Tag Archives: senior poetry

Knitting the Warhol Bridge

WarholBridgeCover.inddThe poems in Ann Curran’s Knitting the Andy Warhol Bridge flash with a quiet brilliance. An adroit wordsmith, Curran turns clever on its head; her poems can become deadly at the least provocation, not to mention funny, dark, illuminating, and often, heartbreakingly sad. Her poems celebrate life in all its sullied glory. No subject escapes her critical gaze:

weddings, sports stadiums, parolees sharing a moment, adoption, racism, war, rumors, love, death. Even the penis is fair game for her wit. These poems sparkle with specifics; they dig deep, nudge the reader toward tolerance. “The New Pastor” “urges the faithful/ to open their hearts to different people: the food co-op kid with rings in his nose,/ lips and eyebrows, the Latino next door,/ college students with raucous beer parties,/ even the half-black U.S. president./ Put down the iPod, the Wi-Fi-fed notebook. / See the live people. …Deal with the real.” This timely, remarkable collection deals with the real in a profound and brand new way. It is a considerable achievement and a terrific read.

Alexis Rhone Fancher, poetry editor of Cultural Weekly, is author of State of Grace: The Joshua Elegies, and How I Lost My Virginity to Michael Cohen and other Heart Stab Poems

A poet’s muse can take many forms. Ann Curran finds inspiration in the personal stories and incidents of daily life. A journalism background informs her craft, but her stories would be hard to tell in a newspaper. It is her poetry that offers her the way to make sense of her world and ours. A native Pittsburgher, she finds much material locally, but, whatever the locale, her poetry is infused with humanity, wisdom, wit and grace.

Reg Henry is a nationally syndicated columnist for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

See a sample version of this book, here.

SUMMARY

In Knitting the Andy Warhol Bridge, poet Ann Curran takes you into Downtown Pittsburgh, looks at life—raging, whimpering, chuckling— at the bus stop, at the PNC/Y, along the three rivers where local knitters and crocheters decorated the bridge that commemorates Pittsburgh native Andy Warhol. That bridge leads to the North Side of town where the nation’s largest museum dedicated to a single artist attracts international visitors to ooh and aah, tap and punch at a roomful of inflated silver balloons and see shows that depict the brutal end of a routine southern picnic in the olden days —families, children to ancient grandmas, gather to watch a black man lynched. She’ll take you up the incline to Mount Washington, where her Irish immigrant grandparents landed in what they thought was luxury, where she’s lived for a couple of decades, blocks away from “the best urban view in the world.” Five minutes from Downtown, you’ll find deer and turkeys meandering through her yard. She’ll recall the G-20 visit to town, the steps to becoming a white racist or not. Music and religion seep into how she’s come to love her hometown and all the children and grandchildren of immigrants who, like her, still wave their other flag—in voice, in music, in food, in their very souls. You don’t have to be from Pittsburgh to enjoy the sounds and insights of this book. You just have to belong to the human race, diverse as the knitwork that dressed the Andy Warhol Bridge for a brief month one summer.

BIO

Ann Curran, president and CEO of Curran Ink, is author of Placement Test (Editor’s Choice, Main Street Rag) and Me First (Lummox Press). She has worked as a backroom bakery slave washing dirty pans and snitching icing, and as a conscientious journalist at the Pittsburgh Catholic and Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. A film reviewer of the love-to-hate school, she reported on new films and Pittsburgh Public Theater plays for the Market Square tabloid and covered the International Poetry Forum for the Pittsburgh Press, providing advance features and reviews of performances. She wrote features for half a dozen Pittsburgh Magazine editors. She also taught English at Duquesne University, her alma, as a graduate assistant, which placed her well below an adjunct professor. She learned grammar teaching remedial English at the Community College of Allegheny County, where she found her favorite, obscene example of passive voice written on a wall on her way to class to teach that chicken way of talking. For a couple of decades, she edited the prize-winning quarterly Carnegie Mellon Magazine at Carnegie Mellon University, while her boss, Don Hale, argued with assorted presidents about why they should not fire her. Otherwise, she plays tennis in four seasons, Shanghai Rum and 500 with cocoa bean fanatics, works out at the Y, does the laundry, sort of cooks, cleans the toilets and performs other poetic chores. Some how she managed to marry a kind, loving man—Ed Wintermantel. They raised the most thoughtful, sweetest daughter imaginable—Cristin Francis Curran Wintermantel. Ann sings at St. Mary of the Mount Church when the choir is in active voice and serves on the Parish Pastoral Council.

