August Poetry Postcard Festival Prep
For the past few years I've taken part in the annual August Poetry Postcard Festival. At the end of July, participants are placed in groups and a list of names and addresses is sent to each person for their group. Participants begin with the name after theirs' on the list and proceed through August, sending out 31 poetry postcards in total. The festival is hosted by Paul Nelson who has a kind of Zen-philosophy to composing a poetry postcard, believing the poem should be composed directly onto the card. My approach has been more along the lines of 'let's see how many new viable poems I can write in August'. To that end, I usually write a shortish poem every day into a document, print it and then literally cut and paste onto the card. I respect and appreciate Paul's approach and may come closer to achieving it this year. I usually collect postcards toward the fest, especially cards that will spark ekphrastic poems. A few of these do appear in my published collections. But, since I also have a crafty side, this year I decided to make my own cards, incorporating erasure on some of them. So far, I've made some inked monotypes and collaged cards. The ones I'm most excited about are the tarot-themed cards. I'd like to make the entire major arcana. I'm cutting the card titles from an old Ryder-Waite deck I have. Tarot cards are really fun and satisfying to make and the constraints of having to make The Moon or The High Priestess, impose the perfect amount of form on the creative chaos. I'll post again once the fest is underway and I usually write a wrap-up post afterward. Check out this article by Paul Nelson about the fest and the creative joys of the poetry postcards on Rattle.