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Poetry Breakfast

Beginning March 20th, 2016 Poetry Breakfast will once again serve a little poetic nourishment every morning. Start your day with our new expanded menu. Poems, of course, are our specialty. But we will also be serving a fuller menu that includes poetry related creative non-fiction such as letters to and from poets, essays on poetry, and anything else that might feed a poet and poetry lover’s soul.

The Hinge – A Poem by Sergio A. Ortiz

The Hinge

Forgive
the craft
of pouring myself
into pitchers.

Water
cannot tolerate thirst
for long periods
of time, the thirst

that invaded my home
during the years
of submarginal
words.

Burglars
burned down
the charity bazaars
and school libraries.

Now my son
will inherit
a handful of ashes.

 

 

About the Poet:
Sergio A. Ortiz is a gay Puerto Rican poet and the founding editor of Undertow Tanka Review. He is a two-time Pushcart nominee, a four-time Best of the Web nominee, and 2016 Best of the Net nominee. 2nd place in the 2016 Ramón Ataz annual poetry competition, sponsored by Alaire Publishing House. He is currently working on his first full-length collection of poems, Elephant Graveyard.

 

Poetry Breakfast accepts submissions of poetry and poetry related creative non-fiction year-round.  See our Submission Guidelines page for details on submitting your work.

Start your morning with a nourishing poem.  Follow us on  Twitter, Facebook, and  Tumblr,  and enjoy a new poem every morning straight to your feed.

Dyslateral – A Poem by Sonja Johanson

Dyslateral

Never really could tell which way people meant.
I understand the concept, I truly do, but which
foot to kick the ball with, which way to turn at
the second light, which column in the paper – I’m
not ever going to get it. Do you mean from your
side looking at me, or from my side looking at you?

I could tell you if you really meant vocation or
avocation and when to use whom instead of who;
could determine by smell if there was enough salt
in the sauce, could choose the exact shade of green
to match the wallpaper, but there was only half
a chance I would pull the lever you wanted me to.

My sister was fine with it. She would give me driving
directions saying “my way” or “your way” to guide
me. Now you’re trying to get me to a place I’ve
never been, and I’m looking at the road, but discreetly
rubbing my middle fingers, feeling for the callous I got
on my writing hand, back before we had computers.

 

 

This poem was originally published in Trees in Our Dooryards, Redbird Chapbooks. http://www.redbirdchapbooks.com/content/trees-our-dooryards

 

 

About the Poet:
Sonja Johanson has recent work appearing in the Best American Poetry blog, BOAAT,  Epiphany,  and The Writer’s Almanac.  She is a contributing editor at the Found Poetry Review, and the author of Impossible Dovetail (IDES, Silver Birch Press), all those ragged scars (Choose the Sword Press), and Trees in Our Dooryards (Redbird Chapbooks).  Sonja divides her time between work in Massachusetts and her home in the mountains of western Maine. You can follow her work at www.sonjajohanson.net .

 

 

Poetry Breakfast accepts submissions of poetry and poetry related creative non-fiction year-round.  See our Submission Guidelines page for details on submitting your work.

Start your morning with a nourishing poem.  Follow us on  Twitter, Facebook, and  Tumblr,  and enjoy a new poem every morning straight to your feed.

Beach Dweller Manifesto – A Poem by Leah Mueller

Beach Dweller Manifesto

I hated the close of the year
before it ever became
popular, believing the digits
themselves to be ominous-

a number left behind
vanishes into sea,
while a bottle emerges,
containing words
of imminent promise.

I stretch my arm forward:
the bottle tumbles past, followed
by another, until I give up
the catch, and the hunt.

By the end of every year,
I’m ready to begin again.

Facing the winter
with four pairs of new socks
and my eroding good looks,
I push my chest forward
and laugh. They will never stop me.
Let them try.

 

 

About the Poet:
Leah Mueller is an independent writer from Tacoma, Washington. She is the author of one chapbook, Queen of Dorksville, and two full-length books, Allergic to Everything and The Underside of the Snake. Her work has been published or is forthcoming in Blunderbuss, Memoryhouse, Outlook Springs, Atticus Review, Sadie Girl Press, Origins Journal, Silver Birch Press, Cultured Vultures, Quail Bell, and many others. She was a featured poet at the 2015 New York Poetry Festival, and a runner-up in the 2012 Wergle Flomp Humor Poetry contest.

