Thursday, July 12, 2007

The Right Words

Gnome in York
Photo by Katy Brown, Davis

verse in July
—dawn dibartolo, sacramento

the right words ~
aspirin turn of phrase
and dress the pain
in summertime
like that perfect
yellow cotton
i just coined yesterday.
i’ll wear it to the
carnival, flirt a little
with the breeze, let it
catch my hem and dance
as i give the past to the
quarter-toss toy booths
and assume
the stuffed animals
love me.


Thanks, Dawn!

Tonight in NorCal poetry:

•••Thursday (7/12), 8 PM: Poetry Unplugged at Luna's Cafe, 1414 16th St., Sacramento. Featured reader(s), with open mic before and after.

•••Thursday (7/12), 7:30: Poetry Flash at Berkeley City College presents Andrea Hollander Budy & Sacramento’s Kathleen Lynch. Andrea Hollander Budy's new book of poems is Woman in the Painting; her previous collections are The Other Life, and House Without a Dreamer, which won the Nicholas Roerich Poetry Prize. Among her many honors are a D.H. Lawrence Fellowship and a Pushcart Prize, as well as two fellowships from the National Endowment of the Arts. Kathleen Lynch's first full-length book of poems, Hinge, won the Black Zinnias Press National Poetry Book Competition. She's published several chapbooks, including How to Build an Owl and Alterations of Rising. Among her honors are the Spoon River Poetry Review Editor's Choice Award and the Salt Hill Poetry Award. Berkeley City College Auditorium, 2050 Center Street, Berkeley, one-half block from Berkeley BART. Parking garage next door. Info: Poetry Flash: (510) 525-5476. Co-sponsored by Cody's Books.

Strolling down the Lane:

Pleasanton Poet Cynthia Bryant's wonderful website, Poet’s Lane (, send to has a new page called What the Hell Are We Fightin’ For. Send your war poems/essays to Other Poet’s Lane pages include:

•••Picture Prompted Poetry, which has a NEW picture to write a poem about, or write to one of the other pictures still up on that page and send it to

•••Poet's Lane is looking for poetry for JULY: Independence, Family Reunion, Roots & Branches and Social Wellness (check out the new poems).

•••If you need to rant in a poem about the injustices of life, send a poem for Get it Off Your Chest (mental health poetry) page.

•••NEW Question for That Would Be Telling! page: “What is your favorite word and what is your least favorite word?” Or answer any of the other previous questions if you wish.

•••It is getting to be the time of year for Poetry/Book Festivals. Send your pertinent information for the Poetry Festivals/Book Fairs page.

•••Annual writing contests will be listed on the new Annual Contests page; if you have one coming up, please send the information to PoetsLane@comcast.

•••Put your face and name up with other rising poets and writers on Poets & Writers in the Know. Send your bio, picture and contact information to and add to your chances of getting to be known for what you do.

•••If you have a writers/poets journal or an organization, a venue for publishing or presenting to the public poets or writers, then add your information to Poetry/Writers related web-sites and links by sending it to Be sure to state what page it is for.


—dawn dibartolo

plant a kiss upon
the golden face of dawn
and rise with each
occasion of the sun,
for day is the truest lover ~
each soul fulfilled by destiny.
an ember fringe
on the horizon
skirts the hours
like a sensual woman,
flirtatious and seducing opportunity
from the corners of time.
wantonly, she spreads herself
across the blue abandon
ever trekking westward
toward her temporary demise.
and even night acknowledges infatuation
in the stain of day’s departure
on the mirror-moon:
reflections of affection
that chaperon young lovers
through the darkness,
and thus, new lusts bloom.


—dawn dibartolo

together with the whole
of the universe
complex and spiritually diverse
into expansion, i submerse
the allness of me; and become, we
a multi-verse
amidst the infinite stars, dispersed
to full and ultimate


the keeping of things
—dawn dibartolo

certain songs, preserved
in the memory of a moment
when love was well,
still lingers like the
taste of content
on his skin, smells
that remember an instant
of shared lusts…

or longings.

like jam in the jar,
these things will keep



Medusa encourages poets of all ilk and ages to send their POETRY, PHOTOS and ART, as well as announcements of Northern California poetry events to (or snail ‘em to P.O. Box 762, Pollock Pines, CA 95726) for posting on this daily Snake blog. Rights remain with the poets. Previously-published poems are okay for Medusa’s Kitchen, as long as you own the rights. (Please cite publication.)

SnakeWatch: Up-to-the-minute Snake news:

Journals (free publications): Rattlesnake Review14 is now available at The Book Collector; contributors and subscribers should have received theirs by now. If you're none of those, and can't get down to The Book Collector, send two bux (for postage) to P.O. Box 762, Pollock Pines, CA 95726 and I'll mail you a copy. If you want more than one, please send $2 for the first one and $1 for copies after that. Next deadline, for RR15, is August 15. VYPER6 (for youth 13-19) is in The Book Collector; next deadline is Nov. 1. Snakelets10 (for kids 0-12) is also at The Book Collector; next deadline is Oct. 1.

Books/broadsides: June's releases include Tom Miner's chapbook, North of Everything; David Humphreys' littlesnake broadside, Cominciare Adagio; and #3 in B.L. Kennedy's Rattlesnake Interview Series, this one featuring Jane Blue.

ZZZZZZZ: Shh! The Snake is sleeping! There will be no Snake readings/releases in July or August. Then we return with a bang on September 12, presenting Susan Kelly-DeWitt's new chapbook, Cassiopeia Above the Banyan Tree. See the online journal, Mudlark, for a hefty sample of poems from her book; that’s Also coming in the Fall: new issues of the Review, Snakelets and VYPER [see the above deadlines], plus more littlesnake broadsides from NorCal poets near and far, and a continuation of B.L. Kennedy's Rattlesnake Interview Series—including an anthology of interviews to be released for Sacramento Poetry Month (October).