Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Featured Poet: Daniela Olszewska

"Daniela Olszewska was born Wroclaw, Poland and raised
in the area known as Chicagoland. Her poems have
appeared in recent issues of La Petite Zine, Cranky,
and Conduit. Daniela's chapbooks are called The
Partial Autobiography of Jane Doe (dancing girl press,
2008) and Resort to Humming (Scantily Clad Press,
forthcoming). She holds a BA in Poetry from Columbia
College Chicago and plans to start working towards her
MFA degree at the University of Alabama this fall."

Daniela is a a first for a number of reasons on this site:
-She's one of the first people to join the facebook group dedicated to it, and has been a friend in spreading the word and info on it to other friends.
-Shes's the first poet to openly acknowledge the phantom presence of editorial assistant Becky in her letter. Becky has read some of the poems for now, and as more submit, she'll read more and more.
-She is the first Wroclaw Warrior bringing Polish Power to O Sweet Flowery Roses. Ok, so that's not much of a first. But I guess I only had two firsts for her and realized that seemed underwhelming.
Regardless, she is a very talented poet and I am happy to present some of her poems.


Obelisk mash-ups,


and mercy-lipped.

Shiver and lunge

and tripled down

under the weight

of uncouth dipped

special just for you.


in hyper peach/pink.

Gobo projections.

Love me

on a fun day.

Ribbon rack,

nurture nook –

crapshoot mafias.

Braying purposely




They built citadels underneath

my hairline to be guarded

by bees and panic attacks.


Sheet after sheet of dirty blue

tinfoil. Of decametric song.

Dot. Dot. Dashing through the show.


This corner of intensely hued bazaar.

Filled with creatures of a polydactyl

and peacock-plumed nature.


Marked with the three signs

of terrible memory.

Winter exponentialized.


The bones can.
Make blastocyst.

Full of epicene.
And hemlockery.

Tented under the fleshy.
Part of my never naked.

Enough back. I grew.
a 90-degree angled.

Foreigner with placards.
And enough kickings.

To call undue mention.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Featured Poet: Janna Lutz

"Janna has wanted to be a writer ever since she learned how to spell her name. She published her first children's book in 2001 and is actively workinig on her second book. Janna has been involved in freelance and ghost writing for over two years, doing everything from fashion articles to books. She considers poetry her hobby...a way to keep the creative juices flowing."
With the understated excitement of a true hobbyist, Janna Lutz has shared her poetry like wooden bird carvings would be placed on a shelf, or coin collection books would be strategically placed on a table. I have also added a link to her blog. Take note, readers. I have added a side column with blogs that you can access by clicking on them with your mouse button. This will further the E-Community we are trying to build. And the E stands for Internet, still.
Renewed Interest

Pieces of my spirit are scattered at my feet as

I sit beneath the ever swaying willow trees in

my mind. Old tears have created a flowing river,

and new ones bathe the fresh grasses like a blanket

of dew. My mourning had almost claimed what was

left of my heart. And this meadow has become both

my refuge and my prison. And now there is you…

There is the warmth in your touch and I am so

hopeful for your love. Soften my jaded heart

and kiss the broken parts of me that you are

holding. This is a strange and uncertain road that

I am peering at. Let me see once more through

your opened eyes. I can smile knowing that the

sun will soon rise and light the way into your arms.


There is beauty in the strangest

Places; there is love in the most

Delicate of forms. My eyes can

Peer into a vast existence; my

Thoughts meander down the

Oddest of corridors. My mind

Is dancing and tripping, running

In circles until I am dizzy and

Out of breath. I want to feel the

Warmth of creativity in my veins,

And a familiar smile that arrives

With spontaneity. Be my muse

And tickle my imagination with

Delicacies that replenish even

My soul.


Here I am, standing here at

the beginning of something.

The dawn has opened her

eyes and is now looking my

way. Give me your smile of

hope and tell me that I am

okay. My muse has finally

remembered her touch and

caressed my hand. Her lips

are against my ear, and her

sweet words have inspired

the fluttering of an endless

multitude of creative ideas.

My pen is no longer asleep

and yearns to be beckoned,

to feel the flow of my craft

like a current of luminous

waters. For joy- I am awake.

Elbowing Off the Stage: For Those (in Chicago and) About to Rock, (poetry) Salutes You!

