Friday, June 23, 2017

Two Poems by Brooke Matson

Brooke Matson is a poet and educator. Her full-length collection of
poetry, The Moons, was published by Blue Begonia Press in 2012. Her
poems have appeared in Floating Bridge Review, CALYX, Numéro Cinq, several
anthologies, and various issues of RiverLit, for which she was the 2014 Poet
in Residence.

About the poems:
The past year and a half, I’ve used the medium of poetry to interrogate physical
matter— particularly chemistry and physics—about the nature of human trauma,
both personal and societal. Both these poem explore our symbiotic relationship
with matter—one from the perspective of an element (“Lithium”), and the other
from a human observer (“Ode to Dark Matter”).

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Plain White Shoebox, by Sanam Mahloudji

Sanam Mahloudji lives in Los Angeles, and soon London, with her
husband and two daughters. Born in Tehran and raised in L.A., she’s
worked as a record store clerk and union-side labor lawyer, among other
things. Her non-fiction has appeared in GOOD. This is her first published
work of fiction.

About the work:

My daughters were two, and just started their first drop-off program at our
YWCA; I’d sit in the main office until we felt they were ready for this first real
separation. I’d listen to the older women chat before exercise classes, amazed at
how easily, even hilariously, they spoke of death. Someone mentioned shredding
99.9 percent of her papers in preparation. I felt, though, there was an unspoken
layer underneath, which is what I tried to explore.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Not Elsewhere, by Michele Leavitt

Michele Leavitt, a poet and essayist, is also a high school dropout, hepatitis C survivor, and former trial attorney. Her poems and essays appear most recently in North American Review, Sycamore Review, Guernica, and Catapult. She’s the author of the Kindle Singles memoir, Walk Away.

About the poem:
I was separated from my family by adoption, and reunited with them as an adult.
My mother passed away one year before that reunion, and I often think of what it
would be like to meet her.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

After the Election, Reading with Students, by Michael Lauchlan

Michael Lauchlan’s poems have landed in many publications including New England Review, Virginia Quarterly Review, The North American Review, Harpur Palate, Sugar House Review, and Poetry Ireland. His most recent collection is Trumbull Ave., from WSU Press.

Poet on the poem:
In his efforts to comment on the authoritarian drift in Athens, Sophocles found the Trojan war to be a useful frame. His portrayal of madness and destruction provided a similar lens for me on the day after our election.

Monday, June 12, 2017

Pope Francis Blesses the Motorcycles, by Pat M. Kuras

Pat M. Kuras has two chapbooks: Hope: Newfound Clarity (2015), and Insomniac Bliss (2017), both from IWA Publishing.

Poet on the poem:
It never occurred to me that bikers could be devout and fond of Pope Francis. When they got together, I knew I had to write a poem about them.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Until I Am Warm Too, by Eve Kenneally

Eve Kenneally (from Boston by way of DC) is a freelance writer and recent alumna of the MFA program at the University of Montana. Her chapbook, Something Else Entirely, was recently released by Dancing Girl Press. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Whiskey Island, Yemassee, Bop Dead City, decomP, Stirring, Blue Monday Review, and elsewhere.

Poet on the poem:
This poem started when my friend sent me an article about a woman making a robot out of lipstick, which I thought was an amazing and visceral phrase. I was also trying to do an Inger Christensen “Alphabet” imitation for a workshop around the same time, so this is what I ended up writing in response!

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Colin, by Erren Geraud Kelly

Erren Geraud Kelly is a Puschart-nominated poet whose works have appeared in over 200 publications in print and online, in the USA and around the world. His work can be found in Children, Churches and Daddies, Slow Trains Journal, Allegro Poetry Review, and vox poetica. Kelly is the author of the book, Disturbing the Peace, from Night Ballet Press, and The Rah-Rah Girl, forthcoming from Barometric Press. He has a B.A. in English—Creative Writing From Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, and lives in Los Angeles.

Poet on the poem:
Colin is not a typical Black Poem; but then again, I’m not a typical black poet.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Still Life In A Hearse, by Judy Kaber

Judy Kaber’s poems have appeared in many journals including Eclectica, Ekphrasis, Off the Coast, Comstock Review, and The Guardian. Contest credits include the Maine Postmark Poetry Contest, the Larry Kramer Memorial Chapbook Contest, and, most recently, second place in the 2016 Muriel Craft Bailey Poetry Contest.