See a sample of Knitting the Andy Warhol Bridge here.

ORDERING A COPY OF THIS BOOK:
To order a copy of Knitting the Andy Warhol Bridge by check if you are in the USA please address your check to Lummox Productions in the amount of $18 and send to Lummox Press c/o PO Box 5301, San Pedro, CA 90733

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Unbroken Lines

UnbrokenCoverHiResHere is the definitive book of prose-poems, destined to be a classic of the genre on every reference shelf. A new adventure in the evolving presentation of Canadian poetry, a welcome innovation of compact vision, allowing many threads of existence to wind together on a brief, powerful page. The lyricism, the heart-tug of common human experience, is strongly present, just as the emotional highs we have come to expect of great poetry.

James Deahl’s prose-poem form allows the freedom of disparate experiences to be gathered with meaningful connection into the paragraphs poetically linked. The form is not limited to a single insight, but has the sweeping vibrancy to allow geography, time, season, and circumstance to flow together, like a stony riverbed, ever changing, ever the same, as we imprint personal events onto the backdrop. A story unfolds and surprises inside each prose-poem here, enhanced by natural setting, a history straddling the tides of our memories and experiences in cities and towns that have watchfully witnessed our arrivals and departures.

 Unbroken Lines heralds a welcome new experience in poetic expression, leaves you hungry for more. The introductory poem, “Damp Stones,” encapsulates the hammer power of compact lines, shadowing myth, beauty, fear, desire, old yearnings caught in knots of the woods in all our subconscious minds. Deahl’s poem “The Meadow” expresses these revelations searingly: “only the realm of indestructible forms remains, a realm outside the tarnished world of matter, like a meadow of endless spring living in the imagination of a child.”

James Deahl has a very special gift, it marks him as one of our great contemporaries: he can impart the geography he has absorbed into his poetic persona, make it places that resonate with the joys and sorrows of those who lived in those places, leaving them mute testimony to change and often decay, a part of our bones. Here the stalwart Yankee beginnings, his travels to Europe, old DNA touchstones, the wilds of Canada that hold and transfix. The prose-poem is a perfect vehicle for this complex painting.

I anticipate that Unbroken Lines will herald a freer form of lyrical expression for coming generations of Canadian writers.

Katherine L. Gordan

A review and interview with James Deahl…

Read a sample from Unbroken Lines

ISBN 978-1-929878-60-4
150 pages, 6 X 9 inches, Trade Paper
$20 + Shipping

For orders by check/money orders, please make out to Lummox Productions in one of the following amounts: USA = $26 (shipping included); WORLD = $42. Send to Lummox Press at 3127 E. 5th St. Long Beach, CA 90814

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When Desert Willows Speak

WINNER OF THE SECOND LUMMOX POETRY PRIZE

DesertWillowsCover.inddH. Marie Aragon of Santa Fe, New Mexico has won the 2015 Lummox Poetry Prize with her poem The Dark and Light Side of the Moon. The prize consists of a cash award of $250 and forty copies of a chapbook created by Lummox Press for the author.  When Desert Willows Speak is the chapbook. It’s 46 pages long and can be ordered from Lummox Press (see the ordering information below). Read a sample from the chapbook here. We hope you will enjoy it.