Elbowing Off the Stage: A Community Reading 7:30 pm, Manhatten's Bar (on the corner of Dearborn and Congress in the South Loop CHICAGO Tuesday, April 29th. Featured readers include Rachel Smith, Helen Kiernan, Patrick Justice, and Heidi McKye. I will also show up to shill this very site! Will hilarity ensue? FIND OUT BY SHOWING UP! If you read the site and have yet to submit, I urge you to. Why? Because it beats having one group of people love your poem, some question it, some reject it, etc. Don't we get enough mixed messages already? I just watched a commercial for some total buffed body workout, followed by a Burger King commercial. Eat 5,000 hamburgers and then work it off. If only poetry could be spared somehow this awful wave of messages. Perhaps it can, if people keep writing and responding, thinking and sharing. Having fun and having fun. Just submit, share, and sit back and read, read, read. Xoxo!, Russell

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Featured Poet: Donna Pecore

"Donna Pecore has a BA in poetry from Columbia College Chicago, where she started “Poetry in the Round”, and is editor and contributor to the PITR anthology “Word Curves.” Recipient of the Alma Stuckey Award. CCC publication credits: “Demo Four,” “Reservoir,” "South Loop Review," and “Word 2 Word.” Other credits: “Best of Chicago Poetry,” “Best of Chicago’s Open Mike-2,” “Journal of Ordinary Thought,” “North Central College Review,” “Poetry Super Highway,” “The Solitary Plover,” and the Goodman Theater and the Smart Museum’s websites. She found poetry at Weeds in ‘96 and her first publication was the online ‘zine “Poetry Victims.” Donna reads at several venues: “JOT’s” Art of Play, Humanities Festival, Printers Row, the Clothesline Project: curator Michelle Sayset, producer Cathleen Schandelmeier's Beach Poets and Foot Fantasia presentation, plus CJ Laity's Chicago Poetry's extravaganzas. Tutored and taught poetry at the American Indian Center. A mother of three and caregiver to her 85 yr. old mother (who is feisty enough to spit her pills across the room) lives on the Northwest side of Chicago along with her grand dog, Apache she is off to get her master’s at UIC."

I added Donna's bio and picture late, as I hadn't received them at the same time as the submissions. Check out the poemsies!

Crib Death

I had that dream again, that awful achy one, that wake me up one, that keep me up all night one. Timbers rose amid the smoky midnight mist, sky scraper high, darks way.

I had that dream again; you know that dream, the one that makes the goose bumps on my arms pop on even the hottest nights. Eyes heavy with sleep glue I wipe to see if somehow

that dream I had again, had materialized within this room, had escaped the other rooms, the dark rooms we inhabit in those silent hours. Did it find the numbers on my door? Did

that dream, I had again, hold the key to enter that door, walk inside and visit this house? The baby sleeps. The cat approaches. The baby sleeps. The cat comes close. I shake my

head; I shake the dream I had again. I wake into another room. I walk into another room. I see myself, deep asleep beneath the forest boughs. The mountain lion sits right next to

me–he lowers his head. I am in the dream I had again. It is too dark to see, too dark to breathe. It is too dark to know if it is real, if there is a way out, if this is wrong, or might

this nocturnal fright be. Do I surrender to that dream that I had again? See what unknown room it leads me to? See what place, what space, what emptiness or hold my breath,

no matter how hard that dream I had again, sucks me in? Or let it suck the day’s light? Leave me in dark. Without the light there is no dark, no right, no wrong. Falling hard

back into the dream I had again. The forest floor, my bed, wraps roots round my arms, round my legs, round my throat. The more I writhe and thrash, tighter the tree binds

me into the dream that I had again. The cat approaches. The baby sleeps. The mountain lion comes close. The baby sleeps. I don’t sleep as I wipe spilt milk from the baby’s chin.

CARDIOMYOPATHY (A disease of the heart muscle)

Dis-ease this is not easy, this dissection of emotion, the unused muscle deteriorates, turns one into a cold hearted bitch.

The shriveled entity resists inspection withdraws within the dark recesses of the chest cave and hides, a frightened rat.

Dis-ease. Does that mean a broken heart is contagious like…the flu?

With this entropic study, am I considering the measure of the disorder that exists or the measure of unavailable energy or the measure of efficiency of communication in regards to the dis-ease…perhaps all three?

Is it even feasible to consider what damage occurs? Emotion diffused by knowledge like grass seed. Dis-ease: an un-ease. He was an ass but that didn’t matter much.

How is the measure made?

