unbound CONTENT bookblog

Pushcart Prize Nominations

Yes, it's that time of year again! And I'm glad my part in it is done. It's always a hard call. Read them and see for yourself. The unbound CONTENT Pushcart Prize 2012 nominees are:

Apples to Oranges (from At Age Twenty by Maxwell Baumbach)

it is said
that when two things
cannot be compared
a case of apples to oranges exists

but those things can be compared
they are both fruits
and like humans
they have skin
and humans like trees
can be cut down
and trees like flowers
can bend in the wind
and flowers like hummingbirds
can astonish with their beauty
and the hummingbird sings
the way all the earth does

in harmonious unison

Painting Czeslawa Kwoka (from Painting Czeslawa Kwoka by Theresa Senato Edwards)


In Brasse’s black and white photos,
you are a young girl with a round face
dropped into a flat, grey world,
26947 sewn on a striped wardrobe,
naked beneath these numbers.

What does color bring to you?
In color you move through our minds.

In color you are a movie star: Mia Farrow—
slightly protruding upper lip, swollen bottom
forms a dense shadow to your chin.

In color you are a young woman
bleeding from within: pale skin
filters red to pink. This is the 
girl you are at Auschwitz, Czeslawa.

You are not a criminal.


Your full color portrait
forces our reaction—
your hair is the warmest
fall in a dead winter, amber
background sparks the short, matted
bristles: adolescent questions
quickly extinguished when a scarf adds
texture, diagonal patterns, another
look of a 14-year-old prisoner.

In color you transform: we can
touch your swollen mouth, feel the
voice beneath the left side of your face,
where greys mix with pinks,
a rash of illness.

The contrast holds us.


In a soft color profile,
above and slightly right 
of 26947, we see a tear
from your right eye spilling down,
just underneath skin transparent,
thin from a bleak setting.

We follow the contour of your
smeared mouth, slightly opened,
trace from lower lip to the
bottom of your chin:
this part of pinkish-grey flesh
appears as number 7.

This is not intentional.


In color we feel the 
blacks of uniformity,
harsh marks of suffering
blacken the scratched
shadows below your nostrils.

The black slit above your
grey lower lip sucks us
empty—your eyes, black
oval platters reflecting
SS soldiers and worse
within deep, grey carvings.

Black is blacker in color.


Painted close-up: a bright
yellow backdrop brightens
the scarf’s pattern, your hair
hidden in black and white
becomes strands of sunlight,
movement on still life.

Yellows warm your cheeks,
your forehead clear of dirt,
yellows remove the dark patch
from the tip of your nose we see
in each of Brasse’s photographs.
Yellows plunge orange,
settle on the center left of your chest.

You can breathe them in.

XVII (from A Strange Frenzy by Dom Gabrielli)

Lovers don’t finally meet somewhere.
They’re in each other all along.


i am the one in the series
whom in you stays
finding the path to the chests in your soul

i am the one who came last
who picked the fruit without hands
and drank the juice with my heart

i am the luck which i refused to lose

all the anger and the pain has sense for you

for my silence

for all the empty bottles of poor wine

which sojourned but could not stay

The Feast of St. Catherine (from Saltian by Alice Shapiro)

In our vacant lot the carnival
burst into town each June
like a Verdi opera.

Pink gossamer to eat
mud-stomped grass beneath our feet
a shrill Italian song

emanating over children’s jeers
the aim to win, to beat old carnys’
sleights against all odds.

And the gambler’s vice begins.

Day fades, lanterns light, a crowd wanders
circling tent-booths lined with wooden ducks
dead to barrels aimed to kill.

And the gun for sport dawns.

We spin around on giant teacups
dizzy from the ride
take note of a faint, free mind

And reach for sweet, indulgent wine.

At dusk, painted horses gallop on everlasting turns
help us grab the golden ring
and if our sense is strong enough

A holy promise sings.

Hurricane Season (from The Pomegranate Papers by Cassie Premo Steele)

Facing southeast, I wait for the hurricane,
feel the purple wind on my cheeks, 
know that nothing will be the same.

I have ridden the air on an eastern rug,
woven with blood and memory,
and the colors still cling to my skin. 

I am not afraid of the seasons, 
not the mountains or rivers or night.
I am one desert pink flower in bloom.

And when my summer is over,
I will return to the earth with gratitude,
lay my petals upon her damp breast,

and know that nothing is ever the same.
I have lived, bloomed, given birth,
died, all in my own name, all in my name.