If you are curious about this contest go here

When Desert Willows Speak by H. Marie Aragon
ISBN 9781929878666
46 pages, 6 X 9 paperback, $12 retail

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Two-fer Deal: Taylor Graham

PuppyCoverWhatWindSaysCover3Get two books by Taylor Graham: What the Wind Says; and Walking the Puppy for $24 (includes S & H)… use the drop down menu button to order. Or send by mail to:

Lummox PRODUCTIONS
3127 E. 6th St.
Long Beach, CA 90814


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What the Wind Says

WhatWindSaysCover3WHAT THE WIND SAYS by TAYLOR GRAHAM

For over 35 years Taylor Graham has been a volunteer search-and-rescue (SAR) dog handler. She and her husband have trained their German Shepherds to find missing people – in Alaska, rural Virginia, and California. She’s a veteran of the 1985 Mexico City earthquake, the Berkeley-Oakland Hills firestorm, and other disasters, as well as hundreds of searches for lost hunters and hikers, elderly walkaways, victims of drowning, avalanche and homicide. For ten years she edited the National Association for Search and Rescue’s SAR Dog ALERT newsletter. With her search dog, she spent two summers as a Forest Service volunteer ranger in the Mokelumne Wilderness. No longer on SAR callout, she still trains her dogs at least weekly; German Shepherds don’t understand retirement.

For my husband, Hatch, who’s had dogs all his life; and for all the dogs who’ve shared our lives and taught us so much — Taylor Graham

“If they don’t allow dogs in heaven, then I don’t want to go!” — Grandpa Armstrong

Look through a sampling of poems from this book. 

160 pages; 6 X 9 Perfect bound, Softcover
ISBN 978-1-929878-49-9
$15 Retail + S&H

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Or order a copy by mail, make a check or M/O out to Lummox Productions, and send to: Lummox c/o PO Box 5301 San Pedro, CA 90733

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STEEL VALLEY by Mike Adams

SteelValleyCoverI first heard Mike Adams reading selections from Steel Valley on the Jane Crown Show (pod cast) in 2009. I was so enthralled with what I heard that I called in and offered to publish the manuscript! Thus Steel Valley was born.

John Macker, a respected poet, reviewer and small press publisher (the Desert Shovel Review) wrote this about Steel Valley:

“I love poetry that illuminates the soul’s travelogue. You can feel with all senses the steel wheels of Mike Adams’ Pennsylvania steel mill and railroad boyhood pulse in every word; his clear, generous breaths open the heart to the wide expanses of the poet writing down his life. These tough, tender-eyed poems and prose pieces are at once blue collar and bohemian, homages to the drinking and the working life juxtaposed against a long poem about cooking green chili. There are disappearing riprap trails and epic family narratives that haunt and exhilarate. It is hard to find a geography worth its weight in memory that doesn’t resonate with the blood and spirit of its inhabitants. Mike, like Ed Abbey before him, left behind the Wobbly Joe bars, mills, hills and scarred valleys of Pennsylvania for the boisterous outback of the comparatively wide, wild open West. Steel Valley is fine writing, epic and intimate.”  – John macker

Sadly, on Sept. 28, 2013 we lost Mike to Cancer. He was a great man, both as poet and a human being, gentle & wise. He is sorely missed.

Read a sample of Steel Valley here.

Steel Valley
ISBN 978-1-929878-17-8
106 pages, Trade Paperback
$15 + S&H
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Books by RD Armstrong

Internationally recognized publisher & poet RD Armstrong has been writing for over 20 years. Specializing in mostly poetry, he also has written prose, essays, articles, reviews & interviews, many of which are showcased in his numerous projects put out by his Lummox Press. In the Lummox Journal (1995 – 2006), RD wrote a lead essay for each issue, conducted interviews with over 100 poets, writers, musicians, artists and even a dancer, over the course of its eleven year existence. He has also edited the annual Poetry Anthology simply entitled Lummox, for the past 7 years. He’s self-published (in the proud tradition of Walt Whitman) 6 full sized collections as well as 11 chapbooks and was published in 2 full sized books and 2 chapbooks published by other presses. In addition to that, he has been published in over 300 magazines. journals, and online sites. This last number would be higher if he hadn’t spent so much of his time running the Lummox Press and helping hundreds of poets.

The titles listed below are all perfect-bound paperbacks. All are published by Lummox Press.

Fire 1

 

FIRE and RAIN Volume 1

Volume one of a two-part set featuring selected poems from 1993 to 2007, including some of RD’s ‘signature’ poems, like “Eyes Like Mingus”, “Pueblo de las Putas” and “Corazon”. These are poems you might hear him read at one of his many features in the Small Press poetry scene. All the poems in this two volume set were hand picked by RD as his personal favorites.

