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dear All PP Patrons,
hope this third annual edition of PP finds each and every one of you well and safe in this trying time!
first and foremost, as planned and announced last year, we have changed our Poetry Pacific from an annual online edition to a printed anthology! at the same time, we release an e.book or kindle edition of the anthology, in addition to our online publication. Given this big change, we adopt a new format: in our online edition, we feature only one or two poems from those who have more than two pieces accepted, but for artworks, such as paintings, drawings, studies and photos, we showcase them all and only in our online edition for 'better' presentation. in other words, the paperback and e.book include all the poems or word content, while the online edition samples only word content but presents all the visual artworks.
links for the e.book & paperback:
also, good news for some authors: from now on, we are open to chapbook and full-length collection ms submissions year round. though we have no specific restrictions or "guidelines," a query (including a short proposal and literary cv) first would be greatly appreciated.
another note to all submitters: while we are deeply grateful for your (continuing) support, please wait a period of four months, or at least two issues/years (in the case of acceptance by PP), before submitting new work to us.
most important: as beginning from this (2022) edition, PP will be released as an annual edition both as a print anthology and an e.book. as for our website, we will continue to maintain it but only for promotional purposes; that is, we will use this site mainly to sample the content of every anthology and showcase all the accepted visual artworks in the years to come.
in this annual edition, we are honored to present 66 authors and 6 artists.
with all very best wishes for this trying time...
- eds. at PP
The Bone Song Revisited
Connections are growing weaker
day w/ every word typed
or written, every bend or twist.
Bands snapping under strain.
Ball popping socket.
When connections are gone
these bones will be floating
unconstrained and will stabilize
according to someone else’s law.
Each day I am more
Man just waiting
to be poked and prodded,
singing only at night.
James Reitter has been publishing poetry for nearly four decades. He is the author of a collection of poetry and artwork, Scratched Records, and runs the online literature and arts journal, Masque and Spectacle. As an Associate Professor of English and Film Studies, he lives in New York with his wife and pets.
Japanese shodo (書道) is a way of writing with a black ink brush, which is influenced by Zen Buddhism. For example, to practice basic brush movement for the kanji character of ”one (i-chi)," first one needs to learn how to enter the brush, moving the brush left to right, focusing to get to the end of the line and knowing how to end the movement to take the brush off the paper. The kanji character, the brush movement, and the artist's mind must be one. This process is called mu-shi-n (無心)— the fluidity of the mind, Zen’s ultimatum. After acquiring the basic skills, one can only reach that stage by disciplined practice.
I was first exposed to this process at age seven, when I was allowed to be a student of an eminent shodo master in the city of Gobo, Japan. Sitting on the hardwood floor, I practiced writing the kanji character one (i-chi) with an ink brush; I did this for three years before the master approved my going to the next stage of the process. I began with the block style of kanji, learning basic skills and then putting the whole character together in balance. Then I learned the position of the character and the layout on the Japanese mulberry rice paper. It was important to learn the speed of the brush movement and the appropriate amount of ink in the brush, so as not to poke a hole in the fragile paper.
There is no perfection in this disciplined art. There is no revision. One executes only once in the moment. In shodo, the artist's style is clearly identifiable, but each piece of the artwork is not the same. If the shodo artist's execution of the first stroke in terms of the position on the paper, the amount of ink, and the movement of the brush fails, the whole precious paper is wasted. After repetitive disciplined practice, one still loses the fluidity of the mind in each execution, even with a master shodo artist, as there is no perfection. It is different from “woodshedding," when a musician rehearses a difficult passage repeatedly until it can be performed flawlessly.
I have continued to be involved with shodo in the following ways—
• Taught the course “Zen and Japanese Culture,” which included shodo, at Foothill College for 38 years.
• Gave lectures and demonstrations to students of art and Japanese studies at colleges in the San Francisco Bay Area.
• Gave a lecture and demonstration to the community of Varazdin, Croatia in September,1993.
