After months of not writing, I've somehow managed to squeeze out two poems today, both part of a project that's been rattling around in my head for three or four years: Catches & Stays will be a series of poems in response to, in dialogue with, or launched by a line or fragment from other poems. Specifically, I'm selecting poems from Seven Kitchens chapbooks to serve as touchstones for the new work. I'm thrilled--thrilled--to be writing again.
The first poem, "Who Cannot," starts with the fragment he is wasting his time trying to sing from Jeff Oaks' poem "Who Cannot Read This." Jeff's poem appears in his chapbook, Shift, published in the Summer Kitchen Series in 2010.
The second poem, "Shutters," begins with the fragment what shutters the relentless from Lisa Sewell's poem "The Corrections." Lisa's poem appears in her chapbook, Long Corridor, published in the Keystone Series back in 2009. I'm currently typesetting a second edition of the chapbook for a fall release.
Very excited to see how this project develops, though I expect it will be hard to write on workdays. Still, one never knows. The hardest part is carving out the time to sit here at my laptop without guilt over all the other tasks that I'm setting aside for the chance, the hope, to write again.
Much gratitude to Jeff and Lisa for allowing me to publish their work in the first place. Jeff's chapbook is long out of print, but Lisa's will have a new incarnation soon.
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Meanwhile, at Seven Kitchens, I've received the final draft of David Daniels' Indecency (Robin Becker Prize co-winner) and will be typesetting the manuscript this week. Looking forward to seeing David's cover design--the last one, for Breakfast in the Suburbs, was awesome.
Cynthia Neely: Hopewell Bay
1 week ago