No Place to Go (from Elegy by Raphaela Willington)

April 18, 2001

No Place to Go

Lost in the wilderness
of my parents’ house,
my illness,
I inherit:
the bounce of a branch of hemlock,
your embrace

If you like these poems and you haven't bought any of these books yet, remember that every copy sold sends royalty money to the writers and artists whose work we now celebrate. Browse our bookshelf here. Please join me in congratulating the writers.  

To see the vox poetica nominees, please click here.

Call for Submissions


In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, unbound CONTENT is publishing an anthology (title TBD) celebrating the Jersey Shore. The book, edited by poet Joanie DiMartino, is expected to release in late 2013, and proceeds from the sale will be donated to ongoing restoration charities.

We are looking for: your prose, poetry, and artwork inspired by your recollections and reimaginings of 
the Jersey Shore. The focus should be more on love than loss, but send your best work for consideration. No restrictions or length limit on submissions, within reason. Send submissions to annmarie@unboundcontent.com and include JERSEY in the subject line. Writers and artists do not need to be residents of New Jersey to submit work for consideration. Deadline for submissions is 3/31/2013.

Joanie DiMartino is the author of 2 collections of poetry, "Licking the Spoon," (Finishing Line Press) and "Strange Girls," (Little Red Tree Publishing). She is the director of the Hidden Treasures Poetry Series in downtown Mystic, CT, and hosts the Soup & Sonnets Literary Salon for Women. Raised in southern New Jersey, she holds history degrees from both Rowan and Rutgers. She has fond memories of summers at the shore, and is a true Jersey Girl.

Storm Disruption

Sandy has left her mark on New Jersey, homeland of vox poetica and unbound CONTENT. With no power, intermittent connectivity, and assorted other complications, I've been forced to reduce operations here in Englewood. I'm told it could take 7-10 days to restore service, but I'm hoping to continue daily vox poetica updates at the very least with no additional interruptions. Be patient and keep a good thought! And send sunshine my way; typing is not easy when the temperature in the house dips into the low 50s ... And please send some positive energy to my beloved torn-up state and all the people who've lost so much in the track of this behemoth storm. Thank you.
--Annmarie Lockhart, editor

The Pomegranate Songs Have Arrived!

A collection of songs inspired by The Pomegranate Papers, The Pomegranate Songs is a collaboration between the voice of female poet Cassie Premo Steele and the vision of male musician Russ Eidson. The songs combine earthiness, lyricism, and joyful rhythm. Poetry lovers and indie music fans alike will find something to adore in this transcendent CD celebrating the cycles and seasons of creativity and relationship. For more information and to order your copy, click here.

Elegy by Raphaela Willington, now available

Just in time for fall, Raphaela Willington's Elegy is now available. Written over the span of several years, the poems in this collection were assembled in the late stages of Willington's fight with ovarian cancer and in the aftermath of the sudden deaths of her parents. Published nearly a decade after her death, the work is vibrant and beautiful, even as it grapples with the mystery of mortality and the inevitability of loss. Edited by John Briggs, literary executor of the Willington Estate and Professor of Writing, Linguistics & Creative Process, the book includes Willington's sketches and a foreword by Briggs (also her lifelong friend). Willington doesn't shy away from reality, nor does she veer into morbid terrain. Elegy is a living and loving book, one that will appeal to poetry lovers, nature lovers, philosophers, and anyone dealing with loss (doesn't that mean everyone?). Click here for more information and to order your copy.

ginosko short fiction & poetry

I'm happy to announce the publication of ginosko short fiction & poetry, the first anthology of work originally published at ginosko literary journal! This is the first title to emerge from the publishing partnership of unbound CONTENT and ginosko literary journal. The collection, edited by Robert Paul Cesaretti, includes work by Steve Ablon, Ivan Arguelles, Tim Bellows, Linda Benninghoff, Richard M Berlin, Eric Bonholtzer, Louis Bourgeois, Grace Cavalieri, Srinjay Chakravarti, Constance Christopher, Jennifer Pruden Colligan, Patricial Connolly, Phebe Davidson, devin wayne davis, Stephanie Dickinson, Rupert Haigh, Therese Halscheid, Michael Hettich, Yala Korwin, Kate LaDew, Cheryl Loetscher, gary lundy, Mike Maggio, Greggory Moore, Jefferson Navicky, Mireya Robles, Craig Saunders, EM Schorb, Patricia Roth Schwartz, LB Sedlacek, Larissa Shmailo, Allegra Jostad Silberstein, Lisa Sornberger, Jayne Lyn Stahl, Elaine Starkman, Sofia M Starnes, Mark Terrill, Carine Topal, Sara Toruno, Leonore Wilson, Francine Witte, and Andrena Zawinski. Cover art is by Rick Visser. To order, click here.

