People have been asking me why I chose the risk of first publishing a book of poetry before publishing my collection of short stories THE VILLAGE OF LIGHT and my first novel, THE PLAGUE. Why launch a writing career on the back of such a neglected and unpopular form of literature?
My first answer has been that as a keen admirer of the actor William Shatner, I wanted to emulate his career; first as a starship captain (in my mind), and second, as a genius of the Art of Spoken Word.
Poetry has maintained a major position in the spectrum of human arts; true across society, cultures, oceans and centuries.
This dawning century of technological, scientific and artistic achievement; this era we currently reside in, is the exception to the human rule.
We have exchanged our ability to appreciate Poetry for other more comfortable and lascivious sensations. We have unlearned the sensibility to immerse ourselves in the healing waters of an art that we, as a species have grown like a medicinal herb in the human garden, to salve the pains in our souls and our minds .
By turning our backs on those warm healing waters we have damaged ourselves. We are all in dire need of rehabilitation.
And that is exactly what Poetry mystically, delivers.
Poetry sets you free, for free!
If you know how to notice and pay attention to the subtler colors in the spectrum of your mind’s cognition.
Which is a Poetic thing to say in that it is both metaphoric and literal at the same time.
Poems allow the mind to synthesize (reconcile), apparent opposites and to understand the deeper resonances of our human experience, in the simplest of terms, arranging words like pebbles on a dry river bank and in the broadest, to enter the harmonic rhapsody of our humanity and its sense of rhythm in this universe.
That rhythm is the breath, which is true to us all who are living. Poetry is the sound of our breathing in this world. If you want to know who a people strange to you are, read their Poetry; the words they have chosen to express themes, that persist for us all: Birth, Death, Love and the swirl of illusions inbetween.
Poetry is a drastic intervention meant to make you better. Not just feel better, but actually see, understand and *be* better than you are, which may feel strange at first.
Only bad poetry is comfortable. Trying to be the best that you are, to overcome ones self, may take more than one lifetime to achieve. But so many Poems offer roadmaps of the soul. Guidebooks from which you can detect what is universal about humanity, about the human subjective experience, and your place in this present.
So that is why I chose to launch my writing career, with my current publisher (Chameleon), with a book of Poetry:
I chose to publish Poetry first specifically because it is the form of literature that has proven to be least popular at the moment, as this marketing study details.
I’ve always stood up for the underdog, be it in life or publishing. I stood up for Comics when they were largely looked down upon as adolescent drivel. I just never thought to myself in all my years on this earth, that I would need to stand up for Poetry, because it had now succumbed to more dominant dogs.
This is a great shame to me, as a reader of great Poets from virtually every culture and time period. I mean with Poetry it really is where all of humanity meets, outside of time and space. The very center of our collective space, where language is. Each one of us is both here and there: at the edge of meaning. The words of the poem are are written by and read by the singular mind that spans all of us to that edge of comprehension. Poetry is the very understanding that we seek, in our selves and in others.
It is passive crime against our own humanity to let this art subside, due to laziness, neglect and superficiality.
So do your soul a favour and read a poem. Not just mine, any poem will do. Any Poem will set you free, for free; or at least at the modest cost of your attention.
In My (always) Humble Opinion, ofcourse.
I am not a connection.
I am a conjugation of every verb you have ever uttered,
Before the action you took, just now.
Hidden and mistaken
Slipping between your shadows,
And a Reality that long ago,
Left you way behind:
The moment you thought you were in.
I am not your connection,
I am your conjugation, So
Stop spitting out your words
And start breathing in time.
We who are hiding in our second bedrooms,
Licking the silver from the backs of our screen,
Are living in a differently timed zone
Of insomniac awareness.
Sometimes 2, sometimes 3, sometimes 4 or more
Lives are lived and lost each night.
In our rooms, by ourselves
Sitting too close to the edge of our beds.
This is our legacy
The lasting perpetuity of our sensory species:
The glow that contests the light that once shone from our eyes,
Right up to the razor’s edge of our understanding of
What is not yet known.
What can barely be thought , much less said and
Yet still dances these words so merrily across this page.
In the ballet of silence that surrounds them.
Who are you reading this?
What perturbs your eternal sleep-walk into the night?
Are there questions you are pondering?
Or are you merely waiting for the screen to pull through for you?
Into your own quiet, private world,
Where things that count never change.
And no one is dreaming you, but your mother
Who has left you now for another child.
Who has left you now for another child.
I am the Resurrection.
Every morning I drag myself from my bed.
Rolling away the heavy sheet I wrapped around myself
All night long.
Jesus, where’s the fucking coffee-filter?
Jesus, you don’t have the muscle anymore
that it takes,
To roll the weight I’ve been rolling away, every day
From the mouth of my cave.
Here we are again . . .
Awake, but blurry-eyed,
Look at the lives we’ve each brought back from the dead:
From the cave of shadows,
From the dancing on the walls.
Fire animates the walls
(There is fire is in the whole).
But the bad impersonation of the sun
These dancing flames assume
Leave me adrift.
Floating in a sea of my own shortcomings.
Who are you, reading this?
And who do you suspect this voice to to be ?
You and I?
We are just meeting here by chance.
