|A couple of weeks ago I received some poems about horrific actions, taken against a certain minority. Problem was the poems were a bit ranting. So, I returned them to the author who promptly wrote back accusing me of racism. She also stated that RRR had printed poems about crimes against Hispanic, LGBT, and Blacks, but I was obviously against this group.
I could have gotten mad, but I really thought poems about this topic would be good for the journal, if well written. I grabbed a couple of stanzas and rewrote them to give them an example. Then I gave my best poetic advise: take these to a workshop group or a poetry mentor. They can step back and give you the perspective, your grief/anger will not allow right now.
Why am I telling you this? Some health issues recently have caused me to have to stop going to festivals and readings out of town. I really hadn’t realized what these gatherings had meant to me until I realized I would not be there this year. I thought of all the poems I’d written in workshops, hotel rooms, and receptions. Get out there and join the poetry world. Even if you don’t write, the pure creative synergy will sweeten/spice whatever art you are engaged in. Most important you’ll find people who will help you with those sharp edges, before you cut yourself on them.
And finally, I was lucky this past year to attend a workshop by the inimitable Jim LaVilla-Havelin, on writing short poems. I knew it had had a lot of influence on my work. But it was not until I was putting this issue to bed that I realized it had impacted my editorial choice this season. You’ll find some fantastic small poems in this issue. Many times, small is good - it keeps you out of more trouble.
Have a fantastic spring and I’ll see you again in May!
We are accepting submissions for our 67th Issue - April 2018 issue.