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spacer.gif   POETRY OPEN CALL: DEAR MR. PRESIDENT
Posted by : cj on Saturday, October 28, 2017 - 03:23 PM
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  Chicago Poetry News: Click On Headlines
1376 Reads

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Now Accepting Submissions for Journal of Modern Poetry Volume 21


Dear Poets,

Whew! A lot has happened since Chicago Poetry Press’ last open call for poetry, but don’t worry. The wait is finally over.

Chicago Poetry Press is honored to announce a brand new open call for submissions of poetry and short prose, for the 21st, that’s right 21st volume of Journal of Modern Poetry. In 2018, I will be sending your poetry to a big white house located in Washington, DC.

My Dear Poets, over the past year one voice has dominated the national discourse, usually at a rate of 140 characters at a time. Now it’s time for the poets of this country to offer a rebuttal. This is why Chicago Poetry Press is announcing its intention to publish JOMP 21: Dear Mr. President, a politically and socially charged issue of JOMP that is scheduled to take this country by storm in the spring of 2018.

Chicago Poetry Press is seeking “Social and Political” poetry designed to respectfully educate the Commander in Chief (whoever that might be at the time of publication) about the world that exists outside of 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. Seems our fellow Americans in the administration just might have gotten a little lost in a universe of alternative facts, and it’s our duty as citizens to set the record straight for them; so, send me your best socially conscious or politically infused poetry or short prose. If your work is selected for publication, it will be delivered directly to the White House so that the President of the United States has an opportunity to read it. It will also be made available to the public through online bookstores, Amazon.com as well as right here at PoetryAward.org.

This is your chance to give POTUS something else to read as he’s fiddling around with Twitter in the wee hours of the morning. Off the top of my head, some of the subjects you might want to touch upon may include: social media, cyber bullying, racial relations, sexual harassment awareness, alternative facts, narcissism, democracy, elections, foreign relations, disasters and disaster relief, taking a knee, health care, mental health, crowds, a wall, immigration, maturity, grieving, or any other covfefe you might have written about or plan to write about. These are just a few examples of possible running themes, but I’m not suggesting you need to pick one of them. This is YOUR chance to offer your rebuttal and perhaps even enlighten the Head of State with your poetry. What you want to write about is up to you.

Now, keep in mind, at the rate things are going, nobody can guarantee who will be the president come publication date, so you'll want to make sure your poetry will be just as poignant and timely regardless of who is sitting in the oval office when the book arrives there.

Guidelines to Getting Your Poetry into the White House
Please take the time to read and understand the following about the submission process.


--Journal of Modern Poetry (JOMP) is celebrating its lucky 21 with a volume of poetry that is guaranteed to raise a few eyebrow. I am seeking to showcase some of the best social and political poetry written today, whether it is traditional or experimental. All form, style and length will be considered from published as well as previously unpublished poets. Your poetry can address the theme directly, or it may take a more abstract approach. If you feel your work touches upon the theme in any way, shape or form I want to see it.

To clarify: the word "President" or "Trump" doesn't have to appear in your poem anywhere. I'm looking for quality poetry that you would like the President to read, something that might enlighten him. It doesn't have to be directed to him or be about him. It just has to be good poetry.

--Q: Does my entry donation guarantee that I will be published in JOMP 21?

A: No. Your non-refundable entry donation is considered a subscription to JOMP 21. You will receive a copy of the Dear Mr. President Anthology whether or not your work is accepted for publication. I will attempt to include as much work as possible so that the anthology represents a wide diversity of voices, but let’s be honest—no publication accepts every single submission it receives.

--Q: What if I support the President? Will I still be given a fair shot? Will my work still be considered for possible publication?

A: Absolutely. The mission of Journal of Modern Poetry 21 will be to enlighten our leadership. Even if you voted for and support your leadership, you have to admit there is still room for improvement. I was a supporter of previous administrations as well, but if given this same opportunity, I could have easily come up with a dozen shortcomings about which to enlighten them. So if you’re a supporter and submit poetry in support of your leadership, good poetry that is honest and with good intentions, it will be considered along with all the other poems. Here’s your shot to express what’s on your mind.

--All poets 18 years old or older will be given equal consideration. You do not have to be from Chicago to get published by Chicago Poetry Press. In the past we have published poets from all over the country and even some from across the globe.

--What kind of poetry has a chance? All types. I'm looking for quality work. The best way to get a sense of what writing I have honored in the past is to purchase one of Chicago Poetry Press' publications, all of which I have edited (see buttons to the upper right of this page for ordering information). The only way you won’t have a chance at getting published is if you don’t submit your work.

--Please send only original work written by you. Poetry (or short works of prose) must be primarily in the English language. Previously published work is okay for consideration into JOMP 21 (please cite previous publications and make sure copyright has reverted back to you).

--Poets may submit up to five poems for consideration. You do not have to make make additional entry donations for each poem; just make the one donation. I highly encourage all poets to send more than one poem if you have it, in order to increase your odds of getting published.

--You may update your entry prior to the final deadline. What does this mean? It means if you have rewritten your poem, or if you have a new poem that you want to add to your submission, you can send me an update to your file at no additional cost as long as I get it before the final deadline. This is something unique to JOMP. It gives you a lot of flexibility to tweak your submission as the final deadline approaches. This is expected to be particularly useful given the theme at hand and how quickly our political landscape is changing. I want the submission I have from you to be the strongest and most relevant submission possible, so I will work with you if you feel the need to improve it along the way.

To clarify: once your submission donation has been received, a file will be created for you. You may add or subtract poems from your file, or send updated or rewritten work, at any point, all the way up until the final deadline. Once the final deadline has expired, whatever is in your file will be considered your final submission and no alterations may be made after that point.

--If at any time it is determined that enough submissions have been received to sustain the publication, ChicagoPoetry.com reserves the right to halt this open call. This means that priority will be given to early submissions, so it's wise not to wait until the last minute to create your contest file. Traditionally, as I review the work periodically throughout the submission process, certain poems tend to be pre-selected and certain running themes begin to emerge. Last minute submissions would then be expected to fit in with what has already been selected, making it harder for last minute submissions to make the cut. This is why it is highly encouraged that you make your submissions as early as possible. Remember, you can always tweak your submission any time before the final deadline if you've rewritten your work or have a new poem to add.

OKAY. HERE’S YOUR CHANCE TO TELL IT LIKE IT IS.


To submit to Dear Mr. President, first use PayPal to contribute your $21 entry donation, which entitles you to a copy of the 21st Issue of JOMP, shipping included, whether you are selected for publication or not.

CLICK HERE TO MAKE YOUR ENTRY DONATION. You can use a credit / debit card or e-check if you do not have a PayPal account.

Once you have subscribed with your entry donation, a file will be created for you and you will have until the final deadline to submit up to five of your best poems (review the theme above) to Publisher@ChicagoPoetry.com.

The best way to submit your poetry is as an attachment in Microsoft Word or Works (no pdfs please) with all your poetry included in one SINGLE document (not five separate documents please). Use a standard black font (Arial is good) and do not attach any images as they will not be used. Use your own name as the title of your document.

Please include a cover letter introducing yourself, as well as a three or four sentence biography, and include all necessary contact information. (Please, even if you have submitted in the past, include your short biography so that I don’t have to go searching for it. Thank you.) Make sure your current mailing address is included. Updates about this project will be sent to you by email so make sure to include your current email address.

All materials must be received for your entry to be considered, so here is a checklist.
1. Entry donation made through PayPal.
2. Submission of up to five poems emailed as attachment in Word.
3. Short cover letter introducing yourself.
4. Short bio. about yourself to be included in book if accepted.
5. The mailing address where you want your copy of the book to be shipped, and your email address where you want to receive updates.

DEADLINE: The current deadline to send your poetry is January 16, 2018. Please don’t wait until this deadline to submit your work, so that I may gauge how lengthy I can expect the book to be and so that I can plan for publication.


If you have any questions do not be shy. Contact me at Publisher@ChicagoPoetry.com and I will personally reply back with any clarifications.

Journal of Modern Poetry Volume 21 is determined to start an important public discourse with yet another chapter in Chicago Poetry Press' tradition of publishing the freshest and highest quality poetry. I hope you are as anxious about this as I am, and I can't wait to read your submissions.

Yours in poetry,



CJ Laity
Editor, Journal of Modern Poetry
Chicago Poetry Press



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spacer.gif   CONGRATULATIONS TO THE JOMP 20 POETS
Posted by : cj on Saturday, October 22, 2016 - 09:24 PM
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  Chicago Poetry News: Click On Headlines
4308 Reads

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Chicago Poetry Press is pleased to announce the Winners of the 2017 Galactic Poetry Prizes.

In the category of “Best Moon Poem” the winner is: Joanne Blackwelder of Ocean City, NJ, for her poem “Night Walk on the Shore”. Joanne wins $120.00 in celebration of JOMP’s 20th anniversary issue.

