Wednesday, January 23, 2013


My poem "Traveling Alone . . ." which was first published in the Bryant Literary Review is now posted on Ralph Murre's  RE/VERSE. 

Please click on link to read:

I discovered this journal in December and have been enjoying Murre's selection of reprinted poems matched with his exceptional art or others' artwork.  I was thrilled to be included and hope some of you will consider sending your previously published poems to be showcased again.  This is especially vital for poems only available in print. I think it's a double showcase, for the poem and the journal/review which first published the work.

Read the submission guidelines carefully before submitting.


Wednesday, January 16, 2013

New York, New York!

Photo collage by Lou Iuppa, 2013

Can you feel the energy of the city. . . Background lyrics of Alicia Keyes ( I Heart Her) "New York,"
a theme song if you're living there . . . and here what is the theme song for upstate NY . . .

We had a thunderstorm over the weekend.  Authentic thunder and lightning rolling in, over the lake, for
several hours.  The downpour aided in melting the drifts of snow.  Now creeks swell, cornfields have furrows of brackish water, gray skies are in a mad rush , full of rumpus . . .There's an adage that proclaims a thunderstorm in January  means the end of winter.  Last year, at this time of the first thaw, we had a thunderstorm, and after that storm, winter was nonexistent. Will it happen two years in a row?

The semester has begun and I have been in the thick of planning events for my program and assisting other programs and departments with their events too.  We're going to have a rockin' semester at St. John Fisher.
I'm so excited about it.

In the mail, seed catalogs are arriving in pairs.  I get dreamy looking at all the veggies, imagining what our upcoming garden will look like. We have been enjoying the tomato sauce I put by.  Opening the jars and
smelling the fresh tomatoes and basil and garlic, all at once, transports us back to August. O so good!

I have been diligent, writing a poem a day, then moving on to prose work.  The early office seems to be my best practice . . .  I feel energized and ready to take on the other work I'm doing. 

I have received 13 acceptances (poems, flash fiction, essays) since December 17th, 2012.  Some were received after 100 days, some in a fortnight, and those rare responses in a few hours. I'm so grateful to the editors at Heron Tree, The Prose Poem Project,  The Apeiron Review, The Eunoia Review, Germ, Brevity Poetry Review, Blueline, Curio, About Place Journal,The Great Lake Book Project, The Centrifugal Eye Anthology, Yes, Poetry, who have given my work ascent.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Next Steps . . .

Warner's Steps
Photo: K. Iuppa

In San Francisco, it rarely snows. The seasons change in subtle ways.  It can be cold in San Francisco, which always throws me, because the landscape has palm trees.

I love this photograph. It captures how I'm feeling. What are the next steps for this new  year to be unlike any other?

I don't want to have "menu" conversations anymore.  A "menu" conversation is a top ten list of things to talk about, which may or may not be things YOU want to talk about. I'm tired of the repeat "menu." Time to change the menu.  I think I'm starting to realize (at this late date) that the repeat conversation menu works well  if the conversationalist's intention is to wear people down with the grind of complaints, but the conversationalist has no intention to work on those complaints.  If the insults were fixed, then there would be nothing to complain about.  Resolution 1: Make it New. 

 No sympathy.  Time to trim dead wood. Winter is a good time to do this.  Getting rid of the branches that have burgeoned out of control or  grown stringy, or blighted in the past year.  I'm using a tree metaphor here, but apply it to everything-- from clutter to toxic people.  Get rid of it/them.  Allow the winter's dormancy
to heal  head, heart, spirit. Emerge from the solitude with a new way of seeing-- a sense of wonder.

Resolution 2: Make it So.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Old Thoughts for New

It's remarkable how slowly the week between Christmas and New Year's goes by.  Then, on the mark of Twelve, time resumes its clipped pace and here we are at the weekend of the first week of the new year.

I'm beginning this year with a double dose of energy. The quiet introspective holiday restored me in so many ways.  I'm grateful to my family for giving me this down time-- a true gift.
In the past week, I have been writing a lot, which always makes me feel "with it," because "without it" can make me very cranky and I feel like have gremlins aching to get into some mischief. Better to be occupied with creative work than entertaining the imp of the perverse.

Thus far, I have written 5 new poems and have had 2 acceptances for the New Year, which were sent in the middle of the night on New Year's Day and received an hour later.  Poems that went halfway around the world to the middle of their day and back to the beginning of mine. Amazing, right? 

