Saturday, March 21, 2020

Call for Poems on the topic of epidemics, illness, medicine, death and healing

The virus that causes Covid-19 is currently spreading around the world and humanity is suffering

We, at the Armenian Poetry Project, believe poetry has a unique role in these times, when the soul is drowning in news and apathy

APP would like to hear from you, budding poets, young and old, and, poetry readers

Send us your poems in response to Covid-19, or poems which help you deal with this issue, and we will publish them

This call for poems is open to our Armenian readers worldwide

APP holds the right to select or reject poems

Send to ArmenianPoetryProject[at]gmail[dot]com
 your original work, or the work by an Armenian author you admire

Subject line should be EPIDEMIC POETRY

In the body of the email: your full name, city, state, country 

Your original poem (in Armenian, French, English) 
OR, the work you selected by an Armenian poet, TYPED, with poet's name and if applicable the translation and translator's full name

Poems should NOT be excerpts and please check your spelling 

Deadline for submissions: June 1, 2020

Thank you,

Lola Koundakjian
Curator and Producer of The Armenian Poetry Project

ԻԳՆԱ ՍԱՐԸԱՍԼԱՆ: Ոչ դուն գիտցար - ոչ ալ ես

Օր եղաւ շուքդ եղայ
Օր եղաւ շուքս եղար
Միշտ իրարու յենարան
Միշտ իրարմէ անբաժան

Օր եղաւ լոյսդ դարձայ
Օր եղաւ լոյսս դարձար
Միշտ իրարու սրտակից

Միշտ իրարու աջակից

Սէրը լոյս դառնալ էր արդեօք
Թէ ոչ շուք մը ըլլալ անբաժան
Ոչ դուն գիտցար - ոչ ալ ես
Պատասխանը միշտ շուքին մէջ մնաց


Tuesday, March 03, 2020

Gregory Djanikian: Reconstitutions, Dispersions

There’s an easiness in how the Black River
parts around the rocks
then comes together almost as itself.

Foxes deep among the trees,
beetles underneath the stones,
I’d like to sense them the way bees sense
the ultraviolet shining in flowers
as if they were the flowers.

I smell the earth in a handful of earth,
touch the atoms I might one day be colluding with.
I look at honeysuckle and think goshawk,
finger a willow branch and say lodestone.

Maybe that loose amalgam I’ve called ghost
might reappear one day as a mourning dove
fluttering at night against my window.

I, I, I, (as in impermeable):
how much of the world
has seeped into that slender vowel,
the carbon from the stars I’ve bonded with,
the oxygen that makes up most of my body.

The cold is pimpling my arms, and maybe
a molecule of me might have been part
of some plump goose a thousand years ago,
the air it breathed what I’m breathing now.

The alphabet of matter
transposing itself into different guises.

The river I put my hand into now,
river I might become, imagining
the feel of trout gill, fox tongue,
taking me, drinking me in.

Monday, March 02, 2020

Gregory Djanikian: A Moment Without Objects

Suddenly I felt something had been forgotten
and I went from cupboard to bed stand
to coffee mug and desk to find what I thought

had been missing from my life
as though I could find it
where I had spent most of my hours.

I sharpened a pencil, I plucked
a guitar string, though nothing seemed to be
different from what had always been.

I said mountain then desert
as if the two contrarieties
would offer me a doorway
to a sideways landscape

though everything stood as it was
while I counted my breaths
without keeping track of the number.

Then there was a shrill sound
outside, a blue jay’s screech,
a shadow of wing tipping the balance.

Then the noise of the house readjusting its planks
and sunlight falling on the kitchen floor
and my fingers running slowly
along the smooth apparition of morning
without knowing why.

This poem appears in Gregory's latest collection, Sojourners of the In-Between. For more information about the author and his books, visit