Monday, June 28, 2010

June 28: Goth Night with Gordon Gilbert 6-8pm at Yippie Cafe, NYC


Roxanne, The Vampire PoetMonday June 28, 2010 6:30PM-8PM @ Yippie Museum Cafe, 9 Bleecker Street, between Bowery & Elizabeth Streets, An Evening of Vampire Poetry & Performance featuring Big Mike, Mike Fiorito, Nicholas Fofonoff, Robert Gibbons, Gordon Gilbert, Viviana Grell, Roxanne Hoffman, Evie Ivy, Orion 0.62, Puma Perl, Minnie Petruzzi, and Tom White.
Hosted by Gordon Gilbert.  No Cover. 
Please purchase a beverage to help support the venue.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

VGP Chapbook Anthology: America Remembered Now Available

Reposted from Virgogray Press:

VGP Chapbook Anthology: America Remembered

Thanks to everyone who sent their work in for the America Remembers Anthology. We are very pleased to release this anthology as it has been a goal in our mind’s eye for sometime and we extended deadlines for this project and prompted with calls for submissions. The poets responded and the time has come. We are proud to release a publication on the topic of our nation, the United States of America. This fine menagerie of writers present a spirit of pride, concern, and honor to the American way of life and that which it once stood for. These poems evoke many images, ask many questions and proffer answers, and affirm commitments to what it means to be American and the many freedoms that are entitled.

Contributors include:
Danny P. Barbare, Roxanne Hoffman, David S. Pointer, Elizabeth Chapin-Pinotti, Michael Aaron Casares, J.P. Christiansen, Christa Pandey, Franklin Metro, Matthew Nadelson, Scot Siegel, Mitchell Waldmen, Thom Moon Bird, Chevalterre Nabil, Sal Treppiedi, James Brush, Elzy Cogswell, Claire Vogel-Camargo, Mikel K.

$7 + S/H.

Michael Aaron Casares
Virgogray Press

Monday, June 21, 2010

VGP Chapbook Anthology: America Remembered Due Out June 22

Sharing some good news! I just found out from Michael Aaron Casares, Editor/Publisher of Virgogray Press that my poem "The Wright Brother" will be included in a new VGP chapbook anthology AMERICA REMEMBERED, due out June 22, 2010.  Michael describes the poem as  "a quaint expression of American history" and thought it would "work nicely in the text."

The poem was inspired by Wilbur Wright's letter to Octave Chanute, dated May 13, 1900. “For some years I have been afflicted with the belief that flight is possible by man.” is the first sentence Wright's letter. In the second paragraph of the same letter, Wilbur Wright explains how “knowledge and skill” are critical to man’s flight. The incidents mentioned are documented in Wikipedia and other sources.

Here's the poem with a sound clip. Enjoy!

by Roxanne Hoffman

Given to mischief, Orville was once expelled,
but could his father have predicted
his older son Wilbur would be so compelled?
“For some years I have been afflicted

with the belief that flight is possible by man.”
What most men only dared dream, his boys would plan.
Was it the hockey stick that struck Will’s face at 8?
Or the toy brought back from France propelling fate?

Made of bamboo, cork and paper with a rubber band,
flown and flown until it could fly no more,
then they made their own inventions soar!
As men they would glide over dunes of sand,

expanding their knowledge, honing their skill.
To unlock the secret of flight, their thrill.

“For some years I have been afflicted with the belief that flight is possible by man.” is the first sentence of Wilbur Wright's letter to Octave Chanute, dated May 13, 1900. In the second paragraph of the same letter, Wilbur Wright explains how “knowledge and skill” are critical to man’s flight.

Last year,  my poem "Ash Wednesday" was published in another chapbook anthology from Virgogray Press, SO IT GOES, on the theme of death.

To find out more about Virgogray Press, their publication, and how to submit your own work, please visit Michael Aaron Casares at

Saturday, June 12, 2010

New Review of Maja Trochimczyk's CHOPIN WITH CHERRIES Posted

Some news from Maja Trochimczyk, Editor of Chopin with Cherries: A Tribute in Verse: Alison Ross just posted her review of the anthology on Clockwise Cat. Follow the link to read her review: 

The first official review of Chopin with Cherries appeared the Spring 2010 issue of The Cosmopolitan Review, a Canadian journal: John Guzlowski writes: "I cannot remember reading an anthology of poems centered around a single-theme that I liked more." The issue also includes a selection of poems by: Kerri Buckley, Ryan McLellan, Rick Lupert, Elizabeth Murawski, Ruth Nolan, William Pillin, Katrin Talbot, and Maja Trochimczyk.

Another review was published in London, March 2010 in The Polish Weekly.

This anthology of contemporary poetry celebrates the 200th birth anniversary of Fryderyk Chopin (1810-1849). The volume presents 123 poems by 92 poets, including moi! The book is illustrated with vintage Chopin postcards and includes a translation of "Chopin's Piano" by Norwid. The editor, Dr. Maja Trochimczyk, is a Polish-American poet, music historian, photographer, and translator. She published four books on music, two books of poetry, and hundreds of articles and poems.

By Roxanne Hoffman


I tell my piano
the things I used to tell you,
pull back its fallboard
after propping up the lid,
stroke its sturdy trusses,
hear the strings vibrate in sympathy,
undampered escapement permits,
as my fingers depress and release its keys
to unlock unsaid thoughts,
the music I dream.
The solid back frame
understands the balanced tension
of romance:
the give and the take
of the player and the played,
the rhythm of two heartbeats, even at rest,
the somber melody
of disharmony.
We of equal temperament
speak at length,
practice our arpeggios and scales,
regulate our voices,
and play Mozart in your absence.


