Friday, December 4, 2009

Season of THE FLEA

You've got to pick up every stitch,
The rabbit’s running in the ditch,
Beatniks are out to make it rich,
Oh no! Must be the Season of the Witch...

Thomas Zimmerman, Marly Youmans, Gail White, Timothy Murphy, Rick Mullin, David W. Landrum, Rose Kelleher, Clive James, Jan Iwaszkiewicz, Midge Goldberg, Richard Epstein, Ann Drysdale, Kevin Cutrer, Norman Ball, Gene Auprey, Mark Allinson, Mary Alexandra Agner.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Caratacus Rides Again!

My Domus Carataci personal blog on JournalSpace with years of posts was destroyed when JournalSpace's server crashed in 2007. Since then I haven't run a personal blog, channeling most of my energies into Shit Creek Review, The Chimaera and THE FLEA and their respective blogs. But some material fits better onto a personal blog than onto the more formal context of a literary magazine's blog; with that in mind I have revived Domus Carataci, now on Blogspot, and renamed it I, Caratacus. I will update it from time to time, whenever Bloggina, the Muse of Bloggers, inspires me.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Dzanc Best of Web and Pushcart Nominations

SCR/The Chimaera/The Flea

2009 Nominations for the Pushcart — Best of the Small Presses Anthology and the Dzanc Books Best of the Web Series.



'Prayer for a Horseman' by Timothy Murphy

'After the Funeral' by Janice D. Soderling

'After Van Gogh’s CafĂ© Terrace at Night' by Sam Byfield

'Kung Fu Monkeys Hijack Armored Car' by Dennis Loney

'Life' by Bill Greenwell

'Monstrance or Reliquary' by Ann Drysdale

The Chimaera

'The Red Mud of Lydney' by Ann Drysdale

'An Understudy for Desire' by Alan Gould

'Lighthouse, with Poet Brandishing His Hat' by Rhina P. Espaillat

'Talcott Mountain' by Martin Elster

'The Annexe' by Stephen Edgar

'I Am Going Drown' by Charles Musser

The Flea

'Two Theories' by Rhina Espaillat

'Against Beauty' by Alfred Nichol

'High Bank' by Bill Greenwell

'Body of Evidence' by Catherine Chandler

'Iconography' by Maryann Corbett

'Said Yeats’s Bones to Hardy’s Heart' by Ann Drysdale

Dzanc Books Best of Web


'After the Funeral' by Janice D. Soderling

'Prayer for a Horseman' by Timothy Murphy

'Death Watch' by Michael Cantor

The Chimaera

'Sonnet 23 from The Dark Lady' by Jennifer Reeser

'Distraction' by Rick Mullin

'Seeing People' by Geoff Page

The Flea

'Vertigo' by Stephen Edgar

'Clock of the Moon and Stars' by Marly Youmans

'Hydrangeas' by Mark Allinson

Monday, October 12, 2009

IMPORTANT: Submissions Sept - October

My computer and much of its back-up went to God on the morning of 4th October due to an unfortunate combination of events involving two poodles, a lunatic cat, some tequila and a go-go dancer. Consequently if you submitted work by DIRECT EMAIL to The Chimaera between September 7 and October 4 you need to resubmit it. 

If you submitted work by the online form, as most did, then your work is safe and you should not resubmit. Read the announcement here:

Needless to say I am mortified by this development, and apologise to all concerned.

Friday, October 2, 2009

The Fleas of the Apocalypse

THE THIRD FLEA of the Apocalypse is loose!

Mark Allinson, Mary Alexandra Agner, Maryann Corbett, Ann Drysdale, Richard Epstein, Midge Goldberg, Bill Greenwell, R. Nemo Hill, Janet Kenny, Janice D. Soderling, J.J. Steinfeld, Leo Yankevich, Marly Youmans, & Thomas Zimmerman

Flea! Flea!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Terry Stanton needs help

My old friend Terry Stanton, who used to drink at The Royal George, is in dire straits. Nine months ago he fell and hit his head, and has been in intensive care ever since, having lost many of his faculties. There will be a benefit for him at Palm Beach R.S.L. on Sunday 30th August, 1-4 pm, with an auction of art by (amongst others) Martin Sharp, Reg Mombassa, Bruce Goold and Mick Glasheen. Phone (02) 9974 5566.

