“Recovering” in The Hopper

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Once, I lived alone in a house by the sea for free. I thought the place was haunted in a good way. Deer in the meadow visited often. I couldn’t drink the water so I didn’t think much of the well, until I found out it was uncovered. I found out because a deer fell in.

“Recovering” dreams an ending for that doe.

I’m in love with The Hopper. A talented group publishes beautiful pieces, all with an ecological focus. I hope you get lost in their archives and check back often.

Image: Deer in the Forest I | Franz Marc | {PD-US}

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“After Leaving, Before Arrival” in The Quieting

Friends, I’ve finally entered the letterpressed world. Platypus Press just finished pressing and sewing these beauuutiful books called The Quieting: an anthology of softness and light — ten poets, ten poems. I’m in love with the compression/lightness/texture of this project, and I’m beyond grateful to have been included, and to have received my copy in my mailbox today. My poem “After Leaving, Before Arrival” is about leaving home with my love to head east this summer, about decisions, precipice, and faith.

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If you love art, poems, and/or gorgeous objects, I recommend you buy one of these 50 books. They’re $5, and the book will cross an ocean to be yours.

Earlier this year…

front-cover-full-for-web-or-screen-1-200x300While at WWU for my MFA, I took a class from Brenda Miller on autobiography and photography, which led me to hand-make an accordion book covered in maps, juxtaposing NASA Landsat images of the Mississippi River with family photos and memory vignettes. The WWU MFA program has a “multi-genre” focus, meaning lines usually drawn to separate types of writing and art break down. Bellingham Review, the grad literary journal at WWU, recently opted to open hybrid submissions. As WWU English TAs, we asked our students to expand their concept of a “text.” (Our word “text” comes from the Latin for “to weave”—texere.) Students asked questions about how design and juxtaposition and delivery affect their understanding of a work as a whole.

Earlier this year, Brenda asked me if I might be interested in designing her latest book from Judith Kitchen’s Ovenbird Press, An Earlier Life. As a graduate of the MFA program she helped found, with its focus on hybridity and form, I care even more deeply about words, and I have also come to care deeply about the book or vessel that allows these words to meet their readers.

I read and reread Brenda’s manuscript, and months later I’m still stunned by An Earlier Life‘s accumulation of wild places, sacred moments, aches, and questions. Her book is beautiful, and I was honored to set it to the page. Come celebrate Brenda’s book launch Friday night, 4/15, at Village Books, 7:00 p.m!

Oh, and I’ll read poems Thursday night, 4/14, at Village Books, 7:00 p.m. for Noisy Water‘s almost-final poetry month mega-reading.