Tuesday, January 31, 2023

your i-heart annogram

Dear annogrammers
We have some soup to warm you up this dreary February! And for Valentine’s, revelations of divine love, and an exacting clam. Sound crazy? No. It is your typical annogram, full of the literary news and creative opportunities you love.


All Shall Be Well


Julian of Norwich (1342-c1416)
When Dos Madres publisher Robert Murphy once quoted Julian of Norwich (1342-c1416) to me, I was impressed. Not many know about the anchorite whose visions informed Revelations of Divine Love, one of the earliest writings in English by a woman. That’s one reason I am thrilled my poem, “Intervention,” will appear this May in the All Shall Be Well tribute anthology edited by UK poet Sarah Law.


Reader’s Choice Award in China

Yan River Reader's Choice Award
After Chinese translator Chen Du translated a handful of my poems that appeared in the distinguished Yan River literary journal, we received a Reader’s Choice Award. Chen Du and her co-translator, Xisheng Chen, also translate into English the work of contemporary Chinese poet Yan An. Find most recent work in The Dodge, The Hopkins Review, and Our Changing Earth (The Poet) anthology.


Hélène Sanguinetti and Exacting Clam

Hélène Sanguinetti at Mémo d’Oullins
Congratulations to Hélène on reading with François Charvet at the Coïncidences Poétiques at Mémo d’Oullins (France) last month! More good news: Exacting Clam, the literary journal of Sagging Meniscus Press, will publish my translation of Hélène’s poem, “I took 3 cows to the country,” that debuted in the French journal Vinaigrette. Woo-hoo as we say, or Ouah in French….


Telling You Everything

That is the title of Cindy Hochman's latest book, whose wonderful poems combine Plath-like gravitas and Dorothy Parker street savvy. All the wit you enjoy in Cindy’s Monday Facebook posts on English grammar animates this volume as well. As editor of First Literary Review-East, she works her powers of discrimination to create an utterly delightful and satisfying read. Highly recommended!


Honoring Jeff Beck

Jeff Beck (1944-2023)
Thanks to Michael, the favorite guitarist in my life, I attended the ARMS Benefit (1983) where Yardbird guitarists Beck, Clapton, and Page reunited; Beck-Clapton Together and Apart (2010), Beck-Brian Wilson-Beach Boys concert (2013), and Beck with Tyler Bryant at the Capitol Theater (2015). After Beck’s first Fillmore East show, Michael met him outside with “You were great tonight!” He replied, “I know,” and then kicked a soccer ball to his new vocalist Rod Stewart. We will miss Beck’s creative genius, which included everything from crunchy techno fireworks to haunting vocal-like solos.


Creative Opportunities


Kevin Pilkington
Steve Almond, Writing into Deep Truth, Maine Media Workshop, August 14-18, $1450


Nick Flynn, Memoir as Bewilderment, Maine Media Workshop, July 10-14, $1450


Green Linden Press Chapbook open call, by March 20


Kevin Pilkington, Best Words—Best Order Poetry Workshop, Maine Media Workshop, July 17-21, $1396


The Poet anthologies, call for poems on suicide, by March 31; and addiction, by April 30


Federico García Lorca (1898-1936)
Politics and Prose online class on Garcia Lorca, $130, April 12, 19, 26, May 3, 6-8pm ET 

Wildhouse Poetry Chapbook Contest, $25 fee, by April 15


Writing the Walls, a literary response to artwork at the Hudson Valley MOCA, by February 5


New and Recent Releases


John Bradley, Dear Morpheus, The Glue That is You (Dos Madres Press)




Joanne M. Clarkson, Hospice House (Moonpath Press)


Jim Daniels, The Human Engine at Dawn (Wolfson Press)

First Literary Review-East


Cindy Hochman, Telling You Everything (Unleash Press)


Nathalia Holt, Wise Gals: The Spies Who Built the CIA and Changed the Future of Espionage (G.P. Putnam’s Sons)

Giorgia Pavlidou,
Haunted by the Living – Fed by the Dead (Anvil Tongue Books)


Pedestal 91


Mark Saba, Flowers in the Dark (Kelsay Books)


Meredith Trede, Bringing Back the House (Broadstone Books) pre-order


Creative Workshops


All-Genre Writers Group, 6:30pm, Thursdays


John McMullen Poetry Workshop, 6pm, fourth Wednesdays


Photo by Marcus Paulos Prado
Mahopac Poetry Workshop, 6pm, second Wednesdays


ModPo, University of Pennsylvania’s free poetry course and global community


Norwalk Poetry Workshop, first and third Mondays, 6:30pm; email poet_laureate@norwalkpl.org to register


The Peekskill Writing Table, serious critique for writers, second and third Tuesdays via Zoom; email tpwritingtable@gmail.com


The Poets Salon, led by Ed Ahern and Alison McBain of Fairfield Scribes Press, 10am, every second Saturday


Writers and Artists Lunch Conversation, second Fridays, noon


February Events – ET

Suzanne Cleary
HVWC, February 1, 7pm; poet Suzanne Cleary introduces Spencer Reece, Ashley M. Jones, Rick Mulkey (LIVE), register here

