Poetry News from Origami Poems HQ
Left-side Contents - Photo Caption Contest, 'Today's book of poetry' blog, Events & Publications, E-letters to the Editor.

1st Ever "Name That Caption" Contest...

Come up with a clever caption & email it to
Selected entry will be posted in next newsletter & said clever creator will receive 5 chapbooks of choice.. via snail mail.  Photo taken by photographer extraordinaire, Dave Amadio - Many thanks, Dave. 

(Yes, OPP books are already free, but everyone likes to be witty, to "win," and to get REAL mail.)

Today's book of poetry

Blogsite posts review/appreciation of books
We recently received an email from Michael Dennis:
" I am a published poet from Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.  For the last two years I have been posting a regular blog about books of poetry I like.  I try to post a new blog/review/appreciation every other day.  My blog is called "Today's book of poetry".
Thus far I've posted 284 blogs/reviews of books from over 130 different small presses.   My blog has been seen by over 75,000 readers.  Today's book of poetry has been read by viewers in over 125 countries.  We would very much like to include your titles on our blog."

 After receiving our packet of books Mr. Dennis wrote,
"Thank you so much for sending these very attractive Origami Poems Project books. On looks alone - I love them. Today's book of poetry will be certain to contact you whenever I blog/review any of your titles."

Thank you, Mr. Dennis

Sunday, Feb 1st  - RISD, Providence RI
Metcalf Museum from 1-3:30 pm

20th Annual Langston Hughes reading
Featured poet, Rick Benjamin, RI Poet Laureate


Sunday Feb 8th 3-5:00 pm
Symposium Books
E Greenwich RI
Tom Chandler, Lynnie Gobeille, Heather Sullivan - Guest MC, Lisa Starr


Poets Speaking Up!  Sundays at 2:00 PM
February 15 & March 15
The Contemporary Theater in Wakefield, RI

Free Admission.  Donations for local charities gratefully accepted.

FEBRUARY 15th Event:
Feeding People One Word at a Time
Featured poets: Lisa Starr, Kim Baker & Nancy Jasper. Other poems will be selected from submissions the organizers solicited for the theme addressing “all the ways we need to be fed as human beings”.

MARCH 15th Event:
Gimme Shelter
Special guest, nationally acclaimed Spoken Word artist, Jared Paul. Russell Partridge, Westerly’s WARM Center Director and local musician, will give a perspective on the theme as well as read and sing. Margie Flanders will read from her work.


FRI Feb, 20th 12-4pm,  International House, Providence
"Lies My Mother Told Me: A Perspective on Societal Propaganda" - Workshop explores the effect of parental & cultural messages on our personal desire for expression and growth.  Discussion and writing exercises led by Mary Mueller, LICSW and Lawrence J. Krips, Empowerment Coach and poet.  Contact Larry:  illuminationcoaching@aol.com
for more info

Memphis Movie: A Novel
by Corey Mesler
Available April 7th

"Memphis Movie tells of a director who hits it big after filming a small, independent movie in Memphis. He goes to Hollywood, makes two or three less than successful films, and can't get another one made. But a producer gives him a last chance: a movie made again in Memphis" Leonard Gill in Memphis Flyer

Switch (the difference)
Various Authors
Editors: A.J. Huffman, April Salzano

The 5th anthology of 2014, Kind of a Hurricane Press

Justice for All
by Alex Stolis
released in August by The Conversation Paperpress.
Excerpt from S.B. May 30th 2002
"Forgiveness may need flesh and blood but for some of us, being lost
is the only heaven we’ll know."

Fugitive Pieces
by Howard Good

Right Hand Pointing
All proceeds go to the Food Bank of the Hudson Valley.

From poet, Nancy Jasper:
Gávea-Brown recently published four of my poems.  The poems are all connected to Portuguese feasts in Fox Point.  I am especially excited about this because the magazine has readers in Portugal as well as in North America.  It’s nice to be offered a place at the table. 

Ana Prudaru’s “collection of eight love letters" will be published Oct. 2015 by Etched Press

E-Letters to the OPP

I received the package with my little origami chapbooks in it, they look so lovely.  Thanks again for sending me extra print copies, now I just have to figure out how to fold them properly.  ;-)
Sandy Benitez, California, 1/22/2015

To Origami book-folding-aspirants - See the Fold-An-Origami slideshow on the website.  It's slow and the photos are a bit hokey but you'll get the hang of it in no time!
Dear Editors,
I am deeply touched... and I think the draft and the illustration are simply beautiful! Thank you!  I look forward to seeing them in print and also in the near future, more of my poems!  Let me know what else you need.  We Nigerians are very religious so permit me to say; GOD BLESS ORIGAMI!

