I had a very pleasant surprise checking my mailbox in our Himeji apartment a couple of weeks ago. As well as the usual utilities bills written in Japanese and ads for very expensive pizzas, there was a copy of Illya’s Honey, the bi-annual journal of The Dallas Poets Community. In this Spring/Summer 2012 edition were two of my poems “a cup” and “my left hand.”
It seems that the small presses are keeping poetry alive in many parts of the world, no doubt existing on a shoe-string budget and manned by volunteers giving up their own time to keep a labor of love extant.
I love seeing my work alongside of others’ I’m not familiar with – in this case mostly US poets – and I still get a buzz knowing that my work has been printed (and read) on the other side of the planet. And I’ve “met” yet another Walker poet (Loretta Diane Walker) who’s poem The Help’s Daughter I read serendipitously the day after I saw the movie The Help based on Kathryn Stockett’s novel. A bonus – included in the envelope was a chapbook by Budd Powell Mahan, whose work is also previously unknown to me and wonderful, being a book of poems written on One Saturday.
It was another US small publisher (The Red River Review) which nominated me for a Pushcart Prize last year.
Nothing against online publications – but let’s hope the small presses continue to thrive and support creative artists around the world!
Thanks Dallas Poets Community for your generosity.