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I start reading Li-Young Lee's "Behind My Eyes." I fall in love with his poems since I read "ROSE" two years ago.

One of favorite poems from his book...

***
MOTHER DELUXE

"We can't stay where we are,
and we don't know where else to go,"

is the first card my mother deals. We're playing
her deluxe edition of "Memories
from the 20th Century."

"Dead Baby," "Mystery Bundles," "Cleansing by Sacrifice."

Seven cards apiece and the object is to not die.

"Exodus," "Eyes Snatched Away,"
"Superstition at the Side of the Road."

All cards are good or bad depending on how you play them.
"Defeated by wings," "Eating Forbidden Blood."

No card possesses inherent value.
"Among the Lepers," "Burial by the Solo River,"
"The Extracted Oil."

Every player begins in bondage.
Every player eventually dies. Everybody plays
where they know or don't know they're playing.

Maybe this isn't game.
Maybe it's the World Evening News.

Maybe this time I'll rescue my mother.
I can't tell if I thought that or if she said it.

Maybe this isn't the news.
Maybe this is a dream God is having
and somebody should wake Him.

Good boat, first boat, old boat, Mother,
my first night with you lasted nine months.
Our second night together is the rest of my life.

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RHINO Poetry 2017 this Saturday, April 29, at The Book Stall

3 pm RHINO editors write poems-on-demand! Order a poem-to-go on any topic of your choice. RHINO editor-poets will compose a poen for you on the spot in ild school typewriters for a small donation to the magazine.

4-5 pm Featured reading by RHINO 2017 poets and editors. Copies of the new issue will also be on sale. Grab some RHINO swag--bookmarks and buttons and meet the editors and poets of this 40+ award-winning literary magazine.

Featured readers:

Naoko Fujimoto was born and raised in Nagoya, Japan. She was an exchange student and received a B.A. and M.A. from Indiana University South Bend. Her recent publications are in Prairie Schooner, Hotel Amerika, RHINO, Cream City Review, and many other journals. Her first chapbook, “Home, No Home”, won the annual Oro Fino Chapbook Competition by Educe Press. Other short collections, “Silver Seasons of Heartache” and “Cochlea”, will be published by Glass Lyre Press in May, 2017. Currently she is working on her graphic poetry co…

Pre-Order "Mother Said, I Want Your Pain" Today!

"Mother Said, I Want Your Pain" (The winner of the Shared Dream Immigrant Contest, selected by Janine Joseph) will be available from Backbone Press (Spring 2018).

Of the collection, Janine Joseph writes:“I do not know/ if I am even right to be a mother at a right time,” discloses the speaker in the opening poem of Mother Said, “I Want Your Pain.” Evocative and startling in their unflinching clarity of image, these poems are inheritors of the aftermath of nuclear fallout and chemical warfare. They are tuned to the movement of transgenerational traumas. Grandmothers who “hid in a ditch with three horses” while B-29s shot bullets overhead, leave relatives who later ask of our bequeathed earth, “Is the land poisoned or not poisoned?” Here is a striking collection with a deft voice, poised even as it turns on or transcends an observation or emotion: “Grandfather watches TV on the highest volume,/ the howling-wind.”

Pre-Order Your Copy Today from Backbone Press!