Review: Painting Czeslawa Kwoka, by Sara Fryd

Painting Czeslawa Kwoka, Honoring Children of the Holocaust
Paintings by Lori Schreiner, Poems by Theresa Senato Edwards

The tears began, as if in slow motion, from behind the eyes then slowly down my cheeks until they came to a halt on my shirt where they will remain wet drops of memories. My memories that still, 65 years after the Holocaust has ended, are as real as when I heard them as whispers in the refugee camp in Germany. After so much time I still remember the stories and will always be the little boys Emanuel and Avram Rosenthal (p 24).

Even if the horrors are too great to deal with, remember we must. Painting Czeslawa Kwoka is a touching tribute, a visual blessing, a treasure of colors and words, a gift to a broken world by two amazing women. Books that teach us to remember with such grace and heart are the glue that brings us together in the hope that this will never happen again.
--Sara Fryd, author, What If ... only one child remained?

Please welcome Patrick Stevens

 ... our new Series Editor! Some of you know him better as Patrick Shea, a name he has published under (and been nominated for a Pushcart Prize under, see Calamity Rani). For those of you that don't know him, he writes poetry, plays, screenplays, novels, short fiction, and press releases as needed. He also edits material in many genres (if you're looking for an editor, contact him about how he can help). His poetry has appeared at Assaracus, Ascent Aspirations, Instigatorzine, and vox poetica, and his first full-length collection is forthcoming from unbound CONTENT. Check out his indiegogo fundraiser page for his new project, Encantado: I Become You. In his role as Series Editor, Patrick will be editing the Contributor Series and Prompts series in their online and print versions. 

As we approach the third birthday of vox poetica, and I consider the growth we are experiencing, I want to thank you for your writing, your readership, and your enthusiasm. 

--Annmarie Lockhart, editor

The Pomegranate Papers!

Cassie Premo Steele's new collection of poetry, The Pomegranate Papers, is available now through unbound CONTENT. Cassie is currently on her book tour, spreading the word about this excellent book. Rave reviews have come in from The Mom Egg and Ploughshares. Video clips from her readings (and forthcoming documentary) will post soon. In the meantime, pick up your copy here.

Introducing Melanie Eisenhart!

I'm thrilled to introduce you to Melanie Eisenhart, who will be performing the tasks of Associate Editor of Marketing as unbound CONTENT grows into 2012! In that capacity Melanie will be helping to promote our writers, create partnerships with arts and publishing organizations, and increase the availability of our titles. 

Melanie brings valuable experience as a program manager at Atlanta's Margaret Mitchell House where she coordinated programs via National Endowment for the Arts and PEN/Faulkner Writers in Schools, facilitated author lectures, organized writing workshops, planned community events around literacy and the arts, and did tons of other amazing things. 

Please join me in welcoming Melanie to the unbound CONTENT community. I am looking forward to an enduring creative collaboration!

--Annmarie Lockhart


April 2014

Monthly Archives

Recent Posts

  1. Pushcart Prize Nominations
    Sunday, December 02, 2012
  2. Call for Submissions
    Friday, November 30, 2012
  3. Storm Disruption
    Thursday, November 01, 2012
  4. The Pomegranate Songs Have Arrived!
    Monday, October 15, 2012
  5. Elegy by Raphaela Willington, now available
    Monday, October 01, 2012
  6. ginosko short fiction & poetry
    Tuesday, June 05, 2012
  7. Review: Painting Czeslawa Kwoka, by Sara Fryd
    Thursday, May 10, 2012
  8. Please welcome Patrick Stevens
    Monday, May 07, 2012
  9. The Pomegranate Papers!
    Thursday, April 26, 2012
  10. Introducing Melanie Eisenhart!
    Sunday, February 12, 2012

Recent Comments

  1. Mark Gooch on Storm Disruption
  2. Ellenelizabeth Cernek on Introducing Melanie Eisenhart!
  3. Diana on Pushcart Prize Nominations
  4. Stan on Introducing Melanie Eisenhart!
  5. Alice Shapiro on Introducing Melanie Eisenhart!
  6. Mark Gooch on Introducing Melanie Eisenhart!
  7. Alice Shapiro on A Word From Maxwell Baumbach
  8. KC Bosch on A Word From Maxwell Baumbach
  9. Alice Shapiro on Coming Soon!
  10. Alice Shapiro on Pushcart Prize Nominations


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