And Happy National Poetry Month!
I can’t believe how many months have passed since I last wrote. I’m not sure how time works for you these days, but I recently wrote a check (um, yes, I still write checks) that said, “April 2021.” Apparently, I’ve dropped a year somewhere along the way.
But what have I learned these last two years? That nothing has ever been certain, we’ve just had routines in place to make us think it has been. Also, we’re here on this planet for an eye-wink, so find ways to connect with those you love, make time for your art and your joy, and walk gently into the world knowing your daily interactions can make a positive difference in someone’s life.
There is so much we don’t control, but we do control how kind we are to others both those who we love and strangers we don’t know. So whenever you feel down, pass on some joy, a compliment, some love, to someone else…I swear, it makes a difference.
And in the spirit of that kindness, here’s a poem by Danusha Laméris (from her book, Bonfire Opera) on that same theme for you to enjoy:
Opportunities, Events, & Other Things I Love:
Dean Rader started this project “Poems that Changed Me” which has grown into this beautiful collaboration with other poets including Sharon Olds, Arthur Sze, Jane Hirshfield, and others making videos about poems that have changed them. Each week, a new poet. You can see these poets as well as Dean’s favorite poems here.
Terrain.org is accepting poems (deadline: April 30), but I love that they also will also consider poem/image combinations, video poems, image poems, hybrid forms, and online chapbooks that may contain more than 6 poems.
This note from E.B. White made me smile. After reading this note, I feel as if I have been declining things all wrong for years! I’m definitely moving to the mysterious: “I must decline, for secret reasons.”
New Project: At Two Sylvias Press, we were asked by poets to create something for them to inspire new poems, help keep them accountable to their writing practice, publish more work, create community, and the Weekly Muse was born! Beginning May 1st—Two Sylvias’ Weekly Muse is a new subscription to help you write new poems and bring your work to the next level.
The first three issues are rich with tips for your writing, submitting, and some inspiring poetry prompts (and more). You can learn more here. (And by subscribing you support a women-run indie press and not a corporation—so thank you!)
Poetry Writing Class: And if you’re around this Saturday, April 23 from 11 am - 3 pm PST, I’m teaching a Zoom class with Susan Rich called Risking It!—where we will write new poems (5-7 drafts!) These classes (which are basically mini-retreats) are my favorite to lead because so many dazzling poems are born. Registration closes in the next two days, but there are still a few spaces left if you’re interested: Click here to learn more.
And can you believe this?
And it’s almost been a year since Dialogues with Rising Tides came out from Copper Canyon Press. Thank you all who have bought it or given it as gifts and for all the wonderful notes about it.
One fun thing I didn’t realize would happen is that people would send me photos of their pets with my book or my book “out in the wild.”
Here’s one of Sylvia (poet Jeannine Hall Gailey’s cat) that is “adorbs” as the kids say…
Thank you so much for being part of my community. I tend to say “more from me soon” and I realize we never know if that’s a month from now or ten! But know, I’m thankful to have you in my poetry universe.
Love and light,
P.S. Here’s a few photos from Seattle’s Elliott Bay Books first in-person reading since Jane Hirshfield read there in March of 2020! Susan Rich (whose new book Gallery of Postcards & Maps is releasing on July 7) and I read there on the warmest day of the year and it was magical:
Love this, Kelli! So much to sink teeth into, here. Can’t wait for Two Sylvia’s Weekly Muse to start! I’m all in & super grateful. Really wish I could join your class this Saturday but will be traveling that day. It will be magical, I know.
Many thanks for your generous wisdom. Delighted to have you back in my inbox and honored to share a few moments in our wink of time. Karla