Thursday, December 31, 2020

My poem "Odd Missive" published in Polarity

Many thanks to editor George Wallace for selecting "Odd Missive" for publication in the Winter 2020-21 issue of his e-magazine Polarity.

Read the issue here.
Read just my poem here.

I wrote "Odd Missive" during a 2018 workshop in Connecticut led by Meg Harris. Around that time, there was a thing happening on Facebook where people were sharing what songs were number one on their fourteenth birthdays — and that was our prompt. The poem also appears in my book Rattle and Numb: Selected and New Poems, 1992-2019.

More Polarity:

Wednesday, December 30, 2020

Books I've Read in 2020

...or at least that I've finished in 2020. There are many more I'm still in the process of reading.


Circuit by John Greiner (2020, Whiskey City)
Death of a Selfish Altruist by Chris Stroffolino (2017, Iniquity)


Those Who Pray to Rice by Julio Montalvo Valentin (2019, NightBallet)
Dog Alley by Hugh Merrill (2018, Stubborn Mule)
Alex in Movieland (1943-1973) by Alex Gildzen (2020, Crisis Chronicles)


Looking Back at Elyria: A Midwest City at Midcentury by Marci Rich (2019, The History Press)
Radish Legs, Duck Feet by Sayuri Ayers (2016, Green Bottle)
The Beats: A Graphic History by Paul M. Buhle (ed.), Harvey Pekar et al (2009, Hill & Wang)
How I Became Hettie Jones by Hettie Jones (1996, Grove)


Memoirs of a Beatnik by Diane DiPrima (1998 ed., Penguin)
The Rabbits With Red Eyes by Juliet Cook (2020, Ethel Zine and Micro)
One Evening by Yohji Izawa and Canna Funakoshi (1991, Marcel Dekker)
Sunshine State by Gregg Shapiro (2019, NightBallet)
A Quiet Ghost by M. J. Arcangelini (2020, Luchador)
typing with e.e. cummings by Lori Desrosiers (2019, Glass Lyre)
Love, H: The Letters of Helene Dorn and Hettie Jones by Hettie Jones (2016, Duke University)


Serving by Kari Gunter-Seymour (2020 revised ed., Crisis Chronicles)
Reflections by Hermann Hesse (1974 ed., Farrar Straus Giroux)
Artists in the Underworld by Richard Wayne Horton (2019, Human Error)
an extra doughnut permanently lent by Sara Adams (2020, Ghost City)


Autobiography by Morrissey (2013, Penguin Classics)
The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison (1972 edition, Washington Square)
The Gathering of My Name by Cornelius Eady (1991, Carnegie Mellon University)
A Place to Stand by Jimmy Santiago Baca (2002 edition, Grove)
Dutchman & The Slave: Two Plays by Amiri Baraka (1971 ed., Harper Perennial)


How to Change Your Mind by Michael Pollan (2018, Penguin)
Citizen: An American Lyric by Claudia Rankine (2014, Graywolf)
The Near-Johannesburg Boy and Other Poems by Gwendolyn Brooks (1991 ed., Third World)
Actual Air by David Berman (2019 ed., Drag City)
The Bastard Children of Dharma Bums by Joshua Michael Stewart (2020, Human Error)
The 24 Hour Store Was Closed by Paul Richmond (2020, Human Error)


Some Tricks I Was Born Knowing by D. M. Spratley (2020, Ghost City)
Stamped from the Beginning by Ibram X. Kendi (2016, Bold Type)
Dress Codes: Of Three Girlhoods by Noelle Howey (2002, Picador)
The Collected Poems of Chika Sagawa trans. by Sawako Nakayasu (2020, Modern Library)


How to Be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi (2019, One World)
The Can Book by Pascal Bussy & Andy Hall (1989, Harrow)


i saw god cooking children / paint their bones by John Compton (2020, Blood Pudding)
Fort Pitt Tunnel Blues by John Dorsey (2020, Maverick Duck)
Ode to Horatio and Other Saviors by Carolyn Srygley-Moore (2020, Crisis Chronicles)


Your Baby's First Word Will Be DADA
by Jimmy Fallon (2015. Feiwel & Friends)


All Gates Open: The Story of Can by Rob Young & Irmin Schmidt (2019, Faber & Faber)
The Circus of His Bones by Steve Brightman (2020, Kung Fu Treachery)
Basho: The Complete Haiku trans. by Jane Reichhold (2008 ed., Kodansha)
The Vagina Analogues by Michelle R. Smith (2020, self)
Beowulf trans. by Seamus Heaney (2001, W.W. Norton)
The Subterraneans by Jack Kerouac (1994 ed., Grove)

Friday, December 18, 2020

$1.3 Million In Pandemic Relief Funds Distributed By Arts Cleveland

I'm super grateful to be one of the individual artist recipients. This couldn't have come at a better time. Thank you, Cuyahoga County and Arts Cleveland!

