Thursday, June 29, 2017

We Are All Something, by Shankar Narayan

Shankar Narayan explores identity, power, and race in a world where the
body is flung across borders yet possesses unrivaled power to transcend
them. A Pushcart Prize nominee and a 2016 Fellow at Kundiman and at
Hugo House, Shankar draws strength from his global upbringing and from
his work as a civil rights attorney. In Seattle, he awakens to the wonders
of Cascadia every day, but his heart yearns east to his other hometown,

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

First Born Son, by Jasminne Mendez

Jasminne Mendez is an award-winning author whose work has been
published both nationally and internationally. Her first memoir, Island
of Dreams, was awarded Best Young Adult Latino Focused Book by the
International Latino Book Awards in 2015. She is an MFA Creative Writing
candidate at PLU’s Rainier Writing Workshop.

About the poem:

This poem came from a writing workshop I took with Willie Perdomo at the Voices
of Our Nation (VONA/Voices) writing workshop where we were asked to write a
“hard poem.” Writing about my brother is hard because although he introduced
me to poetry and theatre, our relationship has dissolved over the years, and in this
piece I mourn the loss of who he was and the things we once shared.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Dark Matter, by Martha McCollough

Martha McCollough is a writer and video artist living in Chelsea, MA.
Her poems have appeared in The Baffler, Cream City Review, and Salamander,
among others. Her videopoems have appeared in Triquarterly, Datableed,
and Atticus Review.

About the poem:
“Dark Matter” is a meditation for one of those days when the universe, or some
malign aspect of it, seems to intend to thwart us. The crows are real. In parts of
Japan, the Jungle Crow often makes nests atop power lines during the breeding
season that could cause large blackouts due to short circuiting. The Kyushu
Electric power company has “crow patrols” that search out and destroy hanger
nests on their power grid.

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.