Wednesday, July 1, 2015

The Garden of Verses: Poetry from Here to Bombay

            Happy summer, everyone. We're just past the Summer Solstice, still enjoying the longest days of the year, and I'm still high on one of the year's highest points.
            A poem stemming from the wages of carrying too much water to thirsty plants last summer has seen the light of day in a book recently published in a distant clime. The Bombay Review celebrates the first anniversary of its bimonthly literary journal with an anthology of selections from the first year's contributions. My poem "My Aching Back" (a backyard gardener's injury) was chosen for inclusion.
            You can order a copy of the anthology off the publisher's website, but it will cost you 399 rupees. I've been checking our various collections of international money, a few pounds or pence here, a few thousand Lebanese Lira there, but so far not a single rupee. Happily, I believe they take American. Anne points out that we are relatively "rich in rupees," since by recent exchange rates those 399 convert to $6.38.
            ("Let’s get a few copies," she suggests. "And then go out for Indian food.")
            Here's the link to the anthology:

            Another month, another new edition. The July Verse-Virtual, the fantastically industrious online journal that publishes scores of original poems at the remarkable pace of a new edition every month, includes five of my poems. These consist of an amalgam of three "Late Songs," my title for poems written to celebrate some songs I listen to frequently, but almost always late at night.
            Another of these poems owes its existence to a recommendation from fellow Verse-Virtual poet Luis Neer, who pointed me to Mary Oliver's poem "Out of the Stump Rot, Something," which in turn reminded me of an encounter with a black snake. The poem's called "Snake Crossing."
            The fifth poem concerns one of poetry's most enduring subjects and sources of inspiration, the seasons.
            Here's the link for these poems: