Askew In The Valley

As you can see, many fine poets in this issue.

My poem is out in Askew Poetry Journal’s Issue #12 Spring/Summer 2012  (here’s the link to Askew in case you’re interested in submitting or subscribing). They also have a Facebook page with samples of poetry from this issue. Dorothea Grossman’s poems are a delight and a reminder that less can definitely be worlds. Holly Prado’s ‘sonnet’ is fun and jolting. No, fun is not the right word. I’d tell you the right word and give a little review of this issue, but I haven’t slept much lately…Far easier to bite a marshmallow and watch an episode of Doc Martin, Season 5. And convey that once Louisa’s brain clears from the sleeplessness of new-motherhood, she’ll move out of the surgery and move on. The Dr. is not evolving, he is regressing. Damn those writers…2 poems in this issue of Askew contain the word askew. And the journal’s motto: Tell all the Truth but tell it slant—by, of course, Emily Dickinson, is used in a contributor’s poem…After the 4th cup of coffee I usually realize caffeine is not going to help—still, sometimes I ingest a pick-me-upper cupper around 3pm—and can be counted on to discover, too late (very late), that it was not a good idea…How Prado uses both my bougainvillea-arm and coyote air to end her sonnet made me want to read the poem again. Then again. And Prado’s reason for why sonnets can’t stand Los Angeles I quite agree with. Although I don’t believe the answer is meant to be agreed or disagreed with…True story: I once knew someone who renamed herself Ellipsis, because she thought the word sounded beautiful…There are many quotable lines from Holly Prado’s sonnet. I recommend subscribing to the journal just so you will receive that poem in the mail—oh, yes! Askew is a poetry journal you hold in your hands, your morning coffee standing by, steaming promisingly as your fingers turn pages smooth as cornsilk. They’re not cornsilk pages. But they are very smooth..Nora Ephron died today. I’m quite sad about it. She forged, she smote, she conquered. One of Dorothea Grossman’s poems is titled, For The Newly Bereaved: It doesn’t matter/whether you open the door/turn on the music/or stand up./All you really have to do/is feed the cat…I didn’t know Dorothea Grossman died last May…My poem is not a sonnet, does not contain the word askew (although the speaker is definitely off-kilter), has nothing to do with terminal illnesses or heartbreak and it does not contain an ellipsis. Since rights revert back to me upon publication, here it is. Goodnight and may your dreams be quiet little canters, not even the tiniest image of Legoland tainting their gauzy borders.


Sun the fog’s ball snagged by a suburban barrier
of giraffe-necked palms. My lawn in recess: churched
(this formal stillness, fog-tuned).
My lawn is Winter’s readied bride, her chill-
wrap tight over tips, her delicate sweat.
Here, the deciduous
mutter off leaves by the evening’s folding light
as I watch 2 boys chasing impulse

in cold separating the fog, setting the moon
risen so early in her hypocrisy of flaws
(O pocked resilience).
Run, run.
Their rocket gasps, blood-worked,
tidal energy
pushed the length of my yard’s
walls of safe. I search for comfort

in time-traveling domesticity and grippable
martyrs: books I resented others
owning until I arrived
in this swatch of breathy Eden, clueless.
Cold frills the air. I watch
the Cyclops bent on counter-
clockwise logic, its eye’s glass-cuts
old trickery I won’t translate. Won’t.

Run. Run.
Sun shatters into anemone sky.
My speck-titans so suddenly famous:
they in their pink hides, I in my cloak-bane,
with half-sight, knocked (I get: you),
ever on the chase.

—PB Rippey


About PB Rippey

Writer, wife, mother, grateful. Fiction, memoir, poetry, kidlit (MG), member SCBWI.
This entry was posted in Poetry, Quotes, Writing, Writing Publications and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Askew In The Valley

  1. Beth Hull says:

    Beautiful poem. So energetic. And I just want to take those words, take them! and keep them. You’ve captured them so well. Congratulations on the publication!

Words do not escape you

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