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Tag Archives: Maine poets

As we hurtle toward the winter solstice…why poets excel at business

Here is a wonderful Rockwell Kent painting, and a photo of my Maine coon cat George contemplating the snow outside.

Recently Portland Poet Laureate Marcia Brown sent out a link to an article by John Coleman in, of all places, the Harvard Business Review, in the issue of 10/27/2012.  It addresses the question of why poets make good business employees and managers.  Coleman asserts that poets can, among other skills, simplify the complex, develop empathy, and “infuse life with beauty and meaning.”  I love this idea and agree with it.  I’m one of those not-so-rare people with  “mixed” academic training in lit, writing and law (there are far more lawyer/poets around than you might think). I worked in the corporate world for about 20 years and found it rewarding in many ways.  I like to think that one can balance practicality with creativity, and that when you cross into another realm, one can be enriched by it, because there is much to learn.

Kent painting snowIMG_0529

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Maine – Talentland

AfternoonInWonderland Brooking

It’s a truism that Maine is overflowing with talented people – writers, artists, musicians, creative types of all kinds. One of the delights of publishing poetry books in Maine is using art and photos by people I know whose work I love, often the poets themselves, on book covers. For me, showcasing both poetry and art in an alluring package is one of the most fun parts of publishing. Feast your eyes on some examples on our website: covers by Ruth Bookey, Ellen Taylor, Mike Albert, Nancy Henry, and Donna Asmussen, to name a few. (This picture is called “Afternoon in Wonderland” by Westbrook artist Mary Brooking, whose paintings enliven the covers of Jack McCarthy’s beautiful book ALMOST A REMEMBRANCE.) Quite a few MPP poets have musical talent, too. We are close to releasing a book by Maine’s own inimitable Stan Keach, a “triple threat” poet, musician and artist who illustrated his upcoming book NOTHING IS REAL (more details about this soon). I am grateful that I will never run out of excellent poetry to publish, or wonderful art for covers.

Spring – saying YES to the world

cat and chicks

April abounds with poetry events and it is hard to choose which ones to go to. Yesterday I went to the 12th annual Plunkett Poetry Festival at UMaine-Augusta, always a fun opportunity to hear a lot of Maine poets. Spring has finally come to southern Maine and we are all delirious. Lowe’s opened its garden section and people wearing shorts and Tshirts were madly buying pansies, MiracleGro and all kinds of things they can’t really use or plant until Memorial Day. This is Easter week coming up and here’s a photo of a cat with some chicks. I saw my friend Bruce’s new chicks yesterday, including some bantams – beautiful birds. His yard is full of intensely yellow and purple crocuses. Renewal, rebirth, warmth, blossom. Here is a poem I love about saying YES to the world.

Yes

It’s like a tap-dance
Or a new pink dress,
A shit-naïve feeling
Saying Yes.

Some say Good morning
Some say God bless –
Some say Possibly
Some say Yes.

Some say Never
Some say Unless
It’s stupid and lovely
To rush into Yes.

What can it mean ?
It’s just like life,
One thing to you
One to your wife.

Some go local
Some go express
Some can’t wait
To answer Yes.

Some complain
Of strain and stress
The answer may be
No for Yes.

Some like failure
Some like success
Some like Yes Yes
Yes Yes Yes.

Open your eyes,
Dream but don’t guess.
Your biggest surprise
Comes after Yes.

Muriel Rukeyser