New poems

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Allotment

Enough! Come out of those yellow eyes of fear!
The greedy day grabs you and me by the hands.
Have you been wronged, with your rosary of tears?
Look, our dreams hit the wall in equal shares.

Here’s a tree and rain. How can we divide them?
On my way home today, I’ve got soaking wet.
Do you think I could trade the rain for a tree,
when it’s pouring outside and the trees stand bare?

Don’t fall asleep so quickly—the night is young.
Twigs of sadness clank at my window and yours.
The morning divides the world into two halves…
a thread of air binds us; we need nothing more.

more new poems


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“Concise Delight”

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concise-delightHow delightful! The Editor of Concise Delight, Mr. Denis M. Garrison, has made the Summer 2009 issue available online. The original print-issue is a beautifully edited collection of very short poetry. There are plenty of pearls to fish for in this publication!

For me the issue has a very special significance, as one of my earliest poetry publications in English. Several of the poems included in Concise Delight (pp. 88-9) were in fact my first, shy attempts of writing in the new language. I sketched those poems on the margins of the books I was reading back then—hence their brevity!

I want to use this opportunity to express my deep gratitude to Mr. Denis M. Garrison, for including my work in this charming publication. Thank you so much!

Having my poems accepted in Concise Delight in 2009 gave me the courage to pursue writing poetry in my second language, English (which I had learned in my 30s). Since then, I have published five books of poetry in English.

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Stained Glass reviewed

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SG Front coverPlease, take a moment to read Mary Harwell Sayler’s insightful review of Stained Glass, just published on her blog The Poetry Editor.

Thank you so much, Mary!

 

Buy

     more info

 

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“You Who Wronged” by Czesław Miłosz

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It may be helpful to remember in this difficult time the powerful poem “You Who Wronged” by Czesław Miłosz (in Richard Lourie’s translation):

 

You who wronged a simple man
Bursting into laughter at the crime,
And kept a pack of fools around you
To mix good and evil, to blur the line,

Though everyone bowed down before you,
Saying virtue and wisdom lit your way,
Striking gold medals in your honor,
Glad to have survived another day,

Do not feel safe.
(…)

 

The entire poem can be found at the Poetry Foundation

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Celebrating Ivaana Muse’s Composition of “Snow”

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It’s been half-a-year since Ivaana Muse composed music to “Snow”—and the more I listen to her composition, the more I love it! I am so happy and humbled she chose my poem as the lyrics to her amazing work.  So today I am celebrating Ivaana‘s composition—and asking that you please take a moment to listen to it!  Here’s “Snow” in Sound Cloud—composed and performed by Ivaana Muse.

I also posted links to the composition, its history, and the poem itself, in the POEMS section of my website.

And here’s a photo of my childhood garden in Olsztyn—my native town in Poland, one very snowy winter.  Echoes of that garden play in “Snow”…

 

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An Invitation

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You are invited to the following event:

THE BLESSING OF THE ORDINARY: AN AFTERNOON OF POETRY

with Ken Hada, Joanna Kurowska, and Steven Schroeder

 

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Sunday, July 31, 2016

from 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM (CDT)

 

Conrad Sulzer Regional Library

4455 N. Lincoln Avenue
Chicago, IL 60625

View Map

(click the image to view the poster)

 

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Poems in audio

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In Print Radio posted on Youtube two of my poems*: “Nothing” and “Cupboards”; read by myself.

I am grateful to In Print Radio‘s producer Bob Francis, for this post, and for hosting a program with me in the past.

• listen to “Nothing” on Youtube
• listen to “Cupboards” on Youtube
• listen to the Eddie Resner’s interview with me in In Print Radio

________________________
*Both poems are from Inclusions, Cervena Barva Press 2014

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Stained Glass reviewed

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A new, insightful review of Stained Glass has appeared on Amazon.

SG Front coverExcerpts: In a calm, reflective manner the poet evokes her life experiences . . . . I was particularly taken by the way she conducts her narration, which turns into a brief story about small details—such as often remain imperceptible to adults but are quite striking to a little girl . . . . Stained Glass is also a story of self-discovery through a ceaseless searching for answers regarding fundamental truths. Kurowska distances herself from widely accepted social and religious practices. Careful observation prompts her to question their overall legitimacy and validity. However, she is far from being a severe judge, in fact she does not pass any moral judgments. Rather, hers is the voice of a sensitive individual, who refuses to go through life in a meaningless and unreflective manner.

I am very grateful to the reviewer!

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2016 Featured Illinois Author in Willow Review

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2016 Featured Illinois Author in Willow Review:

As the Featured Illinois Author in the 2016 issue of Willow Review, the journal of the College of Lake County, I was interviewed by the editor Michael Latza; had several poems published in the journal, and read my poetry at the issue’s launch in the College of Lake County, on April 21.