In the category of “Best Galactic Poem” the winner is: Dianalee Velie of Newbury, NH, for her poems “DIZZY” and “Questions for Venus When She Dangles the Crescent Moon”. Dianalee also wins $120.00.

I’d also like to list two Honorable Mentions, poems that came “this close” to winning one of the prizes:

Sheila Elliott for her poem “In the Sky, In the Stars, We Seek Stories”

and

David Nekimken for his poem “Circle of Life, Circle of Being”

Below is a complete list of the 54 poets selected to have work included in the upcoming Journal of Modern Poetry 20: The Poetry Writer’s Guide to the Galaxy.


THE JOMP 20 POETS ARE:

Amanda Layman, Joliet, IL
Beverly M. Collins, Burbank, CA
Candace Armstrong, Murphysboro, IL
Carolyn Clark, Newfield, NY
Catharine J. Jones, Evanston, IL
David Marcus, Streamwood, IL
David Nekimken, Chicago, IL
Deborah Nodler Rosen, Glencoe, IL
Dianalee Velie, Newbury, NH
Diane O'Neill, Chicago, IL
Donal Mahoney, Belleville, IL
Gene Fendt, Kearney, NE
Hazel Clayton Harrison, Altadena, CA
Irfanulla Shariff, South Elgin, IL
Iris Orpi, Chicago, IL
Itala Langmar, Kenilworth, IL
Jeff Rogers, Los Angeles, CA
Jennifer Dotson, Highland Park, IL
Joan Krieger Hoffman, Los Angeles CA
Joanne Blackwelder, Ocean City, NJ
Joe Glaser, Chicago, IL
Joseph Witt, Altadena, CA
John Laue, La Selva Beach, CA
Joseph Kuhn Carey, Glencoe, IL
Katherine Derengowski, San Marcos, CA
Laura Lee, Lombard, IL
Linda Leedy Schneider, Grand Rapids, MI
Linda Wallin, Palatine, IL
Lynn Veach Sadler, Burlington, NC
Margaret Dubay Mikus, Lake Forest, IL
Marian Kaplun Shapiro, Lexington, MA
Marilyn Peretti, Glen Ellyn, IL
Mary Jo Balistreri, Waukesha, WI
Mary Langer Thompson, Apple Valley, CA
Michael P Wright, Highwood, IL
Nancy J Heggem, Palatine, IL
Nancy Lind, Pasadena, CA
Norma Mahns, Oak Grove, MO
Peter Halliday, Arlington Heights, IL
Peter Rodenby, Northumberland, England
Radomir Vojtech Luza, North Hollywood, CA
Ricardo Lira Acuña, Los Angeles, CA
Richard King Perkins II, Crystal Lake, IL
RPMuha, Valparaiso, IN
Samuel Griffin, Westmont, IL
Sheila Elliott, Oak Park, IL
Stephen Colley, Altadena, CA
Taunja Thomson, Cold Spring, KY
Thelma T. Reyna, Pasadena, CA
Tim Callahan, Altadena, CA
Tony Peyser, Altadena, CA
Tracie Renee Amirante Padal, Palatine, IL
Tricia Marcella Cimera, St. Charles, IL
Wilda Morris, Bolingbrook, IL




THE FOLLOWING IS AN ARCHIVE OF THE JOMP 20 GUIDELINES



Dear Poets,

At long last, the wait is finally over. Chicago Poetry Press is pleased to announce a brand new open call for submissions of poetry, for the twentieth, that’s right TWENTIETH volume of Journal of Modern Poetry. In 2017, we will launch poetry into the final frontier and poetry will go where no poetry has gone before. My Dear Poets, get out your telescopes and fuel your rockets to prepare yourselves for JOMP 20: The Poetry Writer’s Guide to the Galaxy, an extraterrestrial themed issue of JOMP that is scheduled for blast off in the spring of 2017.

JOMP 20: The Poetry Writer’s Guide to the Galaxy will be released at the Chicago Poetry Press table during the Chicago Public Library's annual Poetry Fest from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, April 29, 2017, at the Harold Washington Library Center, 400 S. State Street. This all-day event will also include keynote speaker Juan Felipe Herrera as well as workshops, performances, readings, and other exhibitors.

Chicago Poetry Press is still seeking “Galactic” poetry (whatever that means to you). First we will launch poetry to the moon. As a matter of fact, there will be an entire chapter in JOMP 20 dedicated to poetry about the moon. So get out your best moon poems, whether they be about a full moon, a lunar eclipse, the rising tides, a romantic pie in the sky, the moon landing, the man in the moon, the moon cycles—even if your poem is about a werewolf barking at the moon, I want to see it!

Next, prepare to journey beyond the moon. I want to see your “galactic” poetry. Do you have poetry about Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, or Neptune? I bet you have a poem about Pluto! How about the moons of other planets? Do you have poetry about the sun, the stars or the constellations, about outer space, inner space, about space travel, time travel, about alien life, the speed of light, or about astrology or astronomy? Other topics might include black holes, comets, meteors or meteorites, and just about anything in the universe that you can imagine. If it's out there and you have written about it, send it to me.


ENTER TO WIN ONE OF TWO $120.00 CASH PRIZES


In honor of our twentieth issue anniversary, this time around, I will be selecting two poems out of all the submissions to receive the GALACTIC POETRY PRIZE. The authors of the winning poems will each receive $120. One poem will be selected for each of these two categories:

*Best Moon Poem will receive publication and a $120 cash prize.

*Best Galactic Poem (other than a moon poem) will also receive publication and a $120 cash prize.



Your Guide to the Poetic Galaxy


--Journal of Modern Poetry (JOMP) is celebrating its big TWO OH with a volume of poetry that is guaranteed to be “out of this world.” I am seeking to showcase some of the best poetry written today, whether it is traditional or experimental. All form, style and length will be considered from published as well as previously unpublished poets. Your poem can address the theme of the galaxy directly or it may take a more abstract approach. If you feel your work touches upon the theme in any way, I want to see it.

--Does your entry donation guarantee that you will be published in JOMP 20? No. Your entry donation is considered a subscription to JOMP 20 and an entry into the contest. You will receive a copy of The Poetry Writer’s Guide to the Galaxy whether or not your work is accepted for publication. However, as usual, I will attempt to include as much work as possible so that the anthology represents a wide diversity of voices.

--All poets 18 years old or older will be given equal consideration. You do not have to be from Chicago to submit to Chicago Poetry Press. In the past I have published poets from all around the country as well as the world.

--What kind of poetry has a chance? All types. I'm looking for quality work. The best way to get a sense of what writing I have honored in the past is to purchase one of Chicago Poetry Press' publications, all of which I have edited (see buttons to the upper right of this page for ordering information). The only way you won’t have a chance at getting published is if you don’t submit your work.

--Please send only original work written by you. Poetry (or short works of prose) must be primarily in the English language. Previously published work is okay for consideration into JOMP 20 (please cite previous publications and make sure copyright has reverted back to you).

--Poets may submit up to five poems for consideration. I highly encourage all poets to send more than one entry if you have it, in order to increase your odds.

--You may update your entry prior to the final deadline. What does this mean? It means if you have rewritten your poem, or if you have a new poem that you want to add to your submission, you can send me an update to your file at no additional cost as long as I get it before the final deadline. This is something unique to JOMP. It gives you a lot of flexibility to tweak your submission as the final deadline approaches. I want the submission I have from you to be the strongest submission possible, so I will work with you if you feel the need to improve it along the way.

To clarify: once your submission donation has been received, a file will be created for you. You may add or subtract poems from your file, or send updated or rewritten work, at any point, all the way up until the final deadline. Once the final deadline has expired, whatever is in your file will be considered your final submission and no alterations may be made after that point.

--If at any time it is determined that enough submissions have been received to sustain the publication, ChicagoPoetry.com reserves the right to halt this open call. This means that priority will be given to early submissions, so it's wise not to wait until the last minute to create your contest file. Traditionally, as I review the work periodically throughout the submission process, certain poems tend to be pre-selected and certain running themes begin to emerge. Last minute submissions would then be expected to fit in with what has already been selected, making it harder for last minute submissions to make the cut. This is why it is highly encouraged that you make your submissions as early as possible. Remember, you can always tweak your submission any time before the final deadline if you've rewritten your work or have a new poem to add.

OKAY. IT'S TIME TO LAUNCH YOUR POETRY FOR POSSIBLE PUBLICATION.


To submit to The Poetry Writer’s Guide to the Galaxy anthology, first use PayPal to contribute your $20 entry donation, which entitles you to a copy of the book, shipping included, whether you are selected for publication or not, as well as entry into the Galactic Poetry Contest.


Once you have subscribed with your entry donation, a file will be created for you and you will have until the final deadline to submit up to five of your best poems (review the theme above) to Publisher@ChicagoPoetry.com.