 

Poetry Breakfast accepts submissions of poetry and poetry related creative non-fiction year-round.  See our Submission Guidelines page for details on submitting your work.

Start your morning with a nourishing poem.  Follow us on  Twitter, Facebook, and  Tumblr,  and enjoy a new poem every morning straight to your feed.

Native – A Poem by Kimberly Paulk

Native

Every tree and flower I see,
I ask if it is native.
Was it here before time?
No, the answer comes
always the same.
India, New Caledonia, Africa
are their ancient homes.
What, then, was here?
The mountain, of course.
Always the mountain.

 

 

About the Poet:
Kimberly Paulk is a writer in Matthews, North Carolina. Her work has appeared in Ground Fresh Thursday Press as well as Charlotte Parent and Mom Writers’ Literary magazines.

 

 

Poetry Breakfast accepts submissions of poetry and poetry related creative non-fiction year-round.  See our Submission Guidelines page for details on submitting your work.

Start your morning with a nourishing poem.  Follow us on  Twitter, Facebook, and  Tumblr,  and enjoy a new poem every morning straight to your feed.

In the grease room’s dark – A Poem by Allen Braden

In the grease room’s dark

(somewhere above
the stacks of retreads and rings
of stockpiled air filters

and rough pine planks that sag
under cans of every kind of paint
failing to approximate a rainbow,

where the top shelf’s a stash
of Hustlers and Playboys,
the chew roll of Copenhagen)

a single valentine from the drugstore
is hidden, with not a smudge
of grease or dirt on it.

Would it be hyperbole then
to say turpentine and thinner
perfume the air;

say the cobwebs
are like costume jewelry
accessorizing the beams and rafters;

their specks of dust,
tiny rhinestones
after last night’s killing frost?

Even the dead flies
and drops of oil spilt from drums
glitter in the weak and dirty light.

 

 

This poem also appears in Allen Braden’s chapbook Elegy in the Passive Voice(University of Alaska/Fairbanks).

 

 

About the Poet:
Allen Braden is the author of A Wreath of Down and Drops of Blood and Elegy in the Passive Voice. The poems below are from the latter. He is the assistant poetry editor of Terrain.org: A Journal of the Built + Natural Environments.

 

Poetry Breakfast accepts submissions of poetry and poetry related creative non-fiction year-round.  See our Submission Guidelines page for details on submitting your work.

Start your morning with a nourishing poem.  Follow us on  Twitter, Facebook, and  Tumblr,  and enjoy a new poem every morning straight to your feed.

Summer – A Poem by Sarah Bokich

Summer

I climb the wide west hill and the city
reeks of stagnant late summer: first urine
pooled under the bridge, then the dumpster
behind the Indian buffet on 21st Avenue.

Higher up on the hill, exhaust and roses
mix with the chemical stink of fertilizer
and the fumes from paint slapped onto
an apartment building’s black-iron rails.

I descend to the waterfront where
the scent is late-summer blackberries
warming on the vine, eucalyptus, the faint
flintiness of soil, and oil from a docked ship.

Then I go home and eat a peach so ripe I have to close my eyes.

 

 

This poem also appears in Sarah Bokich’s chapbook Rocking Chair at the End of the World (Finishing Line Press, 2017), available here.

 

 

About the Poet:
Sarah Bokich is a writer and marketing consultant.  Her work has recently appeared in VoiceCatcher, Timberline Review, and Cloudbank, and her debut chapbook Rocking Chair at the End of the World (Finishing Line Press) is forthcoming in 2017.  She lives with her family in Portland, Oregon and can be reached at www.sarahbokich.com.

 

Poetry Breakfast accepts submissions of poetry and poetry related creative non-fiction year-round.  See our Submission Guidelines page for details on submitting your work.

Start your morning with a nourishing poem.  Follow us on  Twitter, Facebook, and  Tumblr,  and enjoy a new poem every morning straight to your feed.

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