Great Weather for Media Ten-Minute Readings on Facebook, Wednesdays, 7:30pm: February 1, Tony Medina; February 8, Kevin Powell; February 15, devorah major; February 22, Danny Simmons; register here by 7:15pm

devorah major
Thorne-Sagendorph Art Gallery, February 9-April 1, Meg Lindsay painting in juried show

Facebook, February 13, 6:30pm, Poetry Chat: Let’s Talk About Imagists with poet Christina Rau; register (free event): info@babylonarts.org


Robert Savino
Long Island Poetry & Literature Repository, February 16, 7pm, poets Christina Rau and Robert Savino; open mic follows

QED Astoria and on Facebook, February 26, 7pm, Poets of Queens, tickets here, $10+EventBrite fee


Now through March 5, New York Public Library, Stephen A. Schwarzman Building, Virginia Woolf: A Modern Mind, free: register here



Monthly Readings – ET


First Sunday, 4pm, Poetic License (Austin)


Every Tuesday, 2pm, Spoken Word World (Paris)


Every Tuesday, 7pm, Curley’s Diner


Third Fridays, 7pm, Hudson Valley Writers Center Open Mic – click third Friday for details


Frequent Saturdays (check Facebook), 5pm, LitBalm


Broccoli-Cheddar Soup


This recipe, from vegetarian blog Love and Lemons, seems perfect for the raw damp weather we’ve been having in New York. Some of you asked what vegetarian chicken broth is—it is Edward and Sons Not-Chick’n Bouillon Cubes from Whole Foods. Click on link below for the crusty croutons which seem like a must. Stay warm!


4 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 medium yellow onion, chopped

½ teaspoon sea salt

Freshly ground black pepper

3 garlic cloves, chopped

¼ cup all-purpose flour

2 cups whole milk or unsweetened almond milk  

2 cups vegetarian chicken broth

3 cups chopped broccoli florets

1 large carrot, julienned or finely chopped

½ teaspoon Dijon mustard

8 ounces shredded cheddar cheese, about 2 heaping cups

Homemade croutons, for serving, optional


Melt butter in large pot over medium heat. Add onion, salt, and several grinds of pepper and stir, 5 minutes, or until softened. Stir in garlic and cook for another minute, then sprinkle in flour and whisk continuously 1-2 minutes, or until flour turns golden. Slowly pour in milk, whisking continuously. Add broth, broccoli, carrot, and mustard, and stir. Simmer 15-20 minutes, or until broccoli is tender. Gradually add cheese, stirring after each addition, until all cheese is melted and soup is creamy. Season to taste and serve with croutons, if desired.



ʼRound the Net


Poet Jean-Luc Pouliquen on presenting “Gaston Bachelard, les poètes et la poésie” recently at Rencontres Philo in La Valette-de-Var (France), and on his book which further explores Bachelard


Poet Robert Fanning on having composer David Biedenbender perform “in a field of stars” based on Robert’s poem “Infinity Room,” and both talking about it, at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Northwest Arkansas to a packed audience


Art historian and translator Beth Gersh-Nesic on her superb essay, “André Salmon's ‘The Fable Of The Tin Fish’ Explained and Explored in the Met Museum's ‘Cubism And the Trompe L'Oeil Tradition’’’


Poet John C. Goodman for this excellent essay, “Obscurity in Poetry,” that explains the development of varied traditions in poetry


Poet Cindy Hochman on her new book, Telling You Everything, and the latest issue of First Literary Review-East


Photographer and poet Michael Holstein on being named the Westchester Art Council’s Volunteer of the Year


Author Nathalia Holt on having Wise Gals selected as the BBC Radio 4 Book of the Week


Poet, essayist, and translator J. Chester Johnson, interviewed by Cornelius Eady, on speaking about the Elaine Race Massacre in this Poets House podcast


Poet Jerry T. Johnson on his forthcoming book A Coldness from Finishing Line Press


Poet and artist Meg Lindsay on her painting in Intima; upcoming poem in inScribe; another poem, painting, and essay in April Tinnitus Today; and juried work at the Thorne-Sagendorph Art Gallery, February 9-April 1


Yorktown Poet Laureate John McMullen for sharing this poignant analysis of a Whitman poem, and another on Leonard Cohen’s use of religious imagery


Poet and artist Giorgia Pavlidou on the Rain Taxi review of her latest book, Lit Balm reading (0:56), and video of a recent reading from Athens


The New York Public Library for sharing its Top Checkouts of 2022


Bassist Larry Schwartzman for this video of Jeff Beck and Rosie Bones Live at the Hollywood Bowl (2017)


Cellist and music archivist Jay Shulman on this Classics Today review of Laura Newell: The Philharmonia Recordings (Artek, 2022)


Poet and watercolorist Linda Simone for this fun visual of childhood pop culture (zoom in)  


Poet and filmmaker Bob Zaslow for this animation of his children’s book, The Mayfly and the Methuselah Tree


Change of Pace


The annogram schedule is changing as a way to produce a more thoughtful newsletter, and to allow me more time for creative pursuits: I plan two spring issues in April and June, a fall one in September, and a holiday November/December issue. It is amazing what we all are accomplishing! Please continue to send your news; I can share your glad tidings in past tense if need be.


Until next time,