The best way to submit your poetry is as an attachment in Microsoft Word or Works (no pdfs please) with all your poetry included in one SINGLE document (not five separate documents please). Use a standard black font and do not attach any images. Please include a cover letter introducing yourself, as well as a three or four sentence biography, and include all necessary contact information. (Please, even if you have submitted in the past, include your short biography so that I don’t have to go searching for it. Thank you.) Make sure your current mailing address is included especially if it is different than the one associated with your PayPal account if you have one. Updates will occasionally be sent to you by email so make sure I have your current email address.

DEADLINE: The FINAL DEADLINE HAS EXPIRED. WE ARE NO LONGER ACCEPTING SUBMISSIONS FOR THIS PROJECT..


If you have any questions do not be shy. Contact me at Publisher@ChicagoPoetry.com and I will personally reply back with any clarifications.

Journal of Modern Poetry Volume 20 promises to blast off yet another chapter in Chicago Poetry Press' tradition of publishing the freshest and highest quality poetry. I hope you are as excited about this as I am, and I can't wait to read your submissions.

Yours in poetry,



CJ Laity
Editor, Journal of Modern Poetry
Chicago Poetry Press



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spacer.gif   POETRY OF PROTEST: NOW AVAILABLE
Posted by : cj on Tuesday, December 01, 2015 - 04:00 PM
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  Chicago Poetry News: Click On Headlines
9539 Reads

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POETRY OF PROTEST IS HERE

Chicago Poetry Press is proud to announce the release of Journal of Modern Poetry Volume 19: Poetry of Protest, a 94 page book featuring 54 poems written by 41 poets, with a full color glossy cover.

JOMP 19 will be available for purchase on Amazon.com as well as through several online bookstores, and will also be available at the Poetry Festival on April 30 at Harold Washington Library. You can use the link provided below to order a discounted copy directly through ChicagoPoetry.com.

The Journal of Modern Poetry 19 features poetry written by Beverly M. Collins, Casey Derengowski, Christopher Leadway (aka, Ken Brown), David Nekimken, Deborah Nodler Rosen, Deborah Stoker, Diane O'Neill, Donal Mahoney, Gerda Govine Ituarte, Iris Orpi, Itala Langmar, Jeff Rogers, Jennifer Dotson, Jennifer May, Jim Davis, Joan Krieger Hoffman, John Gordon, Joseph Glaser, Joseph Schlesinger, Judith MK Kaufman, Kathy Lundy Derengowski, Linda Leedy Schneider, Margaret Dubay Mikus, Marian Kaplun Shapiro, Marilyn Peretti, Mary Jo Balistreri, Mary Langer Thompson, S.M. Kozubek, Michael P Wright, Nancy Heggem, Nancy Lind, Pamela Borovich, Peter Rodenby, Robin Lily Goldberg, Tamara Tabel, Thelma T. Reyna, Tobin Fraley, Tracie Renee Amirante Padal, Tricia Marcella Cimera, Trudy Leong, and Wilda Morris.

This is a very important issue of JOMP. It touches upon many contemporary themes and will serve as a testimony to these times of protest that we live in. Get your copy for $12 and get free shipping by using THIS LINK.



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spacer.gif   The Official Poets' Guide to Peace
Posted by : cj on Friday, March 20, 2015 - 08:44 PM
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  Chicago Poetry News: Click On Headlines
13584 Reads

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Welcome to PeacePoetry.net.

The Official Poets' Guide to Peace is now available!

Here's your chance to order your copy of The Official Poets' Guide to Peace, and since we know you'll want to share this book with a friend, all orders will be doubled: that's right, you will receive two books for the price of one (does not apply to Amazon.com orders).

CLICK HERE to order your copy through PayPal and your books will be shipped to you free of charge.

The Official Poets' Guide to Peace features the work of forty-seven award winning poets. The poets featured in this fabulous collection are: Amanda Layman, B Diehl, Barbara Bridges Gylland, Candace Armstrong, Candace Kubinec, Carla Eisenberg, Carolyn Clark, Casey Derengowski, Chris Reid, David Nekimken, Deborah Rohde, Deborah Rosen, Donal Mahoney, Duane Christianson, Ellen Savage, Irfanulla Shariff, Iris Orpi, Itala Langmar, Jennifer Kress, JoAnne Blackwelder, John J. Gordon, Josef Venable, Joseph Kuhn Carey, Joseph Glaser, Kate Koten, Kathy Lundy Derengowski, Laura Lee, Linda Leedy Schneider, Lynn Veach Sadler, Mara Adamitz Scrupe, Margaret Dubay Mikus, Marian Kaplun Shapiro, Marilyn Peretti, Mary Jo Balistreri, Mary Langer Thompson, Nancy Heggem, Peter Rodenby, Richard King Perkins II, Robin Lily Goldberg, R.P.Muha, S. M. Kozubek, Susan Beall Summers, Susan Schaefer, Tamara Tabel, Thelma T. Reyna, Tobin Fraley, Tracie Renee Amirante Padal.

The Official Poets' Guide to Peace is the eighteenth publication in the Journal of Modern Poetry series.

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spacer.gif   Angel of Vape: Vape Mania 2
Posted by : cj on Sunday, November 16, 2014 - 09:50 AM
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  Chicago Poetry News: Click On Headlines
10843 Reads

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Here it is, the much anticipated sequel to the highly popular Vape Mania. Prepare yourself for ten times the insanity, ten times the hilarity, ten times the intrigue and, of course, ten times the vaping.

Melvin Provario is back: with a vengeance! Angel of Vape begins right where Vape Mania left off. Join Melvin in this adventure as he tries to exonerate himself to the vaping community while at the same time taking on a ruthless cigarette bootlegging ring.

Vape Mania is the only series in existence with a vaper as the main protagonist, set in an e-cigarette community filled with vaping culture. Can Melvin Provario vape his way out of this mess? Buy Angel of Vape now and find out!

Angel of Vape is not available through Kindle. It's designed to have a physical place on your e-juice shelf. Please support printed literature by purchasing a Vaporacle title today.

Click Here to order Angel of Vape using PayPal.

For orders outside of the U.S.A. please USE THIS LINK

Click Here to order through Amazon.com.


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spacer.gif   NOW ACCEPTING SUBMISSIONS FOR SPECIAL "PEACE" ANTHOLOGY
Posted by : cj on Saturday, August 30, 2014 - 02:32 PM
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  Chicago Poetry News: Click On Headlines
7566 Reads

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Journal of Modern Poetry Goes Annual, Updates Guidelines

Deadline for submissions has expired.
Please go to PeacePoetry.net to learn more about this anthology.


JOMP 18: Poets Guide to Peace will be released on Saturday, April 25, 2015,
at the Harold Washington Library Center, 400 S. State Street.


After a break of a few months to catch my breath, Chicago Poetry Press is now accepting submission of poetry for Journal of Modern Poetry 18 (JOMP 18). Before reading the newly updated guidelines below, allow me to briefly summarize the changes that have been made in the submission process.

Now An Annual

Previously JOMP was a bi-annual publication. Producing two anthologies a year proved a bit too much for me to accomplish alongside the other projects I am working on. So from now on JOMP will be an annual publication, with one larger volume coming out per year. This will give me, as editor, additional time to concentrate on putting out a bigger and better issue, and it will also allow me some much needed rest between issues.

Change To Submission Donation

For years, JOMP has been proud to be perhaps the only project of its kind to actually refund the entry fee to those who have not been selected for publication. As much as I’d love to continue being the hero in this area, the more JOMP grows the more increasingly difficult it is to maintain this policy.

Offering the "money back guarantee" makes it impossible for me to anticipate what kind of funding the project will have when all is said and done. It’s simply impossible to use all the submissions I receive, and during the last issue I had to return nearly a third of the donations collected, some of which had to be written by check and mailed since the opportunity to return them electronically had expired. So please be aware of the following changes.

The submission donation will from now on be considered a subscription to JOMP. The subscription will guarantee all contributors one issue of the book, whether the contributor is selected for inclusion in the book or not. The donation will be $16, equal to the retail price of the book, and will be non-refundable, but will include free shipping and handling. It’s my opinion that if you don’t like a publication enough to at least buy a copy of it, then why do you want your work published in it anyway? To clarify, although a subscription to JOMP is required before you can submit poetry to JOMP, the subscription in no way guarantees that your work will be selected for publication. As has always been the case, work is selected by its quality and relevance to the project.

Thank you for your understanding and continued support,

CJ Laity
Editor, Journal of Modern Poetry




Now Accepting Submission of Poetry For JOMP 18


Chicago Poetry Press is pleased to announce an open call for submissions for its eighteenth volume of poetry and creative writing: JOMP 18: The Official Poets’ Guide To Peace. This themed issue of JOMP is scheduled to be released in April of 2015, right in time to celebrate National Poetry Month.

