Celebrate Tax Day with poetry! Featured readers include Christine Beck, Katy Chrisler, D.G. Geis, Robert Okaji, Pamela Paek, D. Ellis Phelps and Ronnie K. Stephens.
My conversation with Mockingheart Review editor, Clare L. Martin.
A MockingHeart Review Conversation with Robert Okaji, author of If Your Matter Could Reform (Dink Press, 2015)
MHR: Hi, Robert. I am glad we have this opportunity to talk to one another about your new chapbook, If Your Matter Could Reform. I have a few questions which I hope will illuminate us.
RO: Thank you, Clare. I’m thrilled that you asked.
MHR: The first poem is “Wind” which introduces us to the ethereal voice that has a calming effect but also the authority and power to speak the deepest questions that you explore in the book. I love the wind motif that blows in and out of poems, like a wind. What does the wind signify to you and what can we learn, formally, from paying attention to your use of it?
RO: We share our lives with the wind, yet are able to see it…
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I’m delighted to have two poems appearing in the inaugural edition of MockingHeart Review. Many thanks to editor Clare Martin for her efforts in assembling this publication.
Directive to the Circumspect Texan
When the vowel trips through the consonant and knots
the tongue, remember this: artifice. A making. In one
hand, a knife. On the table, cured flesh and fermented
products. Imagine uncertain lighting, laughter, a narrow
opening and the uphill walk three days into the parametric
world of occlusion. Tell no untruths. Mention refrigerators
and your proficiency with duck. Admit failure and order
a second pilz. Listen. Discuss heat and issues of space,
personnel logistics and the pleasure of July departures.
Cite advertising and Ashbery. Savor what is rightly not
yours. Embrace inadequacy. Forego dessert. Express
true gratitude. Say y’all. Shake hands. Find the door.
Many thanks to Shinjini Bhattacharjee for including one of my poems, with an audio recording, in Hermeneutic Chaos, Issue 11, alongside work by Nancy Bevilaqua, Kenzie Allen, Shannon Elizabeth Hardwick, and others. This is a lovely, well curated publication, and I’m excited to have work in it.