it's monday! so let's reward ourselves with another chance to win some free Omnidawn Books! i'm going to give away 10 books--and you can choose any Omnidawn book you want if you win. some Omnidawn authors include keith waldrop, lyn hejinian, myung mi kim, tyrone williams, paul hoover, norma cole, and translations of rimbaud & holderlin, and many more. go below the fold to learn how you can win!

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CONTEST 1: TRACING THE OUTSKIRTS

From Richard Greenfield's Tracer:

"Here in the outskirts,

where sea fossils
locked into the ridges,

wrote

“The rain sluiced
the trees bare of the earth—”

this was my history, too,

here in the outskirts"

Your Task : Imagine the act of tracing and trace how you got 'here,' to the 'outskirts.' Interpret 'here' however you like. Leak the autobiography of those who inhabit these outskirts. Submissions must be no more than seven sentences.

listen to richard read from his new collection here.

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CONTEST 2: HAIKU BLANK, THEN

Michelle Taransky's Barn Burned, Then, winner of the 2008 Omnidawn Poetry Prize, takes its title from Masahide's 17th century haiku:

Barn's burnt down-
now
I can see the moon.

Your Task: write a haiku that fills in the blanks:

_____ burnt down-
now
I can _____ the _____

listen to michelle read from her new collection here.

*

the contest will end on wednesday, when my next blog post is published. I will choose my favorite five submissions from each contest. you can submit more than once and win more than once. be creative, have fun, and good luck!

[videos courtesy of poet oscar bermeo]

*

Originally Published: February 1st, 2010

Craig Santos Perez is a native Chamoru (Chamorro) from the Pacific Island of Guåhan/Guam. He is the co-founder of Ala Press, co-star of the poetry album Undercurrent (Hawai’i Dub Machine, 2011), and author of three collections of poetry: from unincorporated territory [hacha] (Tinfish Press, 2008), from unincorporated territory [saina](Omnidawn, 2010),...

  1. February 1, 2010
     james stotts

    we’ve lost our-\r
    selves in some\r
    out-of-town place\r

    there’s a dogwood\r
    it has flowers\r
    that i can’t describe\r

    it’s changed a lot \r
    since this song was written\r
    by the factory wall\r

    by the old canal\r
    dogs are drifting\r
    on their beat\r

    when we meet again\r
    it won’t be bodies\r
    and politics like this time

  2. February 1, 2010
     Don Share

    Poetry burnt down -\r
    now\r
    I can hose the page

  3. February 1, 2010
     Natalia

    Brain burnt down -\r
    now\r
    I can be the loon.

  4. February 1, 2010
     Bhanu Kapil

    This is so brilliant. We are studying the "sentence" today at "school." I was thinking, how can I design a writing experiment for my students that won't bore them to tears. Now it is clear that I will give them your competition. Thank you! I just forwarded it to the Writing and Poetics office to print out 12 copies for me. This is so much better than having or implementing a pedagogy! Could you work on a competition for the paragraph next? (We're doing that in a couple of weeks.)

  5. February 1, 2010
     john

    Abstraction burnt down -\r
    now\r
    I can reify the concept of reification.

  6. February 1, 2010
     Sachiko

    Forests burnt down-\r
    now\r
    I can touch the homeless butterflies.

  7. February 1, 2010
     Christina Rodriguez

    1. My soul burnt down-\r
    now\r
    I can use the extended warranty.\r

    2. Written intentions burnt down-\r
    now\r
    I can draw the plan.

  8. February 1, 2010
     csperez

    hey bhanu, you should tell your students to enter their responses here so they can have a chance to win free books ;)\r

    c

  9. February 1, 2010
     Peter Greene

    Peter says:\r

    trailer burnt down\r
    now\r
    i can feel the wind\r


    here's a spare that was lying around, for fun and contemplation:\r

    haiku: grower's blues\r

    the cat has made a\r
    Japanese sh*t garden of\r
    my sacred clearing.\r

    note to Craig: i don't want a book (no room in the trailer, don't read much these days) - but thanks for the haiku practice!\r

    P

  10. February 1, 2010
     Eprise A

    Vision burnt down -\r
    now\r
    I can write the truth.

  11. February 1, 2010
     james stotts

    town's burnt down-\r
    now\r
    i can find the bees

  12. February 1, 2010
     Christine Spees

    bridges burnt down-\r
    now\r
    I can feel the gap

  13. February 1, 2010
     Anji

    clothesline burnt down-\r
    now \r
    I can start the dryer

  14. February 1, 2010
     Kent Johnson

    SEGUE's burnt down--\r

    now I can laugh at poetry readings.