Note: Lines 1 and 2 are a quotation attributed to Chopin. Toward the end of his life he had a falling out with his long time love George Sand, they separated, and she was absent from his funeral. A final request of Chopin’s was to have Mozart’s Requiem sung in his memory. After his death, among his possessions, a lock of her hair was found in a small envelope embroidered with their initials “G.F” tucked in the back of his diary.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Response to Shakespeare's Sonnet 115 on David Morneau's 5 OF 4 MUSIC

A Response to Shakespeare's Sonnet 115
by Roxanne Hoffman

My response to Shakespeare's Sonnet 115, "Many Have Asked How We Stay Together" is now up on David Morneau's 5 OF 4 MUSIC website (  Last August, David contacted me, after getting my name from fellow writer Susan Maurer, to participate in his "Love Songs" project.  A composer,  he is creating a set of songs based on Shakespeare's Sonnets. Each song is actually a pair of poems: one sonnet and one contemporary poem.

Here is the original description of the project he sent me:
My goal for these pairings is to find find a contemporary poem that addresses a subject similar to one of Shakespeare's sonnets. I am not looking for a specific relationship between the two beyond this. The modern poem can affirm, contradict, illuminate, ignore, embrace (etc etc) the sonnet. I am not simply looking for tributes or modernizations (though these are also fine). Also, I'm not necessarily looking for sonnets.
By leaving it this open (and vague) I am hoping that a poets choice of their own work also says something about their relationship to Shakespeare and their attitude about his work. I do not want to assume that everyone loves his work, after all not all composers like Mozart.

The other thing I'd like to get from you is input about how the pairing works within the song settings. Which poem comes first? Are they combined in one song or separated into two? Once I have a pair from you I will work on setting them for soprano voice and piano.

— David Morneau
A lover of Shakespeare and a songwriter I was certainly enticed to participate!  David is only accepting one pairing from each contributor but I've continued to work on additional responses.

"Listen," my response to Shakespeare's Sonnet 23, appears in Pushing The Envelope: A Literary Magazine, Issue 2, Part 2 (

A Response to Shakespeare's Sonnet 23
by Roxanne Hoffman

Here's other pairing previously shared with Facebook friends:


O, lest the world should task you to recite
What merit lived in me, that you should love
After my death, dear love, forget me quite,
For you in me can nothing worthy prove;
Unless you would devise some virtuous lie,
To do more for me than mine own desert,
And hang more praise upon deceased I
Than niggard truth would willingly impart:
O, lest your true love may seem false in this,
That you for love speak well of me untrue,
My name be buried where my body is,
And live no more to shame nor me nor you.
 For I am shamed by that which I bring forth,
 And so should you, to love things nothing worth.

— William Shakespeare

For The Bard

Some say my love for Will is obsolete!
And that these saucy verses we’ve learned to repeat
Have soured — relish turning vinaigrette.
And those fourteen lines that make a sonnet?
Offer little meat to sink one’s teeth into,
Giving these zesty twists of wit less than due.
Perhaps in an age before DVDs and iPods,
When all to pass the time was sex, wine and bards,
Such screws of tongue & ink deserved their fame.
Still — much less has changed while more remains the same —
Don’t we line up to hear the poets slam and sling?
Rejoice while wincing from the smarts of verbal stings?
 And since Love’s pen is not yet out of style,
 I think I’ll keep my love of Will a while!

I for one will not let [Will's] name be buried where [his] body be!  And apparently several others feel the same.  Susan Maurer, Patricia Carragon, Anne Cammon Fiero, Ana Bozicevic, and Cindy Hochman have already contributed their pairs to "Love Songs."  You can read their contributions and learn more about them on David Morneau's 5 OF 4 MUSIC website (

David is still looking for additional contributions to his project, so please take this opportunity to reread Shakespeare's sonnets and create your own match pair! He is also looking for help in raising funds to support "Love Songs" so he can create a CD.  I think you will find Shakespeare address topics we still find relevant today: friendship, love, sex, jealousy, beauty, aging, mortality, and death.  For more information about "Love Songs" contact David Morneau by email: david at 5of4 dot com.

One song, Patricia Carragon's "Corneal Gates," has already been set to music and will have its premiere performance at the end of September. Details follow:

Composer's Voice Concert
Sunday, September 26, 2010
1:00 PM
Jan Hus Church
351 E 74th Street
New York, NY 10021
Free Admission


3 Poems to Appear in DARK EYE GLANCES, New Canandian Horror Journal

After a flurry of rejections, I just received notice of publication with contract from Dark Eye Glances, a new Canadian horror journal. 3 of my horror pieces, "I Scream at Dawn's Break," "Dare I," and "Persephone's Dream" have been accepted for the premiere issue and will be considered for the 2010 annual anthology. The editor, Garth Von Buchholz,  thanked me for my submission and actually complimented my writing! I'm especially, delighted since one of the poems is "Persephone's Dream," edited down to a sonnet from the original rondelet,  has been making the rounds since last summer!  Repackaging and persistance does pay off.  Here's the final successful result:

by Roxanne Hoffman

A dream haunts me —
Silent, stealth-like, Winter enters.
Spine — frozen ice — I cannot flee!
Spying me helpless, he ventures!

His breath glazes lakes to mirrors,
Turning crystal each bare limbed tree.
My cries, a snowflake’s kiss censures
Till soft white blankets cover me.

Passion’s pyre dispels my terrors.
Nights linger, day's glimmer slenders
Until love’s furnace melts me free,
Sweet sweated from ardor’s pleasures,
And with Spring’s thaw life renters,
And flaunts dream free.

You can read and hear me hear reading "Dare I" on a previous post:

To find out more about Dark Eye Glances and how to submit your own work please visit: