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Stepping Up to the Plate

There have been some complaints that I've been too harsh on the Rhysling nominees without backing up what I'm saying with specific evidence. So, here's what I'm going to try to do. Below is the list of Rhysling nominees for 2009, which I'll be using as a checklist of sorts. Until I get the official publication--.PDF or book, I'm dependent on what's still internet available, but I'll link to the poem and relay my comments. Hopefully, this will spur on a discussion of craft and content, and not a flamewar.

Let it be written here that I am not an expert, in anyway, of poetry, simply an avid reader and writer who wants to learn more, and understands that, by analyzing both what one likes and doesn't like in other people's work, one can learn about one's own voice and craft.


Short Poem Category:
"Frankenstein's Ice Mirror" by Diana Adams (published in Poemeleon: A Journal of Poetry, Summer 2008) 1
"So Many Lullabies" by Mary Alexander Agner (Strange Horizons, 17 March 2008) 1

"The Deceptive Truth" by Brian Aldiss (A Prehistory of Mind, Mayapple Press, 2008) 13
"Don't Get Too Close to the Baby" by Francis W. Alexander (Star*Line, July/August 2008) 13
"Midnight Rendezvous, Philly" by Mike Allen (Goblin Fruit, Summer 2008) 1
"Return of Zombie Teen Angst" by Mike Allen (Asimov's Science Fiction, October/November 2008) 13
"Von Neumann's Poem" by Aaron Benson (Strange Horizons, 28 July 2008) 1
"Pandora's Box, Afterward" by F. J. Bergmann
12
"Piece of Mind" by Anthony Bernstein (Zygote in My Coffee, February 2008) 13
"Dystopian Dusk" by Bruce Boston (Strange Horizons 4 August 2008) 1
"The Gnomes' Spectacles" by Chris Burdette (Niteblade Magazine, June 2008) 1

"Four Haiku Poems on Artificial Intelligence" by Christopher M. Cevasco (Star*line, January/February 2008) 13
"World's Oldest Profession 2.0" by G.O. Clark (Star*Line, July/August 2008) 14
"The Future" by Billy Collins (The New Yorker, 24 February 2008) 2
"Pygmalion" by Malcolm Deeley (Mythology, November 2008) 14
"Emile's Ghosts" by James S. Dorr (Illumen, Spring 2008) 14
"Songs to an Ancient City" by Amal El-Mohtar (Mythic Delirium, Summer/Fall 2008)  2
"Songs were washing up" by Francesca Forrest (Scheherezade's Bequest, September 2008)  2
"A Taxi Driver on Mars" by Bryn Forley (Awen, August 2008) 15
"A Mother Speaks" by Joshua Gage (Goblin Fruit, Fall 2008)  2
"The Illuminator" by Joshua Gage (MindFlights, 5 February 2008)  2
"Aware for the Woman who Disappears in Silence" by Jeannine Hall Gailey (Mythic Delirium, Winter/Spring 2008) 12
"Green Willow Wife" by Jeannine Hall Gailey (Poemeleon: A Journal of Poetry, Summer 2008)  2
"Tammuz to Ishtar" by Delbert R. Gardner (Mythic Delirium, Summer/Fall 2008) 15
"[faint], Wanting the Mouth of a Lover" by Charles Gramlich (Spec House of Poetry, 2008) 15
"Collage" by Todd Hanks (Dreams and Nightmares, May 2008) 15
"Spell" by Samantha Henderson (Goblin Fruit, Fall 2008) 3
"The Seasons' Dying" by Samantha Henderson (Goblin Fruit, Summer 2008) 3
"Animal Rescue" by Deborah P. Kolodji (Lone Star Stories, 1 April 2008) 3
"Camera Obscura" by Deborah P. Kolodji (Raven Electrick, March 2008) 5
"Six Miles from Nowhere" by Deborah P. Kolodji (Phantom Seed, Autumn 2008) 15
"In the Slipstream of the Levee's Overflow" by David C. Kopaska-Merkel & Kendall Evans (Tales of the Talisman, March 2008) 16
"Odysseus on the War Train" by Rose Lemberg (Abyss & Apex, Summer 2008) 4
"Green Cotillions" by Sandra Lindow (Touched by the Gods, Sam's Dot Publishing, 2008) 16
"The A.I.'s Table Prayer" by Sandra Lindow (Tales of the Unanticipated, Autumn/Winter 2008) 16
"The Midwife's Progress" by Joy Marchand (Goblin Fruit, Summer 2008) 4
"No Word for Goodbye" by Pam McNew (Sybil's Garage #5) 16
"My Addiction" by Edward Morris (Helix SF, April 2008) 16
"Pavlov's Best Friend" by Kristine Ong Muslim (Abyss & Apex, July 2008) 4
"Internet Witch" by Karen L. Newman (Raven Electrick, September 2008) 5
"Lovers" by Rhonda Parrish (Star*Line, July/August 2008) 16
"To the Royal Society of Cryptozoologists from the Concerned Daughter of a Member" by Caitlyn Paxson (Goblin Fruit, Winter 2008) 5
"[eruptions]" by Terrie Leigh Relf (The Shantytown Anomaly, October 2008) 17
"There, where the universe begins" by Terrie Leigh Relf (Astropoetica, Spring 2008) 5
"Streamside" by Mark Rich (The Magazine of Speculative Poetry, Spring 2008) 17
"The Invisible Woman Runs for President" by Karen A. Romanko (Strange Horizons, 22 December 2008) 5
"Bats" by Greg Schwartz (Ashen Eye, March 2008) 6
"Dear Giant Squid" by Peter Sears (Luge, Cloudbanks Books, 2008) 6
"The Astronaut's Return" by Marge Simon (Strange Horizons, 3 November 2008) 6
"Lunaticus (in D Minor)" by J.E. Stanley (The Ghazal Page, July 2008) 6

