Another New Review of the Blood Pudding Press chapbook, They Talk About Death

Happy darkly delicious September!

This month is starting off with a wonderfully detailed new review by Jennifer MacBain-Stephens, of the latest Blood Pudding Press poetry chapbook, "They Talk About Death" by Alessandra Bava. 

Below are some lines from the review - and you may read the whole review within the new Infoxicated Corner, here - http://www.thethepoetry.com/category/infoxicated-corner/

And then if you are compelled to read all 13 poems from within the chapbook, it can be purchased from the Blood Pudding Press shop here - http://www.etsy.com/shop/BloodPuddingPress

"Lives cut short by drugs, suicide, illness, and murder – these artists and writers inspire Bava’s work. In this chapbook, assembled and handmade by editor and publisher Juliet Cook, ghosts requite and haunt red-walled Parisian cafes, New York street corners, and dark, succulent gardens."


"Bava’s muses struggled throughout life to find their place and, whether through confessional poetry or offending critics, Bava portrays this glorious, marginalized group (some of them only achieving prominence postmortem,) in all of their eccentric and damaged glory.

In the titular, opening poem, the scene of a salon is staged. Writers talk and sip absinthe; as “Sylvia talks of her first attempt. Anne [Sexton] listens attentively…” the scene becomes almost like a portrayal of two school girls discussing a crush – words such as “sweet,” “infectious laugh,” and “loving,” convey an innocent intimacy; discussing death feels like looking for the shape of a friend in the dark at a sleepover."


"The cover art, by Erin Wells, is eerily reminiscent of Sylvia’s famous blond curls. These curls, however, fall over a horse skull, such an apropos illustration for this collection – the whimsical carousel ride of childhood juxtaposed with the ominous horse skull, to somewhat terrifying effect. We are reminded that, though childhood ends eventually, these beasts continue to gallop in a circle forever, reaching up towards heaven and down towards hell, keeping all riders in a state of limbo. Perhaps the resurrected ghosts of these artists and writers find themselves locked into similar patterns: Sylvia, for example, so gregarious and lovely, almost child-like herself in so many photos, gave life and conformist roles a shot, but in the end, her own darkness was the all-consuming role." 


The First Review of my RED DEMOLITION

"Juliet Cook's chapbook RED DEMOLITION is a painfully beautiful collection of poems that paint a hideously cruel portrait of love lost. What does a heart do when it's wounded and bleeding? Luckily for readers, Juliet's heart wrote a collection of poems that kicks, cries, screams, bites, and does it all with an ear for music & an eye for imagery and poetic beauty that is seldom matched"

part of the very first review of my new poetry chapbook, posted on Goodreads, by Kathy Burkett

read the rest here - https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1039302680?book_show_action=false&page=1

and if so inclined, consider purchasing the chapbook from Shirt Pocket Press for just $6 here - http://shirtpocketpress.wordpress.com/catalog/

or from the Blood Pudding Press shop for just $6 here - https://www.etsy.com/listing/201202952/red-demolition-by-juliet-cook-new-2014?ref=shop_home_active_1


I have a new poetry chapbook!

Below is one poem among the 14 poems within my new poetry chapbook, RED DEMOLITION, published by Shirt Pocket Press.

How Many Holes Can You Handle?


Too many holes might turn you
into a black lagoon with poison
swimming inside you. What if he tells you
he’s thinking about your tits,
you in a witch hat, going down
into a lake that keeps sinking?


At the bottom, pearl sacs rip open,
blisters burst under the tongue. A blustering
blastosphere spell of passion might shoot out
of the water at a breakneck pace, but oddly twisted.
It will rip flesh off the bottom of your legs.


You’re a waitress dress with skull legs affixed.
Red spiders crawl up and down your thighs.
Half and half, slightly sweetened coffee
or black?  Is it sugar or poison drip drip
dripping out your eyes? Is it an iris
or a multicolored wormhole?

