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Poetry: June 05, 2024 Issue [#12581]

 This week: Observations
  Edited by: fyn
                             More Newsletters By This Editor  

Table of Contents

1. About this Newsletter
2. A Word from our Sponsor
3. Letter from the Editor
4. Editor's Picks
5. A Word from Writing.Com
6. Ask & Answer
7. Removal instructions

About This Newsletter

Poetry is ordinary language raised to the Nth power. Poetry is boned with ideas, nerved and blooded with emotions, all held together by the delicate, tough skin of words.~~Paul Engle, from an article in The New York Times.

To be a poet is a condition, not a profession.~~Robert Graves

We make out of the quarrel with others, rhetoric, but of the quarrel with ourselves, poetry.~~William Butler Yeats

Poets are shameless with their experiences: they exploit them.~~Friedrich Nietzsche

Poetry is thoughts that breathe, and words that burn.~~Thomas Gray

Word from our sponsor

Letter from the editor

A newly published author or poet holds their book for the first time. It's real! They are finally holding the dream they worked, cried, sweat, and anguished over. There is a look of joy and, often, tears. I've seen people pet their book, caressing it. It is, after all, strangely and wonderfully, their child. They hug it to themselves. They did it. It is such a special feeling, and it never gets old. Your first for your tenth. It is the same every time. Which, is as it should be. If that emotion fades, it is probably time to quit writing!

An author of prose and poetry, who has eight books already out in the world, arrives for a book signing. He's seeing his newest book for the first time. He's eighty-seven years old. He's crying and hugging it to his chest. His fingers run across the cover. "This," he says holding it up. "These," as he points to his other books arranged at his table, "are my legacy." People passing by, hearing these words, stop and look. Ask about his book. Buy one or several. He can barely hold a pen as his hand shakes, but, determined, he signs each one. "They are buying my book," he says through tears. "I am a happy man."

At different times during the show this weekend, I'm sitting in the back of our space. People meander, strut, hurry, or jog by. Something catches their eye, perhaps and they stop mid-step. Some run fingers across a cover and walk on. Others, pick it up, really look at the cover, and then turn the book over to read the back. Some flip through pages, far too quickly to see anything more than there are words on the page. Too fast to even catch a word. What are they expecting to see? Then they put it down and continue wandering. I'm left wondering. I've never really understood that.

Some feel the need to touch every book, even though they don't pick any of them up to give it a closer look. Another pounces. "Yes! You have it," she gleefully announces. "The next book in the series!" she grins and digs for money.
A child stops, reaches for a book. "Don't touch!" a parent says loudly, yanking the kid to follow her. "But Mom! I wan't to look at the book! I want to read that one!" Mom huffed. A bit quieter she says, "Honey, we can't afford books." She's carrying a wooden owl that I know cost over fifty dollars because I'd looked at it. "This one?" I asked the little boy. "Uh huh," he said sadly, giving up on his plea. I handed it to him, waved off Mom, and said, "My treat! I love it when kids want to read!" The smile on his face was incandescent!

One older lady picked up one, than another. Read the backs. Looked at the covers. "It is such a treat seeing someone here selling books. No little bookstores around much anymore." She perused. Picked up one, held it close to her face and inhaled. "Don't you just love the smell of a brand new book?" I nodded. I absolutely get that! "I love seeing what cover designers put on the covers to draw you in, figuring out how to clue you in to what the story is about!" She wandered to another table. "Like this one!" she points to one. "Says it's a memoir and see?" She points. "The pieces in the place setting must all be bits and pieces of her life! I'll take this one." I smiled and asked if she'd like me to sign it for her. "It's yours? You are a writer? Are these things from your life? No! Don't tell me. I'll find out in the reading, won't I?" I signed it to her, and she still was looking at our books. "Thank you, dear," she said with a big smile. "This has made my day!" I assured her that she'd made mine.

A young man picked up abook about the tiny island of Roi-Namur in the South Pacific. He read some, but his girlfriend was anxious to continue on. He put it down, patted it and was dragged off. Two hours later he returned. "My great-grandfather was on Roi-Namur," he said proudly. "Grandda told me lots of stories about it." I told him he really should get the book, read about where his great-grandfather had been. He nodded and bought it. The girlfriend was antsy again. "This is important," he said. He was right.

A thirty-something man wandered by. "People actually still read books?" he asked. "Who has time to read?" he said as he wandered off. I don't think he has a clue how sad that makes me. I wonder if his kids read or just watch videos. If they don't read they will miss out on so, so much. On so many levels.

Another thirty-something came by with his boys. The kids hemmed and hawed and finally each chose a book. I told him how happy it made me to see the two boys excited about reading. He left me extra money and said to put it towards a child whose parent didn't want to spend money on a book. A bit later a very happy young lady skipped off crowing about princesses and dragons.

Two people bought poetry books. "I love reading poetry," one lady gushed. "It's like life condensed into a few lines. I don't know how they do it, but I'm really glad they do."

Two ladies stopped to chat in front of my area. I overheard the one say to the other, "I don't see why folks should bother with books. If it's any good they'll make a movie out of it and I can just watch it." Which means someone would have read it, to begin with. About then I told the lady helping me for the day that I was going for a short walk. I wandered, I chatted with people. I saw the lady who told her son there was no money for books carrying several bags along with her owl. I bought books from authors who did it all on their own. Their smiles were priceless.

I talked to several people who'd been by my booth who had publishing questions. I talked to a teen I'd talked to earlier who still had more to tell me about her book. I told her mom she could call me anytime for help or encouragement as I handed her my card. "I love talking to another writer!" she exclaimed to her mom. "Me, too!" I answered. "Mom! She said I'm a writer!" I assured her she was.

She was one of the ones who made a long, hot, humid day so much better. She reminded me of why we do what we do. She made me happy.

Editor's Picks

The Rocket's Red Glare  (E)
A Veteran still feels "it" when the National Anthem is played.
#2321430 by StephBee

Ephemera  (E)
no record that I fell through air graceful dancing like breeze-blown petals of a pear.
#1539448 by Kåre Enga in Montana

 Invalid Item 
This item number is not valid.
#2321426 by Not Available.

because it kinda sorta fits! *grin*
If I Had a Bookstore  (E)
If I had a bookstore...maybe when Wynwidyn Press gets a bit bigger! :)
#1930913 by fyn

Mirror Lake  (E)
sunset reflections
#2321389 by Solace.Bring

Yes I did.
#2321405 by Monty

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Ask & Answer

Legerdemain writes: Hi fyn ! I could so feel your emotions when going back to the beginning here at WDC. Sometimes I'll get a review on "xxxxx" and I'll think, is that mine? Sure enough, it's mine from years ago. And yes, flipping back through time can be wonderful and at the same time, cringe worthy. But I feel I've grown and it's a nice reminder. I try not to edit those, unless its simple spelling or something, I think of it as a time capsule. I'm in a different place, maybe not better but hopefully more mature. And it always brings me a smile. Thanks for the reminder and the best of luck with the memoir. Leger~

Thank you!!! I'm so happy with it! *smile*

Monty says: Are we talking only about poetry, been writing since I was seven, yes mostly poetry but WDC knows little about me. I have many pounds of paper going to the dump as I clean out this office. Getting closer to the top rungs of that ladder.


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