Click on the images below to make them bigger and easier to read.

More on Terry here:

I'll post more info when available.

The Terrence Fund

St. George Bank Avalon NSW

B.S.B. 112.879 Account Number 456.125.143

For further info please contact

Patrick Dougherty

Ph. (02) 9974 4255

Fran Holloway

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Chimaeras, Dark Ladies and the GOP

An excerpt from one of Jennifer Reeser's 'Dark Lady' sonnets recently published in The Chimaera has been picked up by a website called 'GOP12'. It's an online blog which tracks American Presidential hopefuls for 2012 from the Republican party — and has been quoted in ABC Business News, and at, among other places:

From one of the best contemporary poets, Jennifer Reeser, an excerpt from the assumed perspective of the obscure woman of William Shakespeare's later poems.

If I were both thy mistress and thy muse,
From all conceivable reactions, chief
Among my choices — if I had to choose —
Would be the innocence of disbelief.

More here.

Jee Leong Koh on the Joe Milford Poetry Show

From Jee Leong Koh:

"I was interviewed recently on the Joe Milford Poetry Show: one-and-a-half hour unedited reading and conversation about my new book of poems Equal to the Earth. We talked about my Singaporean background, art and autobiography, the mythic sea, use of meter and form, sense of humor (!), the objective correlative, children's playfulness, Chinese homosexuals, and love. I hope you enjoy some of it."

Best, Jee

From the show website:

The Joe Milford Poetry Show archives readings and interviews from acclaimed and established poets as well as up-and-coming poets from America and Canada. The Joe Milford Poetry Show prides itself on its candid and organic nature infused with a lively discussion of poetics, genre, the writing process, and myriad theories and movements of poetry. Join us once a week for regularly scheduled shows on Saturdays at 5pm Eastern Time, and watch for special edition shows by announcement. Add The Joe Milford Poetry Show to your MySpace Friends by going to the links page.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Ann Drysdale and The Well-Wrought Chimaera

Ann Drysdale is the star of The Chimaera #6, now online. There is poetry by Ann, essays, reviews and reflections on her by various hands (including the inimitable John Whitworth), and an interview.

The Chimaera also boasts a feature on intricate Well-Wrought Form, edited by Peter Bloxsom, Stephen Edgar and myself. Here you will find work by Timothy Murphy, Rhina Espaillat, Clive James, Alan Gould, Claire Askew, and many more. The General section is well-stocked, too, with poetry by Australian poet Geoff Page, Maryann Corbett, and some more of Jennifer Reeser's delicious Sonnets from the Dark Lady. Reviews by Rose Kelleher, Nigel Holt and Maggie Butt. 

Submissions for Issue 7 will be accepted from September 1st to November 30th. The themed section will be on Voyages and Quests. We are also looking for poetry and prose outside that theme, as well as critical work on the Australian poet and fiction writer Alan Gould.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

The Chimaera looms

Issue #6 of The Chimaera is gestating and should hatch by the end of July, possibly early August.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

The Flea Byteth a Second Time

The Second Flea has hatch'd, and, pamper'd, swells — with verse by Peter Bloxsom, Catherine Chandler, David Davis, Ann Drysdale, Rhina P. Espaillat, Bill Greenwell, Clive James, Jalina Mhyana, Timothy Murphy, Alfred Nicol, Marly Youmans and Thomas Zimmerman. Go, read, be bytten!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Recent news from our published authors

A new interview with Joseph S. Salemi, along with some of his published work, appears at the following website address:

Salemi writes a monthly column for The Pennsylvania Review , and his comic poem ‘Rear-Meat Rhoda’ is up at The Formalist Portal.

Bench Press: Poetry that exerts pressure at every point, and so achieves a momentary rest.

Bench Press, an independent publisher of poetry, will be launched on July 4, 2009. On that day its website will go ‘live’ and unveil its logo. 

