New Poem–Just The Facts

In the midst of this national crisis of fake news, disinformation and pathological lies, it is an honor to have my poem, Just The Facts, published by The Turnip Truck(s) Writers Resist series.  This poem was first read at the Arlington, VA Writers Resist reading.  In this rather dark poem, brevity speaks to our processing of the bombardment of ‘information’ that we endure on a daily basis.

In a comment on their Facebook page, the editor describes the poem saying that it “cleverly reflects our unsettling, distorted political reality”.  That certainly is what I intended.

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New Poem–The Breakdown Of All Things

Many thanks to Indolent Books for including my poem, The Breakdown Of All Things, in their What Rough Beast series.

The poem begins,

Priests of old gods tell us
that we need a moral compass,

You can read the rest of it here.

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Workshop Sign Up: Writing Poetry for Resilience and Resistance

Sign up is now available for my workshop:  Writing Poetry for Resilience and Resistance.  Here are the details:


Time: 11:00 AM-1:00 PM
Dates: 4/2 and 4/9
Location: The Writer’s Center

4508 Walsh Street, Bethesda, MD 20815
Fee:  $80

Writing political poetry is an act of bravery, and a potent tool for social and political change. In this workshop, we will examine current and historic examples of this genre as well as use writing prompts to talk about ways in which we can make our own work more powerful. Resources for publishing and presenting politically informed work will also be discussed. If you have already written work in this genre, please bring a sample of your own poetry. It does not have to be a polished piece, we will be workshopping these poems, so this is an opportunity to get feedback on work that is in progress. Please also bring a political poem written by someone else, we will be discussing how these poems do and do not work and why.

This will be a wonderful opportunity for those who want to use their creative voice to speak up in this time of political dis-ease, even if you have never done so before.

Also please note, the workshop again this summer on the evening of June 6 and 13.  I’ll post the information for that registration when it is available.

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2 Poems–Ground Fresh Thursday

Thanks to GFT Press for including two of my poems, Furies On An Airless Night, and Tea Drinking Before Eulogy in the first Ground Fresh Thursday of the year.  2 additional poems will appear in their spring print addition, stay tuned.

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The Gaithersburg Teen Writing Club Begins Its 3rd Year!

The Gaithersburg Teen Writing Club, which I co-facilitate,  begins its 3rd year this week.  We’ve done so many great projects in the first 2 years, and we have many more planned for this year!  Thanks to Laura Sarantis for this great new flyer:

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Reading At The Writer’s Center

Thanks so much to everyone who came out for the reading at the Writer’s Center despite the icy weather!  It was a great afternoon and it was fun to see so many friendly faces!

Many thanks to my son for taking this great picture.

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New Poem: Patriotism Reconsidered

Many thanks to Indolent Books for publishing my poem, Patriotism Reconsidered as part of their Transition Poems project in response to the election.  This is how it starts:

My anthem is the serenade of birds…

Click the link for the rest of the poem.

 

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I’ll Be Reading A Few Of My Poems At…

The Writer’s Center in Bethesda, MD is celebrating it’s 40th birthday on Saturday December 17 from noon-5pm.  I’ll be reading several of my poems as part of the Reading that will begin at 3:30 in the theater.  If you’re in the DC area, please join us, should be a terrific afternoon.

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A Couple Of Little Publications

Many thanks to HaikuUniverse for publishing an haiku that I wrote recently while waiting in an exam room at the doctor’s office and gratitude also to Morgen Bailey for publishing a few of my 6 word stories.

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The Killing Fields Of Home

It is a most difficult task to make sense of violence, particularly when it often seems unceasing.  There have been numerous horrific acts of murder recently, and in trying to write about them, it feels important to see these events not only as individual incidents but to also make the connections between them, both in why they happen and how we process them.  The following is a poem I wrote in response to the bloody and heartbreaking first week in July, 2016.

The Killing Fields Of Home

 

On July 4th,

 

when I was trying to make sense

of the bombings in Medina and Baghdad

on the very same day that the not so United States of America

was ritually celebrating what we call independence,

with colorful bombs bursting in air,

 

it seemed really important to remember that

the children who saw real bombs were shouting not with glee

but with fear before bleeding to death,

so I wrote haikus about that,

little poems like the children who died–

 

one for Medina,

 

Bombs bursting in air,

bodies explode, people die–

no celebration

 

and one for Baghdad,

 

Car bomb in Baghdad,

the twenty five kids who died

did not like fireworks

 

and I thought I had done my duty as a poet,

but then I read that dozens of people were shot

in Chicago over the holiday weekend

for who knows what reasons and they were bleeding too

and we haven’t even caught our breath since Orlando

and it occurred to me that maybe I needed to write a longer poem,

 

then Alton Sterling and Philando Castile

were gunned down by the police

because the color of their skin was a crime

and Melissa Harris-Perry wrote about how that feels

as a suicide note that I can’t stop reading

 

on the heels of the Chilcot Inquiry that minces no words

blaming Tony Blair for lying to his country about the Iraq war

while in this country we turn endless battle into

an anthem and Bush and Cheney just smirk

 

as a veteran of war,  taught to kill in defense of our country,

shoots at the police in Dallas and more blood is spilt

and they send in a robot to take him out

which prompts Donald Trump to want a photo op with the NYPD

and I’m wondering if a sonnet is adequate

 

when my morning paper tells me that there have been

ten gang killings in ten months in the county where I live

and they have a column too about the child

of a woman who was killed by her boyfriend

 

and someone says we should all remember that

sometimes the police help and he tells a story

about a police officer who helped a lady repair her mailbox

and that was mighty nice of her, and I mean that sincerely,

but I’m thinking that sounds like a bandaid story

when we need a tourniquet because

 

a GOP Congressman says there are a lot more steps to be taken

before they will vote on gun control legislation

and I’m wondering how many steps there could really be

from his office to the floor to take a vote and when are we going to

quit playing six degrees of separation and take action

 

and in the time I have been writing this,

more people have been killed,

and I cannot type fast enough to keep up,

or even pause long enough

to  pretty up this poem that cannot find its end.

 

–Lucinda Marshall, © 2016

 

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