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The BEST OMD (Online Music Distributor) for INDIES (MUST be - WE are there):

Improvijazzation Nation poetry - Issue # 68

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ALL artists!  I am very, VERY happy to announce that IMPROVIJAZZATION NATION is ACCEPTING SUBMISSIONS again.  I have been granted a (possibly long-term) stay of execution for my trip to Iraq.  I will still  be traveling all over the U.S., so new issues may be a little less timely, but (as always), we will review your materials as soon as possible after we receive them.  Look at the guidelines for submission below, please:


MUSIC:  All formats accepted.  Snail mail to:  Zzaj Productions, c/o Dick Metcalf, 5308 65th Avenue, Lacey, WA 98513  The only criteria for music you submit is that it MUST HAVE high performance energy... if you submit lacklustre material, it will be reviewed accordingly

POETRY:  Poems are accepted for publication ONLY via e-mail.  Poems submitted in any other fashion will NOT be published.  Poetry that includes some reference to music is granted first priority for publication.

BOOKS:  We will review some books; books about music are PREFERRED.  We will NOT return any books submitted for review.  Snail them to the address listed above for MUSIC.

DIY Announcements:  We will post your (e-mailed) ad about DIY projects, regardless of genre or medium... HOWEVER, this is ONLY for INDEPENDENTS... if you are a corporation, don't even BOTHER sending stuff... it will be marked and reported as SPAM!


Rochelle Hope Mehr
Ground Zero:  3rd Anniversary
Parents and grandparents
Enunciating names
Slow, deliberate articulation
Restitching together threads
Irrevocably severed
Gesticulating to heaven
Their souls above
Rest above
Flower's bloom
Uncontainable in soil
Remember flush of youth
Cry to open sky

Rochelle Hope Mehr
I heard the silences and they shook me,
More than the tessitura of the age.
I stood back and felt the overtones rage --
The implicit took me out of my cage.
The trial and the error of my ways,
Haunting metaphors not to be assuaged,
The open book hooking me deep within,
The curious fancy set on the page.
Between the commonplace and genius lies
A neutral ground.  Could it be anchorage?
Rest on the meridian and time dies,
Light flies, but where is the umbrage?

Rochelle Hope Mehr
Small signs
and wonders
emboldened me
and made me think
there might be something there
beyond the ordinary
I peeked
through the crack
in the pavement
my plodding feet
had dug themselves
right into
Heaven's abyss
What sort of
plants you
beside the wino
on a seedy street
Where is your winged Pegasus?
Have you only a winding-sheet?
Look away
Avert your gaze
Surely something good
Will arise
From Medusa

Rochelle Hope Mehr
At the Italian Restaurant
I wanted so much
to believe in something
good and pure and simple
the gleam of sheer delight
emanating from the three-year-old
perched on her father's lap
the expectation of bliss
awaiting her vanilla ice cream
as we all crooned
"Happy Birthday!"
in a restaurant
a public place
she had us all
eating out of the palm
of her hand
as she licked and licked

Rochelle Hope Mehr
Give this old war horse a sop
For he has become a drudge.
He no longer clips air.
No longer rises to the moment.
He hems and haws.
Throttles the last swine
That jams his way.
Lives one more day.

Rochelle Hope Mehr
False Expectations
I sat there trying to convince myself
it meant something to be published in the
poetry anthology along with
all of the eminent people who
wrote their own biographical sketches
in the back.
I sat there and tried and tried
to convince myself
it meant that I had arrived
but then I started reading the poems
and wondered
why they lied.

Rochelle Hope Mehr
A not-so-pleasant discovery
I made about myself:
I want to be in complete control
of my destiny.
Nothing unforeseen
should happen to me.
Even something good.
The unfamiliar frightens me,
Shakes me up through my roots.
I want to hang on to the familiar.
I don't want to be uprooted.
I don't want to be shaken up.
I want to dig deep into the good earth.
Resist everything but inertia.

Rochelle Hope Mehr
To an Old Friend
You are still shunning me
If you disapprove of me
In my nightclothes
Take off your glasses
And see me
As I really am.

Rochelle Hope Mehr
Sick and crapped up
For the moment
I'd still rather be myself
Than any one of those I've spoken to
Judging me
With their propped-up propriety,
Their regal highnesses
Putting me in my place.
Sick as I am
I'd still rather be myself --
Lonely and afraid,
Chiseled and frayed.





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