ProtestPoems.Org Nov 2, 2008 15:55:11 GMT 2
Post by moira on Nov 2, 2008 15:55:11 GMT 2
Intro / background / mission /history of your 'zine:
As an active member of Norwegian PEN, I have been writing letters to protest the unjust incarceration of writers around the world. Last year the media took an interest in a writer who had been a Burmese writer imprisoned for writing an acrostic poem. I had been involved in a round robin on the internet and thought people writing to weekly prompts my be inspired to write a poem, with specific prompts, to send as a protest letter. (At the same time, an online journal did a similar project, publishing an electronic chapbook of acrostic poems to draw attention to the writer).
While there was interest and a large mailing list formed, few poems were written. Instead of abandoning the project all together, I returned to my main objective: to raise awareness of Freedom of Speech as it affects the lives (and the physical bodies) of poets around the world.
The new zine is a quarterly publication featuring protest poems of non-partisan political nature. It also continues to provide information regarding current persecuted writers and where to send protest poems/letters.
Just poetry. But do send updates or information about cases so we can pass the word!
Ren Powell is the author of two full-length collections of poetry (Fairy Tales and Soil and Mixed States, both bilingual editions published by Wigestrand AS). Her poetry has been translated and published in French, Norwegian, Croatian, Basque, Persian and Spanish. Ren also has ten books of translations among her publishing credits. She is currently the Norwegian PEN Women Writers Representative. Ren is pursuing a PhD in Creative Writing at Lancaster University.
Cati Porter is an associate member of PEN American Center, she is a poet, freelance writer and reviewer. Her poetry collection Where We Dwell is forthcoming with Mayapple Press, and her chapbook small fruit songs was published in 2008 by Pudding House Press. Cati is also the founder and editor of Poemeleon: A Journal of Poetry.
This was written by Evie Shockley for the first protest compilation:
I would love to find someone interested in reviewing poetry books that are appropriate for Babel Fruit, for example translations and human rights-themed collections.