210 pages; 6X9 size; Trade Paperback
ISBN 978-1-929878-96-3
Retail: $19.99 $15




 

Fire 2

 

FIRE and RAIN Volume 2

Volume two of a two-part set featuring selected poems from 1993 to 2007, including some of RD’s ‘signature’ poems, like “Yardbird Burned”, “Sanitized for Your Protection” and “Things I Notice 4”. These are poems you might hear him read at one of his many features in the Small Press poetry scene. All the poems in this two volume set were hand picked by RD as his personal favorites.

156 pages; 6X9 size; Trade Paperback
ISBN 978-1-929878-97-0
Retail: $19.99 $15




 

OnOffCover2ON/OFF THE BEATEN PATH – 3 Road Poems

Three poems written about road trips…the lure of the road, the frantic pace of mile upon mile, hour upon hour, the mad rush of the journey between Point A and Point B. Contained in this volume: A Journey Up the Coast; On/Off the Beaten Path; and RoadKill (RD’s epic about a 3,000 mile romp undertaken right before Sept. 11, 2001; a 10,000 plus word monster). Ride shotgun with RD as he muses about poets, poetry, friendships forged on hot asphalt and things observed from inside the cockpit of a car hurtling down the interstate at 65 + MPH.

116 pages; 6X9 sized Trade Paperback
ISBN 978-1-929878-99-4
Retail: $15.99 $15




El Pagano

 

EL PAGANO & OTHER TWISTED TALES – Short Stories

The stories in this slim volume, reflect the influence of Charles Bukowski, whom RD has read extensively. But as was noted by one of his fans, this collection of short stories “Out Bukowski’s Bukowski!”  These are tales of extraordinary madness. And while they might appear to be autobiographical, they are not, well not really. RD plays pretty fast and loose with the “facts”.
“Better than a cold shower” – Andrea Kowalski
120 pages; 6X9 sized Trade Paperback
ISBN: 978-1-929878-98-7
Retail: $17.99 $15


E-OR

 

E/OR – LIVING AMONGST THE MANGLED

Near the end of 2008, RD wound up in an L. A. County hospital for 14 days. He nearly lost his right foot to an infection. It was during that time that he was diagnosed with Diabetes. It was a sobering experience (literally!). This collection of poetry and blog entries describes that time period, from the beginning of 2008 (the drunkard’s lifestyle) to the end of 2010 (reformed and living right). It includes everything he wrote about that time…the good, the bad and the horribly ugly! A rough-and-tumble look at health-care for the poor and drunken and the questionable coping methods used to get by.

189 pages; 6X9 sized Trade Paperback
ISBN 978-1-929878-30-7
Retail: $15



Mangled

 

LIVING AMONG THE MANGLED (Revised)

This is the leaner, meaner fighting weight version of E/OR. All the beautiful pieces with none of the fat.

132 pages: 6X9 sized Trade Paperback
ISBN 978-1-929878-90-1
Retail: $15


 

TRACKING THE RABBIT by RD Armstrong

When my dad died, I had some difficulty dealing with his demise. I had mixed feelings…on the one hand I was deeply saddened by his loss, especially since I had gotten to know him and had earned his respect during the last decade of his life; and on the other hand, having visited him in the senior ‘warehouse’ and seeing how utterly miserable and alone he was (lost in his dementia)…I was glad his suffering was at an end.

This chapbook concerns itself with the way I dealt with his death. I employed a “spirit animal” to help me resolve my grief and make some sense of it all.

36 pages; 5.5 X 8.5 Trade Paperback
ISBN: 978-1-929878-78-9
Retail: $12




 

Last Call-new front

 

LAST CALL: THE BUKOWSKI LEGACY CONTINUES – Edited by RD Armstrong

This is the reprised version, new and improved, and ready to take up the banner dropped by the old man so many years ago (we just celebrated Buk’s 93rd birthday in Aug. of 2013).

If you ever wondered what Bukowski spawned by his example, then you need to read this book, which contains poetry, fiction, essays and artwork all inspired by the old dog!