• Created large-sized brush works for Apple Computer and NASA Ames Research Center on commission from 1985 to 1995.
• During the same period, I created on commission more than 50 small-sized brush works for Ford-Mitsubishi SUPER BIRD event.
Recently I have been creating small-sized brush works on traditional Japanese shi-ki-shi (9.5 x10.5) made of mulberry and rice paper pasted on cardboard trimmed with gold.
Yumiko Tsumura was born in Japan; she received her BA and MA in American Literature from Kawansei Gakuin University in Japan and her MFA in Poetry and Translation from the International Writing Program at the University of Iowa. Her article “Poetry: War, and war’s end, through the eyes of a child in Japan” published by The Mainichi Japan August 17, 2021). Her books of poetry include All in One (Black Mountain Press, 2021), Man of Peace (Black Mountain Press, 2020), Woman of March (Finishing Line Press, 2017). Her books of translation include Kazuko Shiraishi’s poetry: Sea, Land, Shadow (New Directions, 2017), My Floating Mother, City (New Directions, 2009), Let Those Who Appear (New Directions, 2002). Her books of translation with Samuel Grolmes include Tamura Ryuichi Poems 1946-1998 (CCC Books, 2000). Also, as a Shodo brush-writing artist, she taught Zen-influenced Shodo, and has given workshops in the San Francisco Bay Area colleges.
活到老、学描梦到老。It's never too late to learn to paint a dream.
Helena Qi Hong worked as a sound engineer for a local TV and broadcasting station for almost forty years before retirement. Now she lives a divided life between Zhuhai and Melbourne. To fulfill one of her fondest teenager dreams, she has been learning colored lead painting since the Pandemic started in her native place.
Climbing Above Rongbuk MonasteryA golden spire
Keith Holyoak, raised on a dairy farm in British Columbia, is now a Distinguished Professor of Psychology at the University of California, Los Angeles. In addition to a volume of translations from classical Chinese poetry, Facing the Moon: Poems of Li Bai and Du Fu (Oyster River Press, 2007), he has published four volumes of his own original poetry. The most recent is Oracle Bones: Poems from the Time of Misrule (Goldfish Press, 2019). The poems included here appeared in Foreigner: New English Poems in Chinese Old Style (Dos Madres Press, 2012). Keith has been a recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, and is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He combined his interests in psychology and poetry to write The Spider’s Thread: Metaphor in Mind, Brain, and Poetry (MIT Press, 2019).
ayaz daryl nielsen, veteran and hospice nurse, lives in Longmont, Colorado, USA. Editor of bear creek haiku (35+ years/175+ issues) with poetry published worldwide, he is online at: bear creek haiku poetry, poems and info. Among other deeply appreciated honors, he is especially delighted by the depth and heart of poets worldwide whose poems have a home in bear creek haiku’s print and online presence.
As I Look Through My Window
Strider Marcus Jones is a poet, law graduate and former civil servant from Salford, England with proud Celtic roots in Ireland and Wales. He is the editor and publisher of Lothlorien Poetry Journal https://lothlorienpoetryjournal.blogspot.com/. A member of The Poetry Society, his five published books of poetry https://stridermarcusjonespoetry.wordpress.com/ reveal a maverick, moving between cities, playing his saxophone in smoky rooms. He is also the editor and publisher of Lothlorien Poetry Journal. https://lothlorienpoetryjournal.blogspot.com/
His poetry has been published in numerous publications including: Dreich Magazine; The Racket Journal; Trouvaille Review; dyst Literary Journal; Impspired Magazine; Melbourne Culture Corner; Literary Yard Journal; The Honest Ulsterman; Poppy Road Review; The Galway Review; Cajun Mutt Press; Rusty Truck Magazine; Rye Whiskey Review; Deep Water Literary Journal; The Huffington Post USA; The Stray Branch Literary Magazine; Crack The Spine Literary Magazine; A New Ulster; The Lampeter Review; Panoplyzine Poetry Magazine and Dissident Voice.