A Collision of Soul in Midair by Mike Bagwell (cover art)

Contributor Poem: Self Portrait

Self Portrait

The year of the snake is
what I am. Simple fact of it: I was born in 1989
with a knife through my palm that called itself
language. Mountains burning in the distance are
mountains of my childhood spent in Bosch’s burning
home, a conceit clearly conceived by the contemporary
architecture of our shared nightmares. The naming of daughters like a
poem from glass: best friends to rats, though Ayla means deer
or oak or bringer of light or the halo of the moon
or from a place of strength.
Very happy with a rabbit, though Kitra means
the inverted crown at the meeting place
of the infinite and the finite.
Knowing I am now done having children
feels simultaneously like the opening and the closing of an era. I wonder about this:
the pessimism of ending
on hell. But then I remember
the Garden triptych closes and the marvel
of the void appears and it is always there.
Suitable gifts: binoculars, tarot cards, oils
and lotions, stamp collection.
Maybe I’ll leave myself
with a sensation I’d forgotten:
while pushing my daughter on the swing,
a firm hand on my back—my own—
nothing but woodchips and sky ahead.

(This poem was first curated by Eunoia Review.)

About the Poem

Mike Bagwell

Author Bio

Mike Bagwell

Mike Bagwell is a writer and software engineer in Philly. He received an MFA from Sarah Lawrence and his work appears or is forthcoming in ITERANT, Heavy Feather Review, trampset, Halfway Down the Stairs, HADBodegaWhiskey Island, and others, some kindly nominating him for a Pushcart. He is the author of the chapbooks A Collision of Soul in Midair (Bottlecap Press, 2023), Or Else They Are Trees, and a micro When We Look at Things We Steal Their Color and Grow Heavy Under Their Weight (Rinky Dink Press 2024).


A Collision of Soul in Midair by Mike Bagwell (cover art)
Bottlecap Press, 2023

Front Page header (Volume 1, Issue 2: Mar-Apr 2024)

Contents

New Poetry Titles (2/27/24)

Check out new poetry books published the week of 2/27 from Alien Buddha Press, GASHER Press, Bottlecap Press, University of Arizona Press, Omnidawn, Signal Editions, Guernica Editions, The Backwaters Press, University of Nebraska Press, Caitlin Press Inc, Autumn House Press, Georgia Review Books, The University of Kentucky Press, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, Brick Books, Changes Press, Tupelo Press, Black Lawrence Press, and MoonPath Press.

Click here to read.

March ‘24: Welcome to Issue 2

Read a note from editor Aiden Hunt about our second bimonthly issue, contributor accomplishments, and things to come.

Click here to read.

New Poetry Titles (3/5/24)

Check out new poetry books published the week of 3/5 from Graywolf Press, Knopf, Bottlecap Press, powerHouse Books, Milkweed Editions, Acre Books, Seagull Books, The University Press of Kentucky, Yale University Press, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, Penguin Books, Able Muse Press, Button Poetry, Miami University Press, Eyewear Publishing, Black Ocean, Seren, MoonPath Press, and Book*Hub Press. Editor’s picks from Diane Seuss and Cindy Juyoung Ok.

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Contributor Poem of the Month: The Plan

Read the Contributor Poem of the Month for March 2024, “The Plan” by C.M. Crockford, along with a few words from the poet.

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New Poetry Titles (3/12/24)

Check out new poetry books published in the week of 3/12 from Belle Point Press, Bottlecap Press, Black Lawrence Press, Haymarket Books, Ecco, Milkweed Editions, Seagull Books, Hub City Press, Nightboat Books, Signature Books, Four Way Books, Curbstone Books, Kaya Press, Kith Books, Saturnalia Books, Ohio University Press, University of Wisconsin Press, Jackleg Press, Semiotext(e) and Brick Books.

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Chapbook Poem of the Month: Collection

Read the featured Chapbook Poem of the Month for March 2024, “Collection” from Dreamsoak by Will Russo, along with a few words from the poet.

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Meet Our Contributor: C.M. Crockford

Meet our contributor, C.M. Crockford, a writer and editor originally from New Hampshire, now living in Philadelphia with his cat, Wally.

Click here to read.

