ISSN 1551-8086
return to home search for a contributing writer

seach for poems by title

archive of previous issues submissions information mailing list online store links to other interesting sites contact us  
  November 2005
Columns
volume 3 number 4
 
  home   (archived)
 
  columns
  center stage
Marie Lecrivain
Sarah Maclay: poet, teacher, and author of Whore
  editor at large
Marie Lecrivain
Fiction+Opinion=Fact: David Howard of Crackpot Press
  essayist
Gene Justice
Rules of Engagement: What the Chinese Shuffle Teaches us about Poetry
  reviewer
Marie Lecrivain
Nessa O'Mahony's Trapping a Ghost
  reviewer
Laura A. Lionello
Periel Aschenbrand's the only bush i trust is my own
  reviewer
Aire Celeste Norell
Marv Wolfman's & Ted White's The Oz Encounter
  reviewer
Marie Lecrivain
Ex Machina Press: Silent Voices Volume 1
  reviewer
Marie Lecrivain
L.A. Writers Recommend...part II
  reviewer
Angel Uriel Perales
Ariel Robello's My Sweet Unconditional
  reviewer
Francisco Dominguez
Pat Patriot Riot?s Me & Pudd Part I
  reviewer
Francisco Dominguez
Meridian Anthology of Contemporary Poetry, Vol. 3
 
  home
  poets
  poems
  archive
  submissions
  mailing list
  store
  links
  contact
 
Francisco Dominguez November 2005
   

 

Meridian Anthology of Contemporary Poetry, Vol. 3

    Phyliss L. Geller and Marilyn Krepf are back with a third installment of the well-crafted Meridian Anthology of Contemporary Poetry. The volume displays the editors' strong ability to create a solid representation of the human spirit through the art of poetry. But what’s impressive in this anthology is the editors' unwillingness to use such ability to play it safe. This volume is definitely bolder than its predecessor. For one, the number of writers has increased. However, the reader may not feel overwhelmed by the large number of works. Much of the same techniques in editing that proved so successful in the previous anthology are employed here as well, mainly, the careful placing of works to create seamless continuity.
    The poets are a mix of published veterans and emerging, but accomplished, artists from the U.S., Canada, the Netherlands, New Zealand and Egypt. The themes are varied as expected from such an eclectic mix of writers with varied lifestyles and backgrounds. However, the appearance of Pulitzer Prize winner and National Book Award winner Philip Levine, while thoroughly enjoyable, is a little puzzling. While his inclusion serves as an introduction to readers previously unaware of his work, overall the anthology is no better off.
Which brings us back to the collection itself. There are plenty of gems in this anthology that speak of the human spirit, as well as the spirit of writing itself as with the piece from returning contributing writer, Fredrick Zydeck, titled, “Letter to Blaski from Brunswick”:

“Dear Steve: Ever notice how some poems
want to be prayed? There is this homing spirit
to such poems. They want to make their nests
at the core of mysteries I don’t even know
how to write about. Pity me. I have never
been bright enough to understand these things…”

    There is also poetry subtle in form, but profound in its careful placing of words and theme, as represented in Shari O’Brien’s “Wide Eyes of Trusting Blue”:

“Wide eyes of trusting blue turn upward
and my grandson asks
where’s Creampuff,

the gentle cream-colored cat who,
with wide eyes of trusting blue, too,
always rolled on the floor when stroked
like a purring slinky cylinder.

Creampuff is gone, I explain,
Hesitating to say the word “died”
Oh,
Says the child, who struggles to make sense
Of an absence like this,
Struggles, I see, to grasp how

The warm ball of silken fur,
So steadfast, so alive,

Could disappear,
Like all things will, in time, from here.

But then,
As I look down into his wide eyes of trusting blue,

I struggle to grasp it, too.”

There is even room for poetry that is whimsical but full of the same mystical presence Mr. Zydeck previously described in his own piece. D.R. Goodman’s poem “Burr” is one of these:

“How did the pod know
a small spiked spiral,
suitable to catch on cloth,
was the way to success?
That any creature,
Furred or clothed,
Would pass?
That this young girl,
Harried by the sticke
Between sock and moccasin
Would stop, unhurried,
To work it free,
Admire its spiny elegance,
And in a spark
Of shared intelligence,
Plant it on a far oasis of grass?”

The third installment of Meridian accomplishes what its predecessor accomplished: to bring another facet of human expression within the writing form to captivate both casual and dedicated poetry reader.

Meridian Anthology of Contemporary Poetry Vol. 3, Phyliss L. Geller & Marilyn Krepf (editors & publishers), Copyright 2005 NM Cyprian Publishers, ISBN: 0-9729014-3-4, pages: 168, $14.

copyright 2005 Francisco Dominguez

   


Francisco Dominguez


author's bio

Francisco J. Dominguez emigrated from Mexico to the United States at the age of 13. Since then, he has written and published a book of poetry, Estranged by the Airfields of Vienna. Fran's creative work is mostly comprised of short prose and free verse. As an immigrant, his endeavors are based on an outside-looking-in perspective. Fran is the art editor for poeticdiversity, and has been writing poetry for more than 10 years. He lives in Long Beach, California.

www.room-208.com