chocolate is a verb

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Tag Archives: poetry

Tonight! SpeakEasy 27: A Spiritual Thread

If you’re interested in the intersection of poetry and spirit, you may want to Zoom in to this evening’s SpeakEasy 27: A Spiritual Thread. I won’t be reading, but I co-produce the SpeakEasy series with Luther Allen and I think the program will offer considerable food for thought.

Each of the poets — Susan Alexander, Luther Allen, Bruce Beasley, Jennifer Bullis, and Dayna Patterson — will share a poem and comment on the process of writing linked poems.

This will be our first virtual SpeakEasy, but definitely not the last. In fact, the poetry produced for SpeakEasy 27 quickly exceeded the constraints of a single reading, so it will be presented as a series. This program, Saturday, November 14, 2020, 7:00pm Pacific, will be followed by another on Saturday, December 12, with future dates TBA. The sessions will be recorded and available for viewing online.

Participation is free on a first-come, first-serve basis, but you must have a password to access the Zoom room. You can find a more complete description, the poets’ bios, and access information on the SpeakEasy 27 page. (This is also where the videos will be posted.)

poem!

Continuing with the everything-published-at-once theme, here is perhappened magazine, with my poem “Stepping out” published in the brand new mixtape issue. Each of the poems is inspired by a song and links to the songs are provided along with the poems.

found poem: my weekend

found poem: when I called

found poem: a shared language

poem

Overtaken by a rash of rhyming and curse as a prompt, I wrote this poem in the other Before-time: before The Election, before 45 was a poisonous number.

Thanks to editor Jerome Betts and Lighten Up Online, it has now found its way into Issue 50 and the world alongside much rhyming, much wry commentary, and some very clever poems.

found poem: we Wrote

poem

The evolution

For a while, in the first months
of the pandemic, you feared your hands:

that they might be the engine of your destruction,
grab from the air, from book or doorknob,

newspaper or broccoli, the errant cell calling
to your lungs. Those hands, lathered, rinsed,

laundry hung out in a dust storm, dragged back in,
washed again. And your face, itching, yearning

for them, abandoned lover. Later, the air itself
became suspect and you held your breath on the trail,

in the grocery store, at the mailbox. Yet, shocked
by your isolation, your fear of contamination,

you came to enjoy the whims of unstructured days,
the naps and chickadees and jigsaw puzzles.

You called old friends, cleaned cupboards, ticked tasks
off your list, learned new technology. You had

no passport, no visa for the country called the future.
The microorganism would stamp your documents,

or not. So you gardened as if someone else
might harvest the beautiful purple peapods,

the lettuce, even the sudden radishes.
And then, as predictions became less dire,

you discovered a new fear:
that life would return to normal.

© J.I. Kleinberg

District Lit

Two of my poems, “Distracted by the stars” and “Self portrait,” have just been published in District Lit. Founded and edited by Diana Smith Bolton, District Lit publishes “writing that smashes down the borders in which we district our lives.” I am grateful to have my work selected.

a poem, for a change

On the trail

How courteous we were
yesterday as we stepped

off the trail to allow others
plenty of room to pass

untouched, no brushing
of shoulders, not close enough

to notice that in our isolation
we hadn’t bathed, that we’d barely

climbed out of our pajamas,
run the toothbrush round

our mouths before yielding
ourselves to this extravagance

of spring, the river an icy celadon
in a stripe of afternoon sun,

moss-painted boulders big as cars,
fallen trees tossed in a snarl,

the ups and downs of the path
playing with the song

of the river, louder, softer,
as we step aside, wait, smile

at the dogs rushing to greet us,
to reassure us, it’s okay, you smell good.
 
 
© J.I. Kleinberg

One Sentence Poems, again (and again)

One Sentence Poems has selected two of my short (one-sentence) poems for publication: “Song” and “Resolution.” Really appreciate the careful work of editors Dale Wisely, Elizabeth McMunn-Tetangco, and Tony Press.

Canary

found poem: architect

Take A Stand

Very pleased to have my poem
“Neither Silence Nor Forgetting”
included in the important new
Raven Chronicles Press anthology,
Take A Stand: Art Against Hate (p. 129).

Thank You
to editors Anna Bálint, Phoebe Bosché,
and Thomas Hubbard,
to the many fine writers and artists
whose work appears in this substantial volume,
and to the many unnamed people whose lives
and stories are shared in these pages.

this Friday in Anacortes, Washington

The monthly poetry series at Pelican Bay Books & Coffeehouse continues on Friday, February 28, 2020, 7:00pm, with an evening of poetry and music with young Skagit poet Piet Anna Pruitt, featured poets Luther Allen and J.I. Kleinberg, and a musical set by Anacortes’ own Pearl Tottenham.

Luther Allen writes poetry and designs buildings from Sumas Mountain, Washington. He facilitates SpeakEasy, a community poetry reading series in Bellingham, and is co-editor of Noisy Water, an anthology of local poets. His collection of poems, The View from Lummi Island, can be found at Other Mind Press. His work is included in the recent anthologies WA 129 (edited by Tod Marshall), Refugium: Poems for the Pacific (edited by Yvonne Blomer), Poets Unite! LitFUSE @10, Weaving the Terrain (Dos Gatos Press), and For Love of Orcas (edited by Jill McCabe Johnson and Andrew Shattuck McBride). His short story “The Stilled Ring” was finalist in the annual fiction contest at terrain.org. He views writing as his spiritual practice.

Twice nominated for Pushcart and Best of the Net awards, J.I. (Judy) Kleinberg is co-editor of 56 Days of August (Five Oaks Press 2017) and Noisy Water: Poetry from Whatcom County, Washington (Other Mind Press 2015), and co-produces the Bellingham-based SpeakEasy poetry series. Her poetry has appeared in One, Pontoon, Pedestal Magazine, Psaltery & Lyre, December, and elsewhere, and more than 300 of her found-word collage poems have been published in print and online. She lives in Bellingham and posts frequently at chocolateisaverb.wordpress.com and thepoetrydepartment.wordpress.com and occasionally on Instagram @jikleinberg.

Please join us!

Alba

new poem

Sometimes poems get accepted by a journal and then are published with no further fanfare. Just discovered that my poem “Paying Attention” was quietly published in E.Ratio Poetry Journal, issue 29. Who needs fanfare? Very grateful.

found poem: March

found poem: urgency

found poem: poet

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