If you wish to read more, you can purchase the chapbook for a mere 6 bucks here - http://shirtpocketpress.wordpress.com/catalog/


Best of the Net Nomination - Creative Non-Fiction: Evacuation by Juliet Cook

I've received a Best of the Net Nomination from Menacing Hedge!

The nomination is for "Evacuation". 
I'm quite excited and delighted by this nomination. 
"Evacuation" is a piece I initially spewed out more than 10 years ago but then had to set aside in a folder for about ten years, unfinished, because some of the personal memories invoked by its content made me feel like puking and thus I didn't feel as if I was capable of re-reading/reconsidering/revising it successfully until years went by and the personal vomit trail feelings had substantially ebbed - and I could then re-read/reconsider/revise it as a successful creative writer rather than a spewing device of personal puke.

Also, since the vast majority of my creative writing is poetry I wasn't quite sure what this three page piece WAS. It wasn't fiction, even though it looked like a short piece of fiction. It didn't look like a poem, even though it felt like some sort of a poem to me. I thought perhaps it was a prose poem, but I think Creative Non-Fiction is a valid description too.
Congrats to all the other nominees also.
You can read "Evacuation" and/or listen to me read it here - 
Menacing Hedge Best of the Net Nominations!

A Terrible Energy by Ree Davis
Ember Against Gravity by William Lemon

Creative Non-Fiction:
Evacuation by Juliet Cook

The Hunter by Kristine Ong Muslim
Our Spectrum on Which Beauty Mingles with Savagery by Nicole Olweean
She Stops to Sew by Kristin LaTour
Two Children Grow Fur in the Woods by Seann F. Weir
Francine Creates Her Story as If I Asked her to Author Her Own Birth by Shannon Elizabeth Hardwick
Judy Grable Makes A Living by W. Todd Kaneko


NEW August Thirteen Myna Birds - "black in a cluster of stars"

Partake of the NEW August issue of Thirteen Myna Birds - offering eight poems by Ariana D. Den Bleyker followed with oodles of poetry by Farkas, Jessie Janeshek, Samantha Duncan, and Paul Tristram!

"simmering in the spaces between your teeth - untouchable to angels - pretty tides flitter in lick - swollen, gauzy things - wet the ghostly fingers - globe over her shoulders - eye hole of coyote skull - like a cracked plate - A scream in these woods! - The first red and yellow tree installed in the bush - is or is not supposed to belong - I want to be black in a cluster of stars."



Apocalypse of Words: Interview with Alessandra Bava (regarding her Blood Pudding Press poetry chapbook, "They Talk About Death")

KL: I love the recasting of Sexton as the ‘St Barbara of Poetry’. Like Caravaggio, there seems to be a sensuality in your appropriation of traditional religious iconography. How do the material arts inspire you?

AB: As a writer I am greatly influenced by art as well. Both Caravaggio and Artemisia Gentileschi have found their way into my poems. My personal iconography is wildly captured by sensuality and sensuousness. How can someone not be enraptured by Michelangelo’s or Bernini’s bodies? Such unparalleled beauty. Something hard to achieve in writing, but still worth trying!      

a few lines from the new interview of Alessandra Bava, about her new poetry chapbook, "They Talk About Death" (Blood Pudding Press, 2014), appearing within Cultural Weekly.

You can also read five poems from the chapbook within this interview.

Then if you desire to read the other poems in the chapbook (while holding it in your hands), you can find out more and/or get your very own copy here - https://www.etsy.com/listing/195494626/new-they-talk-about-death-by-alessandra?ref=shop_home_active_13


Sinking Down Cake Brain

Sinking Down Cake Brain 

(a newly finished painting/collage hybrid added to the Blood Pudding Press shop tonight, here - http://www.etsy.com/listing/199034416/sinking-down-cake-brain-one-of-a-kind?ref=shop_home_active_1)

“Singular annotation to feel his complication of contraries” ( a line from this morning's dream)

Weird dream this morning including the ex and the past.  I don’t remember the details of the dream, but I do remember its strange impact on my brain after I woke up.  I woke up too early, hearing garbage truck sounds and still in my mind was the visual that was taking place in the dream at that time, which included mountainous outdoor terrain, the ex, an ex of his, and me in the background.  In the background I was talking with an ex co-worker of mine whose father was some sort of horoscope expert or bipolar disorder expert or something like that (in another remembered visual from the dream, the father looked like a Transcendental Meditation teacher from my past – which makes sense in a way, because in retrospect, after I suddenly awoke from the dream, I felt like I had been in the midst of an unexpectedly intense Transcendental Meditation).  

