Wednesday, March 31, 2010

National Poetry Month starts tomorrow

I'm going to try the NaPoWriMo thing again: write a poem a day for the entire month of April. I'll be posting links to the poems here, but the poems will be on the forum (which has been my poetic home for many years). Of course, if I decide to send any out, I'll be deleting them there, but you should be able to read them during April (they'll be first drafts, in need of revision).

This will be my fourth year of NaPoWriMo. I've had wonderful luck with the poems I wrote in past Aprils: my chapbook, The book of small treasures, was written during NaPoWriMo 2007. In 2008 I began my book-length manuscript of poems, Dark matter. A selection of those poems won the 2009 Ellen La Forge Memorial Prize in Poetry, and the manuscript made it to the semi-finals on another contest. An unpublished manuscript of sonnets (Cloud studies) was written in 2009 (I have high hopes for those), as were the poems that form the backbone of my novel, The Quantum Archives (the poems made it to the semi-finals at The Black Lawrence Press' Black River chapbook competition).

So, I really have no excuse. Even if it feels like I'm skinning myself again, I'll be trying to write a poem a day. I've got a theme and a few written already, so I even have something with which to work. Good luck to all of you who are going to be writing this year, too!

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

How to photograph the heart

You remember how the lens squeezed
unimportant details into stillness:
the essential trail of rain down glass,
the plummet of autumn-dead leaves,
your grandfather's last blink when
the breath moved on.
Your startled hands compressed
the shutter when you realized: this is it,
this is the last movement he will take
away from the silent fall of morphine,
beyond the soft gasp of the nurse,
past the sick, slow thud of your heart
moving in the luminous silence.

I wrote this in 2005 after I spoke with my mother about my grandmother's death. It is not autobiographical, yet it is in the way that poems draw truth from real experiences. I've always found that odd about writing. It's the title poem from my first chapbook, "How to photograph the heart," (The Lives You Touch Publications).

-Christine Klocek-Lim

Monday, March 08, 2010

First Crocus

Since the first crocus of the season popped up last week, even with all the snow still on the ground, posting an old poem of mine seemed appropriate:

First Crocus

This morning, flowers cracked open
the earth’s brown shell. Spring
leaves spilled everywhere
though winter’s stern hand
could come down again at any moment
to break the delicate yolk
of a new bloom.

The crocus don’t see this as they chatter
beneath a cheerful petal of spring sky.
They ignore the air’s brisk arm
as they peer at their fresh stems, step
on the leftover fragments
of old leaves.

When the night wind twists them to pieces,
they will die like this: laughing,
tossing their brilliant heads
in the bitter air.

© Christine Klocek-Lim, first appeared on, Poems for Spring, 2007

Monday, March 01, 2010


ScreenHunter_04 Mar. 01 09.45

The period for nominating entrees for the 3QD Arts & Literature Prize is over.

To see a full list of the nominees and then vote, go here.

To see details of the prize, go here.

Good luck to all! The voting round closes on Sunday, March 7, 2010, at 11:59 pm NYC time.

FYI: two of my poems are nominated. Go vote!! If not for me, than for your favorite. My poems are at the top of the list (gotta love alphabetical order):

How to photograph the heart


How to search for aliens