Word Perv
(noun): One who takes delight and is skilled at constructing, writing or saying naughty phrases or dialogue.

Last week was the week-long residency for my MFA program. I spent a week living poetry: reading, writing, breathing, eating, and drinking poetry. Talking and writing and laughing and staying up waaaaay too late several nights in a row – four hours of sleep is enough, right? Okay, no, it decidedly wasn’t. But with a lot of coffee I got through it. And as usual, I came home equally exhausted and exhilarated. I’ve got a bunch of edits to do on my poems that were workshopped and I’ve got a whole list of new poets to read. I’m pumped about my writing and about pushing it forward, pushing it harder.

Once home on Sunday I unpacked, did laundry, walked the dog, and then finally sat down at my computer to read the emails I’d been neglecting all week. (What can I say, residency week is a bit consuming.) One of the emails was the announcement of the Deranged, A Picaroon Poetry Anthology, which features two of my poems, is now available for purchase!

Deranged

 

This anthology features poems that are rule-breaking, gender non-conforming, and highlight women in the arts. I’m so pleased to have my poems alongside so many amazing poets. You can read more about the anthology here and you can order your copy here.

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Be sure to follow me on Twitter, like my Facebook page, and find me on Instagram to keep up to date with my poetry, readings, and other happenings!

May 19, 2017

Drag Queens & Poetry

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Last Monday I performed with LaTiDo – my second poetry reading with them this year. (Read all about the first one here.) Once again it was an amazing night of singing and poetry. And drag queens. Yes, you read that right, this time LaTiDo had drag queens perform. Let me tell you, I love drag queens. What’s not to love?! Make-up, big hair, big heels, and big personalities.

That night held more surprises though. Congresswoman Maxine Waters was there and took the mic to share a few words!

 

After the show ended the drag queens were kind enough to pose for a picture with me.

Just a girl and her chapbook and drag queens!

 

But that’s not all — I’ve also got three new poems in Queen of Cups, read them here! I’m very excited to have my poems featured here but I’m also sad that Queen of Cups is ending, I’ve enjoyed getting it delivered to my inbox each week and discovering new poems and poets this way.

 

 

May 2, 2017

It’s Over

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April was National Poetry Month and it proved to be an exciting and surprising and wretched month for me.

Many poets will take the 30/30 challenge – writing a poem a day for every day in April. I didn’t set out to do this but I ended up writing 39 poems in April which was really surprising. I attended several poetry workshops, including the one I lead for Split This Rock, and I went to the Barrelhouse one-day literary conference. All of these things helped push me to write a lot this month.

I participated in several events for Thou Art, the book of identity poems that are paired with original drawings – you can still order your copy but hurry, quantities are limited! I was also the resident poet for Arlington library’s The Poet Is In which meant I hung out at the library and wrote poems on the spot for people.

 

Several close friends of mine got amazing publishing news – my friend Kristin Ryan’s poem, Morning, With Bandages, won the Jabberwock Review’s 2017 Nancy D. Hargrove Editors’ prize for poetry. My friend Hannah Cohen’s chapbook, Bad Anatomy, was accepted for publication by Glass Poetry Press. And I was so fantastically excited for them. I’m a firm believer in supporting other poets and these are two women I admire and whose poems I love.

But then the wretched part: I received more rejections in April than I have in any other month. EVER. One day I received three rejections. On a Monday. *sigh* Yeah, it was a bad day. =( I know that rejections are part of the process. And without rejections there wouldn’t be acceptances, this is how it goes. But damn, I got only one acceptance, and that was of a previously published poem. Which I’m happy about but it would have been nice to have one new poem accepted.

So April is gone and now it’s May. It’s time to send new poems out and hopefully this month, a few more will get accepted.

 

April is National Poetry Month, one of my favorite months, obviously. There are a few ways you can celebrate, here’s what I suggest:

  1. Read poetry. Go to your local bookstore or library or Amazon and peruse the poetry section. Buy the #1 selling poetry book if you don’t know where to start. Or ask for suggestions from your poet friends. Here’s my favorite books of poetry I read in 2016, and the favorites from 2015. Pick one from the list and read it.
  2. Share the poems you like with someone. Send them a link to a poem you especially loved or buy them a copy of your favorite book of poetry.
  3. Buy from independent presses. Better yet, buy directly from poets if you can. Most of us poets have copies of our books we’re dying to sign and sell to you. I have copies of both of my chapbooks available for sale. I’d love it if you bought one or two or ten. ($12 plus your shipping address, and tell me which book you want: Siamese Sisters or All in the Family. Or both!)
  4. Write a poem. You don’t have to share it with anyone if you don’t want to but take the time to put pen to paper.
  5. Go to a poetry reading. You can find them everywhere – libraries, universities, coffee shops, bookstores, open mics. Many are free and almost all are open to the public. Get out there and listen. (I’ve got a poetry reading in Portland, Maine on April 11th – COME LISTEN TO ME READ POEMS!)
  6. Contact your representatives and tell them you support the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and want to keep it funded. The NEA funds things like public events at libraries, film festivals, and music, art, and literary courses for underprivileged kids. These are programs that matter. Call, write, email your representatives and tell them you want our arts funded.

 

March 22, 2017

Coming to Maine!

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Calling all poetry lovers who reside in/around Portland, Maine. I’ve got TWO upcoming readings, come out and listen to me read poems!