Last call for “The BeZine” October submissions; Logo Contest: Tell the Story of Gun Violence

Bone flute, over 41,000 years old, photo courtesy of dalbera under CC BY 2.0


 “Ah, music,” he said, wiping his eyes. “A magic beyond all we do here!” J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

THE BeZINE submissions for the October 2017 issue – themed Music – are open and the deadline is October 10thSend submissions to me at bardogroup@gmail.com. Publication is October 15th. Poetry, essays, fiction and creative nonfiction, art and photography, music (videos or essays), and whatever lends itself to online presentation is welcome for consideration. No demographic restrictions.

Submissions of work on your country and its history and culture are welcome no matter your citizenship, national origin, first language, religion or lack thereof. The more diverse the representation, the better. English only or accompanied by translation into English. Please check out a few issues first and the Intro/Mission Statement and Submission Guidelines. We DO NOT publish anything that promotes hate, divisiveness or violence or that is scornful or in any way dismissive of “other” peoples. The lead for the October issue is Sheffield poet and musician, John Anstie (My Poetry Library and 42).

Note: I’ll consider previously published work as long as you hold the copyright. / J.D.


LOGO CONTEST: Guns Don’t Save People, Poets Do

Asking yourself: What can I do about horrors like Las Vegas and Sandy Hook? Give your thoughts a platform, be apart of the solution…design our GUNS DON’T SAVE LIVES, POETS DO2017 logo. Facebook friends, fans and followers will be the judges. Send entry to poetsout@gmail.com.

FOUNDER: EVELYN AGUSTO

DEADLINE: December 1st, 2017


ABOUT THE POET BY DAY

Thousands and Millions, a poem by John Anstie

This is our (The BeZine) new poster for 100TPC 2018. It was designed by Corina Ravenscraft (Dragon’s Dreams)


One hundred thousand
Poets for change,
so many voices and
carefully chosen words,
at times decay into a void
of the anechoic chamber.

Earthly Fathers praying
for the Establishment,
that sets our stage,
and casts our values
in concrete, steel,
plastic … and carbon.

Leaders of the World,
whose balance sheets and
logical, numerate intellect
measure only a notion
of success. What is that?
Temper your ambition.

For aren’t we just that,
a wealth of rich and
creative intelligence,
maybe the only hope
for our universe
to understand itself?

Heavenly Mothers ask us
why digitise and monetise
and worship at the alter
of the great god, Thworg,
when we are in the face of
richness beyond measure.

Escape to the stars, if you will,
but answers will be found not
in the vanity of space-time travel,
but here, with this unaided vision
they lie in the green and blue,
right before your disbelieving eyes.

Permit your heart to rule
even if only one day a week, when
the visceral, and the common sense
will sit above logic and intellect, and
that subliminal noise in our head
will slowly rise to the conscious.

Maybe, one day we’ll be
Seven Thousand Million
Poets for Change!
Our time will come. Atonement beckons.
It’s in the wind, this beating heart,
a movement beyond the gaze of mortals …

© 2017 John Anstie, All rights reserved; posted here with John’s permission.  You can visit John at My Poetry Library.

This is John’s tribute to the 100,000 Poets for Change – 100TPC 2017 – movement, which had its annual celebration on 30th September.

Thoughts and Guidelines on the Call for Submissions to the October Issue of “The BeZine” themed Music

John Anstie

” Musick has charms to soothe a savage breast “
~ Playwright and Poet, William Congreve (1670-1729), in his 1697 play, ‘The Mourning Bride’.

A letter from John:

In asking for submissions of writing, poetry, art and even music itself for the Music themed October issue of The BeZine, I am conscious that the very subject of music leaves us with a huge scope. But if I am to offer any guidelines as to what you could think about in submitting work, it might be as follows.

My personal perspective on the value of poetry has some relevance here. It is a belief that poetry should always be one step removed from the obvious, the logical and rational, in order for it to awaken the right brain, the creative side of our amazing abilities as humans; to stimulate the visceral (as opposed to the purely intellectual, rational, ‘logical’) response. In turn, this has the potential to stimulate a fresh approach to solving the challenges, be they personal or global. This hits on the core mission of The BeZine in a big way.

But if poetry has this potential power to stimulate a new way of thinking outside the framework imposed by a culture of consumerism, greed and material comfort, as opposed to our social well-being, then music does so with a vengeance. It is truly visceral without the constraints of language. Of course, when the poetry of lyrics is introduced to create song, then there is the opportunity to create something that is greater than the sum of its parts; synergy. It can provide something that dwells in the conscious and even subconscious for a lifetime – whoever forgets the words and melody of a song that they heard at a very poignant moment in their lives, which continues to inhabit a special place in memory, resonate and invoke the most emotional response every time it is heard. Some might argue this is ‘just an over-emotional response’, but I would say that it could be, nay is a key to how we may bring humanity together.

So that may be the most long-winded, not to say ‘visceral’ guideline to what I’m thinking for this issue. But I hope if nothing else it helps to focus your thoughts, as if they needed to be focused in the first place!

