted prey
eyeless momento mori
hail the bony chimera

16.

memorial park
widows placing spring flowers
dewy bloodshot eyes
groundskeeper whistling tunes
keys jangling on their ring


Bio: Samuel Strathman is a poet, author, visual artist, and educator.  He was also the editor-in-chief of Floodlight Editions.  Some of his poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Cobra Milk, I-70 Review, Prole, and other magazines and journals.  His debut poetry collection, "Omnishambles" is forthcoming with Ice Floe Press (2022).


A Fevers of the Mind Quick-9 Interview with Samuel Strathman

Poetry by Samuel Strathman from Fevers of the Mind Anthologies

A Fevers of the Mind Quick-9 Interview with Marcelle Newbold

with Marcelle Newbold:

Q1: When did you start writing and first influences?

Marcelle: I started recording the everyday, usually on my iphone, during maternity leave with my son. It was such an overwhelming time- the extreme sleep deprivation, as well as being new to parenting. I used the page (screen) as someone to share with. Looking back at those notes now the range of emotions is astonishing – some have turned into poems, some not.

In 2018 I attended poetry evening classes run by the generous Mab Jones, she was the one that really got me ‘started’, she is so passionate and enthusiastic. That lead to a weekly group run by Claire Syder, which I still attend now and wouldn’t be without.

Q2: Who are your biggest influences today?

Marcelle: I still attend lots of workshops (online in these covid times), which I find really inspiring – learning about different approaches to writing, the different personalities. I have recently had the pleasure of reconnecting with the fabulous Elizabeth Horan and am now inseparable from the prose poem.

I live in South Wales and am surrounded by wonderful landscape and lyrical welsh poets – historic and living. These are a constant influence – to infuse the local into the universal.

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

Marcelle: Reading Tony Hoagland’s work, it is so affecting, I knew I wanted to learn to be able to connect like that. I adore the way he expresses the magicness of the everyday.

Q4: Who has helped you most with writing?

Marcelle: I regularly attend a workshopping group with Rhian Edwards, Tracey Rhys, Emily Cotterill, Susie Wildsmith and Emily Blewitt, who are all fantastic writers and thoughtful readers. The wonderful Christina Thatcher has been my mentor for almost 2 years now and her steady influence and insight I greatly value.

It is a privilege to be able to read hundreds of poetry submissions in my position as poetry editor for Nightingale and Sparrow, this has really informed my own writing persuasions. In 2020 I worked on a Pandemic Poetry anthology – the submissions were astounding in their breadth and intensity, it was a honour to read for. Editing has definitely helped my ability to objectively assess my own writing.

The twitter poetry community is always generous, I particularly enjoy the inclusive home that Matthew Smith has created around his Black Bough Poetry micro-poem world.

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

Marcelle: I grew up and went to school in Cardiff, capital of Wales, before moving on graduation, via London, to Portsmouth on the south coast of England. I have been very lucky always living close to the sea and hills. My parents love the sea and we would often daytrip to visit, in all its different forms, in all types of weather.
I trained as an Architect and have been lucky enough to travel to Australia & New Zealand, North America & Canada, and Western Europe. I love well laid out European urban spaces and can recall routes and places easily, which I often dream about walking through, and they end up on the page.

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

Marcelle: I enjoy writing about the everyday, highlighting the precious normal, which can easily be overlooked with our hectic lives.

Q7: Favorite activities to relax?

Marcelle: I love making dresses for my young daughter from found materials (scarves from charity shops, my dad’s old shirts), wind bathing! and reading with continuous cups of tea.

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

Marcelle: From ‘Weeping willow’ my poem published in Indigo Dreams’ ‘Dear Dylan, an anthology after Dylan Thomas’:
She knew: memory as a trick, there’s only now.
So they bathe, drink, exert, worship – keep not
to themselves and believe in divine cultivation.

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

Marcelle: Not really! Watch this space, first pamphlet coming soon (hopefully)!

Links:

Twitter: @marcellenewbold

https://icefloepress.net/dwelling-a-poem-by-marcelle-newbold/

https://www.perhappened.com/shoppinglistmarcellenewbold.html

A Spotlight on IceFloe Press : Poetry, Art, Photography Creativity Sponge

logo by Cathy Daley

IceFloe Press is one of the most unique, creative endeavors for poetry these days. With challenges, specific themes of poetry, an all inclusive collective of voices that need to be heard.

