Greetings, friend, from here, beside bear creek, as it flows through the Front Range mountain slopes of beloved Colorado
The postal response has been remarkable - I received requested bios in less than two weeks, with the exception of two, which have since arrived. Foolish me. Furthermore, as I read the bios, I realized ‘bios’ had not been defined (I expected 'briefs' consisting of a few past publishing credits and such)...
What I have received has been (maybe this sounds trite, but, is true) earnest and of the heart and often extensive. And it's all good.
So! Bios, however defined in terms of length and content, have become as important to this anthology as the poems themselves (and bio's may have even a greater space presence than the poetry has).
Makes me wonder if an anthology of only bios by themselves (but not this time) might be a fascinating future endeavor.
And all of us who have BA degrees in English or Literature! - no matter where our lives have taken us, factories, martial art instructors, housewives, house painters, custodians, you name it, there is a healthy, necessary presence of BA degrees! A friend of mine stated the true gentleman or gentle woman, the genuine knight's errant and earth goddess's of our species, if they are to have a degree, have but a BA. (ok, I am not dissing advanced degrees - someone has to teach, perhaps even in a formal classroom setting, the heart and soul of the BA) (and perhaps the finest poetry comes from heart and soul without any need of no stinkin' degree(s))(yet!! I am proud of mine, and soon will blog about how my alma mater, after putting up with me for nine lively - perhaps rowdy? - years slapped me alongside the head with a degree in English Lit and threw me out of their hallowed doors to be rid of me) (and I still love 'em).
Enough. No, not quite - a few poems for you -
Three Wooden Trunks
Wooden trunks in the shed
decades of mice owl and
pigeon droppings decades
of spiderwebs thick with dry
insect husks dirt and small
feathers, of sleepy feral cats
we’ve always fed lying on
old blankets...the uncle
who never came home
from one of those wars
(dedicated to the Nebraska Sand Hills uncle I never met)
November’s first ice
the catfish and bass
deeper and slower
from the homestead’s oak floor
thousand doing just as
enough of us have
that death would
just give it up
One of these poems appeared in Lynx and one in Shamrock and perhaps one was accepted by Yellow Mama - doggone it, gotta remember to bring publishing credits with me to the library - (gotta love libraries) - so I can accurately list the worthy print and online publications who chose to adopt a poem or so of mine. Perhaps I should list them in my computer! Naw. (It's the day after Halloween, and have just learned that in some cultures 'naw' is a less than happy ghost. Here, it simply is a crude form of 'no').
Speaking of which, my rejection list must be - is - well over 2,000. The crudest rejection was from a well-known editor who stated 'your poetry wouldn't work on a bathroom wall', so I wrote that poem on not one, but two, bathroom walls (men's rooms, of course), and someone even wrote a nice response - that'll learn 'em. (Just learned 'em' is a unit of measurement. Here, it is simply a crude form of 'him' or 'them').
One last poem, a favorite -
see you in a moment - ayaz daryl nielsen