Reckless Pilgrims / Allison Thorpe

RedklessPilgrimCoverWelcome to the rich world of storyteller Allison Thorpe. The beauty, which “lived in all things”, the “Giveth and taketh away moments”, the speaker’s “carrying the crease/ of some sharp-eyed certainty” illuminate the day-to-day living and the war within and without. Plants and animals take front stage with the metaphors of their lives, relationships, functions and interactions. “How often do we look up/ for warmth, beauty, answers?” asks this book and the fortunate reader who takes the journey will be well- rewarded with insight.
– Katerina Stoykova – author of Second Skin

Do not be misled by the title of Alison Thorpe’s newest collection. Each word, every line of this welcome book is carefully evaluated and arranged. Her tender examination of place and memory is steadfast and clear-eyed, never maudlin. Conflicts, natural and human, are grappled with, resolved, mourned, even celebrated in these lush poems. Here, the rotation of seasons brings specific gifts – harvested bounty or the marauding threat of winter. There, one might find the “recklessness” alluded to in the title – the abandon of spring, when nature indulges itself with color and abundance. Even as she turns away,
with equal parts of sorrow and confidence, to take up city living, her “eyes hurry to that
green slash of life/that earthy illusion of roots” which carpet her memories and lost
mountain hollows. Thorpe’s plea and mantra can be distilled to this line: “May we find
value in what we are/ Not in what we lack.” Looking back on the absences she considers,
those shadows of the past, we share her delight and abiding pleasure in what was and is
still there, always at hand.
– Brigit Truex, poetry editor, Hopper Journal and author of Sierra Silk

Rooted in both the love of a local place and the poesies of Kentucky, Allison Thorpe’s
poems are emblems of change that teach us to search, know, and then “relearn our heart.”
Thorpe’s “green theater of spreading hills” is a pilgrimage through a life rich with
wonder, love, damage, and loss. We are guided by the voice of the poet-farmer singing
the “joyous seeds of hope” as well as the poet-pilgrim who never shirks reality: “fever,
fires, insane / men who rule the world.” These remarkable poems navigate the unique and
striking journey of living a particular life with communal details and astonishing imagery
and pull us “like a rogue tide” toward “the next luring bend, sparkled, drenched.”
– Marianne Worthington, poetry editor, Still: The Journal


Publication Date: March 1, 2021
Paperback, 104 pages
ISBN: 978-1-937968-79-3

Purchase at: Broadstone Books

Wrinkles In Time and in Love / Nancy Jo Allen

allen_frontNancy Jo Allen proudly announces the release (March 20, 2021) of her first collection of poetry through her publisher Kelsay Books and Amazon. The book is entitled Wrinkles in Time and in Love, and includes the poem “Art” first published in Third Wednesday’s Vol.XI, No. 4 edition.

“Allen’s poems take us on a journey through the difficulties of relationship and identity: daughter, wife, mother, ex-wife, friend, and wife again. At each stage, we’re asked to reconsider our preconceptions and ideals in favor of the lived experience of those realities—a thoughtful and polished collection.”
—Marta Ferguson, former poetry editor for The Missouri Review, and author of Mustang Sally Pays Her Debt to Wilson Pickett

“Nancy Jo Allen’s poems are deeply felt and well crafted. She has an excellent ear and eye.”
—Bruce Taylor is the former Poet Laureate of Eau Claire and host of Off the Page a reading series at the Local Store Gallery.

“Like the haiku, Allen’s poetry captures small moments of life with images from nature. And like a haiku, the collection is perfect in word, rhythm, and line. Through her poems, we travel through the landscape of memory and vicariously touch grief and let it go. We recognize defeat and replace it with contentment. We love again.”
—Lori Younker, author of Mongolian Interior: An Expatriate Experience and Sioux Beside Me, former Columbia Chapter Missouri Writers Guild president, and author and founder of World So Bright.org, a collection of cultural essays.

Nancy Jo Allen was born and raised in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and now lives in Columbia, Missouri, with her husband Terry and their pup Jayden.
3WYouTube

Click to see a video recording of Nancy reading from Wrinkles in Time and in Love.