Somewhere outside of time
Somewhere in these words.
Somewhere near the entrance
Of this cave that each of us,
So gradually emerges from.
Date: March 31, 2015 at 21:38:22 PDT
From: Amy Sterling Casil , Chameleon Publishers
I can honestly say, this is like no other book we have ever seen before; we think perhaps – like no other you may have seen as well.
31 March 2015
For Immediate Release
IS SHE AVAILABLE? PUSHES BOOKS AND PUBLISHING FORWARD THROUGH POETRY, ART, AND MUSIC
Southern-California based publisher Chameleon Publishing releases its first major publication: Is SHE Available? by Igor Goldkind April 1 via the iBooks store.
Is SHE Available? pushes the edge of what is possible with present EPUB3 technology and how books are created and made. It is not an App, it is a true book that marries pop art, comics, avant-garde, jazz, spoken word poetry, video and animations, and type design. Its creative journey was more than a year in the making, growing from the collaborative work of artists, musicians, editors, and designers on two continents.
The poet, Igor Goldkind, is a San Diego native who lived in France and the UK for two decades while promoting the work of today’s most notable comic and graphic novel authors and artists. As a teen, he was one of the co-founders of San Diego’s legendary Comic-Con.
According to Bleeding Cool, “It was Goldkind who popularized the phrase ‘graphic novel’ with the media and found that gave them permission to cover the previously-considered childish medium of comic books . . . . Now, Goldkind’s vision of what graphic novels could be, is returning.”
Is SHE Available? was produced using an international collaborative model, but the book is one man’s voice and one man’s story. Goldkind’s words and voice inspired the art of over 26 internationally-known artists, including cover art and interior illustrations by Eisner-winner Bill Sienkiewicz (Elektra Assassin, Daredevil and more), additional interior illustrations from other graphic novel illustrators and award-winners including Glenn Fabry (Hellblazer, Preacher), David Lloyd (V for Vendetta and many others), Liam Sharp (Judge Dredd/2000 AD/Madefire), fine artists and illustrators Lars Henkel, Mario Cavalli, Mario Torero, Wendy Farrow, and many more.
Music and spoken word were recorded in New York with UK Jazz Album of the Year winner, author and ex-Israeli Gilad Atzmon. A US-based jazz and spoken word tour is scheduled for July 2015.
The type design and hardcover book are created by the eminent London-based designer Rian Hughes (2000 AD, Vertigo, Dan Dare), who includes an afterward about the collaborative design process. E-book production, incorporating Madefire animations, audio and additional animation, were provided by Chameleon Publishing in Southern California.
Due to the inclusion of video, audio and animations, and fine type design, it is playable only on Apple devices, and available only through the iBooks store. The hardcover (without music, spoken word or animations) will be published July 15, 2015.
Other “enhanced e-books” have been produced with budgets of $100,000 or more, and few have sold well. The “wisdom” is: poetry doesn’t sell. Enhanced e-books don’t sell. Most jazz doesn’t sell, either. Comic and graphic novel artists struggle to show their fine art to the public. And what publisher would take on a completely unknown poet whose claim to fame was selling fancy comic books to grown-ups and co-founding a big comic/media/scantily-clad women-fest like Comic-Con?
Twenty percent of North Americans regularly buy and read books. Nearly a hundred percent can read. Chameleon’s mission is to make books for everyone, not just a selected few.
Published April 1, 2015, in honor of National Poetry Month.
For more information and to obtain a copy of Is SHE Available? eBook for review (EPUB3 only on iOS devices – iPad, iPhone and Apple computers) or an advance reading copy of the hardcover edition contact the publisher:
Amy Sterling Casil
Chameleon Publishing Inc
OK, you can buy it now.
My book that is, the one I have been going on and on about on these pages for the past 9 months.
It took awhile, a little longer than I planned on.
But it’s here now: SHE IS NOW AVAILABLE!
My apologies to everyone I have kept waiting, but I think you’ll find that the end result was well worth it.
You really haven’t seen anything like this before.
Somewhat in recompense, my publisher is offering a SPECIAL INTERNET OFFER to my FB and blog followers:
As of tomorrow, you’ll be invited to pre-order the 164, fully illustrated Hard Cover Edition designed by Rian Hughes featuring an original cover by Bill Sienkiewicz for the regular price of $24.99 and
Get the eBook Download RIGHT NOW FOR FREE.
This offer starts tomorrow for a limited time only. The hardcover edition ships this month and will be available in May. This is your chance to get a copy before your friends can steal theirs from the library, for a LIMITED TIME ONLY.
This is a book of Poetry and a book handcrafted by love, tears and the visions of 27 artists, musicians and animators.
Poems are a way to talk to a side of ourselves we cannot talk to and a way to take pictures of things that we cannot take pictures of. But like a picture, it also holds moments in time. It works in the space between words, where connections are made, meaning is formed and the poem is ultimately owned by the reader.
And still, for so many of us, you only notice poetry when you need it.
Because while all the poetry in the world might not be worth as much as one good doctor, if there is a reason we are alive, if there is a reason we’re here, it can be found in poetry. It is the barest bones of the human experience and it captures the soul in flight.
Kind Regards, and please may I ask that you share my words with your Friends.