Peony Moon wins 2014 Saboteur Award

Michelle McGrane and Sophie Mayer’s Against Rape poetry and art anthology won a 2014 Saboteur Award for “Best One Off.” 

In 2013, reacting to rape culture and the tendency for victims of rape to be silenced, McGrane and Mayers created an online anthology of poems from around the globe. An international chorus of poets speak out about personal experiences: survival, anger, grief, and fear.

Even though the poems can be painful to read, as a whole they give courage to others who may have gone through similar experiences. Art can heal. As an older woman once said to me, “Honey, telling our stories eases the burden by half.”

If you haven’t had a chance, do go to Peony Moon to read the poignant, powerful, and persuasive poems that McGrane and Mayer have gathered. Keep in mind that the poems come from honesty and pain and may be triggering.

Michelle McGrane included my poem, “Hippocratic Oath,” which will be in my poetry collection, Swimming This, due to be published in Summer 2015 by FutureCycle Press.

Swimming This grew out of a desire to express my pain and to understand what I had suffered after experiencing abuse from a therapist. I sought therapy to recover from severe post-partum depression, but instead I was manipulated by a predator.

Eventually, through poetry, mediation, and love I recovered. My book shows the path toward healing. I will no longer remain silent about what I went through. If I can do anything to empower others, I will.

Blue bonnets near Austin, Texas, a place where the healing began.

Blue Bonnets in Austin Texas, a place where the healing began.

Pushcart Prize Nominations and Peony Moon Picks

Many thanks to  poet Michelle McGrane, author of peony moon, for compiling an exhaustive list of poetry picks for 2009. Michelle posted nine days of readers’ top-three poetry collections of 2009. You can find my picks here.

Although the three books listed were top on my list the day I sent Michelle my selections, I could easily have added others. Each time I went to peony moon to see what the latest collections were, I thought of other books I could have listed, such as Robin Kemp’s fabulous This Pagan Heaven.

Kemp’s collection has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, and well deserves to win.

I’d also like to thank Barry Harris, editor of the Tipton Poetry Journal, and Katie Kowalski, assistant editor, for including my poem “Everything is a Sign” among their nominations for the Pushcart Prize for 2009. I also need to give Read Write Poem their props, since my idea to write the poem came from one of their writing prompts.

Here’s a complete list of the poems the Tipton Poetry Journal nominated this year:

2009 Nominations

Gilbert Allen Inside Self-Storage (Winter 2009)
Matthew Landrum Rebecca With Tequila Shot (Spring 2009)
Bonnie Maurer Hymn To A Lost Breast (Spring 2009)
Christine Swint Everything is a Sign (Spring 2009)
Michael Brockley When the Woman in the White Sweater at the Cancelled Charles Simic Reading Asked If I Was David Shumate (Summer 2009)
Ruthelen Burns Fallen (Fall 2000)

News about poet Michelle McGrane

For those of you not yet acquainted with the talented and lovely poet Michelle McGrane, there’s an interview with her on the blog 100 Readers, by Fiona Robyn.

Fiona’s new novel, The Blue Handbag, is due to be released in August of this year. On her blog she’s interviewing those who have read advanced copies of the book, which will be available on Amazon.

Many of you know that Pindrop Press has the honor of publishing Michelle’s next collection. Her book, The Suitable Girl, and will be Pindrop’s inaugural title. Michelle is also the featured poet in the second issue of ouroboros review, and has three poems included in our upcoming issue.

Michelle McGrane’s poems are a blend of sensuality, imagination,myth, and gritty reality. Spellbinding is an adjective that comes to my mind. She is more than an avid reader, and it shows in her poems, which are eclectic and reflect her wide-ranging interests. Michelle is a perfect example of someone who has read 100 books before she writes her own, and I respect her for it. It shows in her poems.