DuCharme / Walker / Hastain
DuCharme / Walker / Hastain
The moon is high up in the sky and it’s spring.
I think of you and within myself I’m complete.
— Fernando Pessoa, The Shepherd in Love (1914)
Our second issue as a quarterly features three radical short collections of new lyric and prose poetry: Mark DuCharme's Counter Fluencies 1-20, Tara Walker's Pill, and j/j hastain's Priest/ess. Each poet investigates the consumptive power of language, revealing—in detail at turns familiar, peculiar, and shocking—the secret grace of our verbal depths.
As a triune entity, Spring 2017 proffers the unfearing reader a journey into the news cycle's unconscious, where poets transmute depression, addiction, and discrimination into the benevolent honesty of song. This issue is a living testament to John F. Kennedy's assertion that "when power corrupts, poetry cleanses," that the artist "becomes the last champion of the individual mind and sensibility against an intrusive society and an officious state." ("The Purpose of Poetry," The Atlantic, 1963)
is the author of The Unfinished: Books I-VI, Answer, The Sensory Cabinet, The Crowd Poems, Infinity Subsections and Cosmopolitan Tremble, among others. He sees the poem, in part, as a refusal of utilitarian language, which is ironic, because he teaches composition. Praise for Counter Fluencies 1-20:
Mark Ducharme I know firsthand as a teacher. And this collection proves it is not just a professional title. Nearly every line of his poetry is a lesson. For writers - "If you're not destroyed by [it], then you haven't done it correctly." For everyone - "Fear not the invisible but thank her." — Jonathan Montgomery
has appeared in Magnolia, A Journal of Women's Socially Engaged Literature, The Columbia Poetry Review and Lunch Ticket. Her chapbook Sewn Into the Nest was published in 2009. She has an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and is a current PhD student. Praise for Pill:
Working with only (or mostly) the range of letters each pill provides, creating within it a sense of its own world, Walker nevertheless manages to make from this limited substance, poems that extend beyond their encapsulated confines and into a range of expression that can flood the system and alter perception. Warning: mixing with alcohol may cause musing. — Rowland Saifi
is a collaborator, writer and maker of things. j/j performs ceremonial gore. Chasing and courting the animate and potentially enlivening decay that exists between seer and singer, j/j, simply, hopes to make the god/dess of stone moan and nod deeply through the waxing and waning phases of the moon. j/j hastain is the inventor of The Mystical Sentence Projects and is author of several cross-genre books.
j/j is the real deal, reclaiming a space for engendered anarchy, opening Pandora’s secret treasure trove, playing with fire, sound and love — Anne Waldman
If you are a poet, drink
Deep of bird screams
Then translate them back into silence
Then let silence laugh at you
[ Mark DuCharme ]
men melted you into a leaden ball
you named your doll
blue eyed blond and bland lamb
you named your doll one day
[ Tara Walker ]
Priest/ess in the grass on my back. The grass is beginning to grow a green webbing over my hands and wrists. The growing green web seals me into Earth. It seals my legs open.
[ j/j hastain ]