"best new poets 2006" Anthology with Dina Hardy and Jennifer Chapis

Dina Hardy's work has been published by Agni (www.bu.edu/agni/poetry/ online/2006/hardy.html), Bellingham Review, Black Warrior Review, POOL, Runes and Smartish Pace (www.smartishpace.com/home/erskinej/2003_1st.html). While attending the University of Iowa Writers Workshop on a Maytag Fellowship, she taught undergraduate classes in poetry, fiction and non-fiction. After spending two superlative years among the cows and corn, she received her MFA--then moved back to Burbank, CA. 

On the Island of the Fire-Eaters

                we’re waiting to be struck by lightning
in this moment when the plot stops
making sensethe monster needs life
and it’s dark. Some people say chaos,
others seed, clay or water. It was not
quiet, but calm as a cat and a vial of acid
in a closed box. Inside the reptile’s mouth
venom, teeth like guardrails down its throat.
Lightning spreads across water. In a storm,
never raise an umbrella. A man standing
on one leg has half the chance
of being struck by electricity as a man
on both feet. A man on both feet has half
the chance of a sheep. It’s best to keep away
from trees and radios. The safest place:
the bed. AAR is against all risks or average
annual rainfall. A thousand storms have left
their autographs on the copper of the Empire
State Building. Don’t get too close,
should have been the first sentence in the first
book. In the one-hundredth of a second
for the bolt to travel from cloud to earth,
we realize we aren’t grounded, lacking steel
we return to the beginning. The first picture
taken in our kitchen, so many dirty dishes.
The batter spills across the counter. We wait
to eat, to hold everything in our hands. Struck,
we are, not yet by lightfire and brimstone
far from our minds. The great conflagration
at the top of the mountain, so many pages away.

first published by Free Lunch, No. 37, Spring 2007

POET NAME Moonday poetry reading
You can find out more information about the
"best new poets 2006"
Anthology series,
edited by Jeb Livingood, by going to
www.bestnewpoets.org or by going to Amazon.com 
© 2007 Dina Hardy

Jennifer Chapis is the author of the chapbook, The Beekeeper's Departure (Backwards City Press 2007) and a limited-edition broadside, Poem as Tossed Salad (Center for Book Arts 2002). She has published poems with The Iowa Review, DIAGRAM, Hotel America, McSweeney's, Barrow Street, Quarterly West, and others. Her work was recently recognized with the Florida Review Editor's Prize, the GSU Review Poetry Prize, and a Pushcart nomination. Jennifer is a founding editor with Nightboat Books (www.nightboat.org).


Men in fluorescent vests are busy de-icing the wings.
She’s a sobbing head, shivering body against the plastic window.

She will not hear the man with the deer head,
seated behind in a forest of magazines, offer a blanket. 

Price of love, he explains to the boy with the face of a bear cub,
traveling alone for the first time.

I know the back of her from my dreams, says the man.
But she doesn’t know me, or that I am the one she will marry someday.

And how do you know so much? asks the boy.
Just as you know your mother is not far behind.

You’re not worried about ice on the wings? asks the boy.
I’ve already told you, says the man (warm black eyes),

in my dreams I follow this woman toes of a rabbit, sight of a dolphin,
scent of a circle to the fields where we’ve been.

from best new poets 2006 anthology

©  2007 Jennifer Chapis

List of 50
"best new poets 2006"
Deborah Ager
Andrew Allport
Amanda Auchter
Teresa Ballard
Ciaran Berry
Drew Blanchard
Elizabeth Bradfield
Jennifer Chapis
Adam Chiles
Gary Joseph Cohen
Eduardo C. Corral
James Crews
Christopher Cunningham
John W. Evans
Gaynell Gavin
Heather June Gibbons
Lisa Gluskin
Jessica Goodfellow
Dina Hardy
Jaimee Hills
J.M. Hughes
Theo Hummer
William Ashley Johnson
Anna Journey
Maud Kelly
Peter Kline
Andrew Kozma
Julie Larios
Quinn Latimer
Brian Leary
Stephanie Lenox
Karen Lepri
Michael McGriff
Christina Mengert
Darren Morris
Jay Nebel
Jill Osier
Philip Pardi
Kiki Petrosino
Alison Powell
Gretchen Primack
Stephanie Rogers
Natalie Shapero
Meg Shevenock
Barbara Buckman Strasko
Autumn Watts
Joe Wilkins
Susan Settlemyre Williams
Barbara Yien
Vincent Zompa

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