TABLE OF CONTENTS
Start Somewhere ~ Cathy Porter 7
Prophecy ~ Jane Stuart 7
Pilgrimage ~ Diane Lee Moomey 8
Berlin on Foot ~ Günther Bedson 9
Dream-walking a Year Later in the Gardens of Charlottenburg Castle ~ Günther Bedson 10
Autumn Leaves in Spring ~ Lucia Kiersch Haase 11
Enchantment ~ Walker Abel 12
The Babies Are in Bloom Again ~ Michael Fraley 13
Under the Mulberry Bush ~ Konrad Tademar Wilk 14
Night Sounds ~ Michael Fraley 15
Pearling ~ Diane Lee Moomey 16
Japan ~ Kevin Thornburg 16
Painted Desert ~ Emory Jones 17
Elk and Driftwood ~ Pamela Biery 18
It Beckoned Me ~ Ravi Sonakia 20
Passion ~ Livingston Rossmoor 20
Identity ~ Julia Cadwallader Staub 21
Divine Sculpture ~ Emory Jones 22
Roadside Cross ~ Oriana Ivy 23
The Enlightenment of Touch ~ Walker Abel 24
Message ~ Julia Cadwallader Staub 24
Habitat ~ Quito Regalo 25
The Cyclops ~ Diana DeCillis 26
Tranquility Base ~ Don Palmer 27
The Hard-skinned Fruit ~ Jay A. Adler 28
Bluey ~ Jenny McBride 29
All You Left Me ~ Günther Bedson 30
It’s All Gone Now ~ Ravi Sonakia 30
Aunt Ruth’s Lace Gloves ~ Kit Kennedy 31
Transmutation ~ Leonard Moon 32
Would That It Could ~ Elżbieta Czajkowska 33
My Imperceptible Basket and the Apathy of Moral Dignity ~ Adam Torkelson 34
Cow in Trees ~ John Rowe 35
Elected to the Board of Directors of CSPS in May 2020, Konrad Tademar Wilk is an American poet living in Los Angeles. His works range from single sonnets to epic poems on themes including current events, myth, and philosophy. In addition to American subjects, his work is strongly informed by international events and history, especially those of freedom and oppression. Tademar's early childhood was spent in Poland where he was particularly influenced by the rise of the anti-communist Solidarity labor union.
NEWSBRIEFS 2023, NO. 1, SPRING 2023
Another spring, another crisis, another war… The Wheel of Fortune is turning, on and on, and instead of falling off into a ditch of anger, fear or resentment, we keep doing what we are here to do: publish and honor the best poetry we can find. “The Best” is very personal and individual; what one person cherishes another finds boring. So we do not do anything by committee – our Annual Contest has one Judge per year (Frank Iosue last year, Anna Maria Mickiewicz this year), our Monthly Contests have one Contest Chair and Judge, Alice Pero, and our Quarterly has a group of Editors, each completely responsible for one issue per year or less often if there are more editors actively involved in the publication work. To lessen their workload we occasionally invite Guest Editors and we recently had the pleasure of working with Margaret Saine and Deborah P Kolodji in that role. Our Editor of CQ 49:1 is Konrad Tademar Wilk who edited one issue last year. Relatively new to the Editorial Board are also Bory Thach who had edited two issues so far and William Scott Galasso who edited one.
The California Quarterly Vol. 48, No. 4 edited by Deborah P Kolodji included many poets not previously published by the CQ and was praised for its content. With about 600 poems submitted per issue, and multiple withdrawals of poems published elsewhere, we decided to make important changes to our California Quarterly submission requirements, NOT allowing simultaneous submissions as of January 1, 2023 and instead promising to notify all authors within four months of submission. This will hopefully reduce the number of poems to be reviewed, without impacting their quality.
A second submission change concerns Monthly Contests – we decided to allow previously published poems among the submissions and that change also starts from January 2023. We expect that it will result in the increase of the number of submissions of high-quality poems for us to honor and reprint. The Monthly Contest winners are posted on our blog and published in the quarterly Poetry Letter.
CSPS is pleased to announce the 36th 2022 ANNUAL POETRY CONTEST. Submissions are accepted March 15th – June 30th, 2023. The three prize-winning poems will receive cash prizes and will be published in the California Quarterly, Vol. 49, No. 4 (2023 Winter). Poems selected for up to six Honorary Mentions may be published in the CQ or in the Poetry Letter, depending on the Editors’ choices. Submissions are welcome of original, unpublished poems in English, with 80-line (two-page) limit per poem. How to submit: Submissions are only accepted by mail. Send a cover letter with all poet information (mailing address, email address, name, phone) and a list of the titles of all submitted poems, as well as one copy of each poem with no poet identification, and a check for the appropriate reading fees to: Annual Contest Chair / P.O. Box 4288 Sunland, CA 91041-4288. Further information is below in the section on Annual Contests.
Our 2023 Contest Judge, a Polish-British bilingual poet Anna Maria Mickiewicz is a poet, writer, editor, translator, and publisher. She is the founder of the publishing house Literary Waves that published many volumes of poetry in English and Polish. Born and raised in Poland, Anna moved to California and then to London, where she has lived for many years. She is a member of the English Pen. Her poetic works have appeared in the United States, UK, Australia, Canada, Poland, Mexico, Italy, Bulgaria, Hungary, Salvador, India.
The three prize-winning poems from the 2022 Annual Contest, adjudicated by Frank Iosue of Arizona have been published in the California Quarterly Vol. 48, No. 4 and reprinted in the Poetry Letter No. 1 of 2023, along with Judge’s comments and the poems that won Honorary Mentions. First Prize: Jeanne Wagner – “Dolores Street”; Second Prize: Susan Wolbarst – “After”; Third Prize: Claire Scott – “Ariadne Auf Naxos”; Honorary Mentions: 1. Claire Scott – “S & H Green Stamps”; 2. Claire Scott – “Motel Rooms of Last Resort”; 3. Claire Scott – “The Sea Squirt Loses Its Mind”; 4. Susan Wolbarst – “Where’s Ginny?”; 5. Claire Scott – “In the Revised Version: A Different Mother”; 6. Sunny Yim Alperson – “Husband’s Urn”.
The Poetry Letter also features three poems by Les Bernstein from her recent book Loose Magic (Finishing Line Press). Book reviews in the Poetry Letter discuss: Shadows Thrown by Laura Ann Reed (Pauline Dutton), Saffron Skies by William Scott Galasso (Maja Trochimczyk) and Juliusz Erazm Bolek’s Ogród /The Garden in Polish and English (Jan Stępień), with two sample poems included, translated by Anna Maria Mickiewicz & Steve Rushton. Two reviews are by Michael Escoubas, shared from the Quill and Parchment, and presenting Synergy, by Kathy Lohrum Cotton & Michael Scott, M.D.; and Alice’s Adventures: A Modern Version of Lewis Carroll’s Classic in Verse, by Paul Buchheit.
The CSPS Poetry Letters continue to be published online, with PDF versions emailed to about 450 poets and poetry lovers; and the online posts divided into two, book reviews and poems. The ISSN application was submitted and is pending.
Maja Trochimczyk, CSPS President