Poetry Society of America Awards Are Open for Entry Through December 23

“If you ask a twenty-one-year-old poet whose poetry he likes, he might say, unblushing, “Nobody’s,” In his youth, he has not yet understood that poets like poetry, and novelists like novels; he himself likes only the role, the thought of himself in a hat.” Annie Dillard, The Writing Life



According to The Poetry Society of America’s site: “The PSA’s Annual Awards are among the most prestigious honors available to poets. They offer emerging and established poets recognition at all stages of their careers, including our student poetry award and book awards for publishers.”

There are four categories Individual Awards, Anna Rabinowitz Prize, Student Poetry Award, and Book Awards for Publishers. Details HERE.


Jamie Dedes. I’m a freelance writer, poet, content editor, and blogger. I also manage The BeZine and its associated activities and The Poet by Day jamiededes.com, an info hub for writers meant to encourage good but lesser-known poets, women and minority poets, outsider artists, and artists just finding their voices in maturity. The Poet by Day is dedicated to supporting freedom of artistic expression and human rights.  Email thepoetbyday@gmail.com for permissions, commissions, or assignments.

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Recent and Upcoming in Digital Publications Poets Advocate for Peace, Justice, and Sustainability, How 100,000 Poets Are Fostering Peace, Justice, and Sustainability, YOPP! * The Damask Garden, In a Woman’s Voice, August 11, 2019 / This short story is dedicated to all refugees. That would be one in every 113 people. * Five poems, Spirit of Nature, Opa Anthology of Poetry, 2019 * From the Small Beginning, Entropy Magazine (Enclave, #Final Poems), July 2019 * Over His Morning Coffee, Front Porch Review, July 2019 * Three poems, Our Poetry Archive, September 2019


“Every pair of eyes facing you has probably experienced something you could not endure.”  Lucille Clifton

Valley of the Shadow of Death, a poem

“When your time comes to die, be not like those whose hearts are filled with fear of death, so that when their time comes they weep and pray for a little more time to live their lives over again in a different way. Sing your death song, and die like a hero going home.” Tecumseh



Night makes way for morning
The clouds tumbling in like
Cotton bolls blown across a
Field of promise, sun ablaze
Tinged with crimson and saffron
Grooving to the rattle and the click
And caw of our city corvids, and
Hear too the blue jay’s whispered
Song, the mourning dove’s coo
In my kitchen, five stories up, is a
Breakfast reminiscent of my father
Broiled trout, roasted potatoes, and I
Pull cartilage from the fish, evocative
Of a trachea, and salt the potatoes
To the humming of O2 concentrators
I drag on a nasal cannula, life support
In this, my Valley of the Shadow of Death

© 2019, Jamie Dedes


Jamie Dedes. I’m a freelance writer, poet, content editor, and blogger. I also manage The BeZine and its associated activities and The Poet by Day jamiededes.com, an info hub for writers meant to encourage good but lesser-known poets, women and minority poets, outsider artists, and artists just finding their voices in maturity. The Poet by Day is dedicated to supporting freedom of artistic expression and human rights.  Email thepoetbyday@gmail.com for permissions, commissions, or assignments.

About / Testimonials / Disclosure / Facebook

Recent and Upcoming in Digital Publications Poets Advocate for Peace, Justice, and Sustainability, How 100,000 Poets Are Fostering Peace, Justice, and Sustainability, YOPP! * The Damask Garden, In a Woman’s Voice, August 11, 2019 / This short story is dedicated to all refugees. That would be one in every 113 people. * Five poems, Spirit of Nature, Opa Anthology of Poetry, 2019 * From the Small Beginning, Entropy Magazine (Enclave, #Final Poems), July 2019 * Over His Morning Coffee, Front Porch Review, July 2019 * Three poems, Our Poetry Archive, September 2019


“Every pair of eyes facing you has probably experienced something you could not endure.”  Lucille Clifton

Double Trouble: Lamech and His Two Wives, the fifth poem in Linda Chown’s Blake series

 “When you see with, not through the eye.”   William Blake

[Lamech is the sixth generation descendent of Cain]



Our eyes can be a noose, shutting off all but feeling
when you can only see with.
Blake knows pain’s light’s so fierce
He thus turns it all bright white here unforgettable.
With no hiding in myth or long words,
we see only instant gutted grief everywhere
rolling in eerie-dense earthen white.
Everyone is seeing transitive with their eyes,
not intransitively and freely through.
A tourniquet of frozen seeing freezes word-say
And the three of them alive today only
Horror-see, struck in white trauma.
This painting chants impediment and limit
The very act of looking burns heart-holes with no exit.
This view is split into two larger than life grief crimes:
polygamy on the left and Lamech’s Cain-tinged murder right flat dead

When it gets this bad, everyone sheerly shrieks inside unlooking
No one sees each here. The whole painting a bleached wound.
Blake knew color and looking were dangerous commitments.
“Colours are the wounds of life,” he tellingly said.

Oh say can you see how it feels to be Lamech scorned and doomed
How does it feel at the end of the world when there is nothing to
see, but distance and heartbreak wrapped in “frantic pain”?

© 2019, Linda Chown

Mad Song

Like a fiend in a cloud
With howling woe,
After night I do croud,
And with night will go;
I turn my back to the east,
From whence comforts have increas’d;
For light doth seize my brain
With frantic pain.