At the Driveway Guitar Sale/ Buff Whitman-Bradley

Cvr_DrivewayGuitarSaleThird Wednesday contributor Buff Whitman-Bradley’s new book, At the Driveway Guitar Sale: Poems on Aging, Memory, Mortality, is available from Main Street Rag Publishing Company. A few of the poems in the book were originally published in Third Wednesday. He podcasts at thirdactpoems.podbean.com
3WYouTube
Click the YouTube link for a video of Buff reading from his book.

At the Driveway Guitar Sale can be puchased from Main Street Rag.

I’ve read this author in many publications over the years, and listened to his own gently cadenced readings on his podcast, and I love his poetry. Wit, imagination, a perfect ear, and an effortless touch (not to mention knee-slapping punchlines) mark all of Whitman-Bradley’s work, and the poems in this book are no different. The poet is forgivingly and unforgivingly self-aware, somehow finding all the poetry in life’s least poetic moments.  ~Roger Stoll, essayist and poet

For all of us, even though we may continue to climb stairs and eat our vegetables, the ever-expanding past continues to nip at our heels. Buff Whitman-Bradley reminds us in these poems that we are not alone, that we participate in a common project with its pitfalls and distractions. He calls attention to the gifts and graces that accompany a seasoned perspective, and that there is a special liveliness and wise humor that comes with age that is both balm and elixir.  ~Gary Crounse

With his signature grace and economy, Buff Whitman-Bradley tackles the unimaginable; the body’s elemental breakdown and the proverbial leap into the unknown which awaits us all. Never settling for abstraction or platitude, these poems are as rugged and beautiful as the California landscapes humming in the background. And though he may have given up on his plan ‘to be an ancient Chinese poet’, something of their wild humor and gem-like clarity shines on every page. ~Seth Jani, Publisher and Editor of Seven CirclePress, Author of Night Fable

Tidy up

buff_whitman-bradleyA Zen master of my acquaintance
Once said that when he died
He wished to leave no trace.
All the backpackers I know
Say the same
About their sojourns in the wild.
No messes, no unfinished business.
It’s a good idea to tidy up
Before all of our little departures
And our impending Big One –
Douse the coals, strew the ashes,
Bag any food scraps,
Bits of paper, foil and cardboard,
Erase all footprints,
Be forthright, apologize, forgive –
So that what remains of us in memory
Is not a squalid little campsite
Full of trash and debris
And tangled disputes
That will cause great consternation
Or anguish
To those left behind,
But is instead
An expanse of mountain grasses
Beside a high cold tarn
Where ones who loved us
Might like to pass a little time,
Pitch a tent,
Build a fire.

What the Owls Know / Paul Bernstein

WhatTheOwlsKnowPaperback: 58 pages
Publisher: Kelsay Books (August 5, 2019)
Available from Kelsay Books
Amazon.com
Barnes and Noble

PaulBernsteinPaul Bernstein is a self-taught poet who began writing seriously after a varied career as a library worker/weekend hippie, anti-war activist, radical journalist, medical editor, and managing editor. His work now appears regularly in journals and anthologies. He is also a prizewinning amateur country music lyricist and a published photographer. Recent work has appeared or is forthcoming in  Front Porch Review, Muddy River Poetry Review, New Plains Review, Third Wednesday, and U.S. 1 Worksheets. Paul currently lives in Ann Arbor, Michigan. He suffers from an addiction to Michigan sports contracted as an undergraduate but is otherwise functional.

3WYouTubeClick to see and hear Paul Bernstein reading from What the Owls Know on our YouTube channel.

Spindrift / Laurence W. Thomas

SpindriftCoverSpindrift suggests stuff blown onto beaches, beaches of discovery in one’s mind. When these poems show a squirrel, a fish, birds, a beggar, an Irish pub, or a dish we see these as metaphors which conjure up ideas or feelings from our own familiarity with them. A poem that begins as an abstraction, like an enemy or peace or patience, becomes objectified. Spindrift is comprised of whatever little gems might be found along the shore, examined closely to become part of the reader’s experience. These jottings of spindrift take off from that experience like going to an airport when you want to be someplace else – or like poems which say one thing when they mean another.

Published by Atmosphere Press, 2021. 124 Pages, ISBN 163649532X
or purchase from Barnes and Noble or Amazon.

aaLarryThomasLaurence W. Thomas is the founding editor of Third Wednesday Magazine. He has been around long enough to know the sting of rejection and the salve of acceptance. His shelves are lined with his own publications as well as the works of many other poets. He Chancelor Emertus of the Poetry Society of Michigan.

