Tag Archives: poems

New Year, New Book, New Idiom, New Look….

2013 was great for The Idiom Magazine and Piscataway House Publications….we handed out mags at festivals….one of our publishers received their MFA and another publisher worked endlessly at their manuscript….We published our first novel, Tollbooth, and it won the best book of 2013 by the people at Drunk Monkeys!

Our latest issue of The Idiom Magazine has been revamped and all prettied up after we upgraded our printing system…we now have a hard card stock cover and color insides!

Our website http://www.theidiommag.com is going to have a new look in a few weeks and we plan on changing our submissions guidelines so our online issue is a lil more interactive with the internets…check out the site now though for some of our upcoming events going on….

Speaking of upcoming events!  January 18th the release of our next duel book with Idiom Publisher, Keith Baird and editor for some PHP projects, Andrew “Ink” Feindt….it’s gonna be a great show hosted by Chris Rockwell and musician guests Jimmy James from Little Big Toe and Sarah Donner!  There will be coffee drunk from the Revolutionary Lounge Bar with great food as always and throughout the night poems from the poets and a Haiku Death Match to the DEATH!  It’s free to get in and books will be for sale for $8 and if ya have a book idea perhaps bring it by and maybe you can be having the next book release party!

Over the next two weeks I will be posting my favorite poems from the book and some selections from the current issue of The Idiom so keep an eye out for these posts…..and don’t forget to send us some pieces for possible publication…..

I’ll start with the poems in the current issue from Keith Baird and Ink….

Keith Baird’s poems use simple images to talk about the big picture….how can velcro, rocks we stand on, or the colors we look at really explain anything….Keith shows us that they do more work for us then we could ever imagine…

untitled

with all these
vibrant colors before us
it’s easy to forget
that we’re only
staring at the
smallest
spectrum
waves.

untitled

We’re cutting our hands and feet
On sand and rock,
But give it enough heat
And we’ll be sliding on smooth glass.

untitled

Like velcro, quietly fitting together,
Tiny hairs and tendrils attaching
Softly to each other,
And making such a racket when
Separating.

I love when poets use math in poems….and Ink’s poem includes math and some microeconomics to express the logical mindset that any independent artist would like to express…

Poetry Appraisal

By the transitive property
and creative accounting,
each book of poetry should be valued
in the thousands of dollars.

The proof:
If 1 picture = 1,000 words
and 1 poem = 1 picture,
keeping in mind that even mediocre art
sells for around $300
and that there are generally 50 poems
hanging between front and back cover frames,
then 50 x $300 = $1,500.

But poets are kind.
They know there is more to life than money,
that their art requires time to appreciate
and is not inherently decorative.
So their union issues deep discounts –
coupon code: time=money,
bringing books down to a paltry $5 to $15.

And yet you still debate the purchase.

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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

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….

Bone Dancers Drink….

Bone Dancers Drink   is the first and last line in Jeffrey Grassley’s poem Seen from the Current Issue of The Idiom Magazine

the rest of the piece has just as many great one liners and images throughout and reads really well out loud.  It’s a great homage to Bukowski and his attitude that writers shouldn’t try to write like him is something I wish more writers would learn.  “And too often we multiply ourselves / by our tragedies” is a great statement and a thought I’ve been contemplating about myself and the people around me….

Being Able to Touch is a tighter poem but flows just as easily as the last one.

“teacher

of cadence, an education
in bad prophecy– project
and convince them, that yes,
i speak of, electricity
static-cling shockwaves on skin
beneath warming sheets
and little space– ghost stories,
we told too many war stories,”

His internal rhymes are magnificent without being obvious or sing-songy.  Again his images surprise me as I approach each line and although I can’t make an immediate connection to them by the end of the poem I am satisfied.

Here’s his bio that he sent me and you should check out his chapbook if ya like his stuff:

-Jeffrey Graessley lives in La Puente, CA. His poems can be found in the upcoming volumes of Emerge Literary Journal and RCC MUSE Magazine. His first chapbook, Her Blue Dress is due out sometime in September (Silver Birch Press, 2013). His recent discovery of the BEAT generation has prompted loving and longing thoughts for that simple, drunken, far-gone time in American history.

James Duncan and his use of the absurd….

You can see James Duncan’s poems in the current issue. I couldn’t link it from my ipad so here’s the address:
http://theidiommag.com/idiom%20sites/idiommagazine.html

I like when things don’t make sense. I especially like when people get angry about things that don’t make sense. In James Duncan’s poem No Sunday Delivery we have a narrator who’s mad cause someone stole his mailbox….but the anger seems unwarranted if this is taking place on a Sunday when things don’t get delivered anyways….

I like how everything seems to reference every other image in the piece….the birds in flight connect with the crying babies because I think of a stork who delivers babies and the stamps for sunlight remind me of a fresh begging and of course the play on the word stamps as a verb and the currency we use to mail things….I’m not quite sure what this piece is about but having everything reference each other and a few unstable spacings around the piece give me some kind of poetic pleasure….

James’s other poem in the issue, Waiting for the Artist to Arrive Is a little more concrete and narrative. It’s a kind of ars poetica and celebrates the similarities of hanging out in Astoria and an Edward Hopper scene of people doing there daily routine and sometimes that quick glimpse into a brief moment of someone’s life.

I don’t know Manhattan well enough (does anyone really?) to know if they would actually line around the block “to catch a glimpse at that thousand word painting of checkerboard broken windows” but considering the state of reality television today he may not be too far off…

Jennifer Lemming reading her poem, Driving with Sunflowers

We recently posted why we liked Jennifer’s poem, Driving with Sunflowers, now you can hear her read it on The Idiom’s Website.

For Mac users the audio works best in Safari and cuts very short in Firefox for some reason….