ChicagoPoetry.com is proud to announce that six poets from the new publication Cram Volume 10 have been nominated for Pushcart Prizes. The nominated poets are Charlotte Digregorio, Cynthia Gallaher, Marilyn Peretti, Cynthia Pfeiffer, Stella Vinitchi Radulescu, and Deborah Nodler Rosen. I am delighted to showcase the nominated poems here on this page.
(The following poem was awarded First Place in Poets & Patrons 54th Annual Chicagoland Poetry Contest, 2010, and also appears in Poetry Cram Volume 10 published by ChicagoPoetry.com Press.)
At The Museum of Contemporary Art
by Charlotte Digregorio
Seeking quietude on a foggy day,
I visit the Museum to drift and dream,
with watercolors, collages, montages, and tapestries.
I happen upon worn scraps of metal, wire,
bits of broken glass, and splintered plastic.
Perhaps they are castaways culled from a hidden dumpster
in a deserted Chicago alley.
I visualize a sculptor in his cramped studio with a large window.
Under skies donning infinite grayness,
he watches languishing birds in autumnís breath.
Brittle poplar branches wave in whispering wind.
His eye glimpses fluttering scarlet and gold.
Inspired hands bend, chip, and polish refuse into delicate,
shining pieces, with soothing shades.
With agile fingers, his drab finds, a reflection of our gritty lives,
become graceful art, as if by metamorphosis.
He realizes sculptures of oddly-shaped people
and animals, almost unidentifiable,
yet bearing equilibrium and harmony.
In solitude, he finds lyricism
in trifles surrounding him.
(The following ekphrastic poem is part of a larger chapbook manuscript inspired by paintings in the Art Institute of Chicago. It appears in Poetry Cram Volume 10 published by ChicagoPoetry.com Press.)
After Henri Matisseís "Interior at Nice" 1920
by Cynthia Gallaher
Like a hydra-eyed chandelier
able to see from a dozen angles,
I venture through the outside of this inside,
A past in the reflection
of a hazy future, while gauzy curtains
open drama to theater in the round.
I face an interior of an interior on the far wall,
while the lady haloed by Riviera waters
takes her own perspective.
She has my hair,
sits like my late sister, crosses legs
and sports shoes of a 1920s cousin.
Her eggshell chemise wraps her
in momentary peace, a peace
outlined in harsh borders.
Itís as if weíre gazing into what could be
our own perfect bodies, the beveled,
floral patterns of femininity.
We breathe salty air,
the sweetness of youth,
yet hear waves crash relentlessly behind.
(The following poem was written in response to the Language of Conservation poetry exhibit at the Brookfield Zoo and it appears in Poetry Cram Volume 10 published by ChicagoPoetry.com Press.)
by Marilyn Peretti
Is that your ribs
they see up there?
You, coming onto land,
no ice floe left?
Your muscular body
pacing back and forth?
Your blanket of white fur
shrinking to bare flesh?
Your mastery of the ice
wasted on a patch of grass?
Your heart dying
I see you
in my dreams,
from all the stories, pictures,
Arctic studies. I dream
of your massive ten-foot stance,
your giant snowshoe paws,
your spry leap to pounce
upon your prey,
your joy in swimming icy
blue waters, and romping
with your snowball babies,
My sleep is still and warm
and I donít want the dream
(The following poem first appeared in MillerĎs Pond Poetry Magazine and has been reprinted in Poetry Cram Volume 10 published by ChicagoPoetry.com Press.)
Demands from a Selfish Lover
by Cynthia Pfeiffer
write a love letter
on birch bark
with a hawk's flight feather quill
and corn poppy ink
find an ancient alchemy book
collect the morning dew
turn it into aquamarines, emeralds
leave it on my doorstep,
wrapped in silk
you have spun yourself
gather robins and doves
to serenade me as i fall asleep
then perform an aubade when i wake
and when i wake,
on a day when the sky is bluest blue
arrange the clouds
to spell out our names
do something about that time-space continuum thing
turn back time
then fast foreword
then return to now
like a ride, you see?
just for us
from you, to me
(Romanian born Stella Vinitchi Radulescu is widely published and is the author of several books of poetry including My Dream Has Red Fingers [Sterling House], From Heaven with Love [Pudding House, 2003], and Insomnia in Flowers [Plain View Press]. The following poem appears in Poetry Cram Volume 10 published by ChicagoPoetry.com Press.)
Landscape & More
by Stella Vinitchi Radulescu
To paint a heart you need some red an oval
or a square
men with golden teeth golden hair sitting on the bench
Jardin du Luxembourg would be ideal I come and go
with my spring look
I used to like the weather the timing
The sun came down it was too late sleepy
the wooden face
I left the painting on the grass
I left it blank
(Deborah Nodler Rosen is an editor of RHINO and her poetry anthology, WHERE WE FIND OURSELVES: Jewish Women around the World Write about Home was recently published by SUNY Press. The following poem appears in Poetry Cram Volume 10 published by ChicagoPoetry.com Press.)
A TIME OF ONEíS OWN
by Deborah Nodler Rosen
The breath before the beginning
in the generating chaos
Thatís where the words wait,
hovering like dust in the up-jump
before the dive, the teetering before the fall.
I want this unmown time, untasked time,
beyond Sunday, beyond Summer
this flow welling up I can lean into,
pull around me, a space without edge
that asks nothing, and I can own.
I want that time always saved for later
hoarded like candy in some locked drawer
and I will fill it with letters, words,
the whole of my story as these moments
stretch wider and wider able to hold
all my words as I add them
into the ticking world.
It is an honor that ChicagoPoetry.com has six of the most talented poets of Chicagoland representing Cram 10 in the 2011 Pushcart Prize competition. Thanks go out to these remarkable poets for sharing their work with us and please wish them the best of luck.
In addition to these six poets, thirty-one additional poets have been selected for inclusion in Poetry Cram Volume 10: click here for the details.
Note: ChicagoPoetry.com is proud to announce that six poets from the new publication Cram Volume 10 have been nominated for Pushcart Prizes. Click Here to read the nominated poems.