01/01/15 Blackout Poem

January 1, 2015 § Leave a comment

Blackout poetry: the destruction of one literary work for the creation of another.blackout poem 01:01

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“Centerpiece” published by Contraposition Magazine

May 27, 2014 § Leave a comment

Today one of my poems, “Centerpiece,” was published online by Contraposition Magazine.

Read the full poem below or check it out at Contraposition Magazine and click around to read other great pieces.

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National Poetry Month is over…and so is my undergraduate education

May 1, 2014 § 1 Comment

Yesterday was the last day of National Poetry Month, for which I posted a different poem every single day as my Facebook status. The reception of this project from friends, family, and random acquaintances greatly surpassed any and all of my expectations. It was fascinating to see which poems resounded with which people, and in what ways. I received quite a few Facebook messages from people sharing their own favorite poems with me, and was approached by multiple individuals who used the poems as a conversation starter, asking me about my favorites and telling me about theirs. And from these conversations, friendships blossomed.

Over the course of the last month I posted a poem every day on Facebook, was invited to take part in a poetry reading at the LA Times Festival of Books, had a couple poems accepted to literary journals and magazines (check back over the course of the next month for links when they’re published!), and finished a literary internship that helped confirm my originally unsure idea of pursuing a career path in publishing.

Today marks the last day of classes for my undergraduate career and it’s pretty surreal.

For any who were wondering, here is the comprehensive list of poems I posted during the month of April (in chronological order of posting date):

1. WHERE THE SIDEWALK ENDS by Shel Silverstein
2. SLEEPING WITH THE DICTIONARY by Harryette Mullen
3. LAST WORDS OF THE DYING I by Diana Arterian
4. somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond by e. e. cummings
5. WE AT WAR BABY by Gaith Adhami
6. THE OUTSIDER by Shole Wolpé
7. THE RIVAL by Sylvia Plath
8. DINNER GUEST: ME by Langston Hughes
9. TELEVISION by Roald Dahl
10. MIRROR, MIRROR by Spike Milligan
11. SONG OF MYSELF LII (an excerpt) by Walt Whitman
12. SHAKE THE DUST by Anis Mojgani
13. BRAVE NEW VOICES CHICAGO SPOKEN WORD
14. ANY LIT by Harryette Mullen
15. THE TRUTH STANDS BEFORE ME… by Rumi
16. HOW TO MEDITATE by Jack Kerouac
17. HOMEWORK by Allen Ginsberg
18. HER FACE by Arthur Gorges
19. FRIEND ZONE by Dylan Garity
20. THE CLOD AND THE PEBBLE by William Blake
21. sisters by Lucille Clifton
22. WHAT THE DOCTOR SAID by Raymond Carver
23. BELONGING by Eileen Carney Hulme
24. i went fishing with my family when i was five by Tao Lin
25. MIMESIS by Fady Joudah
26. BELLA IN THE WYCH ELM by Stacy Gnall
27. IF I SHOULD HAVE A DAUGHTER by Sarah Kay
28. ASKING TOO MUCH by Andrea Gibson
29. THE QUIET WORLD by Jeffrey McDaniel
30. WHATIF by Shel Silverstein

Anis Mojgani performs Shake the Dust

April 12, 2014 § Leave a comment

In the spirit of spoken word, I’m sharing a favorite.

LA Times Festival of Books Poetry Reading

April 12, 2014 § 1 Comment

I was invited to be part of a small reading today at the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books.

It was a coming-of-age themed reading.

#nationalpoetrymonth « Read the rest of this entry »

Citrus Shocks

April 4, 2014 § 1 Comment

Citrus Shocks
by Genevieve Shifke

Over nineteen years spent between
Florida and California and
I simply couldn’t eat them.
The white part was too gross.
Stringy bitter bits of
cotton lining, the hidden
tangy meat underneath.
It’s called the pith,
which is a suiting name,
since it sounds equally as
unappetizing as it tastes.
Pith.
One flat syllable
that makes the tongue
stick to the top of the
mouth, awkward and
unsure of what to do with
itself after suffering through
such an utterance.