150 pages; 6X9 sized Trade Paperback
ISBN 978-1-929878-86-4
Retail: $18




 

 

 

WORKING THE WRECKAGE OF THE AMERICAN POEM – Edited by RD Armstrong

This anthology deals with the passing of Small Press legend and Lummox Press favorite, Todd Moore, who passed away suddenly in March of 2010. Todd was a prolific poet who choose the gangster John Dillinger as his poetic persona. Many of Todd’s pals are included in this volume which features poetry and essays about the Co-Founder of the Outlaw School of Poetry. There’s also a near-complete bibliography of Todd’s books, chapbooks and recordings included. Due to some bureaucratic BS, there is no poetry by Todd Moore in this book. But there are other books and chapbooks published by Lummox Press, most notably, The Riddle of the Wooden Gun which came out in 2009.  That book concerns Dillinger’s “mythic” escape from the Crown Point Jail in 1933, supposed using a gun that was carved out of wood…

178 pages; 6X9 sized Trade Paperback
ISBN 978-1-929878-93-2
Retail: $15




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Walking the Puppy

PuppyCoverFor over 35 years, Taylor Graham has been working with Search & Rescue (SAR) dogs. She has traveled far and wide searching for lost hikers in the wilderness, victims of earthquakes and sadly, dead bodies. Walking the Puppy contains poems written for/about her current dog, Loki. Even though Taylor has retired from active duty, Loki has not…as Taylor puts it, SAR dogs never retire, so they must be continuously trained and exercised.

This chapbook was a precursor to a larger collection remembering all of Taylor’s dogs and their adventures over the years, entitled What The Wind Says. If you love dogs, you’re going to love these books.

Walking The Puppy Sample

ISBN 978-1-929878-46-8
34 pages; 5.5 X 8.5; chapbook
Retail: $8



 

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Me First

MeFirstCoverAnn Curran has written a book like no other. With a reporter’s eye and a poet’s vision, she has created a new genre—a poetry of utter frankness. For grief, see the Kennedy poem.  For candor, the poem to Maxine Kumin.  For accuracy, her lines on “cagey” Seamus Heaney. Whether the subject is the million dollar sale of a bishop’s mansion, the Warhol and Ginsberg myths or the “profound” jottings of Kay Ryan and other superficialists, this is poetry at war with fakery on all fronts, and it’s as unignorable as it is rare. —Samuel Hazo, director, International Poetry Forum, professor emeritus, Duquesne University.

The “me” of these poems celebrates “connecting.” Ann Curran identifies persons and associations that have places in her drama. The voice can be modest, sardonic, even outrageous. Never just chronicler and seasoned by her years as a reporter, no foolishness and no person goes unnoticed. The writer’s wit, balanced by tenderness, makes the reader look forward to each poem. You want to laugh, cry, applaud. You’ll love her authenticity. —Rosaly DeMaios Roffman, professor emerita, Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

Me First Sampler

ISBN 978-1-929878-44-4
120 pages, 6 X 9, Trade Paperback
$15 Retail





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I See Hunger’s Children

normalCover

I first became aware of the poet normal through Lee Crabtree, then the Fug’s keyboard man, in 1963 or ’64, at  the Peace Eye Bookstore on the Lower East Side. Thirty-five years later I be­came re-acquainted with his poems.  I liked his honesty. I like the “jolt” of reality in these works, and the inten­sity of images such as the  “devil hair of barbed wire’,’ and “diamonds of light beg forgiveness’,’ or “a parade of wrinkles.” Go forth. normal.

Ed Sanders, poet, musician & activist

“…normal is the voice of the homeless, the victimized, the disaffected and the disturbed. These are poems born of the street, of the vagabond heart, the true restless American spirit that Whitman spoke of when he heard America singing. Too often, now, we hear of singing like the dolphins in an Eliot poem, who do not sing for us.  normal sings for us, that is, to the poet in us all and we should listen.”

Alan Catlin

Hunger’s Children Sampler

ISBN 978-1-929878-80-2
128 pages, 6 X 9, Trade Paperback
$15 retail





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