According to the dis-ease’s progression different levels of pain are indicated by the rise of the mercury inside the thermometer and the explosive emotion or lack of reaction to removal, the divorce of the offending source.

Empty chambers fill as the Mitral valve opens and emotions pump blood erratically into the weakened organ. Coumadin thinned to allow flow. Thin skinned vulnerable enough.

Is a cure feasible or even available or has too much damage been done by and from this dis-ease? Artificial resuscitation, a Jarvis heart, my puppy’s kisses, my writing, a sunset navigates the ventricles widens the vena cava, removes built up plaque.

The danger now is if this build up of dis-ease’s hostile plaque gathers in one location ceasing the ebb and flow of love of life. A balloon pushes past hate and hostile blockage, restores breath, and earns one another chance at heart’s content.

Prescription: Practice gratitude for this chance, but by all means avoid caustic relations, salt, and exercise caution but don’t be afraid to develop relationships. Open heart
to opportunities.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Editor's Note: 4/25/08 Ok, ok, it's not a link to poetry, but I did almost choke on my own gullet laughing at it. Think of it like poetry: when you remove the poem from the poem, you are left with a depressingly hilarious husk. Notice the site counter? NOT tacky at all. Ok, more submissions please! There are more additions to featured poets coming in the next couple days.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Editor's Note: 4/24/08

It's about that time of year. You know what I am talking about. Christmas in April. Put away all your Passover decorations and sedar plates. It's time to get ready for phase 2 of blog-o-tron 08. Things you can expect to see in the coming week: -A site counter. This will let you know just how many oglers are ogling, and the frequency with which each ogle will occur. -I am printing business cards with site info to bring to the art gallery shows / poetry readings I go to. -I am working with the fabulously talented Columbia College poet Nicole Wilson, who runs the "Elbowing Off the Stage" reading series at Manhatten's Bar (on the corner of Dearborne and Congress in the South Loop of CHIcago.) There is a reading this coming Tuesday, and I am going to go shill the blog and have a great time hearing poems be read by poets who write them. -YOU HAVE A JOB, READER FRIEND! Please tell your friends to submit. Let it be known how powerful, cathartic, fun, etc. writing and submitting poetry can be. And also, please continue to submit. -Be on the lookout for some more good stuff, too. And don't be afraid to email or make comments with suggestions, questions, comments, concerns. -Becky Dewing, editorial assistant to the stars, will be getting more and more poems to help me go through as the site grows. We may eventually cut down to one poem / bio per poet, but that is not going to happen for at least another few weeks, which is like a lifetime in the blogosphere. Blogocube? Blogoshape. I mean, let's not label the blog here. XOXO! Russell Jaffe Editor-in-Flowers

Featured Poet: Brooklyn Copeland

"Brooklyn Copeland [] was born
in Indianapolis in 1984. She has since lived in Florida and throughout
Northern Europe. Her poems are forthcoming in issues of NOÖ Journal,
Mimesis, Warbler and Blossombones, among others, and her e-chapbook,
The Milk for Free, is available from Scantily Clad Press

Biznass: Brooklyn is co-editor of Taiga [], a
new print-based journal of poetry and translation. The first issue,
available this summer, includes contributions from more than 30
ridiculously talented poets and translators of the Swedish, Russian
and Latvian languages. This issue also includes short interviews with
musicians Helena Espvall, Damon Krukowski, Marissa Nadler, Laura
Naukkarinen and Max Richter. Submissions to Taiga are closed until
later this summer, but the editors are reading chapbook-length
manuscripts for the Tundra Chapbook Series.

List of Brooklyn's Current Favorite Things: At-Large Magazine, Fou
Magazine, Mid)Rib, Textsound Journal, and Warbler. Spring weather and
National Poetry Month. The Midwest. Rufus Sewell. Listening to
Papercuts, Donovan, and Django Reinhardt. Reading new poets. Being
newly married and madly in love with my husband. Trashy romance
novels. My cocker spaniel, Loki. Recipes that involve lots of peanut

An E-Chapbook! What a great idea. And a cocker spaniel. This website sticks with a firmly e-libertarian stance on biographies: people say whatever the hell they want, and on the blog it shall go. U. S. A. I am here for publishing. So I will publish thusly. Here are her poems.

