Monthly Archives: November 2013

A new video for Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving / Black Friday to the world….

Here’s our interactive cover video to end up the last week or two where we will be featuring the Volume 9 Issue 1 Idiom….

The cover was done by Jennifer Mustaches and the video was produced by our friends at Royal Jelly Studios...check them all out and all the things that they do…But first check out the video linked below and some of our other youtubeiness…

Idiom Cover

The Interactive Idiom Cover at the 2013 Frostburg Indie Lit Festival

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The Simplicity of a Poem makes me turn to Metaphors….

Here at the Idiom we love a good narrative poem….We’re fans of minimalist writing and enjoy coming into a party and waiting for the anticipation to leave….

But when a poem is narrative and concrete and straight forward with its images and story….I eventually look at the piece for more than what’s being said and find metaphor and meaning in everything…

In the current issue of The Idiom there is a poem called Icicles by Caitlin Sinead Jennings which makes me turn the whole piece into a metaphor….maybe it’s because we live in Jersey and right now when we see the word Sandy it makes us think of the storm that hurt our shore last year or maybe I just want icicles to be more than condensed water dripping off of awnings that remind me of A Christmas Story and Ralphie who I look so much like….or that Caitlin brings us to the bank at one point and the struggles her narrator is having in their post Sandy be-Jobless World and the pleasure found in learning new words and using them in dangerous situations when there really is no time to learn new words….

Now I’m rambling….The Idiom doesn’t normally deal with politically themed pieces but when one is written as well as this one was, hiding the political overtones and focusing on the enjoyment of the poem instead of its message I have to accept it and will even post it below because I think its our favorite piece in this issue….

On a side note stay tuned to our blog on Thanksgiving Day when we will be releasing a special video featuring our interactive cover!

 

Icicles

I assessed the icy blades hanging from the bank awning before setting up orange cones and pulling a ladder from my “Ted’s Landscaping” truck. The image of the lawnmower on the side seemed out of place in winter, when instead of cutting grass we were shoveling snow and removing hazardous icicles.

I was used to walking under this awning, not climbing to be on level with it. I saw it before depositing my first paycheck and before asking for a mortgage. The bank gave Jimmy, just two then, an orange lollipop and Sandy and me the home of our dreams.  But it’s also the awning that I walked under, foreclosure notices in hand, four months after Sandy lost her job.

The man I talked to sneered at our misfortune and relished the power he held over me. I frantically begged for a different payment plan. A smirk hid behind his lips when he said in an annoyingly calm voice, “We cannot acquiesce to any requests for changes in loan agreements at this time.” He didn’t even hide the laugh when I asked him what acquiesce meant.

The icicles were firm in the cold, but would grow unpredictable as it warmed. I was about to knock one down when someone disregarded the cones and walked under me. I stared, realizing it was him. He paused for a while, reading his blackberry, seemingly begging me to break the large sharp icicle above his head.  I simply acquiesced.

Joshua Ballard’s Epic Return to the Universe….

In this current issue of The Idiom Joshua Ballard makes his epic return since publishing a collection of his poetry with Piscataway House Publications (i keep going)

In fact heres a link to a video from his book release party when it was released…

His poem The Science of Stars addresses that existential feeling we all get when looking at a city in the distance or the night sky and those heavy thoughts we have questioning our own existence to our everyday activities….

Science tells us that the universe is expanding
that never again will it be quite like this
never again will the stars be gazing upon lovers
at this exact angle
how perfect this moment is, then
that there are a billion stars for every human
that has ever existed on this planet
how that’s the most humbling thing I can think of
and those tiny flecks in the sky are the closest thing
to a connection with the universe we’re ever going to have
I’m gonna call Josh an experience poet….a writer who’s really good at writing about that moment of enjoyment, excitement, or anguish and able to take all the feelings of an experience and putting it into words…check out the rest of his piece on our site and you can see Josh read at many poetry events around Jersey…

Josh is very involved with the local community and is starting a non-profit organization which will put on events and other awesome shows…check out the Artist For Change Facebook Page

What is Fecundity….

In the current issue of the Idiom there is a poem by Susie Garay called Fecundity….Never heard that word before so I googled it…wikipedia told me it’s “derived from the word fecund, generally refers to the ability to reproduce


Fecundity

I wonder about the
fecundity of a thing.

The birthing of ideas,
the act itself.

The miracle of thought
that leads to action.
The dreaming that
brings things to pass.

Living on
this planet
is messy.
And I am often
a mess.

But from the mess
come morsels
that I never would
have come upon
otherwise.

The writing today
was interesting.

Such odd old memories
coming to the surface.
I hope they serve
their purpose,
then go.

Susie though is not talking about the physical act of giving birth but “the birthing of ideas, / the act itself” and I especially like the idea of ‘morsels’ of thoughts coming out of the ‘mess’ in her life and “such odd old memories / coming to the surface.”

She ends her poem elegantly as some of the friends of The Idiom who have come and gone “I hope they serve / their purpose, / then go.” That line break ending on serve does double the work as it continues the thought but implies the work that the ideas are doing…

Also coming out on Thanksgiving Day a new video on our Youtube Page!  A video showing all the fun you can have with this issues interactive cover….

Tollbooth Review from way back and Van Gogh’s crows

This was posted a while back but thought I’d mention it here…..Matthew J. Hall a poet who has been in a previous issue of The Idiom wrote up a lil review of our novel Tollbooth His other blog posts are great too about literary things he’s reading and more….

The Current Issue of The Idiom Volume 9 Issue 1 is now available on our website!  You can flip through the Magazine if it shows up on your computer or click on Volume 9 issue1 to download a PDF to your mobile device and tablets….damn we’re fancy….

In this issue the poet, Christopher Mulrooney sent us some poems and we chose his piece, Van Gogh’s crows

the symbolism is expressed in the brushwork of a few seconds etc.
a flick of the wrist and it’s done
not the dull cowboys at the bright supermarket
signifying where the posse is laid ambush for
in Yuma territory or thereabouts
or the girlish echoes of a ghost town in the West entirely imaginary
birds of night closing in on the day at the start
When I see a poem about art I tend to turn it into some type of ars poetica and even though this piece isn’t about writing I take the situation of Van Gogh and his painting and turn it into some kind of epic poem about the poets own writing….or maybe it’s just easier for me to relate as a writer and see all art as some kind of universal machine and make it all relatable in my mind…..
but whatever it is I loved the epic first line about symbolism that dwindles into a simple “etc.” at the end….obviously I am a huge fan of the ellipses, and etc. can be considered the lettered form of the punctuation mark….
That etc. is also kinda shown visually in the Van Gogh painting … as our eyes are drawn to it at the end of the first line in the painting we are drawn to the crows rising up to the sky and slowly dwindling off.  In the painting we are surrounded by a very “dramatic, cloudy sky” almost as dramatic as the “dull cowboys at the bright supermarket” to the “girlish echoes of a ghost town” and the other images that make up the poem….
Do you agree?  What else do you like or not like about this piece….let me know in the comments below…