Yesterday (1/4/2013), in the high winds, I ventured out to start my first residency of the year and drop off a batch of student plays for the 2 Pages/2 Voices competition at Writers & Books.
Here's the call for submissions:

Writers & Books and Geva Theatre Center Seek Submissions for 2 Pages/2 Voices

Each year, in January, Writers & Books and Geva Theatre Center collaborate to present 2 Pages/2 Voices, an evening of short short plays written by area writers and read by area actors.
Each play must be no more than two pages in length and contain no more than two characters. The only other stipulation for this year's submissions is that at some point in the the play the word "border" must be included.
The dates for this year's event are:
Deadline for submissions: Tuesday, January 8, 2013 (Submissions can be hand-delivered or mailed to Writers & Books, 740 University Avenue, Rochester, NY 14607.
Performance of plays: Tuesday, January 22, 2013 at the Writers & Books Performance Space.

This competition is such fun.  I love going to the reading of the winning work.  Advice: if you go to the reading, get there early because the room fills up FAST.

 Next up at Writers & Books is the first Genesee Reading Series of the Year.  This reading
will feature two writers, Anne Panning and James Whorton who read at St. John Fisher  College in the Fall.  If you missed their readings in the Fall, you may want to make a point of
going to  this reading. Here are the details:

Genesee Reading Series
Tues., Jan. 8
$3 W&B members / $6 general public, 7:30 p.m., at W&B.
Hosted by Wanda Schubmehl

For the first Genesee Reading Series of 2013, we import two writers of fiction, essay, and memoir from SUNY Brockport, Anne Panning and James Whorton.

Anne Panning’s novel, Butter, was published in October 2012 by Switchgrass Books. Her short story collection, Super America, won the 2006 Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction and was selected as a New York Times Editor's Choice. She has also published a book of short stories, The Price of Eggs, as well as short fiction and nonfiction in places such as Beloit Fiction Journal, Bellingham Review, Prairie Schooner, New Letters, The Florida Review, Passages North, Black Warrior Review, The Greensboro Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, Kalliope, Quarterly West, The Kenyon Review, The Laurel Review, Five Points, The Hawaii Review, Cimarron Review, West Branch and Brevity. Four of her essays have received notable citations in The Best American Essays series. She is currently at work on a memoir, Dragonfly Notes: A Memoir of Motherhood and Loss. She lives in upstate New York with her husband and two children, and teaches creative writing at SUNY Brockport.

James Whorton is a former Mississippian and former Tennessean who now is happy to live in Rochester with his wife (Kate Whorton, who runs the Genesee Pottery on Monroe Ave) and two daughters. He's published three novels--Angela Sloan, Frankland, and  Approximately Heaven. His short stories and nonfiction have appeared in Oxford American, Mississippi Review, Sewanee Review, American Book Review, and The Washington Post. He is an associate editor at, and is Associate Professor and Associate Chair of the English Department at SUNY Brockport.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Christmas in San Francisco in the 70s. My Parents and the SF grandchildren.

Cozy, don't you think?  We all loved being with them (my parents). Their bed, no matter where they were, was a meeting place for everyone.  Grandchildren vied for the spot next to my Mom.  My Dad had given my Mom a coffee service for an anniversary, and from the day he gave her the service, she received breakfast in bed, even if he wasn't there to make the breakfast because he was at the hospital bringing yet another perfect someone into the world, we made the breakfast and carried it upstairs.  So, despite crumbs , it was luxurious . . .

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Looking Back, Looking Forward

Yesterday, despite blue skies, was a day turned inward.  On December 27th, one of my dear friends from St. John Fisher passed away. Yesterday, I went to her celebratory mass, which was so poignant and rich in the words spoken by her children and grandson.  Father Jim Callan has a wonderful way of lifting 
the spirits of so many who were/are truly grieving our loss. Truthfully, I don't know how I'm going to handle her absence. I'm so sad.  I feel like I've fallen down a well. I've gone to sleep, hoping to have one last conversation with her.  She's come to me in dreams, where we're sitting on some jutting rocks, which looks like the coast of Oregon or Japan, I really don't know but we're having a picnic, sharing cheese sandwiches and watching the sky change, and
she points to something in the distance, but I can't see it.  It's so vague.  The shape moves in the gait of a horse galloping, galloping with all of its muscles engaged and hooves pounding the surface between sky and water and suddenly it rains . . . 

Yesterday was the last day of December.  I overheard someone say, see you next year or next month, whichever you prefer.


This is the New Year.  Woke up at 3 a.m.  There were three deer eating fallen apples in our orchard.  I watched their grazing silhouettes.  The snow angel Brigid  made in the middle of the yard seemed to be a perfect impression, glowing in the blue light.  I decided to stay up and write. 


I imagine this year will be different.  As it always is.  Often I wish I had transparency in the whowhatwherewhywhen of my living.  But transparency doesn't make poetry.  I'm always caught between two worlds.


What to do today?  Everything you do today, you will do for the whole year.
Choose wisely.