Good Things Come in Threes (or More)

cover of 2012 Emrys JournalThe end of the year is an apt time to look back and be thankful for what’s happened. At the end of this December I’m thankful for some acceptances I received in the second half of this year:

  • The Sow’s Ear Poetry Review published “Keeping Time with the Dead” (which uses the rhyme words from John Donne’s “Holy Sonnet VIII” as its end words, though without concern for the other constraints of a traditional sonnet), and I received my contributor copies at Thanksgiving.
  • Emrys Journal accepted “Emily in Italy in April,” a traditional sonnet in what I hope will some day be a full-fledged sequence of Emily poems. The poem will come out in the 2013 journey-themed issue, and I’m happy to again be associated with Emrys, the wonderful arts foundation that published my first (and only) chapbook, How Language Is Lost.
  • Tar River Poetry accepted “Fear Not the Design of the Angels” and will publish it in 2013. This poem (in no way or shape a sonnet) will be my second appearance in the journal.

Earlier this month, Main Street Rag released The Best of the Fuquay-Varina Reading Series 2012, in which three of my poems appear:

  • “Belated Birthday on Santa Catalina Island”
  • “Enlightenment at the Stoplight”
  • “Purgatory”

Here’s hoping I’ll have more publications to celebrate in 2013.

Celisa Steele Wins Rash Award in Poetry

Broad River ReviewMy poem “To a Son on the Verge of Divorce” won the Broad River Review‘s 2011 Rash Award in Poetry. I received the news at the end of December, but the journal just published the finalists and winner on its Web site yesterday, so now I’m making my official announcement.

The poem will be published in a 2012 issue of the Broad River Review, and I receive a $500 award.

Winning any contest is an honor, but this award is particularly special for me because it’s named for Ron Rash and because it was blind-judged by Cathy Smith Bowers. I was lucky enough to study with Ron Rash at a summer workshop at Wildacres, and his grasp of the English language–its lilt and subtleties–amazes me. And I greatly admire the poetry of Cathy Smith Bowers–The Love That Ended Yesterday in Texas is intelligent, funny, and finely wrought, as are all her books.

Review and Poems in Wild Goose Poetry Review

Two of my poems (“The Feeder” and “Pie at 3 AM”) and a review of my chapbook How Language Is Lost appear in the summer 2011 issue of Wild Goose Poetry Review, a quarterly online journal of poetry, reviews, and poetry-related news, edited by the prolific, generous, indefatigable Scott Owens.

Since it’s an online journal, there’s no reason you shouldn’t browse poems–there are many fine ones–and all five reviews, which cover Ron Rash’s and John Lane’s new poetry collections.