Sightings, Clippings

Painful as the bulb that strains to be the sharpest
tool in the shed. She saves grocery lists from a certain fate,

gathers the names of her friends on the fridge
with the magnets. For all we know she might be ancient,

here to give us back this language. But to watch her: painful
as the crayon that doesn't play with the full deck,

as the neutered beast of leisure
as he humps a stranger's leg.

Ask her any painful question, she makes as if
to joke. Wait for it, she says, then pauses.


Your ukulele. Just because I could not play.
By sleight of wave our names are forever

erased from the sand. By sleight of hand
your card is pulled, melts, seamless,

and our dainty pastel admittance seizes
the moment of gentle tumult to burrow

maybe beyond the discard pile,
beyond my boggled-sight?

Beyond my fire-fingered grasp?
For my love is a painted hermit crab,

yours for a good cry.
The sea, the sea will provide.

This evening, there will be intrigue
while our clothes tumble dry low.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Featured Poet: Julie A Sullivan

"The motivations behind my writing are completely unselfish and involve a true love for the written word. I wrote my very first poem at five years old. I have been writing on and off ever since. I have always been creative for as long as I could remember and when most kids did not like doing book reports or essays. I was one who truly loved to do them by either reading a book or having to go to the library to do a lot of research. So I guess one can say it started way young with me and has been nonstop ever since. I cannot imagine a day in my life without being able to write or to create something that comes from my imagination. It is both a part of me and a connection to my heart. I do it solely because I love it and that is it. It would be nice to one day achieve fame and fortune. If it is to be fate, it will. However, I write mainly because it is something I treasure and have always done. So let us just say it also lives in my spirit and soul. I love to make people happy by reading my words and I cannot think of a more precious gift than that other than love.

I am 44 years old and single. My hobbies range from reading to cooking to music. Even though writing is a major force in my life, I still have a life that involves family and friends, and all the usual things that go along with it too. I am very much a people and animal person in addition. I love to help others in some way if I can. As making, a difference in this world can inspire others to make a difference as well."

Yes. Here are some of Julie A Sullivan's poems:

I Could Soar Cloud High
It's true I could soar cloud high
From the rapture you've given me
No one's ever brought fulfillment
Or touched my heart so completely.
Your love has lifted me way up
To the heavens and what is beyond
I'm both carefree in body and soul
Because of our everlasting bond.
Knowing that you are in my corner
Has also given me an angel's wings
Which lift and hold me on the wind
Especially when facing life's things.
You've moved me very tenderly inside
As well as made me feel reborn anew
Because my life truly did begin indeed
The day I was fortunate to meet you.
love is life, everything, it brings joy, removes
doubt, and takes away strife.

Say It with Poetry
Poetry speaks its own language and says what it wants...:).
One should say it with poetry

If they have a time expressing

Feelings which need to be known

Or a truth that needs confessing.

This avenue is a creative ground

The chance to share one's heart

With those who matter in some way

Who have been there from the start.

Words are just words without impact

So charge your feelings into being

As the masses are waiting eagerly by

To witness their magic worth seeing.

Phantom Man
He came virtually from amidst a shadow of mystery

But the lady didn't care about his hidden true self

For she loved the man that her heart knew the best

Which was the only important element of his identity.

This wondrous, but very brooding specimen of mankind

Taught this innocent sprig of femininity and ladyhood

How to feel all the fiery things that a woman feels

When she's gone and fallen under his spell for good.

Phantom Man, a part of she, yearns for you to lurk

But a stronger front bids her to forever take leave

As she is very afraid of your faceless silhouette

That taunts her dreams and tells her not to believe.

Phantom Man, you're a denizen of reality and fantasy

Who actually is an inmate of both worlds by choice

Yet you heard the music of love from a siren's call

And you became captivated by her beauty and voice.

You slowly allowed her to gain entry into your heart

Something that brought utter rapture beyond belief

However when she overstepped the line and got close

The cast-out and despaired siren no longer knew relief.

She exiled herself to a sea that only had rocky waves

A very distant and isolated place of no real return.

While her once knight returned to his ghostly kingdom

Leaving behind a mask of confusion and lessons to learn.

Phantom Man, why did you retreat, after speaking of love

Truly, you must be as supernatural as the spirits beyond

For you don't make yourself visible and then disappear

Especially while with the siren that you are most fond.

Phantom Man, you are someone, who flees in the night

To escape the silky clutches of a maiden's enticement

Though the lost siren is set adrift by your release

Her songs of life will go on and her spirit is unbent.

sometimes love exists between the borders of what is real and what we imagine that we feel...