Thursday, February 16, 2006

The Death of Melic Review: Final Issue # XXVII

Melic Review
Final Issue # XXVII
Selected artwork by Scott Odom

The Melic Poetry Workshop was one of the first on-line forums that I called a home of sorts. There were some great moderators there and of course the presence of C.E. Chaffin was always felt. His critique was always apropos and incisive and he didn't mind posting one of his own from time to time. His work on the Melic Review was also exemplary and it is no wonder that it flourished for nine years. The final issue No. XXVII contains the following writers & poets:

Marcus Bales
Norm Ball
Walter Bargen
Christopher Barnes
Kristy Bowen
Greg Braquet
Laurie Byro
Jared Carter
C.E. Chaffin
Srinjay Chakravarti
Phillip Henry Christopher
Debi Cimo
Alfred Corn
Debra Di Blasi
Camille Dungy
Taylor Graham
John Gray
Frank Haberle
Jessica Harris
Bob Hicok
Mark Jackley
Ariana-Sophia Kartsonis
Kirsten Kaschock
Meg Kearney
Charles Lowe
Rachel Mallino
Frank Matagrano
Cathy McArthur
Michael Mobley
V.C. Nash
Richard Newman
Chris O’Carroll
Scott K. Odom
Lee Passarella
Lee Ann Roripaugh
Jim Simmerman
Andrew Slattery
Gary Sloboda
Michael Virga
Emily Waples
Dara Wier's
Michael White
Can V. Yeginsu

A Sampler:

The Wind’s Odd Needlepoint
by Frank Matagrano

It is January 23rd and the image of me doesn’t care
that four to six more inches are expected to fall late
tonight. The image of me will not offer to shovel
the driveway tomorrow morning, nor will he scrape
ice off the windshield. Most likely, he will be lying
in bed or roaming around the house in a bathrobe, trying
to remember the name of an old acquaintance who made
a cameo in last night’s dream. But at the moment, it is still
January 23rd and I am watching the image of me whisper
sweet things to the image of my first wife, who now lives
in Colorado, where it takes weeks for the sun to go down
and where they are making omelets in the kitchen
with something that looks like an onion though no one is
crying. The smell, Old Wisdom says, comes off your hands
with lemon juice. Pharaohs were buried with onions, bound
to their ears and soles. One king was entombed
with a bulb in each eye. He was found
flowering. I am feeling out loud. I don’t know
a better way to work through this stuff, and believe
you me, it is January 23rd and I am dragging out
the bedroom from my last apartment to give
the image of me a place to stretch, a chance
to reach across the mattress and trace
the mouth of a certain memory. There are people who love
things that cannot love them back in the same way, things unable
to say Yes, unable to say I never stopped ___________, things lost
in the drift. Banks of old snow are piled high along the roadside,
the tops sewn by the wind’s odd needlepoint into a sheet
and draped over the road, as if to put these things to rest.

** poem originally published in the Cimarron Review


shann said...

I couldn't bear to submit anything- one of my first publications was Melic (1997?), I think I had nine poems published there, then I became assistant poetry editor for awhile, a few years later CE came thru Richmond and we had two wonderful readings (he slept on our couch- an amazing feat-he is a very tall guy), then I stayed on as staff for the workshop. I have poems in the print anthology, Melic will always hold a special place in my heart.

I am very, very sad to see it close.

Nick said...

Melic is a place that I always wanted to be published in (mainly because of C.E. Chaffin) but couldn't get up the nerve to sub to. Now it's too late.

Jirí Cêch: poet, vampyre, real estate developer said...

The Melic Review was the best literary journal in the whole world because it published my fabulous sex poetry and allowed me, as one-time editor, to select poetry almost as fabulous as mine (but not quite). I weep at its demise. These are real tears. Real. The saline more intense than on a saltine cracker. (Now you can see how fabulous my poetic voice.) Thank you, Jim Zola. I hope our paths will cross some night, very late. Au revoir et bon reve, mon petit chou!

C. E. Chaffin said...

Hey Dudes,

I'm staying at my daughter's house, and she has no cable, so I was bored and started snooping around the net. So happy to find some who appreciated what we tried to do with Melic, even though Jiri never wrote me personally. Ka-Ching! But Zola was very fond of Jiri, as I am of Shann, and I'm sorry Nick never submitted.

I should say, however, that fondness had nothing to do with my poetry selections. I published people I disliked and rejected people I liked; it was all about the poem.

And someday someone might actually read my last essay on Eliot and actually comment on it--though I'll be waiting a while because only I am crazy enough to write a 35,000 word essay for an e-zine and expect anyone to read it!



Nick said...

Gee, I'm reading this post about a year later and am dismayed that I never submitted to Melic Review. Nonetheless, I am a better poet for having participated in the online workshop.

Unknown said...

2016, and I Googled Melic because it was the best training ground I ever had in poetry. I graduated through posting mad verse in wild online forums, and finally found what felt like a home in Melic, and it really honed my writing. It was an environment that drew the best out of you because the other people's writing was so strong. So, thanks CE Chaffin, Laurie, Shann and tyre rest!