Abraham Adonduwa, Nigeria, January 22, 2015
I received the package with my little origami chapbooks in it, they look so lovely.  Thanks again for sending me extra print copies, now I just have to figure out how to fold them properly.  ;-)

Sandy Benitez, California, January 22, 2015
Thank you for supporting my work in the past.  I love being an OPP poet and giving the micro chapbooks away at my readings.  Everyone loves them!

MJ Iuppa December 14, 2014
I was at a store today promoting my books. As a part of my program, I gave away copies of my Origami Poetry Projects. Luckily I made copies. I gave away over 100 copies of my poems as well as 100 copies of other poets from the project ... I did not sell too many books, but I sold some and used your books to promote my books at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

Martin Willitts, Jr., New York 12/5/2014

for your encouraging emails...
OPP Editors

* * *

Documentary Filmmaker Ken Burns named recipient of 2015 Tell It Slant Award
Presented annually by the Emily Dickinson Museum Board of Governors to honor individuals whose work, in any field, is imbued with the creative spirit of America's greatest poet, Emily Dickinson.
Wendy says, that's all for this Newsletter!

Do YOU have news to share?
Send it to us at origamipoems@gmail.com

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0.5% of the price of your eligible purchase is donated when you select Origami Poems Project as your Charity of Choice.
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Things we have to say...

Terms of Use: All materials on this site are protected by copyright and intellectual property laws and are the property of Origami Poems Project ("OPP") and our poets. Unless otherwise provided through the express, written permission of the Editors, visitors may access and download free OPP micro-chapbooks available through the OPP website only for personal, non-commercial use. Any and all sale and/or resale of OPP materials is strictly prohibited. Selection, publication and/or distribution of submitted poetry shall be at the sole discretion of the Editors. OPP reserves the right to refuse any submission for any reason.

Thanks, that's all we wanted to know.

Above photo:  Cosmic Winterscape - a gelid scene *

Right-side Contents - New Poets Sandy Benitez, Abraham Adonduwa, Recent Micro-chapbooks with poem selection.  Special contributions:  "Shelfie" by Corey Messler and "A New Year's Resolution" by Howie Good

Poets New to the OPP
  Sandy Benitez  "is the founder and editor of Flutter Press and Poppy Road Review. She's been nominated for the Pushcart Prize, Dzanc's Best of the Web, and Best of the Net. Sandy has authored six poetry chapbooks and has appeared in three anthologies. 


    Abraham Ogebe Adonduwa  "is a writer of poetry and short stories and has published in a few international literary journals and magazines...  He hopes to publish more poems and more stories about his beloved home Nigeria, and he also hopes to learn how to fold Origami perfectly." 

Micro-chapbooks Published Since Last Newsletter
(Click Cover & Download Book as one-page PDF)

'Stone' by Corey Mesler

Cover image: nemo.star

What I Bring to the Table

Limp me into middle age.
Hang me up like a single
sock. Sock me
like a punch-drunk pug.
Take me out to the rifle range
and target my sores.
I’m passive like a stone.
Kick me like Virginia Woolf
and change the world-to-come.
· · ·

"Silent Work" by Martin Willitts, Jr.
Cover: Imperial tortoise beetle

Opening Lines to Silent Work
There is patience in the rush of irises across the fields
like planting of love between two people —
It is deep work — like roots for plants,
like a barn’s loose nail needing hammering,
or a fence sags from neglect.

Silence need not be a sullen work.
A deep well always replenishes,
drawing up a full bucket with a rope that never frays.
But just like pulling the rope
on a hot and thirsty day can seem to take forever,
you need patience to bring love that long distance.
· · ·

'Inside a Dog's Head' by Helen Burke

Cover Art by Helen Burke

From 'The Kindness of Dogs'

You say it and it is true.
Dogs are kind.
They buy small dog treats for each other.
They hold doors open for cats.
They run rings around the moon,
Bury the sun in the sand and throw sticks
For the stars.
Dogs are kind.
They put paws on your knees on bad days.
They hold a light out to you in their eyes.
They run to the top of the mountain and bark
“Which stone did you want?? which one??”
And race back down with it and
Place it gently at your feet.
· · ·

"The Lilac City" by Sandy Benitez

Cover photo: Lilacs Blooming with Blue Sky

Rose Hill

After 16 years, the roses remain.
Do you remember the pebbled path
that led us back to where we began;
a casual stroll, mindful of stray thorns.
One of your friends married at Rose Hill
only to divorce one year later. All those
roses gathered around could not perfume
a sweet romance gone sour. Even a lone
sun dial couldn’t turn back time to bliss.
If we ever return, we’ll walk the same
pebbled path; tracing our steps in youth,
every moment together a blooming rose.
· · ·

"Small Gestures" by MJ Iuppa

Cover photo: rumroadravings.com


Having no hope of spring, I
trudge along a snow-packed
sidewalk with my head down,
careful not to catch my boots
in an icy crack.