"A Sad, A Southern Face" by Lynn Strongin (Doorways Magazine, Spring 2008) 17
"Autopoiesis" by Sonya Taaffe (Lone Star Stories, 1 April 2008) 6
"Cherries in Winter" by Sonya Taaffe (Goblin Fruit, Winter 2008) 6
"Logos" by Sonya Taaffe (Lone Star Stories, 1 October 2008)7
"The Devourer" by Sonya Taaffe (Mythic Delirium, Summer/Fall 2008) 18
"Some Random Hero" by Marcie Tentchoff (Strange Horizons, 23 June 2008) 7
"Becoming Fictional" by Jen Valencia (Tales of the Talisman, Autumn 2008) 7
"In the World" by Sandy Walejko (Wisconsin People and Ideas, Summer 2008)18
"Screams" by Ian Watson (Asimov's Science Fiction, September 2008) 18
"To the River" by Jessica Paige Wick (Mythic Delirium, Summer/Fall 2008) 7
"Smells" by Jane Yolen (Doorways Magazine, October 2008) 18

Long Poem Category:
"Mondrian's War" by Mike Allen (Strange Horizons, 18 August 2008) 8
"Zombie Bombs" by Mike Allen & Ian Watson (Helix SF, April 2008) 19
"Sedna" by C.S.E. Cooney (Goblin Fruit, Winter 2008) 8
"Wild Over Tombs Does Grow" by C.S.E. Cooney (Doorways Magazine, Spring 2008) 19
"Tentacle 1" by Camilla DeCarnin (Tales of the Unanticipated, Autumn/Winter 2008) 19
"Oracle" by Malcolm Deeley (Legends of the Fallen Sky, Sam's Dot Publishing, 2008) 20
"Orpheus and Eurydice" by Malcolm Deeley (Mythology, November 2008)
20
"The Leviathan" by Malcolm Deeley (Legends of the Fallen Sky, Sam's Dot Publishing, 2008) 20
"Damascus Divides the Lovers by Zero, or, The City Is Never Finished" by Amal El-Mohtar & Catherynne M. Valente (Lone Star Stories, 1 December 2008) 8
"Death and Life on Enceladus" by Kendall Evans & David C. Kopaska-Merkel (The Magazine of Speculative Poetry, Spring 2008) 21
"Mrs. Margaret Lovett, Her Book" by Gemma Files (Mythic Delirium, Winter/Spring 2008)
21
"Isotope Ballerina" by Cornelius Fortune (Tales of the Unanticipated, Autumn/Winter 2008) 22
"The White Doe of Nara" by Joshua Gage (Goblin Fruit, Summer 2008) 9
"The Dispossessed" by Lyn C.A. Gardner (Helix SF, Summer 2008) 9
"Hungry: Some Ghost Stories" by Samantha Henderson (Lone Star Stories, 1 April 2008) 9
"Reveal" by Linda Hogan (Rounding the Human Corners, Coffee House Press) 22
"Man'yoshu at Galactic Edge: Poems from the Courtesan" by Deborah P. Kolodji (Dreams and Nightmares, May 2008) 22
"Search" by Geoffrey A. Landis (Helix SF, October 2008) 9
"The Night Market" by Beth Langford (Goblin Fruit, Spring 2008) 10
"Living on Burrowed Time" by Patrick Lawler (Blackbird: An Online Journal of Literature and the Arts, Fall 2008) 10
"3 Poems Called Cosmic" by JM McDermott (Abyss & Apex, July 2008) 10
"Disciples of Paradox" by David Memmott (Strange Horizons, 25 February 2008) 11
"Another Fairy Tale Ending" by Marcy Rockwell (Dreams and Nightmares, September 2008) 22
"Transformation" by J.C. Runolfson (Strange Horizons, 26 May 2008) 11
"The Love Song of A. Alhazred Azathoth" by William Browning Spencer (Subterranean Press e-Newsletter