Founded by Robert Frede Kenter (Eic), Co-editor Moira J. Saucer, other editors and chief contributors to the site are Ankh Spice, Elisabeth Horan, Adedayo Adeyemi Agarau & Jakky Bankong-Obi

Some of their contributions to Fevers of the Mind can be linked below.

Wolfpack Contributor: Robert Frede Kenter

4 poems from Robert Frede Kenter in Avalanches in Poetry An Interview with Robert Frede Kenter of Icefloe Press

4 poems from Fevers of the Mind Poets of 2020 by Moira J Saucer

Some poems from Elisabeth Horan in Fevers of the Mind Issue 1 (2019)

6 poems from Elisabeth Horan

A Fevers of the Mind Quick-9 Interview with Jakky Bankong-Obi

5 Poems by Ankh Spice : That which can be made visible, Hold the river, Feeding the koi, Act like you were never for sale, & Hathor’s gift

Holiday Interlude by Ankh Spice from Avalanches in Poetry Writings & Art Inspired by Leonard Cohen

IceFloe is known for great art contributions, poetry contributions & photography. Some links below to a few you just have to read or see.

https://icefloepress.net/peach-delphine/

https://icefloepress.net/2020/01/28/five-poems-by-peach-delphine/

https://icefloepress.net/2020/05/12/two-poems-by-david-hanlon/

https://icefloepress.net/2020/12/09/three-poems-by-jenny-mitchell/

Poem for a Russian Grandmother in Exile by Robert Frede Kenter w/ A Painting by Moira J. Saucer

https://icefloepress.net/2020/12/04/glass-kelp-a-poem-by-anindita-sengupta-w-an-image-by-vera-schmittberger/

https://icefloepress.net/2020/12/24/a-reunion-or-a-resurrection-a-poem-and-three-images-by-kushal-poddar/

https://icefloepress.net/2020/11/30/happy-birthday-twice-a-pandemitime-poem-and-three-images-by-lynne-sachs/

https://icefloepress.net/2020/12/01/i-am-care-a-poem-by-linnet-macintyre-w-a-painting-by-m-s-evans/

https://icefloepress.net/2020/03/03/five-poems-by-david-o-nan/

https://icefloepress.net/excerpts-from-pandemic-party-moira-j-saucer/

https://icefloepress.net/dwelling-a-poem-by-marcelle-newbold/

https://icefloepress.net/two-poems-by-chelsea-dingman/

https://icefloepress.net/a-love-letter-to-me-a-vispo-by-maggs-vibo/

https://icefloepress.net/two-poems-by-bola-opaleke/

https://icefloepress.net/three-poems-by-catherine-graham/

https://icefloepress.net/two-poems-by-kari-flickinger-w-four-art-works-by-m-s-evans/

https://icefloepress.net/six-poems-from-new-disease-streets-by-david-l-onan-w-a-digital-collage-by-robert-frede-kenter/

https://icefloepress.net/two-poems-loop-year-postmarked-plague-and-an-image-by-kushal-poddar/

https://icefloepress.net/elliot-north/

https://icefloepress.net/pandemic-politics-3-poems/

https://icefloepress.net/three-poems/

https://icefloepress.net/when-aurelia-noa-learned-to-sing-two-poems-by-kushal-poddar/

https://icefloepress.net/loss-a-poem-and-drawings-by-moira-j-saucer/

https://icefloepress.net/in-a-starless-sky-i-find-memories-out-of-a-cancerous-moon-a-prose-poem-by-sodiq-oyekanmi/

https://icefloepress.net/three-poems-rose-knapp/

https://icefloepress.net/survival-from-the-ruins-of-ashes-a-prose-poem-by-ariyo-ahmad/

https://icefloepress.net/for-the-foreign-friend-who-asked-me-why-africans-write-sad-poems-a-poem-by-idowu-odeyemi/

https://icefloepress.net/a-poem-after-lana-del-reys-cinnamon-girl-a-poem-by-adeola-juwon/

https://icefloepress.net/so-long-marianne-and-good-riddance-bitter-biased-thoughts-on-art-romance-and-portrait-of-a-lady-on-fire-an-essay-by-kaye-nash/

https://icefloepress.net/today-i-will-write-a-poem-and-name-it-after-your-beads-an-essay-poem-by-henneh-kweku/

https://icefloepress.net/knowing/

https://icefloepress.net/a-mother-of-poetry-an-elegy-by-suzi-x/

https://icefloepress.net/postmarked-quarantine-a-book-of-poems-by-kushal-poddar/

https://icefloepress.net/kyla-houbolts-dawns-fool-a-microchap/

https://icefloepress.net/boy-bestiary/

https://icefloepress.net/0rder-audacity-of-form/

https://icefloepress.net/order-skeleton-of-a-ruined-song/

A Fevers of the Mind Quick-9 Interview with Catherine Graham

photo by Marion Voysey

with Catherine Graham:

Q1: When did you start writing and first influences?