It’s April Fools and this morning’s
bluster of snow isn’t a hoax.

Another day of dreary, I think
wishing I were defiant as snowdrops
sprung open like safety pins left
beneath a small yard’s ragged

(First published in Ealain)
· · ·


"The Traveller"
by Abraham Ogebe Adonduwa

Cover:  sethincube.blogspot.com

The Traveller

The road is muddy and treacherous
The night is filled with stars
The dancing shadows are a folded page I keep turning
The narrow path is arduous, strenuous,
My feet are sore and swollen
What would have happened had I been less of a fool
What grief, oh what grief! Would I not have had to bear
How much further can my feet go?
Will I fall into this abyss of despair?
Sink into the soft, quick sand?
Will I give in to the whims of my mind?
As it drifts on the edge of sleep
Now fresh and conscious,
Now ready to fall?
My sanity, my being, myself
Will I surrender it all?

The wind whips my pinched skin
Fatigue parches my throat dry
Still, I wander on.

My Shelfish Life
by Corey Mesler

Special to the OPP

          Recently my daughter announced that she was getting an apartment with a friend. Of course I knew I would miss her as if a limb had dropped off, but, after that initial emotional response, my default function said this to me: you will have more bookshelf space.
        Having spent my entire adult life in the book business and then, having married another bibliophile, our home library is an organic, gargantuan entity. It inhabits our space and comforts us, and, at night, if the neighborhood has put its din to bed, you can hear it breathe.
        So I have lived my life among books. I can walk the length of my bookcases as if they are the South Forty and discover, not only books I didn’t know  I owned, but things about myself I didn’t know. The bookcases, I am saying, are me.
        Over the past few weeks, following the lead of my friend, the poet Heather Minette, I began a series of photographs called Shelfies. I don’t know if she invented the term or not. She’s smart enough to have done so. The photos, like a flashing highway sign, are saying, here are my books and through them you shall know me.
        Anthony Powell said, “Books do furnish a room” This I believe. I also believe that they are living things, bookshelves, and are often better friends than the guys and gals you knew in high-school, who now pretend to forget your birthday, who have turned to crystals or Republicanism or reality TV. Bookshelves will never call you in the middle of night in tears because their Facebook friends ignored their post about famous Libras.
        So, I have a home library. The phrase makes me happy. I would say, come visit it but we aren’t really visiting people. We’re too busy reading and talking with our bookshelves.

Corey Mesler has published in numerous journals and anthologies.  He's authored 8 novels (now 9?), 3 full-length poetry collections, and 3 books of short stories. He has also published a dozen chapbooks of both poetry and prose. He has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize numerous times, and two of his poems were chosen for Garrison Keillor’s Writer’s Almanac.  With his wife, he runs Burke’s Book Store in Memphis TN, one of the country’s oldest (1875) and best independent bookstores.

Howie Good - A New Year's

I've been asked to comment on my one and only New Year's resolution, which, as posted on Facebook on the eve of 2015, was. "To become a better writer and a better person and in exactly that order."

The resolution provoked laughter in some quarters (probably mostly from people who think I don't have a chance in hell of ever becoming either) and puzzlement, if not outright consternation, in others. Is the resolution really that cryptic, or are my auditors really that obtuse? It goes against my inclinations  -- which are largely anti-social -- to explain myself, but since I was asked. . . .

What I meant by the resolution was something akin to what H.L. Mencken meant when he said, "A good phrase is better than a great truth."  Art is the only morality worthy of my allegiance because all other moralities are, to one degree or another, prescriptive.  Being a good writer is harder than being a good person, conventionally defined. It requires discipline, stamina, sacrifice, toughness -- a whole host of self-generated resources. Thus it requires my first and fiercest devotion. Or maybe my priorities are just all screwed up.

* * *
Howie Good is a journalism professor at SUNY New Paltz.  He is also the author of numerous chapbooks, including most recently Fugitive Pieces (Right Hand Pointing - all proceeds from this sale go to the Food Bank of the Hudson Valley), The Devil’s Fuzzy Slippers (Flutter Press) and Personal Myths from Writing Knights Press.
* Gelid - This adjective with Latin roots means "very cold, icy, or frosty."
Thanks to Dictionary.com
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Pixie says, 'Yes, you CAN fold an Origami Miro-chapbook,
Even if you're all Paws

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