A nearly-forgotten anniversary took me by surprise yesterday: 5 years since the debut of my first full-length book of poetry, Going Fast in Loose Directions.
A fun, mostly-naughty romp of dirty gay sex poems (as requested by the publisher,) Going Fast in Loose Directions was the manifestation of 3 years of writing and workshopping (in public view) sex positive queer poetry on my former Tumblr, Original Content Required. OCR, as my friends and I called it, focused on queer male sexuality in the 2010s: dating and sex in the digital age, the impact of social media, what was lust beyond physical space, and featured poetry and fiction, visual poems, collaborations, response work (numerous pieces that “collaborated” with the art of John MacConnell, with whom I later did formally organized original creations.) OCR was a blast. Time consuming, but great fun. I caused me to become passionate about writing again, introduced me to a lot of interesting artists, photographers and writers, reminded me of how to be disciplined with creative work. Continue reading “A Hard Wood Anniversary”
Apologies for the late update. April 2019 turned out to be a busy National Poetry Month after I accepted invitation into a 30/30 challenge – 30 new poems in 30 days. I manage to pull it off. Mentally exhausted now, but left with some really interesting and cool drafts from which to make future poems.
The month also saw new poems published in petrichor, Horny Poetry Review and Risk Magazine. More on the way in the coming months, but still waiting to see if any publisher picks up Twang. (It’s in the hands of several at the moment!)
In the latest issue of the amazing Glass: A Journal of Poetry, you will find the newest of my hillbilly spells to meet the world: “Spell to Unbind Family Ties.” I really love the last few stanzas of this poem.
Not a bad way to begin National Poetry Month!
with the first of several short poems featured in Issue VII of Risk Magazine. The issue is themed the Art of Intimacy. The editors asked me to craft some poems inspired by the layout in this issue, dealing with modern intimacy, sex, relationships, etc. I ended up creating four pieces – it was a tight deadline that provided me 3.5 days to complete the work – and the first debuted over the weekend in their story Astronauts.
The poem used in the editorial spread is titled “Daynight.” You can read the original text below.
Cobalt, he said.
Around us molecules
forgot to hush.
I remember the first time
we met here, I lied.
His copper eyes afire.
Do you ever worry?
I heard our past race
ahead, geese and gulls
It’s there, but we can’t see.
It blinds the moon. It has
not been night for a week.
Why do we oxidize
our best parts?
I will miss you.
I wrote the first draft of Reading Is Fundamental ten years ago. The poem traveled a long journey of forms, images, sounds that worked and more that failed.
It contains a story and a feeling I wanted to share about a time and place that will never be again. It pays homage to a generation of gay men destroyed by AIDS. To a time and place of liberation that we have in some ways surpassed and in other ways will never know again.
I will never be able to read this poem in public. It yanks deep sadness and regrets out of me that I otherwise ignore. I usually start crying by Lesson 3.
I hope you enjoy the poem – not just as nostalgia or history, but as love expressed through words.
Check out my latest poem
published over at Toe Good:
“Spell to Elicit Heterosexual Urges”
from my in-progress collection
of spells, potions and rituals inspired
by Appalachia and rural life.
I finished writing my answers to an interview I was asked to do about one of my poems and my influences. It required three glasses of wine. Picking poets I stan is easy; picking poets who’ve influenced my work is not easy. I find so much to like in so many!