Imagining Life after the Ravaging, Virulent COVID-19 Pandemic , A Special Journal. Favorite 

Date: 

Jun 29 0020

Location: 

Online

The signature angst of our time was profoundly expressed in the poems submitted for WOMAWORDS Literary Press June 2020 edition, Imaging Life After COVID-19, offering women poets an opportunity to write about their experience of the pandemic and their vision of or for the future. The universal trauma wrought by this virus, invisible and silent and pouncing with madness and mendacity, brings us to a place we’d like to forget but never will. Our world is charged. Our lives are changed. We embrace with yearning the better memories from our past. We are trapped in the present, making the best of it. We find it hard to envision a future undominated by this moment. It was difficult to select just ten poems from among the many submitted. There was not one unworthy poem. I’m honored to read them, to read the bios and get introduced to some fine new-to-me poets (whether or not selected for publication here), and to be chosen by Mbizo Chirasha to edit this edition of his heart-child, WOMAWORDS Literary Press. The edition goes up late. I offer my apologies to poets, to readers, and to Mbizo. The honor of this work came at a complex time for me. I had another zine to publish and also found myself dealing with a hospital stay and debilitating complications from chronic and catastrophic lung-and-heart health issues. Having said that there is nothing like poetry to help us heal the trauma of the catastrophic illnesses we may suffer individually or from the shared trauma of the current pandemic. Thanks to Mbizo and all submitting poets for this gift in which . . .Samuella Conteh echoes our great hopes in her poem Rebirth:

To find life again after a life of living death

to not love our loved ones from a distance

to let go of reservations of another’s breath

to not shrink into isolation albeit in company

is a dream worth dreaming fast into reality

Smeetha Bhoumik shares rare wisdom in her poem Going Forward, which might also be well-named GROWING Forward.

At MindValley recently,

I learnt that a ‘beautiful destruction’
is at times necessary, to ring in the new.

Nancy Ndeke points to lessons she hopes we’ve learned. Victoria Bennet has us listening to the whispering dead advising “the clock will start again.” Mighty Ntshwabi hopes to tell stories to her grandchildren when the “abysmal storm is over.” Yi-Wen Huang faces the grave possibility of a second wave. Jameela Nishat shares with us the agony of our pandemic journey, where there is no proven path of escape and no answers to our hard questions. Tough times, Constance Edu Baffoe seems say, call for reinvention. Thanks to Hannah Slind we appreciate the special challenge of a lockdown that bars us not only from work, family, and friends but from many of our avocational activities. We exhale at the end of Michelle Navajas poem when, once again, we can finally sit together in love and affection-( Review and Commentary by G Jamie Dedes, Guest Editor and Womawords Poet Laureate 2020, JAMIE DEDES , Founder and Curator of JAMIE DEDES ‘ The Poet by Day Webzine, Founder of The Bardo Group Beguines, a virtual arts community, Founding Editor and Co-managing Editor of “The BeZine.”)

Posted by Mbizo CHIRASHA on

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The universal trauma wrought by this virus, invisible and silent and pouncing with madness and mendacity, brings us to a place we’d like to forget but never will. Our world is charged. Our lives are changed. We embrace with yearning the better memories from our past. We are trapped in the present, making the best of it. We find it hard to envision a future undominated by this momen

Notes

WOMAWORDS Literary Press. The edition goes up late. I offer my apologies to poets, to readers, and to Mbizo. The honor of this work came at a complex time for me. I had another zine to publish and also found myself dealing with a hospital stay and debilitating complications from chronic and catastrophic lung-and-heart health issues. Having said that there is nothing like poetry to help us heal the trauma of the catastrophic illnesses we may suffer individually or from the shared trauma of the current pandemic. Thanks to Mbizo and all submitting poets for this gift in which . . .Samuella Conteh echoes our great hopes in her poem Rebirth: To find life again after a life of living death to not love our loved ones from a distance to let go of reservations of another’s breath to not shrink into isolation albeit in company is a dream worth dreaming fast into reality Smeetha Bhoumik shares rare wisdom in her poem Going Forward, which might also be well-named GROWING Forward. At MindValley recently, I learnt that a ‘beautiful destruction’ is at times necessary, to ring in the new. Nancy Ndeke points to lessons she hopes we’ve learned. Victoria Bennet has us listening to the whispering dead advising “the clock will start again.” Mighty Ntshwabi hopes to tell stories to her grandchildren when the “abysmal storm is over.” Yi-Wen Huang faces the grave possibility of a second wave. Jameela Nishat shares with us the agony of our pandemic journey, where there is no proven path of escape and no answers to our hard questions. Tough times, Constance Edu Baffoe seems say, call for reinvention. Thanks to Hannah Slind we appreciate the special challenge of a lockdown that bars us not only from work, family, and friends but from many of our avocational activities. We exhale at the end of Michelle Navajas poem when, once again, we can finally sit together in love and affection-( Review and Commentary by G Jamie Dedes, Guest Editor and Womawords Poet Laureate 2020, JAMIE DEDES , Founder and Curator of JAMIE DEDES ‘ The Poet by Day Webzine, Founder of The Bardo Group Beguines, a virtual arts community, Founding Editor and Co-managing Editor of “The BeZine.”)