And I've been getting a lot of proofs lately. Meadowland Review sent me proofs. Third Coast sent me proofs. Accents Press sent me proofs for Bigger Than They Appear. And Blood Orange is going to send me proofs. Sweet.
The first time I got to see proofs of my work was when Versal published "This small poem." It was so cool to see that email, download that pdf and then open the file. Especially for that poem, which is really a really small poem. It's two couplets. Four lines. Surrounded by a whole hell of a lot of white space (I love white space almost as much as I love proofs). And the title was printed in huge letters. The title was nearly as tall as the entire poem.
And probably nothing beat getting the proofs for my chapbook, Paper Guillotines. Suddenly, there I was. Twenty pages of me. Plus Jim Daniels! How cool is that.
My grandma recently read some of my poems online. She said to me, "But they don't rhyme." I said, "Grandma, I don't write poems that rhyme." And I don't. I suck at rhyming. Not that I don't try. About a year ago, I tried to write a response poem to John Donne's "The Flea." I got this far:
There are many reasons to like Renaissance poetry,Yeah, then I couldn't come up with a word to rhyme with "poetry" (yes... I know, "flea," but seriously, I can't bring myself to rhyme "poetry" with "flea." It makes me itch just thinking about it).
but John Donne's "The Flea" isn't one of them.
I even wrote a sonnet made up entirely of Nirvana lyrics. You'd think that'd be easy to rhyme since, you know, the lyrics rhyme. But nope. No rhymes. It's also not iambic or pentameter.
But look here: Pemmican just published four of my poems. Proof I'm a poet!
It's X-mas time. Have you bought all your presents? If not, buy all of these chapbooks. And this chapbook. And this chapbook. And this chapbook. And this chapbook and this chapbook and this chapbook (though two of them are out of print so you'll probably have to look on ebay). And buy this book. And buy this book. And buy this book. And buy this book and this book. And buy this book.
When buying poetry is seen as economic stimulus, I'll see it as proof capitalism works. Until then, I offer:
(which, of course, is proof that Bob Dylan's music is awesome. When performed by other people.)
See you next year.
Anne Shaw: Undertow.
Anne Shaw: Undertow.
Melissa Stine: Rough Honey.
Sarah Fox: Because Why.