Poemeleon: The Blog


The official blog for Poemeleon: A Journal of Poetry

If you are a Poemeleon contributor and would like to participate in our ongoing contributor interview series, "The Habitual Poet," download the questions here, input your answers, and e-mail them as an attachment with the subject line "habitual poet"; or if you would like us to post your news or event notice please include the information in an e-mail with the subject line "contributor news."

email to: editor (at) poemeleon (dot) org

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2014 Pushcart Prize Nominees

Here are Poemeleon's nominees for the 2014 Pushcart Prize Anthology:

Congratulations! Wish we could nominate all of you!


Submissions now open for The Disobedient Issue

We are now accepting submissions for our next issue, Volume VII, The Disobedient Issue. We are leaving the interpretation of the concept of disobedience open, but know that this issue was inspired by reading this essay by Alice Notley, and by necessary acts of civil disobedience everywhere. Please send only your best work, any length, any style.

Deadline for this issue: January 31, 2015

Expect a response within 1 - 3 months after close of submissions. If you have not heard from us after this time period please feel free to inquire.

(Editor's note: We seem to be running longer and longer on response times; please don't take this as a sign that we don't like your work - take it as a sign that the editor is overworked. This journal is a labor of love, and as such, sometimes has to make way for other things. Your patience and understanding is appreciated.)

The details:

- Please submit 1 to 5 poems, 1 craft essay,  and/or 1 book review, using the forms below.

- Please include a brief third-person bio in your cover letter.

- Simultaneous submissions are fine as long as we are notified promptly when work is accepted elsewhere, but please no multiple submissions. The only exceptions to this rule is if you are submitting both poems and an essay, or both an essay and a book review, or both poems and a book review.

- Previously published is also fine, as long as it was in print, not online, and as long as you as the author retain all copyright. Because we strive to be the first online publisher of your work, if it has appeared anywhere that is publicly accessible on the web (including on your blog) then it is considered previously published. Please feel free to contact us and we will provide clarification on a case-by-case basis.

- We acquire one-time, non-exclusive rights to publish your work, at which time all rights revert back to you as the author. If we should ever decide to create a print anthology and would like to include your work, we will contact you.

- If accepted for inclusion you may be asked to provide a brief contributor's statement exploring your view of disobedience in literature . (See past issues for examples of what we mean.)

- Please note that we are a non-paying market.

- No snail mail submissions. All submissions must come through our online submissions manager.


Upload your submission:

Submit to Poemeleon: A Journal of Poetry



Status of the Unreal Issue

Thanks to all of you for being so patient. It's "unreal" how long it's taken for me to get back to everyone, but all notifications have been sent and production of the issue is underway. The issue should be live within a week at most. Will send out another notice when it's up, but the cover is now live with a gorgeous image from artist Julie Heffernan. Check out her website while you're waiting, and keep checking this space for more news.



Habitual Poet: Ellen Kombiyil, What I Do On My Summer Vacation, Postcard from Bangalore

This post is part of a series exploring where we are writing from this summer. Click to learn more.


Dear Cati,

I'm responding to your call for the blog and send the following
postcard from Bangalore. I'm looking forward to seeing what others
write and, of course, to the upcoming issue!

All the best,
Ellen Kombiyil

Postcard from Bangalore

It's a summer of mosquitos, newly hatched.
They settle on the hibiscus, the spider plants,
the freshly laundered sheets & Catholic school pants
wicking in the sun. I wondered where all the birds
were coming from: the shrubs, twitching, the tiny
seismic avalanches of twigs as birds hop, feasting,
branch to branch. Even the woodpecker that for days
I heard but never saw, appeared in my yard,
tall & sleek with feet like pen strokes. I should be writing
this down, how the lawn erupts in upward flight
when I step out: mosquitos disperse like
a rising inflection and bulbuls flit
inside dense bougainvillea. It crisscrosses
like a basket, like a cage, like the ribs of a whale.




Ellen Kombiyil, born and raised in Syracuse, New York, and a graduate of the University of Chicago, Ellen Kombiyil’s poetry has recently appeared in 2river, Beloit Poetry Journal, Juked, and MiPOesias, among others. She currently lives in India with her husband and two children.


Habitual Poet: Margo Roby, What I Do On My Summer Vacation, My Steno Notebook Contents

This post is part of a series exploring where we are writing from this summer. Click to learn more.


Hi Cati,

Thank you for this. Although, I did discover how creatively and technologically challenged I am, when I could neither make an ecard work, nor create my first ever power point [which looks like it might be fun].

My Summer Steno Notebook Contents

We're on the road, I-85, Atlanta to New Orleans
and beignets and exotic drinks and oysters, and more oysters.
I research dog days, buzzards, and wild turkeys, on the I-pad,
for poems I am working on for upcoming prompts.

Next Starbucks, Mobile.

In New Orleans strolling the French Quarter...
Plaque in store:
Drove my Chevy
to the levee
but the levee
was gone.
I make notes for a then and now poem. I remember then.

We're on I-10 heading for San Antonio. I plot the next
Starbucks, Lafayette, or Beaumont? I take notes on what I see
as we drive. The water in the bayous is lower this year.

San Antonio. We stop here, stay a while, visit family,
babysit our new grand-daughter. I go through my notes,
work on a couple of poems. Mostly, I rehearse reading poems
and what I am going to say about my mentor, Jack Penha,
at Origami Poetry Project's 3rd anniversary celebration
the 24th of June. I try not to think about audiences as I rough out
'what I wrote on my vacation,' for Poemeleon's Blog.

July 2nd, I head for Walnut Creek, California, and my
mother, a month and a place where I can unformat myself.
I write poems for The Sunday Whirl, as I do every week.
It's good practice, a muscle stretcher.

I consider my poetry, go through my notebook –
it settles me while my brain takes stock.
I decide which poems to develop,
which need revision,
where I will submit what,
and dream about a chapbook.

Regards and a lovely summer to you and everyone who works on Poemeleon -- margo roby

ketchup from a quarter pounder with cheese


Margo Roby spent the first twenty years of her life in Hong Kong, where her parents met and married and stayed. She spent the second twenty years of her life following her army husband around the world with their two children. The second twenty overlapped with the third by two years. Her husband’s last posting was Jakarta, Indonesia and when he retired he joined her teaching at the international school. She lived there twenty years. Now she is living in Atlanta. Her husband still teaches at the international school and she retired from teaching, so she can now concentrate her energy her poetry. Her words can be found here: http://margoroby.wordpress.com