Blog

& MAKING SPACE

November. The 11th month of 2018 during which I’m thinking about space–being made for my poems and me–and those who generously made it.

Making space for makers is a community-minded, inclusive action of high order!

I am deeply grateful to those who have made space for my poems and me the months of this year in their readings series, at their microphones, in their ears, in their eyes, in their bookshelves, in their imaginations, in their conversations, in their publications…

Come on this tour of gratitude-filled maker spaces…

In reading series–

  1. Phoenix Poetry Series: Finishing Line Press Poets 

Fri Jan 26, 2018 at 7pm | Phoenix College, 1202 W Thomas Rd, Phoenix, AZ

A panel-style craft talk about the challenges of writing familial trauma by three Finishing Line Press (FLP) poets: Jami Macarty (Tucson), Virginia Chase Sutton (Phoenix), and the co-host of PPS, Rosemarie Jeana Dombrowski, followed by a reading of our poetic works. Thank you pro hosts Rosemarie Jeana Dombrowski and Nadine Lockhart!                Images: John R. Welch

2. Casa Libre presents…

Sat Mar 24, 2018 at 7pm | Casa Libre Reading Room, 228 N. 4th Ave, Tucson, AZ

With a much compromised voice, I read from Landscape of The Wait and Mind of Spring, with admired Tucson poet Joni Wallace, who read from her Kingdom Come Radio Show and some new work, followed by a Q & A to an audience of intimates at Casa Libre en la Solana. Thank you intrepid host: Sally Roundhouse! Images: Eleanor Kedney

3. Poets Corner Reading Series

Wed, Jun 20, 2018 at 7:30p | Massy Books, 229 E. Georgia St., Vancouver, BC

I read from Landscape of The WaitMind of Spring, and new poems with lovely Vancouver poet Daniella Elza, who read from her new work, followed by a Q & A to a receptive audience at Massy Books. Thank you smiling hosts James Felton and Franci Louann! Images: Deb DeJong

4. Dominion Reading Series #16

Fri, Jun 29, 2018 at 6:30p | BC Artscape Building, 268 Keefer St, Vancouver, BC

With special colleagues and poets Bonnie Nish and Cythia Sharp, I breathed poems–from Landscape of The Wait, Mind of Spring, and a new collection–into the rarified air of the monthly reading series, taking place in Vancouver’s Chinatown. Candie Tanaka, the coolest, is the host of this literary salon and conversation where each writer gets 20 minutes:  10 mins for a reading, 5 mins for discussing their creative process, 5 mins for talking about a hobby or something else of interest, and an extra couple of mins for questions. Plus, Candie offers the best snacks and refreshments. Thank you, host extraordinaire: Candie Tanaka! And, for the images: Bonnie Nish! Listen to my reading!

In radio Interviews–

5. Wax Poetic (Listen on CFRO 100.5FM)

Wed, Jun 20, 2018 at 2-2:30p | Co-Op Radio, 370 Columbia St, Vancouver, BC

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In this interview (prerecorded on May 29 at 3:30pm), I joined hosts Pamela Bentley and Kevin Spenst, allowing each poem I read–from Landscape of The Wait and Mind of Spring–to guide us in conversation at the confluence of the words the world inspires. Thank you thoughtful hosts: Pam and Kevin. Listen to the interview!

In artistic collaborations–

6. Tower of Babel

Sat, Jun 2, 2018 at 1-3pm | Vancouver Art Gallery, 750 Hornby St, Vancouver, BC

In this outdoor public poetry reading, Japanese poet’s Soramaru Takayama’s “Tower of Babel,” was delivered in 20 voices, giving breath in 20 languages, to celebrate Vancouver’s diversity. I had the honor of reading the English parts of the poem. Thank you bows to gracious hosts Tasai Collective, Steve Frost, Yurie Hoyoyon, and Soramaru Takayama! Images: Manto Nakamura

7. Sustenance Anthology Reading

Sun, Jun 17, 2018 at 11am-1pm | Farmer’s Market| Dude Chilling Park, Vancouver, BC

Sustenencae reading Dude Chilling Park June 2018

Fresh local poets who contributed to the anthology Sustenance: Writers from BC and Beyond of the Subject of Food, were paired with produce at the BC Farmers Market. Proceeds from the sale of Sustenance go to support the BC Farmers Market Nutrition Coupon Program. Purchase a copy and help provide a family in need with local, fresh food, all the while supporting BC farmers, ranchers, and fishers. My poem, “Hunger” is at this meal of writing, and I acquired and edited 10 other voices also included in the word feast. Thank you to hosts Rachel Rose and Anvil Press!