Chicago Poetry Press is seeking poetry on the theme of “Peace” (whatever that means to you). Although I will happily consider poetry of a political nature, I’m not necessarily looking for political poetry, nor preachy poetry that believes it has all the answers. Instead, I want to know: What does peace mean to you? How do you find peace? I'm looking for poetry that will make the audience for this book feel a sense of peace when reading it.

Some suggestions of topics that may fit into this theme include poems about nature, gardening, friends and family, images of beauty, spirituality, laughter, happiness, charity, empathy, peaceful protest, good food, being in love, wildlife, travel, rest and relaxation, hobbies, perhaps even death after suffering. There is no restriction to the topics that may fall under the category of “Peace”. If you feel your poetry emits a sense of peace in any way, shape or form, I want to see it. The goal is that by combining multiple views on what brings peace, that the collection as a whole will find some common ground and serve as a poetic guide to the nature of peace itself.

More Information and Guidelines

--Journal of Modern Poetry is once again seeking to showcase some of the best poetry written today, whether it is traditional or experimental. All form, style and length will be considered from published as well as previously unpublished poets. Your poem doesn't necessarily have to take the theme of "Peace" literally; in fact, the word "peace" doesn't even need to appear in your poem. If you believe your work will make someone feel peace when it is read, please submit it.

--Your entry donation is considered a subscription to JOMP 18. You will receive a copy of the book after its publication, whether your work is accepted for publication or not.

--All poets 18 years old or older will be given equal consideration.

--What kind of poetry has a chance? All types. I'm just looking for quality work. The best way to get a sense of what writing I have honored in the past is to purchase one of Chicago Poetry Press' publications, all of which I have edited (see buttons to the upper right of this page for ordering information). Otherwise, just submit if you believe in your work.

--Please send only original work written by you. Poetry must be primarily in the English language. Previously published work is okay for consideration into JOMP 18 (please cite previous publications and make sure copyright has reverted back to you)..

--Poets may submit up to five poems for consideration.

--You may update your entry prior to the final deadline. What does this mean? It means if you have rewritten your poem, or if you have a new poem that you want to add to your submission, you can send me an update to your file at no additional cost as long as I get it before the final deadline. Whatever I have in your file at the expiration of the final deadline is what will be submitted for possible publication. This gives you a lot of flexibility to tweak your submission as the final deadline approaches and it gives priority to those who submit early.

--If at any time it is determined that enough submissions have been received to sustain the publication, ChicagoPoetry.com reserves the right to halt this open call. This means that priority will be given to early submissions, so it's wise not to wait until the last minute to submit. Let me explain further. As I review the work periodically throughout the submission process, certain poems tend to be pre-selected and certain running themes begin to emerge. Last minute submissions would then be expected to fit in with what has already been selected, making it much harder for last minute submissions to make the cut. This is why it is highly encouraged that you make your submissions as early as possible. Remember, you can always tweak your submission any time before the final deadline if you've rewritten your work or have a new poem to add.

IT'S TIME TO SUBMIT YOUR POETRY FOR POSSIBLE PUBLICATION.


To submit to The Official Poets’ Guide To Peace, you must be subscribed to receive this year's volume of JOMP.

BEFORE SUBMITTING YOUR POETRY:

CLICK HERE

to donate $16 through PayPal and receive a subscription to JOMP 18. You will receive a copy of the anthology after publication whether or not you have been selected for publication.

Once you have subscribed, you have until the final deadline to submit up to five of your best poems (review the theme above) to Publisher@ChicagoPoetry.com.

The best way to submit your poetry is as an attachment in Microsoft Word or Works (no pdfs please) with all your poetry included in one SINGLE document (not five separate documents please). Use a standard black font and do not attach images. Please include a cover letter introducing yourself and include all your contact information.

SUBMISSION PERIOD: The submission period will be from September 1, 2014 to March 10, 2015.

Deadline for submissions has expired.

JOMP 18: Poets Guide to Peace will be released on Saturday, April 25, 2015,
at the Harold Washington Library Center, 400 S. State Street.


Once again, please be aware that priority is given to early submissions. As I review the work periodically throughout the submission process, certain poems tend to be pre-selected and certain running themes begin to emerge. Last minute submissions would then be expected to fit in with what has already been selected, making it much harder for last minute submissions to make the cut. This is why it is highly encouraged that you make your submissions as early as possible. Remember, you can always tweak your submission any time before the final deadline if you've rewritten your work or have a new poem to add.

If you have any questions do not be shy. Contact me at Publisher@ChicagoPoetry.com and I will personally reply back with any clarifications.

Journal of Modern Poetry Volume 18 promises to be the beginning of yet another era in Chicago Poetry Press' tradition of publishing the freshest and highest quality poetry. I hope you are as excited about this as I am, and I can't wait to read your submissions.

Yours in poetry,

CJ Laity
Editor, Journal of Modern Poetry
Chicago Poetry Press
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spacer.gif   Journal of Modern Poetry 17 Now Available
Posted by : cj on Saturday, August 30, 2014 - 02:15 PM
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15770 Reads


Note: Click Here to learn about Journal of Modern Poetry 17 (JOMP 17).

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spacer.gif   Vape Mania by Melvin Provario (Vaporacle Publishing)
Posted by : cj on Friday, February 14, 2014 - 04:43 PM
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14405 Reads

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Chicago Poetry Press is proud to handle distribution services to Vaporacle Press to help get the word out about their premier publication, Vape Mania by Melvin Provario.

This insanely funny parody that is "inspired by true events" takes an unflinching look at the fledgling electronic cigarette culture, in a first-person story that makes Reefer Madness look like Sunday mass.

Billed as a memoir written by a man caught in the "seedy world of vaping addiction," this no holds barred satire also includes tongue-in-cheek pro-tobacco commentary by the ridiculously titled "Institute for the Preservation of the Institution of Cigarettes," a representation of "Big Tobacco" that is to Vape Mania what the Tyrell Corporation is to Blade Runner.

Nobody is spared the narrative's often anti-pc cynicism, as the narrator desperately goes through the motions of getting his "e-cig fix."

Click Here to purchase Vape Mania through PayPal.

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spacer.gif   Postcards from Poland, by Joseph Kuhn Carey
Posted by : cj on Saturday, February 08, 2014 - 09:11 AM
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30166 Reads

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Click Here to order your copy of Postcards from Poland and get free shipping.

--2013 Journal of Modern Poetry Book Award Selection.
--2016 Colorado Independent Publishers Association Awards, Finalist/Merit Award Winner,
“Travel” Category (August, 2016)
--2016 Beverly Hills Book Awards, Finalist, “Travel” Category (June, 2016)
--2016 Reader’s Favorite Book Awards, Finalist, “Inspirational Poetry” Category
(September, 2016)
--2016 Shelf Unbound Best Indie Book Awards, Runner Up, (November, 2016)
--2016 Pacific Book Awards, First Place, Poetry Category”
--2015 New Apple Book Awards For Excellence in Independent Publishing—
Winner, “Travel” category (February, 2016)
--Florida Writers Association Royal Palm Literary Award, Medalist (Winner),
“Travel” category (October, 2015)
--Journal of Modern Poetry Book Award Winner (Fall, 2013)
(Award Prize—Publication by Chicago Poetry Press, February, 2014)
--25th Annual Midwest Book Awards, Finalist, “Travel” category (April, 2015)
(Three travel books were picked as finalists)
--London Book Festival, Honorable Mention, “Poetry” category (January, 2016)
--Royal Dragonfly Book Awards, 2nd Place, “Travel” category,
& Honorable Mention, “Poetry” Category (November, 2015)
--Amsterdam Book Festival, Runner Up, “Travel” category (2014)
--Southern California Book Festival, Runner Up, “Wild Card” category (2014)
--Paris Book Festival, Honorable Mention, “Poetry” category (2014)
--San Francisco Book Festival, Honorable Mention, “Poetry” category (2014)
--Great Midwest Book Festival, Honorable Mention, “Poetry” category (2014)

About this book of impressive poems: There is something poignantly beautiful in the lovely lines that come off the page to reach into the heart and mind. Always there on the edge of aware. Joe Carey's "Postcards from Poland" also has something of that loving slant of insight always there in a mind at peace with the time and place. His award winning book of 41 postcard poems reveal what Joe Carey cares about: the language and rhythm of truth.

Ken Nordine, Legendary “Word-Jazz” Originator

Chicago Poetry Press is pleased to announce the release of Postcards from Poland, written by Joseph Kuhn Carey of Glencoe, IL, a Journal of Modern Poetry Book Award Selection. The poems in Mr. Carey's manuscript were composed over three years after the author took an inspiring journey with his family to the Polish cities of Krakow & Zakopane. The "artistic travel-log" nature of the poems present the sights, sounds and colorful events occurring in and around these two mysterious, gorgeous and overlooked cities, which are home to ancient castles, fantastic museums, breath-taking churches, soaring cable-car rides, astonishing mountains, and amazing nightclubs set deep in medieval cellars, as well as nearby horrific and powerfully enlightening WWII death camp locations. The author Joe Carey says: "There is something essential and important in these two cities for the older and younger Polish generations. For the older generation, Krakow and Zakopane represent things that survived WWII intact and largely untouched—while to the younger generation, the two cities represent the vibrant, energetic and robust side of Polish life."