3WYouTubeNow you can see and hear Laurence read poems from this book on 3rd Wednesday’s Youtube Channel!

Home and Away / Ruth Holzer

HoneandAwayHome and Away by Ruth Holzer is a collection of short prose poems combined with haiku in the Japanese form of haibun, originated by Basho in the 17th century, and now becoming more widely written in the English-speaking world. These poems, reflecting a range of emotions, trace a personal journey and hopefully will also resonate with a reader’s experiences.

The 36 page chapbook is available for $7.00 from dancing girl press at:

https://dulcetshop.myshopify.com/collections/dancing-girl-press/products/home-and-away-ruth-holzer

or directly from holzerruth@yahoo.com

RuthHolzerBio: Ruth Holzer is the author of five previous chapbooks, most recently, A Face in the Crowd (Kelsay Books, 2019) and Why We’re Here (Press Press, 2019). Her poems have appeared in Third Wednesday, Poet Lore, Faultline, Connecticut River Review, Southern Poetry Review, Journal of New Jersey Poets, The South Carolina Review, Blue Unicorn and other journals and anthologies. She has served as a co-editor of Haibun Today and as an associate editor of tinywords. A multiple Pushcart nominee, among her awards are the Edgar Allan Poe Memorial Prize from the Poetry Society of Virginia and the Tanka Splendor Award.

Matryoshka Houses / Lynn Pattison

MatryoshkaHousesRoom by room and roof by roof, the poems of Lynn Pattison’s Matryoshka Houses open up those dwellings in which the speaker has lived, and lost, and loved, where the soup contains everything from hard knocks and thorns to the divorce decree, and rooms are “flooded pink with sun through the crabapple.” These are poems that have emerged from a life not only fully lived, but fully seen. The world, here, comes in through the eyes and is sifted through the imagination: “Wide white wings / bloom from either side” of a plow blade, she writes, “as if some/commanding angel sweeps across / the prairie in moonlight delirium.” Pattison’s is a worthy voice to guide us through these disorderly, “illogical days,” this “understory world,” where still the houses of memory sing, in “Calls that reached to the pasture / if they had to”—Here I am.

Diane Seuss, author of Four-Legged Girl and Still Life with Two Dead Peacocks and a Girl

Lynn Pattison writes, “Here,” the house sings, “Here I am.” In Matryoshka Houses, she deftly explores how her homes have served not only as vessels for loved ones and the tangle of objects a family accumulates—like records playing on a Victrola and jewelry boxes decorated with dancers—but are also containers for deep emotions and memories. In these graceful poems, she blends her many houses together seamlessly, until, distilled, they become the essence of home, which stands, “steadfast / no matter the weather,” and to which she returns, again and again.

Kathleen McGookey, author of Instructions for My Impster

Time collapses in this wistful and shimmering collection by Lynn Pattison, in which all the rooms and houses her speaker has lived in become layered like double exposures, a palimpsest, nested Matryoshka dolls. Whether lived in for days, like a hotel room in Cancun that becomes home to a seasick tourist; or decades, like the family homestead where “my father / remembers his father setting logs at dawn,” these lost homes and their furnishings take on mythic significance, resonating with the reader’s own memories. Easily read in one sitting, this chapbook is an ideal introduction to Pattison’s fine work.

Julie Kane, former Louisiana Poet Laureate and author of Mothers of Ireland

LynnPattisonLynn Pattison’s work appeared, most recently, at Ruminate and Moon City Review. It has also appeared in Smartish Pace, Pinyon, The Notre Dame Review, Mom Egg Review and elsewhere. Previous collections include : tesla’s daughter (March St. Press); Walking Back the Cat (Bright Hill Press) and Light That Sounds Like Breaking (Mayapple Press).

Lynn Pattison’s chapbook, Matryoshka Houses, debuted June, 2020 from Kelsay Press. It can be ordered from the Press or purchased from Amazon or Kelsay Books.