The press is pleased to announce its first title: Jee Leong Koh’s Equal to the Earth. Of Koh’s book, Vijay Seshadri writes: ‘Jee Leong Koh is a vigorous, physical poet very much captured by the expressive power of rhythm, rhetoric, and the lexicon. He is also, paradoxically, a poet in pursuit of the most elusive and delicate of human emotions. The contradiction is wonderful and compelling, and so are his poems.’

You can read a poem from the book on the press website, and purchase a copy of the book.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Margaret Menamin, Poet

We are all saddened to hear of Margaret Menamin's death. She was a poet's poet and beloved by many, not only for her fine work but her gracious and thoughtful critique. This poem of hers from The Chimaera III speaks beautifully about acceptance, remembrance and treasured relationships …how those who loved her will come to remember her season on season, summer after spring.

Baucis and Philemon

I believe I know how it will be
with you and me:
Coming silent one day through the wood
where last you stood,
I will stop, remembering, and see
a newsprung tree.

It will be as if it had been planned:
Where then you stand
I will stop, remembering, and see
a wild young tree
tall and straight among the others, and
put forth my hand.

As I touch your greenness, some strange thing
will leap and sing
within the hardening fibers of my hand.
So we will stand,
season on season, summer after spring,

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Book Launch for Ray Pospisil's The Bell

Ray Pospisil, a Brooklyn based poet and journalist, was born in Bogota, Colombia, and early in his life moved with his parents to Union, New Jersey. He spent most of his life in New York City. Ray was a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Rutgers University. He worked as an energy and environment journalist working for Fairchild Publications sand then McGraw-Hill and later became a freelance journalist working mostly for McGraw-Hill publications. Ray had a passion for poetry and often read in the East Village and in Manhattan. His work has been published by Lyric, Iambs & Trochees, The Newport Review, Rogue Scholars and others. In 2006, his chapbook of poems, Some Time Before the Bell, was published by Modern Metrics.

Ray died tragically on January 28, 2008, aged 54. The Bell is a book of remarkable precision, feeling, and sense of beauty among the squalor of urban life in the early twenty-first century. A mixture of anger, humor, compassion, and a deep, hard-earned love for life in spite of its many disappointments make this a painful yet transcendently beautiful collection.

Wednesday, 17 June 2009
Nightingale Lounge
213 Second Ave (Corner of 13th Street)
Manhattan, New York

Featured readers:

Quincy Lehr
R. Nemo Hill, Jane Ormerod, Oran Ryan,
Thomas Fucaloro, Michelle Slater, Su Polo,
David Elsasser, Terese Coe, and Wendy Sloan.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

If You Love English Poetry...

SCR's Poetry Editor, Angela France, has a book out! It's called  Occupation, and it's a ripper! Occupation is full of the sort of poetry that  The Chimaera loves: articulate, honest, incisive, imaginative, true.

And English: if you love English poetry—not just poetry in English, but English poetry — you will love this book. And if you're going to buy a book of poems to read and then come back to, this is the one.

Occupation is available for pre-publication order from Ragged Raven Press, and will be launched with a reading at Ledbury Poetry Festival on July 10th.

Ragged Raven Press is here:

Angela France’s robust poems move through a range of themes, but the passage of time and the struggle against it, in physical effort, in mind and in dream, recur. There is also a very welcome intellectual clarity that produces a beauty of its own, in short poems, like Unpoem and Beeing, but also in more gritty works of realism like Urban. The poems are always vigorous and rhythmically controlled. Occupation establishes a clear, firm, valuable voice in contemporary poetry.

—George Szirtes

Here's a poem  from Occupation to whet your appetite:


The scrubbed block had scars and nicks
from the graded blades hanging on the rack;
I could see blood lingering
in deep cuts. His slabbed hands
were always wet and red, fingers
plump as the sausages forced
from the maw of his machine.