As ever, there are no imposed constraints, if you can provide anything with a musical theme, be it an explanation in prose or poetry of why you love a particular piece or genre of music, or even and especially a link to your favourite song or symphony, aria or opera, concerto or cantata, please let us have it. It could also be a reason why, in some instances music, song, an anthem can be used against our interests, in shoring up a malevolent dictatorship, for example, or promoting anti-social behaviours. It could equally be a short history of folk music, which often tends to tell the stories of the downtrodden masses, or of unrequited love, or … your own story. All is relevant to the October’s theme.

There are, in my book of music, no boundaries to its variety and opportunity for new arrangements and collaborations that stand to provide us and future generations with food for love and peace and social justice and to sustain us all in that future. ”

Peace and love
John


THE BeZINE submissions for the October 2017 issue – themed Music – are open and the deadline is October 10thSend submissions to me [Jamie] at bardogroup@gmail.com. Publication is October 15th. Poetry, essays, fiction and creative nonfiction, art and photography, music (videos or essays), and whatever lends itself to online presentation is welcome for consideration. No demographic restrictions and submissions of work relative to our country and its history and culture are welcome. The more diverse the representation, the better. English only or accompanied by translation into English. Please check out a few issues first and the Intro/Mission Statement and Submission Guidelines. We do not publish anything that promotes hate or violence.  The lead for the October issue is Sheffield poet and musician, John Anstie (My Poetry Library and 42).

  • CALLING ALL POETS, WRITERS, ARTISTS AND MUSICIANS: We need your most passionate work on September 30 for The BeZine 100,000 Poets (and other artists and friends) for Change live online event.
  • Heads-up on the November zine: The theme is Hunger, Poverty and Working-class Slavery. Deadline: November 10. 

JOHN ANSTIE (My Poetry Library and 42) ~ is a British writer, poet and musician –  a multi-talented gentleman self-described as a “Family man, Grandfather, Occasional Musician, Singer, Amateur photographer and Film-maker, Apple-MAC user, Implementation Manager, and Engineer”. He has participated in d’Verse Poet’s Pub and is a player in New World Creative Union as well as a being a ‘spoken-voice’ participant in Roger Allen Baut’s excellent ‘Blue Sky Highway‘ radio broadcasts. He’s been blogging since the beginning of 2011. He is also a member of The Poetry Society (UK) and is one of the stellar team that comprises The Bardo Group Begines, publishers of The BeZine.

  • Sheffield in Harmony hosted by Hallmark of Harmony (Poet John Anstie’s group), October 7, 2017, Saturday at 7:30 p.m. Firth Court. Firth Hall. Sheffield University. “Hallmark of Harmony’s annual production will showcase the considerable barbershop singing talent of our great city. We are proud to share the stage with Sheffield Harmony, who are among the leading female barbershop choruses in the UK. Moreover, this stellar lineup will be complemented by no less than UK champions and World Silver Medallist Mixed quartet, Hannah and the Hurricanes! This is going to be a phenomenal show.” Tickets HERE.

Here is an interview of John. I [Jamie] invite you to get to know him better:  Petrichor Rising and how the Twitterverse birthed friendships that in turn birthed a poetry collection

Compassionate Poetry Projects courtesy of The Grass Roots Poetry Group, White Rat Press, and Silva Merjanian


Not only do some poets use their work to raise the general consciousness but they often donate their work to help fund worthy efforts. Here are three collections that have been featured here before in greater depth. I believe you’ll appreciate  should you decide to read them.

A bit of research reveals there are many other such published collections or anthologies in process. As just two examples, I found one for asthma awareness and another to help support a local ambulance service.

If there’s a cause you’d like to support through poetry, rummage around the Internet or consider producing a collection or anthology yourself.  Not easy work, I know, but you might enjoy it and it would surely be rewarding.


John Anstie whose poem was featured yesterday is a member of The Grass Roots Poetry Group, a collaboration that created and published Petrichor Rising. The proceeds from the sale of this anthology go to UNICEF. The backstory is Petrichor Rising  and how the Twitterverse birthed friendships that in turn birthed a poetry collection. You’ll find links in that feature to purchase the book. John is also one of the earliest members of The BeZine team.


One day some time ago a few books arrived in my mailbox from Anne Stewart of  poetry p f and  Second Light Network of Women Poets Founder, Dilys Wood. Among the books was an anthology that deserved special attention: Hands & Wings, Poems for Freedom from Torture (White Rat Press, 2015).  For information to purchase contact: dorothy.yamamoto@whiteratpress.co.uk. Dorothy Yamamoto is a poet and the editor of this collection. The poems in it are freely shared by A-list poets. The proceeds from the sale of the collection go to help with the rehabilitation and support of torture victims seeking protection in the U.K.


When last I chatted with Silva Zanoyan Merjanian, she’d raised $682.70 for Mer Doon Inc. from the proceeds of Rumor (Cold Water Press, 2015). Mer Doon is an organization that houses orphaned eighteen-year-old girls aging out of care. This support gives the girls a chance to become financially independent and safe from human traffickers. So far the sales of Rumor have  generated over $5,000 for charities. Quite remarkable. If you buy the book directly from Silva’s site (as opposed to Amazon), all proceeds go to these charities. Rumor won the 2015 Best Book Award in the poetry category from the NABE. Three poems from the book were nominated for the Pushcart Prize.  It is Silva’s second published collection.


ABOUT THE POET BY DAY