8. Pandora’s Collective: Poetic Pairings

Tues, Nov 30, 2018 at 6:30pm | Britannia Library| 1661 Napier St, Vancouver, BC,

This is one of my absolute favorite events in Vancouver, programmed by Pandora’s Collective executive director Bonnie Nish, wherein two poets are paired for approximately three months during which time they put their imaginations together and arrive at a collaborative response to concerns of their own creative design. This is the second time I’ve had the good fortune to be included in these most fascinating proceedings, and this time I worked with wonderful Vancouver poet Jacqueline Turner on a two-phase poem, each of six parts, concerning itself with risk the saying as antidote to demands of silence related to violence against women. Thank you to respectful host: Mary Duffy! Images: Wendy Bullen Stephenson

In publications–

9. Celebration of SFU Authors, Contemporary Verse 2 (CV2), EVENT, Light – A Journal of Photography & Poetry, Otoliths, and The Paddock Review (a Finishing Line Press project)

My 2017 good luck publications Landscape of The Wait and Mind of Spring were recognized at the annual Celebration of SFU Authors in March 2018. The literary journals: Contemporary Verse 2 (Canada),  edited by Sharapal Ruprai and Jennifer Still accepted two poems; EVENT (Canada)edited by Joanne Arnott accepted one poem; Light – A Journal of Photography & Poetry (United States), edited by Manny Blacksher accepted five poems and appointed me a Featured Poet (!) of the issue, Otoliths (Australia), edited by Mark Young, accepted six poems and The Paddock Review (United States), edited by Leah Maines accepted one poem. Each editor took a chance on my poems (15 in total); their confidence in my work is a life spark. I am deeply grateful to these editors for their support.

In ears, eyes, & bookshelves–

10. You!

On day 310 of the year 2018 and all seven days of each week in these 11 months–thank you for welcoming my poems and me into your ears and eyes and bookshelves. Thank you with my whole art heart for your welcoming! Poetry Love!

 

& Mind of Spring

Lasts, like this day, December 31 of the year, 2017, point me toward reflection and acknowledgment, so here I am with the intention to take stock of my year in poetry and to bow to those who joined and supported me.

This seems the time to announce the manifest arrival of Mind of Spring (b. October 16, 2017), the winner of the 2017 Vallum Chapbook Award.

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Written across borders—both visible and invisible—between homelessness and home, estrangement and intimacy, lyric and language, Mind of Spring, a long poem, in three parts, contains what I call weirded aesthetics. To illustrate my meaning, here’s an excerpt:

“palo verde blossoms
dispatched

speed no different
than snow’s

covering     making unknown       this ground

yellows           y y e l l o ws     ggaalore”

See those doubled consonants and vowels, the expanding spaces? I mean them as a hybrid of emphasis, mantra, stutter and… These are some of the ways the aesthetics in Mind of Spring are weird. May you read Mind of Spring and walk with me in a desert borderland, as I contemplate social, cultural, environmental, and personal mechanisms of war. Mind of Spring can be purchased in the online store at Vallum (click and see second book on list).

Mind of Spring is the second chapbook of mine published this year. At the announcement of its publication, a colleague called me “prolific.” I laughed. As if. This poem was composed in 2012; it took five years to see it to publication. I’ve been writing writing writing for a long while and with not always that much recognition in the form of publication, for the weirdnesses, such as Mind of Spring that I write, and so I am super super grateful to Vallum and the hard-working, thoughtful Eleni Zisimatos and Leigh Kotsilidis for selecting Mind of Spring for the Chapbook Award and for seeing it to publication. Such confidence and enthusiasm for my work sures my foundation.

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If Vallum sures my creative foundation, then the land on which that foundation stands is Finishing Line Press (FLP), publisher of Landscape of The Wait. The marvelous, artist-friendly team, lead by Leah Maines and Christen Kincaid are beyond-the-call, generous poetry mothers! Like I hold just-out-of-the-box Landscape of The Wait above, I feel held and supported by and ever grateful to FLP, Leah, and Christen for their confidence in my work. Read more about Landscape of The Wait and purchase it by clicking here: Finishing Line Press.

Poetry books take a village: editors, endorsers, readers, reading series, audiences… Behold the beloved villagers of Mind of Spring and Landscape of The Wait!

Beloved endorsersLandscape of The Wait and I bow to you, bow to you, bow to you : Kazim Ali, Rusty Morrison, and Forrest Gander; Mind of Spring and I bow to you, bow to you Annie Guthrie and Erica Mena-Landry.

Beloved readers: (some of whom show their beautiful faces with Landscape of The Wait) Martin, Henry, Birgit, John, Barbara, Louise, Penelope, Theresa, Carol, Ann, Helga, Linda, Andrew, Moss et alia thank you, thank you, thank you for supporting my books by buying and reading them. You know THE way to make a poet happy!

