A Poem, An Interview

I’m happy to report that my latest work, Zn—an erasure poem—is up at Rappahannock Review, and here it is, below. Inspired by Vincent van Gogh’s letters, Zn is part of my erasure poetry project—an endeavor that is slowly coming to fruition. I was also interviewed by RR’s kind Poetry editors, and if you’re interested in reading the same, you can find it HERE.

I am so very grateful to the folks at Rappahannock Review for taking in my little poem, and for granting me my first literary interview.

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Telling It Like It Is

It’s been a long time since I’ve felt compelled to write. In fact, I don’t actually feel compelled to write, and I’ll tell you why: I struggle with the great void, and wonder if  any singular voice adds one iota of worth to the grotesque narrative playing out in this country. We are in a perpetual state of deeply disturbing hostility, an inane and unnecessary protracted battle for common sense laws—and it’s personal to many of us. Our nation has been hijacked by thugs—racist, homophobic, narcissistic, greedy, morally corrupt criminals who are raping and pillaging our country (that’s the short list)—for their own personal gain.

We are now a closed system evolving toward a state of maximum entropy. Entropy. A measure of the loss of information in transmitted signal or message. Entropy. A hypothetical tendency for the universe to attain a state of maximum homogeneity in which all matter is at a uniform temperature (heat death).

ENTROPY. A doctrine of inevitable social decline and degeneration. Look it up, it’s in the dictionary.  I read too much and I think about this too often, this mad —and I mean that in every sense of the word—country of ours. I’m angry, I’m likely depressed. I want an answer to: How do we wrestle the reigns from these evil forces?

But, here’s the thing, I don’t want to write about our sad state. I don’t want to write at all. In any event, there’s enough good and honest reporting by the best of media outlets (by which I mean The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Guardian, The Atlantic…). I believe that most of us know where lies lay like dirty bombs, and we see and hear the fallout of explosive rhetoric and fake news. So, no, I don’t want to add to that void. I want to make art and love and humor and empathy and joy. Yes, joy! And I have a hunch that if we all create more uplifting and constructive matter and deeds, we will eventually rise from our charred, psychopathic, Beckett-like landscape where nothing nurtures and everything important is neglected. Do you know that the words beneficial and helpful are synonymous with progressive? Whether you like or not, true.

This is all to say, here’s some art, my art—an erasure poem/collage (minus the frame). I’m sharing it with you. It’s a piece that’s currently hanging in Art League Rhode Island‘s 2018 Members Exhibition in Warwick, where it was given an Honorary Mention. Sharing art feels a whole lot better than shouting into the void.

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Germination

You may remember this poem from a year ago, when I published it on this blog as a response to the insanity that is Trump.

Germination is an unintended erasure poem (though I was delighted, if not a bit unnerved, by how its meaning eventually revealed itself). As I mentioned last year: “I believe it is an artist’s duty to speak out against cultural erasure, to bring light and truth forward through one’s art. Looking at the body of my erasure work, I think, in large part, that what I have been pursuing (consciously or not) is the gravity of survival, renewal and remembrance—poems that reveal the stories, suffering and mourning of all. Poems composed of glittering fragments of hope and love and compassion.”

Thank you, so very much, to the editors at Entropy Magazine, for publishing my poem on a much larger platform—giving it a second life, a place to sparkle.

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