  15. February 1, 2010
     Colin Ward

    Candle burnt down--\r
    now \r
    I can see the darkness.
    \r

    -----------------------\r

    Yeah, I know. It's beyond lame. It's where lame crawls off to die. \r

    Ç'est la vie.\r

    -o-\r

    Christmas Tsunami, 2004\r

    Look! Starfish\r
    on treetops.

  16. February 1, 2010
     Matt

    Starbucks burnt down-\r
    now\r
    I can see the other Starbucks

  17. February 1, 2010
     Matt

    yeah i know. the year 2003 called, wants its joke back.

  18. February 1, 2010
     Henry Gould

    POETRY's burnt down -\r
    now\r
    I can see rejection slips still smoldering.

  19. February 1, 2010
     Peter Greene

    @Colin: It wasn't THAT bad, was it? Worked well enough for me. Not all cutlery is stainless bamboo, gra**hopper.\r

    @Matt: I'm old, I laughed.\r

    @Christina: There's an extended warranty package? I KNEW I should have registered this thing at the moment of awareness. I was busy, though, and the deadline passes so fast...\r

    @Colin: I liked your tsunami thing. Were there really?\r

    P

  20. February 1, 2010
     Peter Greene

    @J. Stotts: You're the only one so far who tried the tougher question. A shoo-in if that holds up.\r
    P

  21. February 1, 2010
     RC

    workplace burnt down-\r
    now\r
    I can breath the self

  22. February 1, 2010
     Don Share

    [Most of them are e-mails now. Such is progress.]

  23. February 1, 2010
     Veronica

    Neighbour's burnt down-\r
    now\r
    I can let the trees spread.

  24. February 1, 2010
     Eric Landon

    Out here on the hallucinative periphery, it's Monday, so i thopught : wow! lets reward you all with an opportunity to win lyn hejinian, hoover - Paul, myung mi kim, keith waldrop, tyrone williams and norma cole translations of you, Amatuer rimbaud & greenfield Richard I, holding on to those links! \r

    .. don't let the tourists down now, you're getting a free lesson in how to choose what it is you wanna be, if you want to win some, ppl, included below the fold of learning why you can win ...\r

    ... rain running into locked ridges\r
    sea fossils act of tracing and the trace \r

    out you go here, glissandi over you \r
    ... interpret your eye here little \r

    listen to richard read from this new collection ... corn-cob dolly, however he likes it, leaked\r

    autobiography inhabit these outskirts. Submission\r
    ... must be no less than seven sentences locked\r

    in you Hawk the eye at Assaroe\r
    ... glimmers on his back, the silver ridges\r

    mysterious rain-tree sluiced your outskirt\r
    ... Ormskirk ...\r

    earth-\r

    this was my history, this too, too bare earth\r
    ... on the outskirts of Ormskirk, where History\r

    our Task : imagine to be : Imagine being you \r
    ... the : damage bettering day and us all-guy\r

    in less than twenty times, tries, the revolution ...

  25. February 1, 2010
     Veronica

    Fresh skies burnt down-\r
    now\r
    I can inhale the night.

  26. February 1, 2010
     Henry Gould

    No need to remind me - I received one today.

  27. February 1, 2010
     Bhanu Kapil

    We did it in class! I distributed this page, and just e-mailed them to remind them to submit in the comment stream. You're like the secret boss of the day. That didn't make any sense. On another note, via the Greenfield poem, did you see the film, "The Class"?

  28. February 1, 2010
     Megan

    Chair burnt down-\r
    now\r
    I can moon the floor.

  29. February 2, 2010
     billdozer

    7 sentences\r

    The shamanatrix at ceremony asked if I wanted more, but my body,\r
    (wheezing, twitchy, apneac (stoned beautiful) without a CPAP machine), said "no, it will just wear me out."\r
    At least I could touch my fingers to the ground; ten years folding forward over a morbid gut, stretching my hamstrings a breath at a time.\r
    The instructional text on getting out was always mid-stack, or stuffed into a duffel bag, hitch hiking to Chicago.\r
    Being There Then.\r
    I read about Swamis in my flannel pajamies, remembering that as a lad I sat zazen in Lincoln Park for free with the Roshi who could catch a fly with his bare mind.\r
    I never wanted to go to college.\r
    Going back, who wouldn't rather watch cartoons,\r
    see pornography for the very first time again?

