As if that were not enough for a modest poet just trying to get some recognition, my poetry group is now discussing very avidly the possibility of self-publishing our own book. The book talk had ramped up recently and prior to our most recent meeting 7/24 we agreed to all bring 5 poems that we thought were worthy of going into the chapbook- a chapbook is a small stapled book, usually under 50 pages, with a cardstock type covering. When we met that Sunday though, the chatter was amped up even further and by the end we were discussing a "perfect-bound" book with each of us contributing eight poems. A "perfect-bound" book is one most are familiar with-think of a small poetry book with the glossy cover and a spine that would be visible on a bookshelf. Thanks to advancements in technology and the relative low cost of sending our work to a small press(with the help of a designer friend of one of the guys in my group) I may be a contributing author to a book that you could possibly buy in a bookstore. Unbelievable! This would not be finished until near the end of the year or early next year. (so close and yet so far)
Additionally, we are still struggling to name ourselves. We are using Panoply as a working title for our group, but some of us were hoping for something with a little more punch. Panoply has a dual meaning;
1. a suit of armor
2. a vast array
I like(not love) this because of the possibilities for artwork for either a website or books, using the suit of armor, swords and sheilds and the like, while the intended use of panoply (as a name) is more for the second definition as in the varying styles between the five of us.(though I am still partial to Jacklight Poets-oh well)
Portals and Piers is being bandied about as a possible title for our book, this came out of a poem by one of the guys and another one liked the line so much that he suggested it for our project.
Thoughts, questions, suggestions? Shoot.
...and hopefully for your reading pleasure, the poems listed above follow below(see what I did there?)
Our paths cross as they have before
greetings exchanged upon a hint of recognition
though unable to place when or where
I was thinking French class, or maybe
we were lovers in another lifetime.
expatriates sharing café au lait
and stories of home.
Strolling down the Champs- Elysees
I remove my chapeau and
bowing deeply, I ask you to dance.
Your cheeks blush, desperately
trying to match the perfectly pink
parasol you twirl above your head
in the sun- splashed boulevard.
like slow- moving, hungry beasts
forage through the meadow of my mind
the tireless shepherd of my consciousness
drives them on lest they consider
this range of gray matter a home
still they graze and consume
every grain- do they not know
they too will perish
when all is gone
can they not see
what fate lies ahead
and the shepherd; tender of the flock
simply walks behind these creatures,
not minding the foreboding clouds
forming a dark malleable mass
not yet raining
but always threatening
We often hear of the shimmering diamonds strewn
across the surface of a grand body of water while
the sharp white peaks of sailboats cut through the air.
Usually overlooked is the intrusive angling
of the breakwater, dark and corroded
by years of overuse, the tug and the barge
trailing thick trains of smoke.
We are familiar with the young lovers
watching clouds floating by in each others eyes
a half empty bottle of wine and a wicker picnic basket
holding down the corners of a wind blown blanket.
Forgotten is the specter standing
at water’s edge, hands neatly clasped
behind his back as he searches
the dusk-colored vastness for a memory