 

amazonlogo        KelsayAldrich

The Wild Severance / V.P. Loggins

TheWildSever_The Wild Severance delivers on its title. Pelicans, crows, gulls, fireflies, robins, cardinals, bluejays fly from its pages messaging time, illuminating our lives “in the falling darkness.” But it’s not only the natural world this poet loves: he writes of literary and mythological figures, elevating them to existence with language. There are people to remember, too: where a second child fits; how coffee brings a mother and father back from memory; present-day family encounters, “while I watch from my chair I see five generations.” This is a book rich with what is true and what lasts; V.P. Loggins makes us believe that there’s sanctity enough in this cold world to make poetry that honors the glorious.
Grace Cavalieri, Maryland Poet Laurate

With his newest collection of poems, The Wild Severance, V.P. Loggins startles us like crows taking flight after a gunshot. This book wraps around the human heart in all of its moods, reflecting the melancholy of late in the day, when “The sky beyond is changing violet,” the unease of “night / when the moon is burning,” and the hope that comes when “light / outside the window hardens / the black morning into blue.” The poetry here is astonishing. Light spreads throughout these poems like sunrise through opened curtains. They are written with the meticulous and patient gaze of a birdwatcher.
Stephen Roger Powers, Author of All Seats Fifty Cents


V. P. Loggins is the author of The Green Cup (2017), winner of the Cider Press Review Editors’ Prize, The Fourth Paradise (Main Street Rag, 2010) and Heaven Changes (Pudding House Chapbook Series, 2007). He has published one book of criticism on Shakespeare, The Life of Our Design, and is co-author of another, Shakespeare’s Deliberate Art. His poems and articles have appeared in The Baltimore Review, Crannog (Ireland), The Dalhousie Review, First Things, The Hampden-Sydney Poetry Review, The Healing Muse, Poet Lore, Poetry East, Poetry Ireland Review and The Southern Review, among others. He has been a finalist for the T. S. Eliot Prize, the May Swenson Award, and the Tampa Review Prize. His work has been featured in A Universe of Dreams, poetry and music performed nationally by Neal Conan of National Public Radio and Ensemble Galilei. V. P. Loggins holds a Ph.D. in English Renaissance literature from Purdue University and has taught most recently at the United States Naval Academy.


Title: The Wild Severance – Genre: Poetry – $16 – Author: V. P. Loggins
Publication Date: April 20, 2021 – Publisher: Bright Hill Press – Product Number: 9781892471949
ISBN: 978-1-892471-94-9 – Binding: Paperback – Pages: 92 – Weight: 10 ounces


Available From:   Bright Hill Press Books    Small Press Distribution    Baker & Taylor    Barnes & Noble   Amazon 

 

At the Driveway Guitar Sale / Buff Whitman-Bradley

Cvr_DrivewayGuitarSale

Third Wednesday contributor Buff Whitman-Bradley’s new book, At the Driveway Guitar Sale: Poems on Aging, Memory, Mortality, is available from Main Street Rag Publishing Company. A few of the poems in the book were originally published in Third Wednesday. He podcasts at thirdactpoems.podbean.com

At the Driveway Guitar Sale can be puchased from Main Street Rag.

I’ve read this author in many publications over the years, and listened to his own gently cadenced readings on his podcast, and I love his poetry. Wit, imagination, a perfect ear, and an effortless touch (not to mention knee-slapping punchlines) mark all of Whitman-Bradley’s work, and the poems in this book are no different. The poet is forgivingly and unforgivingly self-aware, somehow finding all the poetry in life’s least poetic moments.  ~Roger Stoll, essayist and poet

For all of us, even though we may continue to climb stairs and eat our vegetables, the ever-expanding past continues to nip at our heels. Buff Whitman-Bradley reminds us in these poems that we are not alone, that we participate in a common project with its pitfalls and distractions. He calls attention to the gifts and graces that accompany a seasoned perspective, and that there is a special liveliness and wise humor that comes with age that is both balm and elixir.  ~Gary Crounse

With his signature grace and economy, Buff Whitman-Bradley tackles the unimaginable; the body’s elemental breakdown and the proverbial leap into the unknown which awaits us all. Never settling for abstraction or platitude, these poems are as rugged and beautiful as the California landscapes humming in the background. And though he may have given up on his plan ‘to be an ancient Chinese poet’, something of their wild humor and gem-like clarity shines on every page. ~Seth Jani, Publisher and Editor of Seven CirclePress, Author of Night Fable

