In the car rider line with a book of poetry, I find the world shifts into a slightly better frame for me. The beautiful Gnomon today, by Cynthia Huntington (Jacar Press, 2017).
A gnomon is “the projecting piece on a sundial that shows the time by the position of its shadow.”
From the title poem: “The apples are sour and hard./ The trees are dreaming/ the shape the teeth tore from the flesh./ Gnomon. The part taken away,/ shape of absence — mirror/ to the missing piece. You would know your beloved/ even turned away.”
The themes of love and longing appear over and again within the book; and this kind of love is next to the holy, and “there is no joy beyond this.”
“– we go on under stars, under the darkest/ clouds, we climb and descend, our feet heavy;/ we are tired — but everything is so astonishing,/ each moment so new. We go on; stepping forward,/ we ask: Are you here? The grass says yes./ We step into God every moment, stunned, dumb-/ founded, we meet him however we go, so how/ can we bear to rest, to cease discovering him/ over and over, in the next moment, opening …”
This whole chapbook works like this. “… climb and descend, climb and descend” … seeking and finding God at each unexpected turn, from a green star to a horse alone in a pasture. Love and sorrow, the sweetest loves, the sweetest joys — and every poem in this chapbook is a door.
Honestly, this is poetry I wish I’d written.
And just like the hike through the woods that you wish would last longer, this is a short read — only 20 pages — but what a lovely journey. And the poems, like trees, clear our heads, somehow remind us who we are.
The blurb on the back by David Rivard: “After experience is done teaching us just about everything it thinks it needs to teach us, we come back to desire, the one thing worth knowing. This time around desire shows up as a wild calm, dead center of whatever picture in which we find ourselves. These marvelous, subtle poems go deep, deep, deep into that wild calm. So subtle, so moving! I don’t believe anyone but Cynthia Huntington could have written them.”
If you pick up this chapbook, let me know what you think.
In order to bring more awareness to the issue of domestic violence within the football culture, and open up the conversation with young players,Jacar Press, a community active press, and Women Writers of the Triad are teaming up to host an essay competition for high school football players on “Why Domestic Violence is Wrong.”
Student essays may be submitted in the body of an e-mail sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. While there is no fee to enter, we suggest a $1 submission donation. Winning essay will be awarded a $75 prize, and all proceeds raised will go to the local domestic violence shelter in the winning writer/athlete’s hometown. Submissions are open from September 30-November 30.
Donations can be made here:
or mailed to: 2014 D.V. Essay Competition P.O. Box 4345 Cary, NC 27519
1. Deadline for submission is November 30, 2014.
2. There is no submission fee for participation, but a $1 donation is suggested. Please use the Paypal “Donate” button above.
3. Any U.S. high school football player is eligible to enter.
4. Essays may be sent in the body of an e-mail addressed to email@example.com. (No attachments, please.)
5. Winning essay will be awarded $75.00, and all proceeds raised through donations will be given to the local domestic violence shelter in the winning writer/athlete’s hometown. Author retains all rights to the work, but we will ask permission to also send a copy to local newspaper(s) and/or relevant blogs.
Send any questions you may have through the form below.
I am thrilled to share with you that my poem, “At the End,” won Honorary Mention in the Randall Jarrell Poetry Competition, from the North Carolina Writers’ Network. This year’s judge was Jillian Weise.
At the End was first published in the beautiful poetry & art journal, One, from Jacar Press. I would be honored if you clicked the link to read it there.
I am humbled to find myself in the company of the esteemed winning poets:
Alan Michael Parkerof Davidson is the winner of the 2014 Randall Jarrell Poetry Competition for his poem, “Lights Out in the Chinese Restaurant.” Parker has won the Randall Jarrell Poetry Competition two years in a row. Maureen Sherbondy of Raleigh was named First Runner Up for her poem “After the Funeral.” Kathryn Kirkpatrick also received Honorable Mention, for her poem, “Visitation.” Sherbondy also received an honorable mention in 2011.