  30. February 2, 2010
     rawbbie

    Here its boring, but with hats. I got here to put out a wildfire, but my entire bedroom burned to the ground. We used to play pin the tail on donkey, with real donkeys. I've been here so long I can't feel my legs. Tomorrow I'm going over there to tap dance in my underwear with a balloon animal tied to my neck. It's to cover the hickey. With my new journal I'll be able to remember all the exciting things that happen.

  31. February 2, 2010
     csperez

    mwuhaha glad to be secret boss for the day! i did not see the film 'the class'...tho i suppose i must?

  32. February 2, 2010
     csperez

    Harriet burnt down\r
    now \r
    i can return to facebook

  33. February 2, 2010
     ashlee june

    Year’s burnt down-\r
    now\r
    I can scatter the ashes.

  34. February 2, 2010
     sandra stone

    Matt, there are several witty haiku in space allocated -- but yours is such witty\r
    commentary on odious proliferation of Starbuck's (like a barnacle attached to all the space of our lives, I just had to write you. You made me laugh. That counts high with me.\r

    Salud, sandra stone

  35. February 2, 2010
     sandra stone

    Little Shoppe of Haiku Horrors - sandra stone\r

    Hubby burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can marry the mirror\r

    Lab burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can examine the petri-eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee .... (these shld be e's in descending font size)\r

    Nursery burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can bury the nipper\r

    Gown burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can gaga the navel\r

    Arcade burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can shoot the kewpie\r

    Morgue burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can vamp the mortician\r

    Vegas burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can one-up the bandits\r

    Carny burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can swallow T*H*E F*I*R*E*A*T*E*R\r

    Cardhouse burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can revivify the Joker\r

    Pavilion burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can seduce the corpse\r

    Marquee burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can google the trailer\r

    Tannenbaum burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can deep-six the tinsel\r

    Washer burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can rotate the arsonist\r

    Olympia burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can ogle the gods\r

    Poems burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can howl. The ephemera!\r

    Igloo burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can explain the contradiction\r

    Moth burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can snuff the incandescence\r

    Candle burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can mesmerize the char\r

    sandra stone 2.2.10 3:27 A.M.

  36. February 2, 2010
     Bhanu Kapil

    Are you competing in your own competition? Imagine if you won your own books.

  37. February 2, 2010
     Bhanu Kapil

    Yeah, now you have to set yourself up with a bowl of salt and vinegar crisps, lukewarm root beer or carbonated beverage of your choice, and put your feet on the coffee table. Socks? Boots? It's your home. Okay, I should stop there.

  38. February 2, 2010
     Peter Greene

    Up burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can move the moon

  39. February 2, 2010
     Peter Greene

    @Bhanu: Winning my own book will be a victory of a different colour, when it comes. (Glances at the novel, judders from stem to stern, sounds deep blueback into poetry without taking a breath)\r
    P

  40. February 2, 2010
     Christine Spees

    radio burnt down\r
    now\r
    i can hear the music

  41. February 2, 2010
     evie

    love's burnt down --\r
    now\r
    i can count the whys.\r


    *and*\r


    someone was leading\r
    and we were following.\r

    a dance we did\r
    backwards.\r

    we had learned already\r
    about looking where you're going.\r

    looking over\r
    your shoulder.\r

    where we'd been was growing\r
    distant.\r

    where we'd been was growing\r
    legs.\r

    dancing along behind us,\r
    skirts flying out.

  42. February 2, 2010
     Eric Landon

    Hic : On the grey sand beside the shallow stream\r
    Under your old wind-beaten tower, where still\r
    A lamp burns on beside the open book\r
    That Michael Robartes left, you walk in the moon,\r
    And, though you have passed the best of life, still trace,\r
    Enthralled by the unconquerable delusion,\r

    Magical shapes.\r

    -Yeats Ego Dominus Tuus (continues) \r

    "By the help of an image\r
    I call to my own opposite, summon all\r
    That I have handled least, least looked upon.\r

    Hic : And I would find myself and not an image.." \r

    .. 'see pornography for the very first time ..\r

    touch my fingers to the ground; ten years folding forward over a morbid gut, stretching my hamstrings a breath at a time.'
    \r

