Coming Soon: To The Last Word

To the Last Word

Bianca's Pic

an anthology of poetry compiled

for the members of the

2014 ABQ Unidos Team




Victoria Alexander

SethWilson I. Gray

Bianca Sanchez

Sarah Smithson

Amy Waltner

Claire Wimborne

All proceeds from the sales of this collection will go directly toward raising money for the 2014 ABQ Unidos Slam Team. Support the youth of ABQ while getting your hands on some great poetry. Available at all Unidos Fundraising Events, local bookstores, and beginning May 1, 2014,


Now Available: Cumulus Collections

Danielle CoxAn anthology of poetry, prose, and artwork from students at V. Sue Cleveland High School 2013-2014.

Now Available!

All proceeds benefit the CHS Poetry Community.

SethWilson I. Gray
Artwork:  Suzette Licano
Alexander Schlesinger
Casey Shearer
Artwork: Ambrosia Hernandez
Victoria Alexander
Artwork: Stephanie Baker
Kaley Bertrand
Jillian Kovach
Artwork: Miguel Lastra
Santina Dioniso
Photography: Kristina Dominquez
Victoria Alexander
Alyssa Robinson
Artwork: Elizabeth Koschade
Artwork: Cory Toby
Atira Kennedy
Artwork: Rachel Rounsville 38
Sarah Smithson
Photography: Steven Fiedor
P. Madison Baggett
Rachel Rounsville
Meredith McFall
Shannon Mulligan
Miguel Lastra & Meredith McFall
Photography: Lauren Garcia

Cover Photography by Danielle Coz.

Now Available: Loved Always Tomorrow

Pic pick 1

Now available on and Createspace, Emily Bjustrom’s Loved Always Tomorrow.

About the collection:

Emily Bjustrom’s work applies truth like healing; the uncovered wound, the blood, the sting, the cool breath, the forehead kisses.
The most explicit topics are slid under our vulnerable doors with internal rhymes, consonance, and diction that soothes us into unlocking every lock. We let her in, not because we’re afraid she’ll break down our doors, but because we have to see the face tethered to a voice we know we could never live without.
Her sound is the sweet violin amidst burning buildings, the piano in the desert. Loved Always Tomorrow is our moment to smile a tear off our itching cheeks before returning to the rubble.
John S. Blake – Author of Beautifully Flawed, Pushcart Prize nominee, Teaching Artist
Pick up this latest collection from Swimming with Elephants Publications today!

A Review of “Verbrennen”

VerMatthew Brown’s Poetry Book, “Verbrennen” is Angry
a review by Mikel K

The poems in Matthew Brown’s book, “Verbrennen,” which is published by Swimming With Elephant Publications, are direct and have a lot of purpose. They are also angry poems, which given the subject matter of the poems is understandable if you have a heart and a soul. The bio on the back cover of his book states that Matthew’s poems “expose social, racial, and economic inequalities,” and that is exactly what they do, except for the first poem in the book, “Jose,” which starts off being about his grizzly grandfather and then twists into being about the narrator himself and his bad temper, which seems to have been passed down to him from his grandfather. “Jose,” is an intense poem; the twist in its direction adds to the energy of the poem.

The second poem, “Choice,” is about abortion, or more aptly about the two sides taken on the issue of abortion. The poem is addressed to a woman named Tara who we learn in the poem’s introduction is “a campaigner against reproductive rights.”

“It doesn’t matter who won
over the ban on abortion
because you and I won’t stop fighting for what we believe in,”
is how the poem starts.
It ends with,

“The difference is that my mother knows mercy, loss,
and acceptance
Something that you and your church
know nothing about.”

In this poem, as in all the poems in his book, Matthew has a clear voice. You know where he stands on things. He doesn’t mince words, or beat around the bush.

The third poem in the book, “Feast,” is a searing indictment of the white man’s treatment of the Indians in this great nation of ours. Key lines from the poem are,

“Our relatives will flee from their minivans
like the pilgrims fled from the Mayflower,”

“And in the true American tradition
They will take advantage of
other people’s hospitality,”

“Use the water from the Trail of tearsto fill our crockpots.”
By now, we all know that the Indians got screwed by the white man, but Matthew is more eloquent than most of us could be in his description of the cruelty and self-justification that the white man exhibited in “founding” the “new” land.

“Enola,” is a poem that deals with the Americans bombing of Hiroshima. It would seem that the death and suffering of such a large, large number of people is ignored by most of us, but Matthew is on target in his observations of the occurrence in this poem.

“It’s interesting that when minorities are poor
we call it a statistic
But when whites can’t afford to pay their mortgage,
we call it a recession,”

are key lines from the poem, “Recession,” which speaks of the discrepancies and unfairness that exist between rich folks and poor people using the recent recession to highlight these differences.

“Cake,” “Valor,” and “Blood Diamond,” are angry outbursts at Paula Dean, American usage of drones, and the diamond industry. Each is a fine poem, thought provoking, and original.

VerbrennenThis book would not be enjoyed by a conservative Republican is my guess. It does not portray the Amerika that was taught to us in school. It tells the truth.

Verbrennen is currently available through Amazon and CreateSpace for $10.95. Check it out today.

Also, check out Verbrennen and other fine poetry books at:

Mikel K

A Review of “To Anyone Who Has Ever Loved a Writer”

WriterPoet Nika Ann has an Amazing Book Out
a review by Mikel K

I think that I discovered the poet Nika Ann on Facebook, though I’m not sure how. Her poetry immediately grabbed me and I followed her to her website There I found a treasure chest of amazing poetry.

Nika Ann has just come out with a book on Swimming With Elephants Publications called, “To Anyone Who Has Ever Loved a Writer,” and like Nika Ann’s poems on Facebook and her website,
the poems in this book are amazing.

The book starts with a bit of flash fiction wherein the author explains the title of the book:

“It can be lonely to love a writer, especially when the lover does not have a time consuming interest or practice that requires their focus while the writer is lost in their private universe. Even at the high point of a relationship, there is always something calling the writer away, a need, a craving for some necessary solitude to write. Solitude many people cannot understand.”

Loved a WriterThe brutal honesty that this paragraph conveys is evident in every poem in the book. Alienation, loss, suicide are prevalent themes in the book.

The poem, “What you need to know about depression, “starts off with the lines, “you need to know that the sun does not guarantee a good day and the promise of a friend and cold beer will not always be enough to lure me from my self-made cave,” and goes on to eloquently explain what I am to assume are the authors experience with and feelings about depression. It is both confessional and explanatory at the same time and, as are most all the poems in this book, refreshingly honest and insightful.

“Come Back,” is an amazingly moving poem. It speaks of a girl who ruined her hair and gave the narrator of the poem her grandmother’s watch two days before she killed herself.

“Earthquake,” is another one of my favorites from the book. It is the narrator quirky response to someone who asked her to marry them.

“Remembers,” “Bird,” “Shed,” “Fly,” “Prayer,” and “Confession,” are other poems that I found outstanding and that I think you should check out.

I read this book in one sitting and then re-read it in another sitting which is a good thing. In other words, it was a book that I didn’t want to put down until I had finished it. Nika Ann has a bright future as a poet. You should head over to Swimming With Elephants Publications and buy a copy of this fine book.

To learn more about poet and review Mikel K, please visit his Open Salon:

To Anyone Who Has Ever Loved a Writer is currently available through Amazon and CreateSpace for $10.95. Check it out today.