Luckily, your tongue
knew how to fix it,
remedying the situation by
pressing little citrus shocks
against my taste buds,
giving them something else
to want to attach themselves to.

Darkness was on
pith’s side that day,
hiding from my eyes
the unsightly dandruff
the peel left behind.
The pounding in my chest
sped up when I agreed
to take the piece you
offered, my mind already
making my tongue recoil
at the thought of processing
such a horrid flavor.
But I bit down and
the beating stopped.
All I tasted was pulpy juice;
acidic sweetly sticky juice.
No bitter pith, just the same
citrus shocks my tongue
found on yours.
So I ate another piece.

Originally published in Adsum’s inaugural issue, April 2013.

‪#‎nationalpoetrymonth‬

National Poetry Month Day 4: somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond

April 4, 2014 § 1 Comment

somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond
by e. e. cummings

somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond
any experience, your eyes have their silence:
in your most frail gesture are things which enclose me,
or which i cannot touch because they are too near

your slightest look easily will unclose me
though i have closed myself as fingers,
you open always petal by petal myself as Spring opens
(touching skillfully, mysteriously) her first rose

or if your wish be to close me, i and
my life will shut very beautifully, suddenly,
as when the heart of this flower imagines
the snow carefully everywhere descending;

nothing which we are to perceive in this world equals
the power of your intense fragility: whose texture
compels me with the color of its countries,
rendering death and forever with each breathing

(i do not know what it is about you that closes
and opens; only something in me understands
the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses)
nobody, not even the rain, has such small hands

‪#‎nationalpoetrymonth‬

National Poetry Month Day 1: Where the Sidewalk Ends

April 1, 2014 § 1 Comment

In honor of April being National Poetry Month, each day on Facebook I will be posting a poem as my status in an effort to spread poetic awareness and appreciation. I will also post a few of my ultra-favorites here, along with any I might write over the course of the next month, so if you follow by email, be aware that you might receive multiple emails in one day from this blog (sorry, dad). However, hopefully you will enjoy these poets and their work as much as I do and won’t be too annoyed.

Day 1:

WHERE THE SIDEWALK ENDS
by Shel Silverstein

There is a place where the sidewalk ends
and before the street begins,
and there the grass grows soft and white,
and there the sun burns crimson bright,
and there the moon-bird rests from his flight
to cool in the peppermint wind.

Let us leave this place where the smoke blows black
and the dark street winds and bends.
Past the pits where the asphalt flowers grow
we shall walk with a walk that is measured and slow
and watch where the chalk-white arrows go
to the place where the sidewalk ends.

Yes we’ll walk with a walk that is measured and slow,
and we’ll go where the chalk-white arrows go,
for the children, they mark, and the children, they know,
the place where the sidewalk ends.

Blackout Poetry (minus the blackouts) 04

March 28, 2014 § Leave a comment

I clambered
under
harsh dry air
rotting
slow pulse
and panicking
plinking heart
robbed of
logic
silently I heard
you
sloshing,
follow me
and
I’d be gone

Crawling

March 26, 2014 § Leave a comment

The sun it is burning oh so much burning I need shade oh not too much shade because I’m small oh so very small inch inch inch not even yet an inch but I inch along I inch as long as it takes to find that shade oh yes some very nice shade HELP YOU’RE CRUSHING ME oh no oh I’m sorry oh so very sorry I didn’t see you there why you’re a green caterpillar oh so very green oh no did you lose your stripes you don’t have any stripes inch inch inch oh no no stripes no stripes at all inch inch inch all the way around the milkweed stock no stripes never had stripes huh that’s strange oh so very strange oh you like my stripes thank you thank you so very much I like your particular shade of green thank yes wonderful oh that’s wonderful thank you thank you for the shade I like you I like you very much let’s be friends what kind of caterpillar are BILLYYYYYYYYYYY! BIIIIIILLLLLLLLYYYYYYY WHERE ARE YOU? I’m here mother right here with my new friend oh so very nice friend he’s BILLY! BILLY GET AWAY FROM THAT THING!

What but mother he’s sharing his shade he’s a very nice little green caterp—mother mother ow no why are you flying me away goodbye little green caterpillar thank you oh thank you for the shade

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