Fond Farewell to Poetry Month

April isn’t my cruelest month, because it is my birthday month, Poetry Month, and Santa Fe is full of lilacs and…hail, snow, sleet, and rain. All of which are a treat in the desert.

Poetry Month gives me a chance to review–and re-blog–work on Miriam’s Well and this round I was glad to add some new poets too as well as new work by favorite contributors.

The semester is ending, and I’m humming “school’s out forever” because even though it will start again, summer vacation just feels wonderfully endless at its start.

So–what to blog? Some prose, images, news…and yes, always poetry. Planning a cross country trip full of roadside art, food, and a mini residency. SO I hope to report on between here and there–God willing & the creek don’t rise, as my husband Rich says.

What do you want to read? What do you want to write?

Send me something–I’ve got a particular yen for haibun, flash memoir, and musings on identity.


Poetry Month #30: Pow Wow Haiku

We had a very special time at Gathering of Nations yesterday in Albuquerque. Incredible dancing, gorgeous regalia, and unusual crafts from all over the Americas.

The atmosphere manages to be festive, exciting, and down home at the same time. It’s a pleasure to be there even if it is the hard seats of the Pit!

And many tiny intimate moments in the crowd lend themselves to haiku:

pow wow dancer
in feathered headdress
checks his cell phone

hand mirror glace,
the jungle dancer takes
one last stitch


Photo from Wikipedia, which has an unusually informative article.

Poetry Month #29: Taste of Hate by Behzad Dayeny


I tasted hatred once
Placed in my mouth
And I began to chew,
A lot like tough meat
Stringy and chewy
Although, I must admit
It was well seasoned to
A kind of bitter sweet.
As I swallowed it down
Like an energy drink
It got my heart racing
What an invigorating feeling
Felt like I had just received
A big shot of courage
I wallowed in this feeling
Till it worked its way through
Then I began to feel the pain.
Like a bleeding ulcer
It began to cut me to shreds
Making me want to scream.
Since then I’ve been more careful
I have learned to avoid it
I’ve learned to refuse it
Though on countless occasions
It has been offered to me
On a silver platter


This poem is forthcoming in “The Santa Fe Literary Review”–look for it in autumn, 2016

Poetry Month #28: she lives in the city by Sophie Sagan-Gutherz

Miriam's Well: Poetry, Land Art, and Beyond

she lives in the city

This is not embroidered pillows at Grandma Frimi’s.
This is not the greatest place to land your ass.
This is not where you phone Planned Parenthood.
This might be kayaking on the river.
But this is not the tune your dad sings inspired by the cardinals.

This is not perspiration only the A train can manifest.
This is not that Vietnamese sandwich with extra hoisin.
This is not 4AM perogies.
This might be pollution pleading that you stay.
But this is not the cruel men who climb the six floor walk up.

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Poetry Month #27: Taking New Names by Michael G. Smith

A long time contributor to the blog and a poem worth re-reading…

Miriam's Well: Poetry, Land Art, and Beyond

Taking New Names

And what if each day we take
a new name? What if some time
night chooses? Ask me
about the burden of Achilles,
the gravity of hidden blood vessels.

But when I get to choose I would
choose the river’s. I would choose
where flow tide gathers mountain spawn.
I would choose eddy, the report
of spring thaw.

I would choose your name, for you
tender the volumes and edges
of love I have missed.
For you share the inner gales
after I twist the knife.

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Poetry Month #25: Two Bird Poems by Tom Crawford

A favorite post re-blogged for Poetry Month.

Miriam's Well: Poetry, Land Art, and Beyond


My history? Maybe it was always there,
doctor, my irregular heart beat
but I only became aware of it
the first time I heard the Hermit Thrush.
That’s right. But I’d have to go back years
to Kern County, me behind the wheel
of an old, red Buick, engine gone,
car up on blocks, next to a creaking oil well.
It was west of our farm out in the desert.
My legs barely reached the pedals.
I had the window rolled down
to hear the wind, the sand
pepper the fenders, the windshield.
I was happiest alone, leaving home
on my imaginary wheels.

That bird, its song, a long, sad note
fading away out in the sage, beyond the oily
drums, the pump house.

In those days, doctor, an angel followed me
everywhere. We explored the abandoned wells.
Piles of steel casings gone to rust. Mean, black cable—

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Call for Submissions from A New Magazine in Dublin

Title: Into The Void Magazine is accepting submissions of fiction, non-fiction and poetry.
Into The Void Magazine is a new literary magazine based in Ireland. We are calling for submissions of fiction, non-fiction and poetry for Issue One. We accept all genres and styles. We are looking for stories that grab and enthral and refuse to let go. We prize heartfelt and genuine writing above perfect grammar and technique. Above all, we’re looking for writing that is screaming to be read. So, write the story, essay or poem that you simply have to write; the one that keeps you awake at night and says, ‘Write me! You know you have no choice!’
Previously unpublished writers stand as good a chance of being accepted for publication as established ones–it’s all about the writing.  Some work that doesn’t make it to the magazine will be accepted for publication on our website.
Head over to our website to see exactly what we’re looking for and how to submit:
The deadline for submissions is 25th June, 2016.
They do charge a submission fee, but also pay contributors.

Poetry Month #25: Meditation for Remembering–Michaela Kahn’s Monday Feature

Meditation for Remembering


Sit in the center:

Time on the tongue
tastes of air.
Back through the skin
to the missing girl
who remembers
except the lie.

Sit in the center:

Why fear death?
We have all died many times –
those lost days,
those children we were.
No self to carry into
the next moment.

The mind slips off …

only the body remembers.

Poetry Month #24: Sandhill Cranes Pantoum by Ursula Moeller

One of the most read poems on the blog–Poetry Month #24

Miriam's Well: Poetry, Land Art, and Beyond

Sandhill Cranes, Bosque del Apache

Orion overhead, nature’s cycles,
our sunrise breath hangs smoking
frozen silhouettes reflect in water
like Japanese painting strokes

our sunrise breath hangs smoking
shrill crane’s ancient honking
like Japanese painting strokes
karoo karoo greets a newborn day

crane’s ancient honking in minor key
night-frost crystals encrust
karoo karoo greets a newborn day
gangly stiff knees bend backwards

night-frost crystals encrust
like mine of a sometime morning
cold stiff knees bend backwards
legs slender as lakeside sedges

sometimes like mine of a morning
limbs barely support feather bustle
legs slender as lakeside sedges
red-capped cranes mate for life

limbs barely support feather bustle
daily quest for winter’s food
red-capped cranes mate for life
coyote lurks behind tamarisk

daily quest for winter’s food
undulating necklace pink at dawn
coyote lurks behind tamarisk
wingbeats whistle, necks extend

crane-necklace undulates, pink at dawn
silhouettes overhead reflect in water

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Poetry Month #23: Under The Porch by Dennis Nurske

Dennis Nurske

Under the Porch
Lucky peeled the wings
from a fly
and gave them to me,
as Father once trusted me
with the tiny screws
when he fixed his glasses.
But in my cupped hands
they disappeared.
It was a miracle.
We looked everywhere.
The fly buzzed —
how could it still buzz? —
much louder than before.
At last we reconciled ourselves
and knelt with great compassion
and watched as it moved
in an almost line,
then an almost circle,
there in the crawl space
under the huge brushes
rigid with shellac:
and we were rapt
as if we’d found
the way out of loneliness.


Curated by Elizabeth Jacobson