I’ve been wanting to try a cherita, which is 3 stanzas–one line, two lines, three lines. So this is what I came up with.
I can hear the thunder and spray before I see it.
Then it appears before me in its many textures
of wood and stone and the glorious movement of water.
As I stand on the viewing platform overlooking all,
the mist parts from the water, rising up toward
the blue sky, hugging me in its wet embrace.
Then I started to question if a cherita was really syllabic poetry because you don’t count the syllables, so I quickly came up with a haiku to make sure I’m covered!
sheeting down to be as one
with its still-wild self
The publisher, Alien Buddha Press, of Our Wolves has created a YouTube playlist of authors reading from their new books. I read four poems from the chapbook. Oh, and if you do check it out, watch for when I say the most UNINTENTIONALLY FUNNIEST thing. Hint: it has to do with whether Antarctica has folk and fairy tales.
On another note, I wanted to give you a Perry update. His meds seem to be holding everything bad at bay for now, so we are doing well on that count. But Meesker has decided he doesn’t like Perry in his “room,” so he beats him up occasionally. Yesterday, he left Perry’s fur flying all over the floor! It funny with cats how it works: Perry chases Sloopy Anne who chases Meesker who chases Perry. See the circle there? Then Kana and Perry both intimidate Lily, but if we didn’t have a gate up in the house she would beat up both Meesker and Sloopy Anne! Otherwise, we live in peace and harmony . . . .
I submitted a request to the Phoenix Public Library to purchase 3 books, including Rooted and Winged. I received an automated email saying they had purchased Rooted and Winged. Yay! But the other books were by friends, and they gave me no response on those! I wonder what happened? Next month I will try again. By the way, it’s very easy to request your local library purchase a book, especially if you have a library card.
On this day 2 of the 2-day release of Our Wolves, I would like to share an interview by journalist Deborah Kalb on her book blog. In this interview, she asks questions that probe the origins of the project, including why I chose Red Riding Hood as my “fractured fairy tale.”
Here’s a photo of the champagne I shared with the gardener yesterday for the launch. Note that he tried to order me yellow gerbera daisies which would have been in the photo, but he called Saturday and the florist had already left for the day. So he owes me flowers.
Today is Release Day for Our Wolves. Today and tomorrow. I wanted March 5 because the date has personal significance to me. It’s the anniversary of the first date my husband and I went on, and the chapbook is dedicated to him. Because today is a Sunday, I consider tomorrow Release Day, too!
I hope you will consider heading over to Amazon to pick up a copy of this lil big-mouthed book.
Before I talk about the tour, editor James Lewis so kindly published three of my Rooted and Winged poems in Verse-Virtual‘s March issue: https://www.verse-virtual.org/2023/March/castle-luanne-2023-march.html I hope you like these poems. “Gravity” is about my grandfather gardening in the muck of Kalamazoo. Yes, muck. That is the wet black soil that Kalamazoo is known for, which is why Kalamazoo is known for being the Celery City.
Bloggers: if you would like to piggyback onto the tour in the month of March, I would be happy to share an ARC (Advanced Reader Copy pdf) of the chapbook in the hopes that you will like it enough to review it on your blog and on Amazon (and any other social media sites you care to) in March. If so, please let me know.
This Sunday, March 5, is the launch of my new chapbook Our Wolves with its gorgeous cover art by Kiki Suarez.
In light of that event, I wanted to share a little bit about Kiki and her work.
Kiki was born in Germany, but ended up moving to Mexico where she has lived most of her adult life. She is an artist, a writer, and a psychotherapist. Check out her website, Kikimundo which shares her work, about her company, and a little bit about who she is. I first met Kiki online when we were both writing articles for a site called Cowbird. In a way, writing for Cowbird was like blog writing before I had a blog. Like WordPress, the international community that developed from our shared projects was wonderful, and many of us still stay in contact with each other online.
Here is some more stunning art from the same collection as the one I chose for Our Wolves.
On Facebook, Kiki writes long posts that tell stories about her life. And I noticed on her website that she has blog posts, which I did not realize until now. Here is a wonderful one about her father. Remember that these are written in Spanish, but Google translated for me. I hope it will for you, too.
Now I said that Kiki is a psychotherapist. Here she is in a space devoted to healing people. She says that she combines elements of Rogerian and Gestalt therapy, as well as many elements of Buddhist philosophy.
I owe a big thank you to Kiki for her gorgeous art for my chapbook, as well as making my life more enjoyable in general. I love to read her stories characterized by her big heart and to see the vibrant art she shares online.
Today is Memorial Day, a day to honor those who sacrificed their lives in our military. I am sharing a poem from my chapbook Kin Types about a sister who awaits word from her brother who is a soldier in WWI.
Once and Now
His letter, once wet and now dry, once
wrinkled now smoothed against her breast,
once a receptacle for all he could not say,
the lone poppy in the field, the striped sky, not
the mud, men, horses, bullets, shovels.
Definitely not, but she suspects as much.
She listens to her husband outside the church
door, reads the casualty lists, hovers around
those waiting. Now her big brother’s letter
like his touch on their dying mother’s cheek,
is enough. He’s been long a soldier, the bachelor
patriarch. In the early days he wrote pages
of the trembling sweep of the Pacific,
ancient trees and reeds poking like magic
sticks from the water, a field of buttercups
near the Presidio, a borrowed horse he rode.
Given their immigrant circumstances, the career
had seemed wise until now, with Huns like red
devils leering down from propaganda posters
jeering them with their German names,
a town friend’s Dachshund ripped from her arms,
his brains smashed on the pavement, onto
her shoes. Shoes she showed Clara, pointing,
See, see how dangerous they are in their hate!
The knock sneaks up on her from behind.
She has turned to put the letter in the ribbon-
tied stack, so standing between fourteen years
of letters and the knock, she knows that this
is not the paperboy coming for his coin.
She knows what a ridiculous leap her mind
has made, but still she is certain about the paper,
and it is a paper telegram. Without opening it,
she slips the Western Union under the grosgrain.
Once busy, she has all the time in the world now.
Clara Mulder née Waldeck
Caledonia, Michigan, United States
Clara has received the dreaded telegram that will validate her worst fears--that her laughing, vibrant brother will not be coming home.
I chose a very mild–in this case British–stamp with WWI propaganda.