Lyrical Iowa Competition

I was recently informed that I received FIRST PLACE for the Humorous Verse category of the 2014 Lyrical  Iowa Competition. I was quite surprised by it, since the poems I had available at the time I entered the contest were the ones that were left over after I finished compiling my collections, and I had included the winning poem (“Louie’s Petard”) as an afterthought. I really didn’t even have much confidence that one of them would even be accepted for publication, let alone winning…. It should appear on their website soon (once I return the letter giving them permission to do it) and will be in the 2014 edition of Lyrical Iowa.

As for The Golden Key (Book 3 of the Angus the Mage series), the second section is taking longer than I expected, mainly because it is longer than I thought it would be. I’m close, though; I only need to write the first draft of one or two scenes before I can do the technical revision that it needs. Overall, the initial draft of the novel is coming along much better than I had expected it to be at this time. It’s already about 62,000 words long, and by the time I’m finished with it, it will likely be longer than either of the first two novels in the series. It is shaping up nicely, and I’m looking forward to working on it over the weekend. My new goal for completing the first draft is Thanksgiving, but it will be a challenge to achieve it, especially since premiere week for the Fall television programs has been almost as intrusive as teaching has been….

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Another Visual Poem

I wrote this poem a long time ago after reading Poe’s “The Bells.” I’ll let you guess which bell I had in mind for the image.

poe_bells

© 2014, all rights reserved.

Two Short Poems

The first week of classes are over, and I think it will take me a little longer to adjust to my schedule. I’d like to have a time when I can write consistently, but I don’t think that’s going to happen this time around. I only wrote a little bit on Monday and Friday of this week, but I also jotted down a lot of ideas for the book. I wrote some more today, and I plan to write a little bit tomorrow or Monday. Hopefully writing won’t end up being just a weekend activity this semester, but it might. If it does, it will take me awhile to get Book 3 done. Still, I already have about 10% of the first draft done, and that’s something to build on. Considering that I took a lot of time off from writing since I finished up Book 2 a couple of weeks ago, it isn’t a bad start.

In the meantime, here are a couple of short poems:

Moksha

The murmur of Brahman
whispers into the silence, wait-
ing for atman to hear.

Ennui

Sometimes, when I’m
bored, I tinker with the
icons on my desktop,
rearranging them into
patterns that serve no
purpose and hoping to find
inspiration. But shifting
the icons around does
little to change the drivel
dangling inside them.

© 2014, all rights reserved.

The Rose Bush

Instead of wrestling with the indentation and tabulation, I did a screen-capture of this poem and uploaded it to see if it works. Now that I know it does, it will make it easier to upload other visual poems in the future. “The Rose Bush” may have been published in Night Roses back in 1995 or 1996. It was accepted for publication, but attempts to confirm that it was published have gone unanswered.

© 2014, all rights reserved.

© 2014, all rights reserved.

An Apple a Day….

I spent some time on poetry Saturday, and “An Apple a Day…” is one of the poems that were spawned by the experience. As for The Viper’s Fangs, I’m ready for the ending, and as soon as I settle on which ending, it shouldn’t take more than a day or two to complete the draft. I expect to have it ready for the final go-through by Friday (8/8) and to proofread/lightly edit it during the middle of next week. In the meantime, I hope you enjoy this poem!

An Apple a Day…

But not that day so long
ago it should have been for-
gotten. But it wasn’t. It was
memorialized in mis-
remembered verse,
distorted by mis-
ogynistic senti-
men-
t.

In Eden,
when Adam bit
into the apple, it
had the sweetest
flavor that man-
kind has ever
known.

But it
left a bitter
aftertaste.

© 2014, all rights reserved.


 

Revision of 8/9/2014: Since posting this poem, I’ve revised it as two different poems on the same theme. I think it is more effective as the following two poems, since the first stanza had a different style and was much more overt in its criticism than the last two stanzas (which were more subtle and seemed to have a different message). Here they are:

Forbidden Fruit

In Eden,
when Adam bit
into the apple, it
had the sweetest
flavor that man-
kind has ever
known.

But it
left a bitter
aftertaste.

© 2014, all rights reserved.

Original Sin?

An apple a day…
But not that day so long
ago it should have been for-
gotten but wasn’t. Instead,
it was memorialized, mis-
remembered in verse,
and distorted by mis-
ogynistic senti-
men-
t.

© 2014, all rights reserved.