He smiled at customers as he slapped steak
on white paper, chatted as his cleaver
slammed through flesh and joint.
He knew all the wives by name,
knew who would want the cheap cuts,
the marrow bones for soup. He’d wink
an extra slice of ham into the wrapper
for Mrs Green and tease newlyweds
about what they’d give their man for supper.

I’d keep my eyes down, only offer
words from the shopping list,
scurry away with ideas about his steel door
and what it hid, sure of his kinship
to the plaster pig in the window
with a striped apron and a perverse smile
as its varnished trotter pointed
to rows of glistening chops.

I coloured him red,
heard draining arteries in his voice,
the thud of cleavers in his laugh.
I watched him checking a delivery, afraid
of what might burst from the straining seams.
He caught me looking
at the pigs hanging in the lorry,
pink feet pointing in a row.
Look like ballet dancers, don’t they?

Sunday, May 10, 2009

The Flea Reviewed

Christine Klocek-Lim reviews The Flea here:

" ...At least I know that there is still poetry in the world that speaks to the mind and heart without navigating through the navel first and miring us all in the lint so often found therein."

Friday, May 8, 2009

They Flea from Me that Sometime Did Me Seek

The Flea is definitely out there! Poems by John Whitworth, Jennifer Reeser, Geoff Page, Tim Murphy, Rose Kelleher, Tim Hawkins, Alan Gould, Anna Evans, Rhina P. Espaillat, Stephen Edgar, Ann Drysdale, Temple Cone, Catherine Chandler & Alison Brackenbury.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

THE FLEA cometh

Mr. Paul Stevens, ever stedfaste in the conviction that he hath indeed in Former Times befported and comported himfelf during a long & difreputable Paft Life as a Fellowe and Boone-Companion of Jack Donne Esq.,Ben Jonfon, Sir John Suckling, Richard Lovelace and his partickular Frende and Crony Mr. Andrew Marvell of Hull & Nun Appleton Houfe, wishes to presage the imminent Publickation of an Exhibition or Congeries of Poemes, Sonets,Squibs & Epigrammes,endited & compofed of variovs Illvftrious Avthors & diuers Handes, whych he hath whimfically deuysed under the Favoure of the Souereygne Muse in a Broadsheet to be called THE FLEA, after the excellent Conceite of his Frende Mr. Donne; and will aduyfe furthermore any new Newes as seems appofyte and timely.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

I love this poem!

It's called 'Martin' and its on Peterloo Poets here:

'Martin' comes from Keith Chandler's new book The English Civil War Part 2 published by Peterloo and available for purchase on the Peterloo site.

Monday, March 30, 2009

SCR/Chimaera News March/April 2009

Shit Creek Review Editor Angela France has been shortlisted for the Irish Strokestown Poetry Competition which has very healthy cash prizes and stacks of prestige. Respect, Angela! Angela's forthcoming book, Occupation, will be launched at Ledbury Poetry Festival in July.

Susan McLean, whose work appeared in The Chimaera of May 2008, has an essay on translating Martial's epigrams in Amphora, the newsletter of the American Philological Association, now available for free in PDF at the address below:

The essay is on pages 4-5 and includes a few sample translations.

Sally Cook who has appeared several times in TC and SCR, has a poem, 'Some of the Parts' in the current issue of The New Formalist, another poem 'The World Arises' in Contemporary Sonnet Number 4 and an essay 'A Very Contemporary Artist Speaks' in the most recent issue of The Formalist Portal.

Work by Joseph S. Salemi appears in a new anthology recently published by published by The Oxford University Press, titled A Mind Apart. The book, clustering about themes of melancholia, madness, and addiction, has as its editor one Dr. Mark S. Bauer, a professor of psychiatry at Harvard

Salemi’s 'Sicilian Beachhead' keeps good company with poets from the fourteenth century up to the moment such as Cowper, Clare, Dowson, Herbert, Hardy, Kees, Larkin, Millay, Plath, Roethke, and others.

Sonnets galore! Recent new editons have appeared of online sonnet magazines 14by14 and Contemporary Sonnet, two magazines which serve the sonnet form excellently. Both feature work by many authors who have appeared in SCR and The Chimaera.