As soon as I awoke, I immediately wrote down the phrase the woman was saying to me, which had been said to her by her father:

“Singular annotation to feel his complication of contraries”.

I didn’t know exactly what those words meant, but they were meant as a definition of the ex – and even though I didn’t know exactly what they meant, they definitely seemed to make sense – and then as soon as I awoke and wrote that phrase down, all sorts of stuff started rapidly popping out of my head.  Memories in the form of words and sounds and images.


Sudden ongoing increasing contraries of the ex:

Super sweet/terribly mean/almost uncaring.

Singing goofball hilarious songs/yelling at me/yelling at the TV/yelling out the window.

Being an affectionate hugger/telling me my fingers felt like snakes/punching the cupboard doors.

Suddenly getting up early and immediately launching into a loud made up song while making bacon/having a drunk loud angry tirade about how great Hitler was.


After writing down those thoughts that spewed out after suddenly awaking from the dream, I felt suddenly compelled (for the first time in years) to open a hand written journal of mine, the first hand written journal I compiled after I had a stroke in January 2010.

Here is what it says on the very first page of that journal:

“March 9, 2010: POST-STROKE (diary)

Juliet Cook. The earliest part of this book is much older.

I tore out some words I no longer liked + saved the other words, which are pieces of other’s poetry + odd little words that I might use in a lighter poem of mine.

However, I’m not writing poetry any more, right now. Because I recently had a Stroke.  My reading and writing of words is slowly (slowly slowly) improving, but my writing of poetry is not yet. I’ve been reading poems by myself & others, but it’s tough to read them slowly or entirely understand them. I can no longer remember them (can’t read or write or speak or remember things as well as I used to post-stroke.) The last few years have been wonderful for me as far as poetry-writing and now…”


Maybe I will add more lines from my 2010 diary soon. 

It made me feel oddly emotional.  I’m not sure if anyone else would be the least bit interested though, so maybe I should just read them by myself and not bother typing it or talking about it to anyone else.  Not sure yet.

I do know that after awaking from my dream and then suddenly reading a few pages from my 2010 diary, I had another sudden visual from my past. Past dogs dying.

I do know that all of the thoughts/images I highlighted in green were real life events, not dream imagery.  The images of past dogs dying were real too. And my little journal entry was real. 


My First Poetry Publication of August!

Three collaborative poems by j/j hastain and Juliet Cook are now appearing within New Manifestos, along with lots of other odd goodies too!

Here's a few lines from one of those three collab poems, "The Pumpkin Gut Fur of the Fairy Tale":

"shaggy carpet
on which we repent
lend more than a hand
for what has been done to 
land animals,
snakes that can’t slither anymore

except inside their own heads,
because something tore it out
of them of the pumpkin 
and ate it
yes I’m talking out of the box pumpkin guts"

Partake of more here: 


Another New Review of the new Blood Pudding Press poetry chapbook, "They Talk About Death"

Bava is a poet whose work is informed by the ghosts of poets; as she “carves my own poem, I hear the/ apse rustle” – the rustle is Death at Bava’s shoulder, over which she looks into a world of “unhinged doors,/ thresholds leading/everywhere/ and anywhere.” Read and re-read They Talk about Death.

from a new review by Nicole Rollender of the new Blood Pudding Press poetry chapbook, "They Talk About Death" by Alessandra Bava.

Read more of the review here - https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1006882602

Find out more about and consider purchasing the chapbook from the Blood Pudding Press shop here - https://www.etsy.com/listing/195494626/new-they-talk-about-death-by-alessandra?ref=shop_home_active_4