Joseph Kuhn Carey is the recipient of an American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP)/Deems Taylor Award for music-related writing (for articles written about jazz artist/composers Carla Bley, Charlie Haden and Anthony Braxton) and a Grammy-voting member of The Recording Academy. He’s published a chapbook of poetry (“Bulk-Rate”) and a book on jazz (“Big Noise From Notre Dame: A History of The Collegiate Jazz Festival,” University of Notre Dame Press) and has released two “Loose Caboose Band” CDs of original children’s songs with his brother, Bill, entitled “The Caboose is Loose” and “Mighty Big Broom,” the latter of which garnered two first-round Grammy nominations in 2008 (both recordings, and all of the individual songs, are available on iTunes, CDbaby.com and Amazon.com). He received a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from the University of Notre Dame, a Master of Fine Arts (in Creative Writing) degree from the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop and a Master of Science in Mass Communication degree from Boston University. He’s traveled the country interviewing bakers for Bakery Magazine, written about jazz & blues artists for Down Beat, JazzTimes and The Boston Globe, and his poems have been selected in the Journal of Modern Poetry’s JOMP 15 and JOMP 16 Poetry Contests, the Writer’s Digest 7th Annual Poetry Awards Contest & 80th Annual Writing Competition, Highland Park Poetry’s 2013 “Poetry That Moves” & 2013 “Poetry Challenge” contests and the Evanston Public Library’s 2013 35th Annual Jo-Anne Hirschfield Memorial Poetry Awards. When not scribbling poems, stories and songs on all available scraps of paper to read to his wife and sons over dinner, he runs a successful multi-state property management business.

Here is a buoyant and bountiful love letter to Krakow, with a receptive spirit for everything from Szarlotka and clopping horses, to salt mines, to McDonalds-in-the-catacombs. Joe Carey has made poetry without cynicism or bad temper (though with a touch of irony here and there), always curious and open to the “outdoor swagger” of the land and to “what’s going on inside". A pleasure to read.

Janet Burroway, Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award-Nominated Novelist, Poet, Playwright and Children’s Book Author


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spacer.gif   Journal of Modern Poetry volume 16
Posted by : cj on Monday, October 28, 2013 - 06:56 PM
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22686 Reads

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Chicago Poetry Press is pleased to announce that JOMP 16 is now available featuring 64 poets.

Click Here to order JOMP 16 and get free shipping!

The JOMP 16 poets are:

Albert DeGenova, Amanda Layman, Andrew Rafalski, Anna Middleton, Annie Grizzle, Beatriz Badikian-Gartler, Carol Muehleman, Cassandra Ledbetter, Catharine J. Jones, Charu Gandhi, Cordell M. Miles Jr., Curt Vevang, David Nekimken, Donal Mahoney, Donna Pecore, Ellen Savage, Gail Vescovi, George Korolog, Itala Langmar, James L. Merriner, Jamie Perry, Jennifer Dotson, Jim Davis, JoAnne Blackwelder, John J. Gordon, Josef Venable, Joseph Glaser, Joseph Kuhn Carey, Joseph Schlesinger, Judith MK Tepfer, Kritish Rajbhandari, Linda Benninghoff, Linda Leedy Schneider, Lois Barr, Lynn Sadler, Marcia Pradzinski, Margaret Dubay Mikus, Marian Kaplun Shapiro, Marianne Schaefer, Marilyn Peretti, Marissa Brawn, Mary Chapman, Mary Jo Balistreri, Mary Langer Thompson, Michael Schwartz, Nancy Heggem, Pamela Larson, Peter Rodenby, Rebecca Mullen, René Ostberg, Richard Ilnicki, Robin Goldberg, Ryan Peter Muha, Sharon Warner, Sheila A Donovan, Tamara Tabel, Terri M. O'Hara, Terry Loncaric, Thelma T. Reyna, Timothy E. Doyle, Tinamaria Penn, Tobin Fraley, Trudy Leong, and Wilda Morris

JOMP 16 was released at the Chicago Book Expo on November 24.

Cover art by Divya Rajan.

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spacer.gif   The JOMP Book Awards
Posted by : cj on Friday, June 14, 2013 - 05:22 PM
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9441 Reads

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CHICAGO POETRY PRESS IS PRESENTLY REORGANIZING ITS GUIDELINES FOR ACCEPTING BOOK MANUSCRIPTS FOR POSSIBLE PUBLICATION. PLEASE DO NOT SUBMIT ANY BOOK MANUSCRIPTS AT THIS TIME.

THE JOURNAL OF MODERN POETRY BOOK AWARDS

Chicago Poetry Press is presently reviewing full length manuscripts of poetry for consideration into the Journal of Modern Poetry Book Awards. The winning poet will receive a three year publishing contract through Chicago Poetry Press, which will publish the winning manuscript in a perfect bound edition with a full color cover to be sold at ChicagoPoetry.com, Amazon.com and elsewhere.

The winning poet will receive ten complimentary copies of the book and will receive a $2.50 per book author royalty on books sold at the anticipated cover price of $12. The winning poet will also be entitled to purchase additional copies of the book at half the cover price to be resold at the poets' discretion at readings or at other events in whatever way author sees fit.

If you would like to review one of the JOMP Book Award titles, please take a look at CleverGretel.net.

The following are the guidelines and some suggestions for submission:
Note: Click Here to read the JOMP Book Award Guidelines.

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spacer.gif   The Huge 2013 Poetry Cram Schedule of Events
Posted by : cj on Monday, May 20, 2013 - 02:04 PM
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5373 Reads

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On Wednesday, June 5, at 7 PM, the Chopin Theater at 1543 W. Division Street will host Poetry Cram, a marathon reading by 56 poets in celebration of the release of Journal of Modern Poetry Volume 15 (JOMP 15). The event will be MC'ed by Chicago poet CJ Laity. You can get a complimentary ticket to the event by clicking here for a pdf file. For directions to the theater and information about parking click here. For detailed information about the featured poets as well as other poets featured in JOMP 15, please click here.

The following is the program schedule for the big Poetry Cram.
Note: Click Here for the complete schedule for the MASSIVE Chopin Theater event.

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spacer.gif   JOMP 15 Is Finally Here!
Posted by : cj on Wednesday, May 08, 2013 - 12:07 PM
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CLICK HERE TO ORDER YOUR COPY OF JOMP 15 AND GET FREE SHIPPING


Chicago Poetry Press is pleased to announce the winners of the the JOMP 15 Awards.

The 2013 Contemporary American Poetry Prizes:
(Click on the name to view a pdf copy of the winning poem.)

Grand Prize: Annie Grizzle, for "America is I" (pg. 31)
Silver Prize: Tamara Tabel, for "Arbeit Macht Frei, Dachau 2012" (pg. 24)
Bronze Prize: Mayi Ojisua, for "Tortured Gray" (pg. 69)

The 2013 CAPP Honorable Mentions:
(Please purchase a copy of JOMP 15 to read these and dozens of other poems.)

Barbara Kreader Skalinder, for "Uncontained" (pg. 139)
Charlotte Hart, for "Quills" (pg. 84)
James Merriner, for "Resurrection" (pg. 57)
Gail Goepfert, for "Beckoning" (pg. 58)
Robin Goldberg, for "Rituals" (pg. 86)

The 2013 Poet Laureate of Rhyme Award:
(Click on the name to view a pdf copy of the winning poem.)

Michael Schwartz, Poet Laureate of Rhyme, for "No One But Me" (pg. 127)

Poet Laureate of Rhyme Honorable Mentions:
(Please purchase a copy of JOMP 15 to read these and dozens of other poems.)

Adam Gottlieb, for "Word-of-the-Day Rhyming Exercise #?" (pg. 125)
Amanda Layman, for "Parallel Outlets" (pg. 130)
Carol Muehleman, for "The Plastic Couch" (pg. 38)
Curtis Vevang, for "Where Have All the Rhymesters Gone" (pg. 117)

JOMP 15 Book Awards:

Jennifer Dotson, for her manuscript "Clever Gretel"
Available now through CleverGretel.net

Donna Pecore, for her manuscript "Bindle Stick"
Available now through BindleStickPoetry.com

The following poets submitted manuscripts that have been chosen as "Runners-Up"
and will receive automatic re-entry into the JOMP 16 Book Contest,
to take place in the fall of 2013:

Annie Grizzle, Beatriz Badikian, Carol Kanter, Itala Langmar with James L. Merriner,
Gail Goepfert, Jasminum McMullen, Sheila A. Donovan, and Terri M. O'Hara.