Catherine: I began writing poetry after the deaths of my parents. They died during my undergraduate years. Mother, my first year, father, my last. Grief hit me hard but also became a catalyst to my creative journey which I expand on below. First influences include Sylvia Plath, Elizabeth Bishop and Anne Sexton.

The Colossus and Other Poems

Q2: Who are your biggest influences today?

Catherine: The creative process is my biggest influence. I pay attention to what triggers my imagination. I follow energy lines from various sources: dreams, dream lines, nature, words, music, books and art and coax them into shape so that I have a draft to play with and see if I might craft it into a poem.

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

Catherine: After my parents’ back to back deaths, I was consumed with grief. A worried friend suggested I see a therapist. The therapist suggested I keep a journal. This helped but it wasn’t a cure. One day I started playing with words—images, rhythms and memories of my parents, the water-filled limestone quarry I grew up beside. I fell into a portal where time and pain disappeared and when I came back out I knew something pivotal had happened. Eventually I worked up the courage to share what I’d written with that family friend and she told me I was writing poetry. Of course I knew what poetry was but I didn’t think that I could participate in such an endeavour. At that point the only poems I’d been exposed to were written by bearded men now long dead. But once that connection was made, poetry became the core of my life.

Q4: Who has helped you most with writing?

Catherine: I’d have to say my parents. Their deaths fueled my creative life, plus the water-filled limestone quarry we lived beside. My long term editor, Paul Vermeersch, has also helped me immensely on the poetry journey. He’s edited all my poetry collections (except my first chapbook, The Watch). Pupa, The Red Element, Winterkill, Her Red Hair Rises with the Wings of Insects, The Celery Forest, Æher: An-Out-of-Body Lyric. His belief and continued support mean the world to me. Exchanging poems with writer friends such as James Wyshynski and Ayesha Chatterjee is also extremely helpful.

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

Catherine: I was born in Hamilton but grew up in small town Ontario. The Niagara Escarpment behind our house in Grimsby became the first landscape I loved, followed by the water-filled limestone quarry beside our bungalow in Ridgeway. When poetry charged into my life, it led me to Northern Ireland where I studied and lived during the 90’s. I love the Irish and Northern Irish poets: Michael Longley, Joan and Kate Newmann, Kathleen McCracken (Canadian and Northern Irish!), and more. I’m grateful many have become dear friends.

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

Catherine: I’ve written seven collections of poetry and one novel (Quarry) and they are all meaningful to me. Perhaps they serve as one long creative piece. However, the most meaningful of the lot is my recent collection: Æther: An Out-of-Body Lyric. It’s a hybrid book—poetry, prose, memoir, lyric essay—a homage to family, to cancer and to the strange windings of truth. 

Q7: Favorite activities to relax?

Catherine: I love walking, especially in nature. It helps me process thoughts and emotions and deepens my thinking so insights occur, synchronicities happen, and questions or concerns I’m currently grappling with gain new perspectives. Walking brings comfort, joy and balance to my life.

Lake swimming is another activity I love. Front crawl, breast stroke—back and forth. I become one with water. I also love to visit art galleries. I adore looking at art.

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

Catherine: I’ve been working with dream lines lately. Half-awake in the dark, I jot them down in a bedside notebook and hope I’m able to decipher my scribbles in the morning. My mother rarely visits my dreams but before my imminent departure to leave on a poetry reading tour in Northern Ireland, after a very long absence, she said these comforting words: “You’re a game changer. A post-autumn woman.” That line morphed with a dream I had about Seamus Heaney and became part of a recently published poem “Sleep Patterns for Seamus Heaney.” I was honoured to have it appear in University College Dublin / Museum of Literature Ireland’s new journal Belfield Literary Review.

Sleep Patterns for Seamus Heaney

We hold sleep patterns for him.
Clip flowers from seeds; mist

hours from worries
into a line’s heartbeat.

Tears are rinsers,
not energy takers.

Never waterfalls.
We don’t envy

his gift, we coax
something out—

Take me, for instance,
my dead

mother’s voice—
You’re a game changer, a post-autumn woman.

