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Latest Featured Poet: William Dean

William Dean was featured in March’s print edition of Moon Pigeon. Here are some selections from that edition, along with some bonus material! If you like what you see and want to order the print edition, let us know at moonpigeonpress@gmail.com.

Poetry by William Dean

Blood Moon

We are in the umbra
my wife says,
the darkest part of the shadow.

My daughter and I listen
as we take in the red moon,
rubbing our arms in the chill.
Rays criss-cross the surface
like fresh cuts and old scars.

The harbinger moon
is silent tonight.
We feel nothing of an apocalypse.

Just three favorite people
under the stare of
earth’s oblivious lover.

Interview with William Dean:

What have you been reading recently?

Recently I picked up a copy of Alice’s Sister by Jessica Young. I found it intriguing and very well put together. I highly recommend it.

I also like Queen Mob’s Tea House, an online journal. The poetry there tends toward the avant-garde and experimental, which I find endlessly fascinating. I am too broke to subscribe to any journals, I am sorry to say, but the internet is so full of poetry I don’t feel slighted.

Other than that, I frequent various amateur poetry websites because I love when people try to express themselves. I am very encouraging to them. I learn more from reading amateur poetry sometimes than I do from reading the classics. Critiquing a poem that is imperfect or even outright bad can inform your own poetry. If nothing else, you will recognize mistakes you may have made, clichés you have used, etc.

What brought you to poetry?

My first experience with poetry outside of school was with the movie The Outsiders. A character in the movie recites Frost’s “Nothing Gold Can Stay”. To my 12-year-old ears it was so moving and profound that I instantly memorized it. Shortly after I started writing poetry and have continued off and on for thirty years. Through numerous moves and life changes, I have always held onto my poems. I still have the first poem I ever wrote.

Wow. Do you mind sharing it with us?

Ode to a Beauty

Fairer than a rose is she
For her I drop to my knee
Sweeter than the finest wine
I only wish she would be mine
Unto her I give my life
Gladly bearing all her strife
Into her I pour my being
Wishing it was me she was seeing

Wrote this in 1986 when I was fourteen. It was a Saturday and my dad had taken me to his office. He was letting me use his computer and opened Wordstar for me. This is what came out. I printed it on the dot matrix printer and took it home. I have lost that original but still have a handwritten copy.

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