Click Here to learn about all 77 poets who were selected for inclusion in JOMP 15.

Order your copy of JOMP 15 and get free shipping.

Note: Click Here for the entire, detailed list of JOMP 15 Poets.

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spacer.gif   National Poetry Month Panel Discussion at Chicago Public Library
Posted by : cj on Wednesday, March 27, 2013 - 01:26 PM
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5301 Reads

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MAKING A NAME: THE ART OF PROMOTING POETRY
Saturday, April 27, 11:30 AM
Harold Washington Library, 400 S. State St., Multipurpose Room B


If you read your poem and no one is around to hear it, is it really a poem? If you want to make a name, it's not enough just to write poetry—you need to get your poetry into the hands and the ears of the public. The Chicago poetry scene is a window of opportunity offering a variety of ways to promote your poetry. Whether it is print or online publishing, the poetry slam, the open mic scene or being on the air, there is something for every motivated poet to take advantage of here in Chicago.

Moderator CJ Laity, who has twenty-five years of experience promoting poetry himself, brings together four of the top experts in their respective fields for a lively, informative panel discussion: Emily Calvo is a founding member of Chicago Slam Works and has been a core planning committee member for the National Poetry Slam; Gregorio Gomez is host of Monday nights at Weeds, Chicago's longest running venue dedicated primarily to open mic. poetry; Chicago poet, educator, activist and radio chat show host, Mario is the host of News From the Service Entrance on WHPK 88.5FM (whpk.org); and Victor David Giron is the publisher, editor-in-chief and publicist for one of today's leading Chicago-area publishers, Curbside Splendor.

(Please see the update regarding the panelists below.)

Please join us for the definitive discussion about the secrets of promoting your poetry. A question and answer session will follow. Click Here for the full Poetry Fest schedule of events.



UPDATE ABOUT THE PANELISTS

The Panelists

Emily Thorton Calvo is a freelance Chicago writer, poet and artist who is a founding board member of Chicago Slam Works, has served as marketing / public relations director for the National Poetry Slam and has served as a poet-in-residence through the Poetry Center of Chicago's educational program. As a painter, Calvo has incorporated her poetry into watercolor paintings, which have been exhibited at August House Gallery and at Around the Coyote. Besides appearing in publications such as Colere, After Hours, and Oyez Review, Calvo has been reading her work at many of Chicago's galleries, libraries and festivals, as well as in France, since she first performed in a poetry slam in 1993.

Over the past decades Gregorio Gomez has been the Managing Director of the Latino Chicago Theater Company and executive director for the work of filmmaker Juan A. Ramirez. He has collaborated with Flamenco guitarist Don Tómas De Utrera and has been a featured poet at countless venues along with countless other poets including Carlos Cortes, Luis Rodriguez and Patricia Smith. Gomez has appeared for panel discussions, symposiums, conferences, and art exhibits and he also has been widely published. Gregorio Gomez is best known as the host of Chicago's longest running venue dedicated primarily to open mic. poetry, Monday Night at Weeds, 1555 N. Dayton.

Chicago poet, educator, activist and radio chat show host, Mario has been performing in the Chicagoland area and the US for over 20 years. He currently hosts News From the Service Entrance on WHPK 88.5FM/ whpk.org / iTunes. Mario has written essays for Chicago's public radio affiliate WBEZ, appeared on Voice of America, provided Election Night 2008 analysis for BBC Devon, and has performed his poetry at DePaul University, University of Chicago, Traffic Series at Steppenwolf Theater, Museum of Contemporary Art, United Nations Dialogue Among Civilizations, Old Town School of Folk Music, Art Institute of Chicago and the Chicago Cultural Center.

Sitting in for Victor David Giron today is Jacob S. Knabb, the Senior Editor (focusing on book acquisition, event planning and editorial) of Curbside Splendor Publishing, which publishes stories and poems online, makes books, presents poetry and fiction readings and cohosts the Pop Up Book Fair with the Chicago Writer’s House. Knabb is also Senior Editor of Curbside's imprint Another Chicago Magazine. His own writing has been published in Another Chicago Magazine, The Collagist, KneeJerk, Everyday Genius, THE2NDHAND and in many other publications.

The Moderator

CJ Laity is publisher of Chicago Poetry Press at ChicagoPoetry.com and has been organizing and promoting poetry readings in Chicago for 25 years. Laity currently serves as editor for JOMP (Journal of Modern Poetry) at PoetryAward.org


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spacer.gif   Now Available: Clever Gretel, by Jennifer Dotson
Posted by : cj on Saturday, March 23, 2013 - 01:30 PM
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28599 Reads

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Clever Gretel by Jennifer Dotson
8.5" x 8.5", 96 pages
Chicago Poetry Press
$12.00, ISBN-13: 978-0615769646


Chicago Poetry Press is pleased to announce the release of Jennifer Dotson's wonderful new book, Clever Gretel, the first Journal of Modern Poetry Book Award Selection.

Chicago Poetry Press is offering copies of Clever Gretel for its cover price of $12 with $2.99 shipping (within the United States), when ordered directly through the publisher via PayPal (allow a week for delivery).

Click Here to order your copy of Clever Gretel.

Click Here to order more than one copy with free shipping.

Click Here to have your copy shipped outside of the United States.

You can also pick up your copy of Clever Gretel at an upcoming event:

On Saturday, April 27, Chicago Poetry Press held the Official Book Release Event for Clever Gretel at Harold Washington Library, 400 S. State Street, during the annual Poetry Fest that included a Clever Gretel book signing in the main lobby. Other Poetry Fest highlights included a panel discussion moderated by Chicago Poetry Press publisher CJ Laity and a reading by Campbell McGrath.

On Sunday, July 7, Jennifer Dotson appeared for a book signing at the Pop Up Book Fair at the Empty Bottle in Chicago.

Wednesday, October 2, 7 PM. Clever Gretel Reading and Book Signing. Glenview Public Library, 1930 Glenview Road, Glenview, IL 60025

COMING: Coming March, 2014, join Chicago Poetry Press authors Jennifer Dotson and Donna Pecore for the 3rd Saturday Coffeehouse in Oak Park.

Copies of Clever Gretel are also available for purchase at Women & Children First, 5233 N. Clark St., Chicago.

PRAISE FOR CLEVER GRETEL

Click Here to open a pdf file and read an article about Jennifer Dotson written by Greg Shapiro for The North Shore Weekend.

There's much to like here, from the cracked music of the title through your deft expressions of form to your cagey litany of postmodern cultural icons encountered in crazy places. Mythic and mundane meet in these poems in meaningful and often hilarious ways.

Kevin Stein, Poet Laureate of Illinois

"In Clever Gretel, Jennifer Dotson’s poems transform the straw of everyday womanhood to that which glows with the luminosity of simple truth. Utilizing a playful sense of the magically real, she sleuths for meaning-- in misplaced glasses, in the chipped veneer of Art Deco dressers, in the empty jar of celery salt, in her nightmare “plummet into space.” As a reader I peered through the window of Jennifer's words into the grace of family life and her 'fortune shone on me.'"

Maureen Tolman Flannery, author of Ancestors in the Landscape

"Clever Gretel explores life's loves, losses, anxieties and joys in a voice sagacious yet candid enough to discuss acne over a latte. Even Dotson's forays into the worlds of mythology and superheroes stay grounded in the contemporary problems of junk mail and low-carb diets. In one poem the speaker says of the Muse, 'I don't remember what she looks like'-- but you will certainly find her here in this refreshing debut."

Tania Runyan, author of Delicious Air (Finishing Line Press).

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Jennifer Dotson received her B.A. in English Literature & Theatre Arts from St. Mary’s College of Maryland and her M.F.A. in Drama from the University of Virginia. She is the founder and program coordinator for HighlandParkPoetry.org. She leads creative writing and memoir classes for the District 113 Continuing Education Program at Highland Park High School.



Chicago Poetry Press supports the continued production of books that are made out of paper and that are read from a page; this is why Clever Gretel is not currently available as an e-book. Chicago Poetry Press promises to publish quality poetry, beautifully published and reasonably priced.

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spacer.gif   Urban Sandbox Joins Forces With Hairpin Arts Center In Logan Square
Posted by : cj on Friday, December 14, 2012 - 01:47 AM
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This is an archived article. Location for Urban Sandbox may have changed since first publication. Check Urban Sandbox on facebook to keep up with their activities.

On Thursday, December 13, 2012, the popular open mic. performance poetry series Urban Sandbox closed its ninth season with a showcase of talented Chicago poets as well as a preview of its new venue at Hairpin Arts Center on the second floor of 2800 N. Milwaukee in Logan Square. Hairpin is a big, bright, beautiful space with wonderful acoustics. It looks like the Urban Sandbox collective has made a fantastic partnership with Hairpin's Voice of the City Program, guaranteeing an exciting tenth season for the long running series.