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

Catherine:

Well, there’s Æther: An-Out-of-Body Lyric as mentioned above. It’s now out and available for purchase. My second novel, The Most Cunning Heart. appears Spring 2022 and my eighth poetry collection appears in 2023. Some upcoming events include presenting at the CAA conference (https://canadianauthors.org/national/presenters/) leading the Toronto Festival of Authors Book Club (https://festivalofauthors.ca/book-club/) and reading at Word on the Street (https://toronto.thewordonthestreet.ca/) and Gloucester Poetry Festival (http://www.gloucesterpoetryfestival.uk/). Oh, and I wrote about Æther: An-Out-of-Body Lyric here: https://alllitup.ca/Blog/2021/Lit-Locale-Broken-Landscapes-in-AEther-An-Out-of-Body-Lyric.

Readers may also find me on Twitter and Instagram: @catgrahampoet or they may visit my website: www.catherinegraham.com.

Thanks so much for the interview!

https://www.instagram.com/catgrahampoet/?hl=en
https://linktr.ee/CatGrahamPoet
Forthcoming from Palimpsest Press, 2022: The Most Cunning Heart (novel)

Shortlisted for the Toronto Book Awards, praise for Æther: An Out-of-Body Lyric:
“Catherine Graham’s seventh book of poetry is an intricate reverie, in poetry and prose, which floats back and forth in time and between memories, dreams and reflections.” – Toronto Star

“It is a masterpiece. The melding of poetry and prose into a beautiful and heartbreaking skein, gradual revelation, going back/going forward, weaving in and out, repeating and broadening the meaning as you go. A journey that is fascinating, heartrending, and courageous.” – Marilyn Gear Pilling

https://icefloepress.net/2020/04/20/six-poems-by-catherine-graham/

https://icefloepress.net/three-poems-by-catherine-graham/

A Fevers of the Mind Quick-9 Interview with Samuel Strathman

with Samuel Strathman:

Q1: When did you start writing and first influences?

Samuel:  I started writing four years ago.  My first influences were some of the classic poets from a long, long time ago.  Rumi, Pablo Neruda, Mikhail Lermantov, and Anna Akhmatova are a few names.  Greg Santos and Shannon Bramer were some of the first Canadian poets I really got into.   

Q2: Who are your biggest influences today?

Samuel: My biggest influences today are Chris Banks, Jason Heroux, Stuart Ross, David O’Meara, and Nelson Ball. I would also say that my visual art is influenced by a lot of visual poets such as Michael Orr, Mark Laliberte, and Richard James Biddle. Sometimes books are also good influences. “Syncope” by Asiya Wadud, “Time” by Etel Adnan and “Memory Foam” by Adam Soldofsky have made a great impression on me.

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

Samuel: I’d ben wanting to write a novel for years but could never really find my footing. Poetry had come more naturally to me in school so I decided to go with what I had a knack for.

Q4: Who has helped you most with writing?

Samuel: My girlfriend, Krystal, is usually the first person to get a crack at editing my work. Jim Johnstone, Robert Frede Kenter, and Kirby have also been integral to my success. Both Jim and Robert have been the main editors in my life. Kirby was the first person to offer me a chance to participate in a reading. Any editor who has published my work, interviewed me, or offered feedback has been of great help.

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

Samuel: I’ve lived in Toronto my entire life. I’d say that the work I have done with children in my city has been of great influence. They are always brimming with energy and ideas. I’d say that many trips to Simcoe County have been helpful to me in my writing. I tend to do less writing when I’m outside of the province.

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

Samuel: The most meaningful writing I have done was for the first two and a half years. I had to learn from failure to rise above it.

Q7: Favorite activities to relax?

Samuel: In no particular order: exercise, meditate, read, and spend time with Krystal. Friends and family keep me company when they can.

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

Samuel: One of my favorite vispo books is “’Palingenesia” by Michael Orr.  The collection definitely speaks for itself.

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

Samuel: My first full-length poetry collection “Omnishambles” is forthcoming with IceFloe Press later this year.  The book is a blend of speculative/surreal poems meets horror/sci-fi.  I must thank Robert Frede Kenter for agreeing to publish this book.  I wrote most of the poems during this pandemic.  It was one of the things that kept me sane.

Poetry by Samuel Strathman from Fevers of the Mind Anthologies

Bio:

Samuel Strathman is a poet, visual artist, educator, and author.  He is also the editor-in-chief of Floodlight Editions.  Some of his poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Pulp Literature, Cobra Milk, Blank Spaces, and other magazines and journals.  He is the author of the chapbooks “In Flocks of Three to Five” (Anstruther Press, 2020) and “The Incubus” (Roaring Junior Press, 2020).  “Omnishambles” is his first full-length poetry collection.