11
"On Waking" by Marcie Tentchoff Not One of Us, October 2008) 23
"Lessons in Thermodynamics" by Catherynne M. Valente (Flytrap, June 2008)
23
"The Ballad of All the Things I Might Have Written" by Catherynne M. Valente (Goblin Fruit, Spring 2008) 11
"The Girl with Two Skins" by Catherynne M. Valente (Goblin Fruit, Spring 2008) 12
"The Sea Wife" by JoSelle Vanderhooft (The Magazine of Speculative Poetry, Spring 2008) 23
"How Wizards Duel" by Jessica Paige Wick (Strange Horizons, 12 May 2008) 12
"Through the Looking-Glass, Darkly" by Stephen Wilson (Hungur: Walpurgis Night, October 2008) 23

On the Color Coding:

Here's how the color coding and numbers work. If the poem is pink, it means that I've commented on it. If you click on the number next to the poem title, it will take you to that entry, and you can join in on the discussion. Thanks to [info]grayrose76 for the suggestion.

Comments

( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
samhenderson
Apr. 3rd, 2009 03:50 pm (UTC)
You are a brave man.
BTW, you have every permission to rip mine to shreds. I won't take it personally. I might even help.
tithenai
Apr. 3rd, 2009 04:22 pm (UTC)
Seconded.
hooks_and_books
Apr. 3rd, 2009 08:33 pm (UTC)
Can't do it. Sorry. The one line break was the only thing that caught me off guard.
hooks_and_books
Apr. 3rd, 2009 06:02 pm (UTC)
Yeah. I've got three poems on this list, and I hope folks don't think I'm going to be any more gentle on myself than I am anyone else.

My biggest fear with this is that it will burn a bridge somewhere, or spark a flamewar. So I'm trying very hard to focus on the poems. Hopefully, anyone who responds will, too.
kaolinfire
Apr. 4th, 2009 05:36 pm (UTC)
Fingers crossed. :)
rose_lemberg
Apr. 3rd, 2009 07:22 pm (UTC)
What does your color coding signify?
hooks_and_books
Apr. 3rd, 2009 08:32 pm (UTC)
Good question.
If it's pink, I've commented on it. I was going to go with red, but it was too garrish on the olive background.
rose_lemberg
Apr. 3rd, 2009 08:39 pm (UTC)
Re: Good question.
Thanks. Could you perhaps at some point also incorporate links to the review entries into the master entry? It is easy to find now, but will quickly become less easy to find, I am afraid.

Thumbs up for doing this: it's a very interesting experiment.
hooks_and_books
Apr. 3rd, 2009 09:23 pm (UTC)
Re: Good question.
Yeah. That might work. Let me see what I can do.
rhondaparrish
May. 6th, 2009 05:53 pm (UTC)
I did an interview at Amber Stults' blog and shared my nominated poem there. If you're interested it's at http://www.amberstults.com/?p=1383 . Or I'm content to wait until the anthology reaches you.

I haven't been commenting, but I've been reading and am looking forward to seeing what you have to say about my piece :)
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )

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