I have some new poetry posted over at Beneath the Remains.

Beneath the Remains is about:

“Here we focus on raw images and words from the ruins, from the real world that is often swept away, hidden, talked about in whispers and secrets. We want to uncover and bring to light the real path taken each day, the reality people face and struggle with.”

The following are a selection of haiku poems from Right under the big sky, I don’t wear a hat, the haiku and prose of Hosai Ozaki.


I look back at the shore, not one footprint let

The cigarette is dead, I cast away the loneliness

Dead leaves shake down the trees and broom the blue sky

A single garden rock places, evening comes

A pine grove let the children go home and is darkening

Such a good moon, I look at it by myself and go to sleep

I cup sparrow’s warmth, let it go

I am proud to announce that we just finished the Winter 2014 issue of Stone Path Review.  You are able to view it online, as a flip-book, or download a PDF.  This issue features poetry, photography, a short story, and an interview with the director of a mountain guide training school located in Alaska and Patagonia.


Stone Path Review Winter 2014

Stone Path Review: Stone Path Review Winter 2014

Artistic journal of poetry, photography, short stories and an interview with the director of a mountain guide training school.

Find out more on MagCloud

The poem below is a teaser from my first collection that will be published in a couple of months.  I am finishing up the selection list and completing the final edits.  It will be titled “Beyond the Border Kingdom” and is an attempt to look beyond the daily struggle, the lack of answers, too many questions, and find where we came from.


(4)

on lake superior shores
miles from artificial illumination

red and white lights float
we watch the show for hours

entertaining ourselves with
theories and conspiracies –

what would you do
if they landed here

– until we can no longer differentiate
one light or object from another

constellations become one mass
we have forgotten the names of.

under black hole poked sky we
stumble back to cabin #7 on the hill.

The following is a book review I completed for Stone Path Review.


Review of “Sugartown”, by Kevin Zepper
Publisher: Finishing Line Press, 2012

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Sugartown-Kevin-Zepper/dp/1599249820/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1377393099&sr=8-2&keywords=kevin+zepper

“Sugartown” is the fourth book from Minnesota-based author Kevin Zepper. In this poetry collection, the title and lead poem are homage to harvesting sugar near Moorhead, MN.

Through a writing style utilizing alliteration and word play (an internal rhythm with quick rhymes) a structure emerges that resembles music playing from across fields of grass and wheat. There is a beat here that the reader begins to hum, sing, and tap with the hand that is not holding book.

Another important facet of Kevin’s writing style is its accessibility. I would not call it simple, but rather down-to-earth and digestible, not pompous. The reader feels that Kevin is an observer and that he is one of us, telling a bit of a story, but not giving everything away. Space is left for the reader to relate to an image or situation. In fact, I can still smell the potato salad mom and pops used to make for every picnic while reading the piece “Potato Salad!”.

Each poem offers a look at life now and in the past from somewhere in the heartland of this country. I believe each reader will find something they can relate to and be transported to that moment.

These four poems I found to be particularly well-written and full of words playing not just to sight, but all of the sense.

  • “Cinnamon” – A poem that filled my mind with sharp and salty images of a MN autumn with lines such as “A season seasoned with thyme and cayenne”. The images hang there and even provide a smell to give each definition.
  • “Sugartown”
  • “Potato Salad!”
  • “Jeanne”

Previous collections by Kevin Zepper

  • I Bring You Dead Things (2008)
  • The Fifth Ramone: Prose Poems (2003)
  • (Suffering from) An Apartment Complex

I had hoped to showcase poetry each day for National Poetry Month, but other obligations diverted my attention and time.  For the last day of April, I have chosen poetry from John Haines – a writer whose work and style, along with his time living in Alaska, really influenced and changed my own style, and in some ways, paid the foundation for a change of direction in my own life.

I was introduced to John Haines in a poetry class I took at the Loft Literary Center in Minnesota, by Thomas R Smith.  For that, I will forever be indebted to him.


These selections from from the collection “The Owl in the Mask of the Dreamer”, published by Graywolf Press in 1993.


Horns

I went to the edge of the wood
in the color of evening,
and rubbed with a piece of horn
against a tree,
believing the great, dark moose
would come, his eyes
on fire with the moon.

I fell asleep in an old white tent.
The October moon rose,
and down a wide, frozen stream
the moose came roaring,
hoarse with rage and desire.

I awoke and stood in the cold
as he slowly circled the camp.
His horns exploded in the brush
with dry trees cracking
and falling; his nostrils flared
as swollen-necked, smelling
of challenge, he stalked by me.

I called him back, and he came
and stood in the shadow
not far away, and gently rubbed
his horns against icy willows.
I heard him breathing softly.
Then with a faint sigh of warning
soundlessly he walked away.

I stood there in the moonlight,
and the darkness and silence
surged back, flowing around me,
full of a wild enchantment,
as though a god had spoken.

Denali Road

By the Denali road, facing
north, a battered chair
in which nothing but the wind
was sitting.
And farther on
toward evening, an old man
with a vague smile,
his rifle rusting in his arms.

The Rain Glass

A winter morning, and the sea
breaks on the harbor wall.

Rain moves up the lonely street
under swaying wires,
blowing across the empty playground;
the air smells
of metal, kelp, and tar.

I hear the thrashing of leaves
against these windows;
the house is cold,
but the shifting glare of a fire
shines on wet asphalt.

Chairs, forms of silent people;
faces blurred in the clouding
of many small mirrors.

I wait in the doorway of a room
with grey walls and distant pictures.

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The Spring 2013 edition of Stone Path Review is now online here. The PDF and printed version will be available soon.

As Winter slowly becomes Spring, we celebrate National Poetry Month, and the power and majestic beauty of nature and the mind.

Featured in this issue is an interview with writer Regina Bou and work from these fine artists: Aaron Bowen, Debbie Crawford, Jay Duret, Kenneth Pobo, Pete Armetta, Rachel Dacus, Thomas Zimmerman, Valentina Cano, and Don Cellini.

Received a great package from Amazon today. The latest collection of poems from D. Nurkse, “A Night in Brooklyn”, and “Airmail”, the letters of Robert Bly and Tomas Transtromer.

Mr. Nurkse was part my shift to a more concise and efficient writing style, that also assists tremendously in the editing process. I have read six of his previous collections, and will finally complete a book review with this one.

Mr. Bly’s influence on poetry, literature, and culture cannot be summed up in a few of my words, and is best left to his.