William Blake

The other poems in Linda’s ongoing Blake-poem series:

  1. Refections into William Blake’s “Brutus and Caesar’s Ghost,” Linda Chown
  2. Cohering Clashes: Wiliam Blake’s “The Red Dragon and The Woman Clothed in the Sun,” Linda Chown
  3. This New Ending of the Beginning: William Blake’s “The Body of Abel Found by Adam and Eve,” Linda Chown
  4. Looking Up High: “The Wood of the Self-Murderers: The Harpies, and The Suicides,”  Linda Chown

Linda Chown

LINDA E. CHOWN grew up in Berkeley, Ca. in the days of action. Civil Rights arrests at Sheraton Palace and Auto Row.  BA UC Berkeley Intellectual History; MA Creative Writing SFSU; PHd Comparative Literature University of Washington. Four books of poetry. Many poems published on line at Numero Cinq, Empty Mirror, The Bezine, Dura, Poet Head and others. Many articles on Oliver Sachs, Doris Lessing, Virginia Woolf, and many others. Twenty years in Spain with friends who lived through the worst of Franco. I was in Spain (Granada, Conil and Cádiz) during Franco’s rule, there the day of his death when people took to the streets in celebration. Interviewed nine major Spanish Women Novelists, including Ana María Matute and Carmen Laforet and Carmen Martín Gaite.


Jamie Dedes. I’m a freelance writer, poet, content editor, and blogger. I also manage The BeZine and its associated activities and The Poet by Day jamiededes.com, an info hub for writers meant to encourage good but lesser-known poets, women and minority poets, outsider artists, and artists just finding their voices in maturity. The Poet by Day is dedicated to supporting freedom of artistic expression and human rights.  Email thepoetbyday@gmail.com for permissions, commissions, or assignments.

About / Testimonials / Disclosure / Facebook

Recent and Upcoming in Digital Publications Poets Advocate for Peace, Justice, and Sustainability, How 100,000 Poets Are Fostering Peace, Justice, and Sustainability, YOPP! * The Damask Garden, In a Woman’s Voice, August 11, 2019 / This short story is dedicated to all refugees. That would be one in every 113 people. * Five poems, Spirit of Nature, Opa Anthology of Poetry, 2019 * From the Small Beginning, Entropy Magazine (Enclave, #Final Poems), July 2019 * Over His Morning Coffee, Front Porch Review, July 2019 * Three poems, Our Poetry Archive, September 2019


“Every pair of eyes facing you has probably experienced something you could not endure.”  Lucille Clifton

A Blank Page, a poem by Silva Zanoyan Merjanian

“morning’s nowhere in sight
to wash away with its light
the carcasses a night left behind
of regrets scattered all over dark alleys of my mind”
Silva Zanoyan Merjanian, Uncoil a Night


October drops gift baskets at my door
full of words that fill this evening’s
blithe chalice to the rim
toasting the auspicious rain

soil wet and scented calls for verses
to catch color of leaves
losing their grasp on spring’s promise

smell of burning wood from a distance
tells of flames in a fireplace
watching lovers tangled in post-coital bliss

fall awaits poems, while air lusting for winter
flirts with Maple trees
their elated limbs undressed and arched
reaching for that crisp fall breeze

but that’s not all October brings
there’s a bloodied river
that flows through Aleppo
Kessab, Homs, Damascus

through burning pit of pistachio and olive trees
through a country twisted on its knees
it flows into my cupped hands

I never meant to hold them open to catch their grief

and there’s that last tear hanging from tip
of a continent’s nose, about to drop last sliver
of hope and dress limp prayers in black

October drops gift baskets at my door
full of words that fill this evening’s
blithe chalice to the rim
toasting the auspicious rain

but not a word here about leaves nor the kiss
of fall on winter’s lips
no measured lines about lovers
not a word yet, not on this page

I’m just listening to silence breathe
over contrite indifference trailing children’s bare feet
bleeding on piles of rubble they call home
their shell-shocked faces lost between these blank pages

At New Ulster, Ireland

© Silva Zanoyan Merjanian

This poem is shared here with Silva’s permission.

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SILVA ZANOYAN MERJANIAN  is a widely published poet of Armenian descent who grew up in Beirut, Lebanon. She moved to Geneva for a few years during the Lebanese civil war and later settled in Southern California with her husband and two sons. Her work is featured in international anthologies and poetry journals. Merjanian has two volumes of poetry, Uncoil a Night (2013) and Rumor (Cold River Press, 2015.). Rumor won the Pinnacle Book Achievement Award Fall 2015 for best poetry book by NABE. Three poems from Rumor were nominated for Pushcart Prize. Silva donates proceeds from both books to charities.


Jamie Dedes. I’m a freelance writer, poet, content editor, and blogger. I also manage The BeZine and its associated activities and The Poet by Day jamiededes.com, an info hub for writers meant to encourage activist poets and poetry, good but lesser-known poets, women and minority poets, outsider artists, and artists just finding their voices in maturity. The Poet by Day is dedicated to supporting freedom of artistic expression and human rights.  Email thepoetbyday@gmail.com for permissions, commissions, or assignments.

About / Testimonials / Disclosure / Facebook

Recent and Upcoming in Digital Publications: Poets Advocate for Peace, Justice, and Sustainability, How 100,000 Poets Are Fostering Peace, Justice, and Sustainability, YOPP! * The Damask Garden, In a Woman’s Voice, August 11, 2019 / This short story is dedicated to all refugees. That would be one in every 113 people. * Five poems, Spirit of Nature, Opa Anthology of Poetry, 2019 * From the Small Beginning, Entropy Magazine (Enclave, #Final Poems), July 2019 * Over His Morning Coffee, Front Porch Review, July 2019 * Three poems, Our Poetry Archive, September 2019


“Every pair of eyes facing you has probably experienced something you could not endure.”  Lucille Clifton