That excellent poetry forum The Gazebo has had major server troubles which are now being repaired, but the repairs will take some time. Meanwhile a Gazebo in Exile forum has been set up at The Gazebo is a a very good place to have your poetry critiqued — in return of course for offering your own critique of the work of others there. It also offers discussion about submission of work for publication in various venues. And let us not forget that it was a riotous thread at Gazebo that gave birth to the legendary Shit Creek Review. Hmmm...

Friday, March 13, 2009

Shit Creek Review and the Nightmare of History

Eternal recurrence, Whiggish progress towards Liberty and Enlightenment, dustbin, or just plain old wie es eigentlich gewesen -- the Februaryish Shit Creek Review's 'History and Memory' issue is now online. There are a few poets there you'll recognise, some you might not have met before, and as many bent views of History as the most rabid Post Structuralist could desire, with as goodly a dash of memory as would satisfy the impossible yearnings of the most nostalgic Traditionalist.

Poetry and art by David Gwilym Anthony, Peter Austin, Sam Byfield, Michael Cantor, Mary Cresswell, Jan Iwaszkiewicz, Kathryn Jacobs, Dennis Loney, Donal Mahoney, Matt Merritt, Alistair Noon, Christine Potter, Janice D. Soderling, Peter Swanson, John Whitworth, Mark Bulwinkle, C. Albert, Don Zirilli, Patricia Wallace Jones, Ed Clarke and R.K. Sohm. Edited by Nigel Holt, Angela France, Pat Jones, Don Zirilli and Your Humble Obedient Servant.

Want to plunge further into the Nightmare of History? Just click >>>>HERE<<<< and say a quick Hail Mary.

Listen up. The Subs Gate is now open for SCR issue #10, due to come out in approximately July, circa 2009. The cheery theme for that issue is 'Talking to the Dead'. Better check out the Submissions page (accessible from the SCR front cover). So get out there and start talking to the Dead. Then write the poems and bung them off them to me c/o Heart of Darkness, Shit Creek, in a plain packet ballasted with Kruger Rands. Subs close May 31st. Or (perhaps more reliable) use the email address and online submissions form on the Submissions page.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Slouching complete!

We tried to hold it back but it escaped a few days ago! The fifth Chimaera is officially at large. You should find a spoor of it at

A swift Shift+Refresh or cache clearance might be needed there, but you're certain to find the actual beast itself at

It's bearing up well under the weight of the Light Verse feature (guest-edited by John Whitworth) and the glare of the Spotlight, which is aimed at Australian "formalist" Stephen Edgar — intro. by Clive James, a long interview, lots of poems, and contributions from other prominent persons. In the general section, more poems, two reviews (or is it five?) by Quincy Lehr, an unusual piece of fiction by Michael Sheehan, a review by David Holper of Rose Kelleher's book, and Tim Murphy's interview with Leslie Monsour. Have at it!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

The Beast Sloucheth Ever More Near

Not long now, Monster-Watchers. Your valiant and tireless editors, Sir Peter de Bloxsom and St Paul of the Croissant, fending off the howling gargoyles, gibbering apes and rampant wyverns of Real Life, have been toiling around the sundial, cobbling tag and code, cutting, pasting, tweaking, linking, correcting: labouring to bring the fabulous beast to birth. The Light Chimaera is almost here. Just one or two more sleeps. Or so.

To pass the time meanwhile you will do no better than to swing over to Autumn Sky Poetry and have a good old read. Antonia Clark's 'Lunatic Blues' will knock your socks off. You probably won't even remember The Chimaera after you've read it.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

The Chimaera Slouches Closer

The Fifth Chimaera, its hour almost come round at last, is slouching towards Bethlehem, and should be born fairly soon. Some of the editors have been having insistent reality-engagement issues involving end-of-days scenarios: rivers running with blood, women wailing for their demon lovers, lions prowling at midnight on the High Street, clouds opening to reveal God, new-born puppies with heads like Tony Blair and so forth. We expect these issues to be resolved fairly soon, and The Fifth Chimaera lightly to trip fourth forth when the moon is in the seventh house.