Urban Sandbox is an all-ages (emphasis on all-ages) showcase of poetry, hip-hop free verse, music and all combinations thereof. For the last decade it has bounced around from home to home, never losing its steam even while losing some of its venues.

On the first night in their new venue, there was an impressive open mic. featuring nearly a dozen top notch poets and musicians. After the open mic., the collective featured Lamar Jorden, who appears in the documentary film Louder Than a Bomb. Lamar carried with him a positive message in his poetry as well as in his songs, and that was inspiring and refreshing. Following Lamar came the self-described Emo group Everything's Alright, a four person band with harmonious vocals and songs so addictive I couldn't help humming them to myself long after the show was over.

The 2013 Urban Sandbox season begins with a ten year anniversary celebration to take place at 7:30 PM on Valentines Day, and then the show will continue on the 2nd Thursday of the month from 9 to 11 PM (sign up begins at 8:30). At five bucks, it's a real bargain, and did I mention it's all-ages?
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Note: If you're on the homepage, click here for some photos of the open mic. poets.

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spacer.gif   Wide Range Of Poetic Voices Appeared For Poetry Scene Bash
Posted by : cj on Thursday, October 04, 2012 - 11:47 AM
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16576 Reads

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On Wednesday, October 24, at 7 PM, the Chicago Poetry Scene converged for a one night only performance at the Viaduct Theater, 3111 N. Western Ave, to celebrate the release of Journal of Modern Poetry, the fourteenth edition in the Poetry Cram series. Some of the most talented as well as lettered poets in Illinois read samples of their work in this prestigious event. The event was free and open to the public.
Note: Click Here to learn more about the poets who were showcased at this, the biggest poetry event of the year.

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spacer.gif   Chicago Poet Jacob Saenz Wins Ruth Lilly Fellowship
Posted by : cj on Friday, August 31, 2012 - 12:50 PM
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7392 Reads

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Local poet Jacob Saenz has received a $15,000 scholarship through the 2012 Ruth Lilly Fellowship sponsored by The Poetry Foundation and Poetry Magazine. Among the largest awards offered to aspiring poets in the United States, the $15,000 scholarship prize is intended to encourage the further study and writing of poetry and is open to U.S. poets between 21 and 31 years of age. Saenz's winning manuscript was one of five selected by Poetry Magazine editors from more than 1,000 submissions.

Jacob Saenz was born in Chicago and raised in Cicero, Illinois. He earned his BA from Columbia College Chicago. Saenz received the Letras Latinas Residency Fellowship in 2011, currently serves as an associate editor for RHINO, and works at a library. He has published poems in Apparatus Magazine, Columbia Poetry Review, Great River Review, Poetry, RHINO, and other journals. Saenz's work will be featured in Poetry Magazine’s November issue and on www.poetryfoundation.org.


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spacer.gif   Chicago Post Office Dedicates New Poetry Stamps
Posted by : cj on Tuesday, April 24, 2012 - 02:44 PM
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6626 Reads

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Postal employees to read work of Gwendolyn Brooks, Sylvia Plath, e.e.cummings
and other major poets during Chicago Public Library’s Poetry Fest.


There has always been poetry in the mail – love letters, greeting cards, and verses submitted to magazines for publication. Now, there’s poetry on the mail, as the U.S. Postal Service recognizes the enduring work and influence of ten major American poets. The Chicago Post Office will hold a local dedication of the “Twentieth-Century Poets” stamp sheet Sat., April 28 during the Chicago Public Library’s Poetry Fest, at the Harold Washington Library Center, 400 S. State St., in the Video Theater beginning at 12 noon. The sheet of 45-cent First-Class Forever stamps, which went on sale April 21, honors Elizabeth Bishop, Joseph Brodsky, Gwendolyn Brooks, E. E. Cummings, Robert Hayden, Denise Levertov, Sylvia Plath, Theodore Roethke, Wallace Stevens, and William Carlos Williams. Chicago postal employees – including several with extensive local performing and writing credits – will read selections from the featured poets. Each stamp features a photograph of one of the 10 poets. Text on the back of the stamp sheet includes an excerpt from one poem by each poet


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spacer.gif   National Poetry Month: 2012 Chicago Public Library Poetry Fest
Posted by : cj on Monday, March 26, 2012 - 06:12 PM
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11275 Reads


Note: ChicagoPoetry.com has the advance scoop on the line up for the 13th annual Poetry Fest at Harold Washington Library. Click here for the scoop.

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spacer.gif   It's A Drag: Lee Groban, author of longest poem, 3/20/1947 - 12/9/2011
Posted by : cj on Sunday, December 11, 2011 - 11:52 AM
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7460 Reads

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Chicago Poetry is saddened to have to report that poet Lee Groban, 64, died at St. Francis Hospital in Evanston at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, December 9. Mr. Groban was very ill for the last two months struggling with congestive heart failure and emphysema and recently had a pacemaker installed surgically. On Thursday his kidneys began to fail. He was with friends when his heart stopped; he died quickly without suffering.

Lee held a Bachelors Degree in Russian Language Studies and a Masters Degree in Library Sciences, and much of Lee's work is inspired by his avid interest in ancient ancestries and the cultures which surrounded them. Lee has been an integral part of the Chicago art community for more than three decades. If you have attended art events and street festivals in Chicago, you have seen Lee Groban, who also appeared for ChicagoPoetry.com sponsored events on several occasions (click here to listen to one of his performances). But, of course, Lee Groban is best known for The Cure for Insomnia, a 4,080-page poem that was turned into the 1987 film of the same title that was officially declared the world's longest movie by the Guinness Book of World Records. Running three days and fifteen hours in length, the film consists of Lee reading his poem spliced with occasional clips from heavy metal and pornographic videos. It was first played in its entirety at The School of the Art Institute in Chicago, from January 31 to February 3, 1987, in one continuous showing. In addition to his writing career, Lee Groban was also an accomplished visual artist and had been a featured artist in Pulp Magazine, the Chicago Reader, the Globe, and New City.

There will be a Celebration of Lee Groban's Life and Work on Sunday, December 18, 2011 from 1 to 4 at the Packer Schopf Gallery, 942 W. Lake St., Chicago, IL 60607. Friends and family are encouraged to bring their stories about Lee, as well as artistic, written or musical tributes, and to dress in Lee’s style if you wish. If you would like to make a presentation during the event, please email dickolson@comcast.net and cc dgo@esoplaw.com to allocate time. Lee's family asks that donations go to the endowment fund of the Circle Pines Center, 8650 Mullen Road, in Delton, Michigan, 49046.

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spacer.gif   The Poetry Slam Celebrates 25 Years With Battle Of The Sexes
Posted by : cj on Sunday, July 31, 2011 - 08:22 PM
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11613 Reads


Note: Oh no, you didn't miss the Poetry Slam Anniversary Party at Metro, did you? Really? Why? Well, luckily I was there and took some photos. Check them out!

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spacer.gif   Poetry Slam Celebrates 25 Years With Big Event
Posted by : cj on Sunday, June 12, 2011 - 02:24 PM
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5280 Reads

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With poetry slams sparking inspiration and excitement around the globe—from Singapore to Germany to Madagascar—most Chicagoans are proudly aware that this international phenomena began right here in their city. For those who aren’t aware, and those who are, Chicago Slam Works is lighting the candles on a Birthday Extravaganza that will burn this blockbuster milestone into all minds and hearts with a blow-out night of poetry performances. The Poetry Slam 25th Birthday Extravaganza hosted by slam originator Marc K. Smith will ring, spit, and set Cabaret Metro, 3730 North Clark in Chicago, IL, ablaze on Saturday, July 30 at 8 p.m.

The show features Slam Champions Patricia Smith, Regie O. Gibson, Adam Gottlieb (featured in the film Louder than a Bomb) and a pack of slammers from around the world including Word Alert, an innovative slam team from Frankfort, Germany, as well as special tribute performances by Chicago’s Speak Easy Ensemble. More information and tickets purchases are available through ChicagoSlamWorks.com or the Metro’s box office.

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spacer.gif   Cafe Mestizo Keeps Poetry Open Mic Tradition Alive
Posted by : cj on Monday, April 18, 2011 - 10:26 AM
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9856 Reads


Note: Once a month (usually on the third Saturday) Vito Carli hosts a poetry open mic with featured poets at Cafe Mestizo in Pilsen. Here is the scoop!

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spacer.gif   Chicago Public Library Poetry Fest April 30, 2011
Posted by : cj on Tuesday, February 22, 2011 - 09:19 AM
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7668 Reads

CLICK HERE TO LEARN ABOUT THE 2012 POETRY FEST
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Note: ChicagoPoetry.com has the scoop on the upcoming Poetry Fest at Harold Washington Library. CLICK HERE.