Read more here:

Saturday, December 5, 2020

Police Detective Who Arrested Me in 1992 Has Been Charged with Rape

"ELYRIA — A retired Elyria police officer has been charged with 10 felony sexual assault counts.

Joseph Van Kerkhove, 78, of Grafton, was indicted Nov. 19 by a Lorain County grand jury on six felony counts of rape and four counts of gross sexual imposition. He was served with the charges Tuesday and was being held in the Lorain County Jail on $100,000 cash or surety bond...."

Read the rest in the 12/4/2020 Chronicle-Telegram:

Thursday, December 3, 2020

My poem "What They Did" featured 12/3 in Winedrunk Sidewalk

I am pleased to report that my poem "What They Did" is featured today (day 1416) in Winedrunk Sidewalk. Many thanks to editor John Grochalski for including itand for keeping up the good fight!

For daily resistance poems, follow

Permalink to just my poem:

Poem Process:

I wrote a lot of the first draft of this poem on 1 June 2018 during Write! hosted by River River at the Carson McCullers House in Nyack, New York. On that particular day, one of the workshop prompts was "What they did [was]...." A couple of days later, I edited the rough piece a little and added most of the section from "What they did was spit" through "white Jesus / made in our image." But it still didn't feel finished.

Fast forward to 2020. I found the unfinished handwritten piece while going through a pile of paperwork in my office, found it still unsettlingly relevant, and dusted it off to try out at a couple of Zoom readings. Finally, in late November I decided to transcribe it into a Word document and strengthen and (as much as possible) finish it. One glaring item was that my original ending had alluded to the then still-pending 2020 Presidential election. In the wake of Trump's loss, that ending no longer seemed to work, so I replaced it with the six final lines you now see.

[12/24/2020 UPDATE: When I originally posted this blog entry I said I began this poem during a workshop in Amherst, Ohio. I was wrong. Today, going through other old papers, I realized that while I had the date correct, I had misremembered the location. The poem was begun on 1 June 2018 in Nyack, New York, and I've corrected the paragraph above accordingly. Side note: this was the same day I wrote "Odd Missive," which is the final poem in my book Rattle and Numb.]

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Loring Wirbel reviews Ode to Horatio and Other Saviors

We are grateful to Loring Wirbel for the following review he posted on Goodreads:

Carolyn Srygley-Moore's poetry collections are known for taking orthogonal pie slices through precise locations, times, and emotions for a unique specificity of images, even when steeped in surreality. Here, she takes us to a few brief months in 2012 surrounding the euthanasia of a beloved pitbull Evy. The fact that the poems all date from this period do not make them seem far away in time in the slightest, nor does the fact that she is working for animal rescue make this collection the slightest bit partisan or didactic. The simple thing to say is that this collection contains some of her strongest poems, but then again, we could say that about any of her works.

Since Srygley-Moore rarely gives us prose poems, it's interesting to see her open the collection with a powerful and distilled prose work, "A Place Like Brooklyn, Like Stonehenge." This is followed by the poem that gives the book its title, and the two works together set the stage for the passionate and unblinking works to follow. Three stunning poems serve as memorials to her father, a challenging figure in her life, and one whom she carries to safety in the heartbreaking "PTSD Hushabye."

Two poems in particular serve as memorials to both Horatio and Evy, "Dark, & Darker" and "Scattered Petals." There are several here that could provide a reader's favorite line, such as "Every homeland owns its slaughterhouse" in "An Angry Sad Poem," or "an idea in God's throat" in "Loves, Non-Loves, Anti-Loves." But don't let me steer you to particulars. As in her previous poetry collections, Carolyn Srygley-Moore astonishes the most when her work is swallowed in wholistic fashion. Do not worry about the book serving as a clarion call for animal rights, though that's important too. Accept the gift as just an unceasing marvel.

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Ode to Horatio and Other Saviors by Carolyn Srygley-Moore was published in late 2020 by Crisis Chronicles Press

U.S. or Elsewhere?