New Poetry Titles (3/19/24)

Check out new poetry books published the week of 3/19 from Bottlecap Press, Autumn House Press, Knopf, Guernica Editions, Tin House Books, Milkweed Editions, University of Wisconsin Press and Book*Hug Press.

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Meet Our Contributor: Mike Bagwell

Meet our contributor, Mike Bagwell, a writer, poet, and software engineer in Philly. He’s published two poetry chapbooks and has a full-length collection forthcoming in 2024.

Click here to read.

New Poetry Titles (3/26/24)

Check out new poetry books for the week of 3/26 from Bottlecap Press, Nightwood Editions, Harbour Publishing, McClellan & Stewart, Carcanet Press, University of Regina Press, At Bay Press, Guernica Editions, Beltway Editions, University of Georgia Press, Lost Horse Press, University of New Mexico Press, University of Massachusetts Press, Book*Hug Books, Haymarket Books, Archipelago, Autumn House Press, Hat & Beard Press, Tigerlily Press, and GASHER Press.

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Meet Our Contributor: Francesca Leader

Meet our contributor, Francesca Leader, a Montanan living elsewhere who writes poetry, fiction and creative nonfiction. Read about her writing life in her Contributor Q&A.

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April ‘24: Of SPD, Genocide, and Book Reviews

Editor Aiden Hunt writes about distribution woes, the ongoing genocide in Gaza, and what we have coming during April in the Editor’s Note.

Click here to read.

New Poetry Titles (4/2/24)

Check out new poetry books published the week of 4/2 from Bottlecap Press, Green Linden Press, Stanchion Books, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, Small Harbor Publishing, Milkweed Editions, Graywolf Press, Wave Books, Arsenal Pulp Press, New Directions, Invisible Publishing, Brick Books, Sixteen Rivers Press, Penguin Books, City Lights Publishers, And Other Stories, BOA Editions Ltd, OR Books, Not a Cult, Copper Canyon Press, McGill-Queen’s University Press, Beacon Press, Biblioasis, Nightboat Books, Amistad, House of Anansi Press, Hub City Press, Seagull Books, Fordham University Press, Iron Pen, Persea Books, Central Avenue Publishing, CavanKerry Press, W. W. Norton & Company, University of Akron Press and Red Hen Press.

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Contributor Poem of the Month: Self Portrait

Read the Contributor Poem of the Month for April 2024, “Self Portrait” by Mike Bagwell, along with a few words from the poet.

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On Cindy Juyoung Ok’s ‘House Work’: A Review Essay

Editor Aiden Hunt’s essay reviews Cindy Juyoung Ok’s poetry chapbook, ‘House Work’, published by Ugly Duckling Presse in March 2023.

Click here to read.

New Poetry Titles (4/9/24)

Check out new poetry books published the week of 4/9 from Faber & Faber, Small Harbor Publishing, Bottlecap Press, University of Pittsburgh Press, Green Writers Press, Loom Press, Paraclete Press, Able Muse Press, Caitlin Press Inc., Stephen F. Austin University Press, University of North Texas Press, McGill-Queen’s University Press, University of New Mexico Press, Curbstone Books, Milkweed Editions, Red Hen Press, Wave Books, Alice James Books, Paul Dry Books, Copper Canyon Press, Coffee House Press, powerHouse Books, Dial Press, Knopf, Nightboat Books, SUNY Press, Belle Point Press, White Stag Publishing, and Anhinga Press.

Click here to read.

New Poetry Titles (4/16/24)

Check out new poetry books published the week of 4/16 from Bottlecap Press, Knopf, HarperOne, Small Harbor Publishing, Red Hen Press, Copper Canyon Press, Nightwood Editions, Southern Illinois University Press, Seren, Sarabande Books, Phoneme Media, BOA Editions Ltd., W. W. Norton & Company, JBE Books, White Stag Publishing, ECW Press, knife | fork | book and McGill-Queen’s University Press.

Click here to read.

Chapbook Poem of the Month: Study of Daylight

Read the featured Chapbook Poem of the Month for April 2024, “Study of Daylight” from Love Letters from a Burning Planet by MJ Gomez, along with a few words from the poet.

Click here to read.