Beloved readers: (some of whom welcomed Landscape of The Wait into their home, artistic, and travel landscapes) from Florence, Italy to Tucson, Arizona to Galiano Island, British Columbia to Prague, Czech Republic to a New York City bookcase (Sean Singer’s) to Minneapolis, Minnesota to Montreal, Quebec to Vancouver, Washington to Toronto, Ontario (with scotch!) to Sudbury, Massachusetts, and beyond…. Thank you, thank you for bringing my words into your landscapes. You make a poet happy!

Beloved reading series and organizers: (who hosted me, allowing me space to offer my words) Thank you, thank you, thank you Vancouver Writers Fest, SFU Lunch Poems, The Paper Hound, Gatsby Books, Librairie Drawn & Quarterly, Pandora’s Collective, Dominion Reading Series, Word Vancouver, Dead Poets Reading Series, and the mover-shakers, who helped make the readings happen, especially, Jill McCabe Johnson, Bonnie Nish, Candie Tanaka, Kim Koch, Leigh Kotsilidis, Sean Moor, Rachel Rose, Renee Saklikar, Karen Green et alia and the beloved audiences who listened. How happy and grateful I am for your generosity.

And, thank you, thank you, thank you to interviewers, Jay Ritchie and Cason Sharpe;  reviewers Cristina Tranpani-Scott, Andrea Walker, Jeff Santosuosso, and Panoply, and to those who offered their reading responses: Joe Ezzo, Don Gray, Elizabeth Frank, Virginia Chase Sutton, Andrew Felmar, Jane Antanucci, et alia. Happy, happy you have made a poet.

Such glorious abundances of love-opportunities all of the above mentioned and visible  have bestowed on me! And, to those invisible and unmentioned, also, you, my dearests, have been everything love as these books and I come into the foreground of poetry. Thank you one and all for these glory days of poetry sharing.

 

 

Landscape of The Wait

Landscape of The Wait arises in landscapes near and far; thanks to the book’s beloved, generous readers, who have welcomed the poems into their home landscapes and who have documented the book’s presence where they are then bestowed the pictorial gift-evidence on me, proving the best way to make a poet happy: buy and read her book! A metered, million thank yous in every language: Merci Beaucoup! Danke! Thank you! to you, my beloved readers.

 

 

 

 

 

Landscape of The Wait

There are many arisings related to the “after” of publishing a book that surprise me.

One is “having” readers. I’m not sure if I fully felt into and thought about what “having” readers means to a poet–to me.

What I’m realizing, as people write to me, sharing their responses to the book and/or sending photos of the book in the landscape of their hands, is that “having” readers is conversation is community is love is inspiring is joyful is everything…

Behold! Here are some beloved readers of Landscape of The Wait!

 

Landscape of The Wait

Beloved supporters of and endorsement-writers for Landscape of The Wait–

Forrest Gander

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How to write of emergency. Of trauma. Of a boy in a coma surrounded by those who care. Who care to find him. Jami Macarty, the poet among them, writes her way toward him with a scorching, visceral language. Her poems try to make contact from every direction and so the poems are heterogeneous, their myriad structures probing. The unsettled grammatical connections, the caesuras rehearsing loss, the vowels howling in rhyme from either side of the gap, the skips in the language— into into into— enact all the energies of living in that extended moment of suspension when we simply don’t know what happens next.

-Forrest Gander, author of Core Samples from the World & The Trace

 

Kazim Ali

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From the trauma of ruin, Jami Macarty tries to make sense. The more delicate and beautiful these lyrics are the keener we feel the double-edged blessing and wound of living in a human form. The quiet vigil beside the body of the comatose nephew finds its analogy in the writer and reader desperately attending the language of the poem in deep hope of finding some comfort there.

-Kazim Ali, author of Bright Felon & Sky Ward

Landscape of The Wait

Pre-order Landscape of The Wait, my poetry chapbook!

Your preorder will provide multi-layers of support to:

  • a poet (me)
  • art (poetry)
  • Finishing Line Press, a small press, doing good, necessary work to spread poetry love
 Plus, your preorder will:
  • help determine the print run of my book
  • make you a special partner in this endeavor!
Landscape of The Wait is a personal book about William, my 19-year-old nephew, my family, and the year after William was in a car accident, which he–and to some extent, we–spent comatose.
That the poems, with the support of Finishing Line Press–and you (!)–are poised to find readers means everything.
With a full heart, I’m humbled and excited to share the book with you!
Receive grateful bows from me and loving blessings from the Poetry Gods, pre-order Landscape of The Wait.