Cloudbank 2

Cloudbank 2

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Cloudbank 2 includes poetry and flash fiction by Penelope Schott, David Romtvedt, Amy Miller, Karen Holmberg, Donald Wolff, y madrone, Tim Barnes and others. Starting from Anywhere by Lex Runciman and Light from a Bullet Hole: Poems New and Seleted 1950-2008 by Ralph Salisbury are reviewed.

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Issue introduction by Michael Malan

The Raw and the Cooked

The same might be said for poetry: Most of us are drawn to work that is carefully crafted and revised, rather than something raw and unfinished.

For many readers, though, outdoor verse is more open and unrestricted. Extensive revising and restructuring can yield something quite beautiful, as we know; but so can the great outdoors where the scenes shift with the seasons. Spontaneity and unpredictability are qualities of poetry that takes a more organic approach to self-expression. As Tess Gallagher wrote: “I just want to ride my black horse, / to see where he goes.” [“Legend With Sea Breeze”]

Fortunately, many of us can appreciate both indoor and outdoor art, the grandeur of Notre Dame Cathedral, as well as Yosemite Valley. Spontaneity and order both have their merits, as do fruits plucked from the vine and gratins de fruits rouges. We hope you’ll enjoy both modes of writing in this issue.

 

PRIZE WINNING POEM

Everything You Need to Know You
Learned at the High School Dance
by Amy Miller

Even the ugly boy can dance.
Even with the chicken neck,
checked shirt, shoulders
like a slim bud vase—even he
holds out his hand
and music starts.
Later, your chin
brushing the edge of his collar,
you will see the other girls
slow dance too,
each one a pool of breath
a boy ripples. You feel him
on your thigh,
the easy yes
his arm encircles.
You have no thought
of tomorrow, of home—
he is being,
you are dancing.
He spins you at the end
and you follow,
lights a blur,
the prettiest girl
with new-found feet.
He thanks you and turns—
too fast, you later think—
to a girl who is sitting,
a girl you know.
She is effortless and kind
and small and wearing
a short blue dress.
And they dance and you
and a torrent of girls
head for the chairs
but you keep going
straight out
to the frost-breath parking lot
and you stand there
pondering the hoods of cars
and wondering if she’s been on one
and if so, what
she was feeling then, what
she felt like later, riding home,
gears at the mercy of his hand,
her head against the window,
the radio turned up loud.

Poets and writers in Cloudbank 2

Duane Ackerson
Jeffrey Alfier
Chris Anderson
Tim Barnes
Judith Barrington
Nan Becker
Debra Brimacombe
Christopher Buckley
Paul Cummins
Eric Wayne Dickey
Barbara Drake
George Drew
Rebecca Foust
Tim Gillespie
Cecelia Hagen
Michael Hanner
Sarah Harwell
Karen Holmberg
Henry Hughes
Tim Hunt
Rich Ives
Steve Jones
Christine Kitano
Lois Leveen
Nicholas Lomonossoff
y madrone
Amy MacLennan
Amy Miller
Erik Muller
dan raphael
David Romtvedt
Vern Rutsala
Penelope Scambly Schott
Matt Schumacher
Elaine M. Seaman
Sam Seskin
Autumn Sharp
Kelly Sievers
Bill Siverly
Ann Staley
Pamela Steele
Ron Talney
Colette Tennant
Jie Tian
Jack Turteltaub
Toni Van Deusen
Jeanne Wagner
Larina Warnock
Jaclyn Watterson
Donald Wolff