Poet on the poem:

This poem started as a homophonic translation of another poem, and explores the way the past, however wayward, still lives in us in the present.

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Introducing Crab Creek Review Intern Rukhsar Palla

Rukhsar Palla is a Sullivan Scholar at Seattle University, currently completing her senior year. She is pursuing a double major in Creative writing/English and French, and spent the last year abroad in France, Senegal, and then Pakistan. She is currently the co-editor of Fragments, Seattle University's Annual Literary Publication. Two of her poems have been published in this year's issue of Fragments. Currently, Rukhsar is working on voicing the collective realities and injustices Pakistani women face, through fiction. She has just been accepted to pursue an MFA in Creative Writing at Emerson College, which she will begin completing in August.

Crab Creek Review is pleased to welcome Rukhsar to the team. She's been busy all spring reading submissions, and helping out at the Crab Creek Review table at SAL events.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Tragedy of the Commons, by Claire Jackson

Claire Jackson is an essayist, poet and transit lawyer. Born and raised in Seattle, she studied creative writing at the University of Washington and continues to study at Richard Hugo House. Her work has appeared in various northwest literary journals and has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize.

The writer says:

The “tragedy of the commons” is the observation that individuals acting in their self-interest can be pretty terrible at preserving a shared, unregulated resource for the benefit of the collective. I’m interested in the ways we contend with the everyday depletion of our various “commons”—including the edens we try to create in our relationships—and how difficult it can be to count the costs of our own behaviors.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

I Forgive and Forget, by Tom C. Hunley

Tom C. Hunley was once the world’s forgotten boy, but now he’s God’s lonely man. He is a husband of twenty years, a father of four, a professor, and a publisher. His poetry collections include PLUNK (Wayne State College Press 2015) and THE STATE THAT SPRINGFIELD IS IN (Split Lip Press 2016).

Poet on the poem:

This is part of a book-length manuscript consisting of fifty-odd self-epitaphs. The tentative title is THE GRAND PAUSE.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Aleppo, by Lola Haskins

Lola Haskins’ latest collection is How Small, Confronting Morning. Her prose includes a poetry advice book and a book about Florida cemeteries. She has won the Iowa Poetry Prize and two Florida Book Awards and was recently named Honorary Chancellor of the Florida State Poet’s Association. Haskins taught at Pacific Lutheran University’s Rainier Writing Workshop for eleven years.

Poet on the poem:

“Aleppo” came from a news story which drove home for me what life must be like for all those people who live, hoping that today no bomb will fall on their children, and how much under those circumstances even a few moments of sky/freedom can matter.

Friday, May 26, 2017

Day at the Beach, by Merridawn Duckler

Merridawn Duckler lives in Portland, OR. Poetry current or forthcoming in TAB, Literary Orphans, International Psychoanalysis, Really System, Rivet Journal, Rogue Agent, Unbroken Journal, The Offing, and Otis Nebula. Recent humor appears in in Defenestration. She was a finalist for the 2016 Sozoplo Fiction Fellowship. Duckler is an editor at Narrative and the international philosophy journal Evental Aesthetics.

Poet on the poem:

Where we live, in the Pacific Northwest, nature’s ability to heal is well known. But I wanted a reminder that nature isn’t solely for skilled and accomplished, even competitive, outdoors-people. It’s for all. I don’t need to tell you this world is no day at the beach. But maybe also: go to the water. Say what you find there.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Allied Maintenance, by Merrill Oliver Douglas

Merrill Oliver Douglas has published her work in Barrow Street, San Pedro River Review, Baltimore Review, Lips, IthacaLit, and South 85 Journal, among others. She lives in upstate New York, where she runs a freelance writing business, working with trade magazines, university magazines, nonprofit organizations, and corporate clients.

Poet on the poem:

When I first met my future husband, and for several years into our marriage, he worked on the machine maintenance crew at the huge IBM production complex in our area. IBM is no longer a significant employer in our part of New York State.

Monday, May 22, 2017

An Emergency of Birds, by Diana Decker

Diana Decker is a poet whose work has appeared in Verdad, Poppy Road Review, Silver Birch Press, deLuge, KY Story’s Anthology Getting Old, Mothers Always Write, and Smoky Blue Magazine. She writes, sings, and counts the birds on the small farm in New York that she shares with her husband.

Poet on the poem:

This is about habitat loss and climate change, of course, but also about a delayed realization of loss and missed opportunity, and the momentary impulse to just give in and ride the decline.