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spacer.gif   Man Charged In Frieda Stein Fenster Murder
Posted by : cj on Tuesday, February 08, 2011 - 07:26 PM
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6083 Reads

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Back in December of 1983, during my first year as a Writing Major at Columbia College, I was taking a journalism class and I had to write a human interest story. I chose a 77 year old woman named Frieda Stein Fenster as my subject, because she owned a used bookstore and magic shop that I liked to hang out in a few blocks from the Wabash campus. I talked with Frieda extensively, recording our conversations on cassette tape in order to write my article. During the winter break, only days after I turned my assignment in, I was back with my family in Aurora, IL, and I was watching television and there was the story of Frieda's murder. By the time I returned to school, Frieda's six story brick building and everything inside it was already torn down, hauled away and turned into a parking lot. That was my first experience of the often cold nature of big city life. I was so affected by it, that I even sponsored a poetry contest called the Frieda Stein Fenster Memorial Award from 2003 through 2007.

Today, February 8, 2011, 27 years later, a man who is already serving a life sentence for sexual assault has been charged with Frieda's murder after DNA linked him to the crime. I don't want to taint this wonderful woman's memory with the grisly details of this poor woman's rape and murder or repeat the ugly comments the alleged perpetrated made when charged with the crime. Instead, let me tell you a little bit about Frieda Stein Fenster.

When I met Frieda, she was looking forward to the 100th anniversary of Stein's Books, established by her father Max Stein, who was brought to Chicago from Germany when he was ten years old. Max's father opened a cigar and magazine shop, which Max eventually took over and turned into a publishing house and paperback outlet that published 50 titles--including the infamous "Abe Lincoln Jokes"-- through the 20s and 30s as well as collectible postcards. The bookstore was first at 521 S. State but moved across the street to 526 S. State in 1954. The new building was previously occupied by a magician named Howard Thurston and Max bought the rights to Thurston's magic books and turned part of his bookstore into a novelty shop. Frieda lived in downtown Chicago all of her life, where she roller skated and sold Mexican jumping beans in the window of her father's bookstore. She went to high school in Hyde Park, and attended the University of Chicago as well as Northwestern. Frieda had a chance to work on a dictionary at Northwestern but passed it up to take over her family's business so that her parents could travel. These are some of the things that Frieda told me during our conversations 27 years ago.

--CJ Laity

More from Tribune ** More from CBS.

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spacer.gif   Evanston Haikufest To Inspire Poets To Publish
Posted by : cj on Monday, January 24, 2011 - 08:09 PM
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5338 Reads


Note: Learn about a Haiku Fest coming to Evanston this May 7.

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spacer.gif   Chicago Poetry Scene Mourns Loss Of Kent Foreman
Posted by : cj on Tuesday, November 30, 2010 - 05:27 PM
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6505 Reads

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Only yesterday, Monday, November 29, the Guild Complex sent out the unfortunate email letting everyone know that the venue that has been hosting their Palabra Pura reading series, Decima Musa, was closing down and that the reading series would be temporarily suspended until they find a new location. At the bottom of that email was this link to their website where you can listen to excerpts from "Living History,” a tribute to Chicago poet Kent Foreman that they held on August 24 at the Jazz Showcase, when about a hundred people came out in the afternoon to hear readings by Regie Gibson, Roger Bonair-Agard, Marty McConnell as well as a lengthy set by Foreman himself. That performance would prove to be one of Kent Foreman’s last. Today, as if to seal the deal on a year that has witnessed the loss of one Chicago poet after another, Kent Foreman’s Facebook page is swarming with messages from loved ones saying their goodbyes, where Patricia Smith writes “Loving and missing you” and suggests Chicago should be renamed after him and Tyehimba Jess wishes him “peace.” After a year of battling lung cancer, Kent Foreman has passed away.

The poetry audio project reVerse calls Kent Foreman “a beat generation poet who helped pioneer the Chicago performance poetry scene.” In his long career as a poet, he performed onstage with the likes of Maya Angelou and Amiri Baraka, was mentored by Oscar Brown, Jr., and has been a mentor to an entire generation of performance poets. Online, his work can be found here at e-poets as well as on YouTube performing for Words That Kill and HBO’s Def Poetry Jam. In June 2002, over one-hundred poets joined ChicagoPoetry.com in a boycott of a local arts festival after vendors associated with the festival slung racial slurs at Kent Foreman as he read his award winning poem Chicago on an outdoor stage in Wicker Park. As a result of the boycott, Kent’s photo appeared in a full page article in the Chicago Reader and also in a half page article in the Sun-Times, where they published the first 25 lines of his poem to show their support.

Kent Foreman’s gritty Chicago style of spoken-word poetry lives on in the work of the poets who he mentored, who have in turn passed the baton on to a new generation of performance poets. Presently, there is probably nowhere else where you are more likely to enjoy samples of Foremanesque poetry than at the Guild Complex’s presentation of Tour Guides, that opens this weekend at Chicago Center for the Performing Arts. If you would like to honor Foreman's legacy by supporting Tour Guides, click here to learn more about it.

Rest In Peace, Statesman, as your words live on.

--CJ Laity

**Memorial for Kent Foreman, Sun, January 16, 2011, 2:00pm – 4:30pm, Little Black Pearl, 1060 E. 47th St

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spacer.gif   Is This The Dawning Of The Age Of . . . Muzzle?
Posted by : cj on Sunday, October 17, 2010 - 07:46 PM
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5821 Reads

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I admit there are very few online zines that I read every month in their entirety. It’s not that they aren’t worthy of my attention; it’s just that I publish my own online thing and I just don’t have an hour or two a day to keep up with the plethora of other online publications that are available. As a matter of fact, so much of my life’s energy is invested in the online poetry world, that when I want to relax, the last thing I want to do is sit at a computer and read poetry. I much prefer to watch a film and not think about poetry for a few hours. But along came Muzzle and now I’m hooked. I’m sure I will be reading every issue from now on, religiously.

Muzzle is simply a good read, but for me it also brings on a sense of nostalgia, because it reminds me so much of what I was doing fifteen to twenty years ago when I was devoted to the print publication, the Letter eX Poetry Newsmagazine. I’m certain this is not Muzzle’s intention, because the editors, staff members, featured poets and guest reviewers probably have never even heard of Letter eX, or if they have it is only in legend since they were probably just finishing up grade school at the height of Letter eX’s Chicago reign. But the straight forward, often cynical flavor of the reviews in Issue 2 of Muzzle reminds me of the daring venture of a handful of Chicago poets during what is often referred to as the “golden age” of the Chicago poetry scene (1990 thru 1995), when words that were written in Letter eX often shook up the entire scene and could make or break a poet if that poet allowed them to. Don’t get me wrong, Muzzle is not a carbon copy of Letter eX. For one thing, Letter eX didn’t publish poetry at all; it only reviewed poetry books and performances while reporting news, and yes, even gossip, about the poetry scene. Also, Muzzle is intentionally focusing on the performance poetry scene, effectively taking the foot of any person who claims performance poetry can't stand up on the page and firmly putting said foot in said person’s mouth, where as Letter eX ruthlessly showed no allegiance to any sect of the poetry scene, often harshly criticizing the slam and even members of its own staff. Muzzle exists in three sections: the “Poetry” section (no doubt the strongest of the sections and the reason Muzzle really exists), a nicely done “Art” section, and the soon to be notorious “Reviews and Interviews” section. It is undeniably the unique product of it’s eleven staff members' cooperation, led by Editor in Chief Stevie Edwards (photo).

Nevertheless, when I read through Muzzle, especially the reviews section, I get this intoxicating sense of déjà vu. I feel a little giddy as the positive, though risky and even vulnerable energy behind this new online zine brings back a flood of memories. Letter eX was important and it certainly had its day. I’m convinced Muzzle will have it’s own history of significance to come. Perhaps Muzzle's day is dawning.

Here is a link to Issue #2. Check it out and see what you think.

--CJ Laity

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spacer.gif   A Peek at Idris Goodwin's These Are The Breaks
Posted by : cj on Thursday, October 07, 2010 - 10:58 AM
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5215 Reads

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On Saturday, October 23, 2010, from 6 to 8 PM, Chicago Urban Arts, 2229 South Halsted, will host a celebration for NEA award-winning playwright, HBO Def Poet, and critically acclaimed “indie” rapper Idris Goodwin's first book, a collection of prose, poetry and essays called These Are The Breaks (Write Bloody Publishing), which is described as "the literary mixtape of our cacophonous times." Although the book isn't scheduled to "hit the shelves" until March 2011, Goodwin has decided to share the work with Chicago, and he will have advance copies for sale at this prestigious event. Also on the program will be playwright Tanya Saracho and Lamar Jorden of the critically acclaimed documentary Louder Than A Bomb. There will be a $5 suggested donation but nobody will be turned away and students get in free.

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