I am deeply grateful to Michael Latza and the editorial team of Willow Review for this distinction.

click to read the interview

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Newsletter 04/2016

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Poezja:poetry

Newsletter 04/2016: in Englishin Polish

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Stained Glass reviewed

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A new review of Stained Glass, by Ivaana Muse:

SG Front coverA visual delight.
It is usually difficult to see the unspeakable. Joanna does that masterfully in most of her poems. It is far more arduous to speak what cannot be seen, Joanna does this even better. Stained Glass is my favorite of all of Joanna’s poetry collections. Visually enterprising, this anthology is rich in emotions that one can connect with easily. Family bonding, memories unfolding, the quest for in-transient beauty, appreciation of light and acceptance of the dark are all translucently painted like impeccably textured stained glass panels. Loved that she chose the stained glass as a medium for her personal and artistic identity. The rhythmic coloristic interplay of words and feelings has the sweeping magic of a half lighted chapel in France or Belgium. Extraordinary!!!

Thank you so much, Ivaana!

read the review on Amazon

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Inclusions reviewed

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INCLReaders may remember Ivaana Muse‘s composition “Snow” which employed my poem for the lyrics. Today Ivaana posted her review of Inclusions—the book the poem comes from.  She writes:

Like nobody else Joanna conceives her poems in a manner that never ceases to astonish. The poems are like soulful scrolls of the ordinary world depicted with brilliant intensity. I completely related to all the poems in this collection in spirit, content and temperament. A powerful message underlines the seeming simplicity and that is what makes her poetry so special.

Thank you so much, Ivaana!

Link to Ivaana’s review on Amazon

 

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Post by eLectio Publishing

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eLectio Publishing’s post on Facebook (March 15):

“NEW RELEASE TODAY:

Our first book of poetry was published in Fall 2012*, and was by a wonderful poet named Joanna Kurowska : Poet. Over the years, we have come to truly appreciate Joanna’s charisma and enthusiasm for poetry, for other authors, and for eLectio as a company. We are truly honored to have her as our “elder stateswoman” of poetry (not elderly, mind you).

Her new collection is Stained Glass, and we encourage you to go and get your copy right away. These poems will stick with you and invite you to read them over and over again, and we promise you will find something new every time you read them. We are constantly in awe of how much meaning Kurowska can pack into so few words.”

*eLectio Publishing published my first poetry collection in the USA, The Wall & Beyond (paperback 2013; Kindle 2012).

Thank you so much, eLectio Publishing!

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Stained Glass reviewed

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Stained Glass has received its first five-star review on Amazon!

In it, Arthur W. Turfa says:

“Having read and enjoyed three books of poetry by Joanna Kurowska, I can say without reservation that Stained Glass is the best. Her style is more robust, and there is a deeper examination of familiar themes: Poland, God, immigration, and life in general. . . .Stained Glass is an excellent volume of poetry that cries out to be read.”

Thank you so much, Arthur!

 

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Press release

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Stained Glass by Joanna Kurowska

Published by eLectio Publishing, March 15, 2016
$10.99, 72 pages, paper (Kindle version available)
ISBN 978-1-63213-222-2

***

What makes this a stand-out collection is Kurowska’s imagery in her second, adopted language—it is fresh, pulsating, provocative, and at times beautifully sacramental.   —Philip C. Kolin, University Distinguished Professor, University of Southern Mississippi

Stained Glass is a must-have collection of poetry for the soul starved searching for a tall glass of camaraderie and peace.   —Amber Koneval, Poet and Author of Drunk Dialing the Divine

***

To order* or for more info, click here

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Pilsen Snow

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418Kolin_Philip_COVIn mid-2015 Philip C. Kolin, the editor of the Southern Quarterly and Distinguished Professor Emeritus at the University of Southern Mississippi, published his seventh collection of poems Pilsen Snow: Poems (Finishing Line Press, 2015). Kolin’s poems emerge “from a personal and collective history” of Pilsen, a large Czech neighborhood on the near west side of Chicago which in the early part of the 20th Century “boasted having the second largest Czech population in the world.” In The Column, Kolin talks about the complexities of maintaining a Czech identity in America, evoking the people, places, and historical events, and even the language of his childhood. These Czech immigrants and their descendants had to “live in two worlds at once.”

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To read the conversation with Philip C. Kolin, about Pilsen Snow, click here or on the book’s cover

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Stained Glass

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A new poetry collection by Joanna Kurowska, coming March 15/2016

SG Front cover

eLectio Publishing 2016

more info

 

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“The Appraisal”

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The Appraisal

 

In a one-store warehouse, burly
Latino boys in Chicago Cubs
T-shirts, toss around
storage cartons

A thin-lipped city clerk talks about
poetry—a welcome break in his
daily routine. Poets
are harmless

but for one who has just finished
his earthly task. His corpse
lay seven days before
it was found.

The clerk has a problem…

 

Read the whole poem

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“Romeo & Juliet”

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INTRIIn response to the many enthusiastic comments I have received regarding the cover of Intricacies, I would like to disclose that the cover art is a reproduction of the oil canvas Romeo and Juliet (1959) by Stefan Papp, who has dedicated the painting to the memory of my father Bohdan Kurowski. The cover was designed by my son Paweł Młynarczyk, who also have restored, in Photoshop, the image’s original color.

 

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Press release

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Press release:

Intricacies by Joanna Kurowska
Published on February 3, 2016, by Finishing Line Press
ISBN-10: 1944251634 • ISBN-13: 978-1944251635
Paperback: 38 pages • $14.49

Press release

more information

 

NOTE:
Many thanks to Gina McKnight for posting the book promo on her blog.

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