Dear Writers, Readers and Friends:
In Miscellany this week, I would like to recommend to your attention some fantastic opportunities to support three local literary arts organizations that are doing good, important work for readers and writers of all ages and ilk here in Sacramento.
The first is Sacramento Poetry Center, which will be represented at this weekend’s Race for the Arts. I myself will be running the race and would LOVE to receive a pledge from YOU! Send me an email at asche (dot) kate (at) gmail (dot) com if you’d like to support me in any amount. I myself will donate at least $50. Info about the race is here: http://www.raceforthearts.com/about.html
The next org is 916 Ink, which—using project-based learning methods and modeled after 826 Valencia—is working hard to turn youth writers into passionate, published authors and readers. 916 Ink has just launched a serious indiegogo campaign, and there are lots of neat perks for donations at all levels–$10 to $916! I will be donating at least $50 in the coming week. For information about the org, head to http://www.916ink.org/. To go straight to the fundraising campaign website, click www.indiegogo.com/916inksacramento where you will find a short, inspiring video featuring co-founders Katie McCleary and Michael Spurgeon and others.
Last for now, it’s time to show our love for Stories on Stage! Stories on Stage has been nominated for Best Reading Series by Sacramento News & Review! Please vote for the series (or for another series you love—just vote!) in the “Arts & Smarts” section of the contest here.
Now, back to your regularly scheduled Miscellany!
Yours in writing,
JOHN FOX, Certified Poetry Therapist, comes once again to Sacramento
August 24, 2012
Arden Dimick Library, Sacramento, CA
The Sacramento Community Group
of The Institute for Noetic Sciences
The Light We Let In
(and a creative way to spread it around!)
A talk and mini-workshop on writing as healer
and spiritual practice
Friday, August 24, 2012: 7:00 to 9:30pm
Celestial bodies radiate and reflect light:
sun blazes with fire, moon glows with grace.
Through the images and metaphor of poetry, we are stirred inside with an awareness that experiences of light also are accessible inwardly to heal and empower us, to lift us up, to remind us that we take part in that sacred fire, that beautiful grace.
By expressing ourselves through poem-making and by listening to one another in that process — we learn how to feel, intuit and trust these interior moments of radiance and reflection.
John Fox, a friend and frequent visitor to the chapter of Sacramento Community Group of IONS will bring inspiration and useful tools for you to experience this. No previous experience with poetry is necessary. Anyone interested in how light helps us grow and in the healing potential of the arts is welcome!
Molly Den Boer Stuart and James DenBoer invite you to a party including a special announcement about Swan Scythe Press
invite you to help celebrate our
Birthday Month and momentous years
Saturday, August 25
4:30 – 8:30 pm
Good Golly Farm
Sacramento, CA 95821
Great people, shady trees, sweet flowers, good food,
inspiring conversation and news from Swan Scythe Press.
JOSHUA MCKINNEY CELEBRATES RELEASE OF MAD CURSIVE
LA GRANDE, OR — In his newest collection of poems, Joshua McKinney takes a bold step toward the Japanese concept of binbu ichi, the “unity of martial and literary arts” which was one of the ideals of the Samurai class. In his preface, McKinney, who is an accomplished swordsman, says, “As poetry and swordsmanship are ‘ways,’ involving fundamental attitudes towards life in general, the reader will find few poems ‘about’ fencing. Yet the spirit of fencing, the tension between beauty and destruction, informs these poems…” In his practice, McKinney strives to find an answer to violence, and, as poet Donald Revell notes in his praise of the book, “In an era of distress and shrillness, it takes courage and, more than courage, Grace, to speak out boldly, unguardedly, for Balance.”
“The poems in Mad Cursive move gracefully between beauty and destruction, the essential real locale of poetry in our times. A mad swordsman inside a poet-seer. McKinney dares to locate what resembles, in my reading, spirit laid bare. In this truly elegant book, the remnant of our language negotiates a shadow world—that space between life and death—which is life on this earth. ‘Inside sword we find word,’ indeed. A truly courageous book.”
—Claudia Keelan, author of Missing Her
Orders from publisher website
will receive a $3 media book shipping discount
for limited time.
“Joshua McKinney tells of two masters: one who liked to write while walking ‘in a place unblurred by interruption’ and one who ‘preferred uneven ground.’ When I think of McKinney’s work, I see him as the second master—clearing a new path, or, as Pound said of Whitman, the one who ‘broke the new wood.’ In McKinney post-bucolic interstitial landscape, flowers stand as ostiaries, the heat index reduces the Earth’s archives to ash, and the spirit trembles like a leaf. ‘What I thought beautiful was what died astray.’ Though he leads us through foreboding realms of the imagination, McKinney’s gentle-edged Taoist generosity is exceedingly redemptive, assuring, pointing us skyward and crying, ‘look.’ Here is a poet who as earned the title of ‘master.’”
—D.A. Powell, author of Useless Landscape and A Guide for Boys
Joshua McKinney is the author of two previous collections of poetry: Saunter, co-winner of the University of Georgia Press Poetry Series Open Competition in 2001, and The Novice Mourner, winner of the Dorothy Brunsman Poetry Prize in 2005. He is also the author of two poetry chapbooks: Saunter (Primitive Publications, 1996), and Permutations of the Gallery, winner of the Pavement Saw Chapbook Contest. His work has appeared widely in such journals as American Letters & Commentary, Boulevard, Colorado Review, Denver Quarterly, Kenyon Review, New American Writing, and many others. Other awards include The Dickinson Poetry Prize and a Gertrude Stein Award for Innovative American Poetry. He teaches writing and literature at California State University, Sacramento. He is a member of Senkakukan of Sacramento, where he studies Mugai Ryu, Toyama Ryu, and the curriculum of the Zen Nihon Battodo Renmei.
SURPRISE VALLEY WRITERS’ CONFERENCE OFFERS LAST-MINUTE PARTIAL SCHOLARSHIP
We’ve had a last-minute cancellation in poetry, which involved a partial Steve Turner Scholarship. If you or someone you know would like to apply for the scholarship, now is the time! The scholarship covers $225 of tuition, leaving the recipient with a balance of $225, plus their personal expenses. Please take a look at www.modocforum.org and click on Steve Turner Scholarship for details; also, click on the Surprise Valley Writers’ Conference button on the site for information about the conference, which is Sept. 13–16. We will make every attempt to give the winning applicant enough time to submit a writing sample for workshop discussion.
Questions can be directed back to me, Ray A. March.
Ray A. March
Editor, Modoc Independent News
Chair, Modoc Forum