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16 Years of Chapbook Publication, 17 Years of Anthology Publication


THE HUDSON VALLEY WRITERS' CENTER
SLEEPY HOLLOW, NEW YORK

THE NEWSLETTER OF SLAPERING HOL PRESS

 

Poem below from Mary Kaiser’s Falling into Velazquez, winner of the 2006 Slapering Hol Press Chapbook Contest

A native of Detroit, Mary Kaiser lives in Birmingham, Alabama where she teaches American Literature at Jefferson State Community College. She is the poetry editor of the Red Mountain Review.

photo: Mary Kaiser

Issue 4, January 2007

 

OUR READING SERIES
IS ON MOST 2nd FRIDAYS
AT THE WRITERS' CENTER

SEE CALENDAR FOR INFO

 

Poem below from Kathleen Hellen’s Skin and Bone, I May Be Japanese, finalist in the 2006 Slapering Hol Press Chapbook Contest

Kathleen Hellen lives in Baltimore. Her work has appeared in many journals, including Prairie Schooner, Rattapallax and RUNES. Awards include the Thomas Merton Prize for Poetry of the Sacred and the Individual Artist Award from the Maryland State Arts Council.

photo: Kathleen Hellen

 

Poem below from Megan Harlan’s Multiverse, finalist in the 2006 Slapering Hol Press Chapbook Contest

Megan Harlan’s writing has appeared in Poetry Daily, Beloit Poetry Journal, AGNI, Meridian, The New York Times, and The San Francisco Chronicle, among many other publications. She holds an M.A. in Creative Writing from New York University, and lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her family.

photo: Megan Harlan

Poem below from Jennifer Perrine’s Time and Song Enough, finalist in the 2006 Slapering Hol Press Chapbook Contest

Jennifer Perrine’s first collection of poems, The Body Is No Machine, will be published by New Issues in Spring 2007. Her poems have appeared recently in such journals as Bellingham Review, Green Mountains Review, Nimrod, River Styx, and Southern Poetry Review. She teaches at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa.

photo:Jennifer Perrine

  • The Slapering Hol Press Chapbook Competition is open to writers who have not published a collection of poems in book or chapbook form. Entrants should submit a collection of poems, or one long poem, limited to 16-20 pages.
  • Manuscripts should include a title page (title only), and a separate cover sheet with the title of the work, the author's name, address, phone number, e-mail address, a bio, and acknowledgments. Manuscripts will not be returned.
  • Enclose a self-addressed, stamped envelope for results only. If you would like a notification of receipt of manuscript, include a self-addressed and stamped postcard.
  • Enclose a $15 reading fee. Poets may submit more than one collection, but a $15 reading fee must accompany each entry. Make checks payable to The Hudson Valley Writers' Center.
  • If you would like a copy of one of our previous winners, which we will select for you, enclose an 8 x 10 or larger envelope with $1.83 in postage affixed.
  • Entries must be postmarked by May 15, 2007. The winner will be announced in September 2007. The prize for the winner of the 2007 competition is a $1000 cash award, publication, ten books, and a reading at The Hudson Valley Writers' Center. In addition, a second chapbook may be published from the entries.
  • Send entries to: Slapering Hol Press Chapbook Competition, The Hudson Valley Writers' Center, 300 Riverside Drive, Sleepy Hollow, NY 10591

 

Eakins Makes a Hot Day
Mount Vernon Street, Philadelphia, 1872

Eye dead center, he lashes his perspective to the vanishing point,
rules, sketches looming verticals and a thin keel wedge, outlines
the intake of an hour: like a hot day he once saw or is seeing.

Oblique angles of an unmanned skiff cross foolscap lines. Paired oars
like finger bones skim the grid. Box end and oarlock float skyward.
Pencilled cones suggest a sturdy lower body–is this a spectral man?

Fresh sheet, new lines. With a wash of cheap tint, he skates the shell
across paper planks. Inside the spokes, blank torsos man the oars.
The graphite pier, weightless as a cinder, drifts into the shallow hull.

Eakins counts his grid to see where the sun hits water and how far
beams stretch in summer. Once fixed, the rowers’ skulls shift the apex.

Reflection notes ride the sky: trees on near side, off side of a man.
The artist combines never creates, and then the craft comes round.

Taut canvas gessoed, palette loaded, linseed and sweat reek of Paris
where rivals stripped to wrestle on the grit-strewn floor, and where
he learned to use the brush, more powerful than point or stump.

Light sifts through layers of ochre to the chalky impasto of an August sky.
Champion rowers John and Barney Biglin ease their racer’s slim length
round granite pilings weathered and mossed as the walls of Babylon.

The sun’s yellow blade chisels elbows, knees, cheekbones. An oar’s tip
foams; crimson outriggers inject raw pigment into classical sludge.

Leaning back for the next long stroke, the dapper Biglins squint westward,
beyond the sunset and the slantwise prospect of their pair-oared shell,
launching out of somber gradation into a foreground of untried blue.

From Mary Kaiser’s Falling into Velazquez, winner of the 2006 Slapering Hol Press Chapbook Contest

 

 

Wedding of the Foxes
After Kurosawa’s Dreams

If you happen as a child
on the wedding of the foxes,
the slow, strange procession
to the bridge of mist,
the bride’s white approach
on flute and stealthy drum;
do not hide; run

if vulgar scent gives you away;
if pines reveal what you are stealing
in the pockets of your eyes ---
Never ask: Why this is that;
or why sometimes
the hand becomes a paw
reaching into forests.

Run to where the sun bends into sudden
colors; where your mother waits
behind the sliding screen
to see if it is you, knocking;
answers in her fox’s voice
disguised as “no” or “die”,
answers as she hands you
the dagger.

From Kathleen Hellen’s Skin and Bone, I May Be Japanese, finalist in the 2006 Slapering Hol Press Chapbook Contest. Originally published in Earth’s Daughters.

 

 

Living Cloisters

They raise themselves around us,
sudden shelters

within the larger outpour,
courtyards sprung

from currents of a brighter
force, palmful

of another’s hand, voice
rung down the spine,

stringing archways
within a space that shapes

nothing but its own dimensions,
a rhythm without song,

a corrugated darkness
hewn to colonnades and bells

by our names, meals,
momentary vows, sanctums

opening around a fountain,
its waters illuminated

like figurated calligraphy
in a root, arterial language.

From Megan Harlan’s Multiverse, finalist in the 2006 Slapering Hol Press Chapbook Contest. Originally published in Beloit Poetry Journal.

 

 

To Mirah: In Utero: On Being Named

I lost control of my car one summer, blacked out
on the way to work: when I woke, I’d lost
a random taxonomy: paper, sieve, sand dollar:
stuck in some synapse between mind and tongue:
others lost in their fumble of letters: I found
driftwood on the river and called it derby:
my doctor gave me a name: aphasia: like Adam
knowing he’d gotten it right when he found
gecko or ant lion under a dead leaf: no doubt
there’s a purgatory for lost language: the dark
burning-off before ascension: a lexicon
shaken loose from etymology: uprooted
rhizomes shucking their dirt: and you: swathed
in the hum of your name: all the world your alias.

From Jennifer Perrine’s Time and Song Enough, finalist in the 2006 Slapering Hol Press Chapbook Contest. Originally published in The Ledge.

 

 

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