Tidy up

A Zen master of my acquaintance
Once said that when he died
He wished to leave no trace.
All the backpackers I know
Say the same
About their sojourns in the wild.
No messes, no unfinished business.
It’s a good idea to tidy up
Before all of our little departures
And our impending Big One –
Douse the coals, strew the ashes,
Bag any food scraps,
Bits of paper, foil and cardboard,
Erase all footprints,
Be forthright, apologize, forgive –
So that what remains of us in memory
Is not a squalid little campsite
Full of trash and debris
And tangled disputes
That will cause great consternation
Or anguish
To those left behind,
But is instead
An expanse of mountain grasses
Beside a high cold tarn
Where ones who loved us
Might like to pass a little time,
Pitch a tent,
Build a fire.

Sparrows and Dust / Zilka Joseph

Sparrows and Dust, Poems by Zilka Joseph – The Ridgeway Press

SparrowsDustIs this the bird way? Where is home? What is the fate of wanderers? Have we all been “elsewhere”? Will truths be revealed to us in the end? In this finely tuned chapbook, the poet uses free verse and form to sing her stories, her history, her geography, her experience as an immigrant who finds rest after loss and upheaval with imagination and passion. With deft use of imagery, language and the senses, she travels and shape-shifts. She weaves in science, mysticism, imagination and myth. We fly from India to Michigan and back, from this world to other in-between states where memory, death, loss, the present, the search for home and the self all sing through several voices, and become a miniature symphony. As Attar tells us through his bird characters in his allegorical rendering of Sufism— “the way is long” so we must persevere to find the truth. We are but “water mixed with dust”. The bird-soul can only rest briefly, then it must move on.


ZilkaJZilka Joseph is an educator, editor and a widely published poet. Her chapbooks, Lands I Live In and What Dread, were nominated for a PEN America and a Pushcart award respectively. Her book Sharp Blue Search of Flame (WSUP) and was a finalist for the Foreword INDIES Book Award. http://www.zilkajoseph.com


The poems in Zilka Joseph’s Sparrows and Dust are separate skies—each a wrought song woven with a world of birds: mynah, grackle, swan, sparrow, hoopoe, heron, kingfisher, and dozens of others. From Mumbai and Kolkata in her native India to the yard outside her house in Michigan, this bird-crossed world is made smaller and more beautiful, as Joseph watches the skies and the breadth of her blue heart for the migration of the spirits of her parents and other ancestors. “Leave me a feather to dream on, a map to follow…” one poem sings. As I read and listened to these soaring, gorgeous poems, I felt the dust shake loose; I found myself more open, more buoyant, and more alive.”

—Robert Fanning, author of Severance, Our Sudden Museum, American Prophet and The Seed Thieves


Song and flight, which all poets aspire to achieve, are evident here, there, and everywhere, in this collection of Zilka Joseph’s poems. Her language sings. Between bird-beat and heart-beat, it’s an instrument exquisitely attuned to her love of depths and flitting surfaces. In poem after poem, we return with Zilka to who we are—a gift, a mystery, a wound seeking salve, light-bearers, dipping and swerving through passages of open air, sky and soul, in and out of memory and loss, anxiety and joy, arrival and parting, to settle and nest in the now.

—Ralph Nazareth is the author of Ferrying SecretsBetween Us the Long Road; & Dropping Death. He is the Managing Editor of Yuganta Press and the President of GraceWorks, Inc., an international nonprofit.


When I look up from these poems, I agree with Zilka Joseph that “I have been somewhere else,” perhaps in the mind of a bird. In these remarkable pieces, she explores the dust baths of sparrows–indeed, the behavior of many “life-birds”– as symbols for existence and wonder. Her words wing through family ancestry, migration, and the journey to a place called Michigan where the metaphors shift—hawks overhead, loss and death, but the dust still may, and finally does, shimmer. These are poems of memory and insight the color of saris and feathers, of meaning that rises from origins and resilience and high-flying beauty.

—Anne-Marie Oomen is author of Uncoded Woman, a tale in poems, and Love, Sex and 4-H, winner of the Next Generation Award for Memoir, among others. She teaches at Solstice MFA at Pine Manor College.


Zilka Josheph Poems published in Third Wednesday:
The Geese Who Came to Nest—Winter 2021
Once Upon a Snow Bunting

Purchase Sparrows and Dust from Small Press Distribution.