The above is an image recently sent to me by a talented and genuine soul of the Northwest. He holds in his friendly hand an accomplishment of mine from 2006, Haiku Composed on an English Tour. It is the only self-published volume of poetry which I have arranged, printed and hand-sewed together. As a little bit of millennial ephemera, the chapbook exemplifies the DIY publishing ethos that seeped into my young blood in my first few years out of high school.
At the time I met my friend Mark, I was living in the liberal atmosphere of Portland, Oregon and attending an arts school. Though poetry had been my primary creative medium since I was 13, I intended to study photography and soon after printmaking at the Pacific Northwest College of Art. In the above chapbook, Mark’s copy being only one of a proposed 50 copies, drawings and clippings from maps I used while on a solo bicycle tour through England & Wales accompany the haiku which I wrote at the end of my days’ journeys. I had left PNCA and was embarking on a new chapter of my life altogether, and Haiku was the symbolic result of this period.
I am thankful to Mark for sending me this photo, quite unexpectedly, as he was searching through an old portfolio at home. Discoveries like these can become in a moment the unexpected blessing and reminder to the giver of such cherished and beholden ephemera. That friends keep and hold on to the little pieces of creativity that unknowingly become a benchmark for their personal history is affirmation enough that efforts are worth their short suffering and the support of friends is invaluable help to complete their work.
Almost 3 weeks ago, a volume of love stories featured on the year-long, collaborative Tumblr project One Page Love Story was released into the world for purchase on Kindle or in paperback. Affirming the continued existence of physical books, this volume is printed on nice, warm colored stock and has a matte colored cover, as you can see above in one of its new homes for the feast of public eyes, Strand Books! However, this Saturday March 7th and Sunday the 8th are Kindle free days in which you can read and revel in the work that’s been brought together.
The collection of writers involved in this project were prompted by author Rich Walls to participate in the crafting of short fictional love stories of their own composition, submitting one-a-day over a period of 10 days. One Page Love Story: Share the Love is the culmination of these multiple efforts. A portion of the proceeds go to First Book, a charity which “is determined to see that all children, regardless of their economic conditions, can achieve more in school and in life through access to an ongoing supply of new books,” and so I encourage Kindle readers to consider purchasing a paperback copy for this sake for themselves or as a gift.
I am quite proud to be amongst a hearty crew of working authors who have chosen to support such a worthy cause and create work in this surprisingly tough constraint & format. Each one manages to illuminate a wavelength in the spectrum of love’s expression within human life. Thank you to Rich for making this all possible and to the many readers, writers and lovers in this world, striving for those peak experiences of consciousness and communion.