    " .. coarse-bred son of a livery-stable keeper --\r
    Luxuriant song\r
    ... should you leave the lamp\r
    Burning alone beside an open book,\r
    And trace these characters upon the sands,\r
    A style ... found by sedentary toil\r
    And by the imitation of great masters ... \r

    Bill Dozer\r

    .. I've seen your God - Allen roared ..\r

    Very lyrical Bill Blake\r

    Ego Dominus Tuus\r

    Dozer Yeats\r

    In the name of this poem, translated out of the Latin and into American 'I am your Lord' .. from The Wild Swans at Coole (1919) 'perhaps the most heteroegeneous volume of Yeats's career' - wrote Daniel Albright in the Everyman Collected footnotes, for this well executed attempt at conjuring a 'faery' source of An Sidhe, pronounced shee, A fairy Source of the supernatural within each and every one of us.\r

    There's no single American word-equivalent for 'sidhe', the word's original meaning existed in a land much different from the 24/7 there is today, occuring in a different Tongue from the language-family, spoken by a majority with little to none of it, English.\r

    Though the 'medium' of communication has changed to English, it's not so difficult to imagine our Faery source of yore, the same as we have now in your English-language Culture, friends in the waning Face Age passing the sell by date, fwends, commoners, bloggers, speaking as we in English on 2/2.10 .. Gŵyl y Canhwyllau .. Mary's Festival of the Candles' .. Wales .. the day after Imbolc and St Brigid's Day, the first of Spring\r

    Groundhog Day\r

    Happy New Year

  43. February 2, 2010
     Eprise A

    (i wanted another one):\r
    banks burnt down\r
    now\r
    i can pay the bills\r


    & one more:\r
    tea-plantation's burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can drink the rain.

  44. February 2, 2010
     John Oliver Simon

    Non-profit burnt down\r
    now\r
    everyone can see the elephant in the room

  45. February 2, 2010
     Don Share

    American poetry burned down\r
    now\r
    everyone can see the elephant in the room

  46. February 2, 2010
     csperez

    i think i have a good chance to win because the judge is male ;)

  47. February 2, 2010
     Laura Eve

    I burnt down\r
    now.\r
    I can burn then, too.

  48. February 2, 2010
     csperez

    The elephant in the room burnt down\r
    now\r
    i can see the

  49. February 2, 2010
     Billdozer

    Now burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can burn the here.\r

    5-7-5 burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can cinch the axis.\r

    Youth burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can mourn the knees.\r

    Symmetry burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can adjust the frame.\r

    Sisters burnt down\r
    now \r
    I can comb the tangles.\r

    Father burnt down\r
    now \r
    I can ask the question.\r

    Mother burnt down\r
    now\r
    I can eat the cord.

  50. February 2, 2010
     Peter Greene

    (goes blind)\r
    P

  51. February 2, 2010
     Peter Greene

    ah, now i can see it too.

  52. February 2, 2010
     DLC

    Just After the Battle, Mother\r

    Fifer:\r
    Wilderness burnt down–\r
    now \r
    I can harvest the dead\r

    Ghoul:\r
    Wilderness burnt down–\r
    now \r
    I can’t rifle their soles\r

    Photographer:\r
    Wilderness burnt down–\r
    now \r
    I can document the skulls\r

    (wilderness burnt down–\r
    now\r
    can start the new growth)\r

    ~\r

    Reenactor:\r
    Tate burnt down–\r
    Lowell burnt down–\r
    now\r
    I can patronize Wal-Mart–\r
    the battlefield got sold\r


    The mention of wilderness in the other thread coupled with the haiku invitation here triggered this poem. I guess there is still a chance the Wal-Mart won’t go up:\r

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_the_Wilderness\r

    And, yes, I realize it’s not a wise idea to mention Tate and Lowell in the context of such a little poem, but there they are.

  53. February 2, 2010
     Jack

    bridge burnt down-\r
    now\r
    i can walk the river

  54. February 3, 2010
     J. Creighton

    The wind blew until it broke the branch, my arm of the family tree. The sea wept as I walked away, her whispers far too deep. The mountain fell before me, I was far too high to refuse. As I stand before you, I’m only who I am; unconcerned of where, for I’m already there. Your eyes fill in my lines, your lies shade the guile your learning to despise. You see me walk away, yet I’m still exactly where I am. The heart of motion only dies once. \r

    I’ve burnt down\r
    Now \r
    I can cash the pipe.