Poetry: The Stimson Room

Adeline Carrie Koscher ’97 writes poetry and fiction mostly in her sleep and while running or kayaking. Sadly, whole novels have been lost this way. Some of the surviving texts are “Shadows,” a short story included in Altered States Sci-Fi and Fantasy Stories About Change, edited by Amy Locklin, published by Main Street Rag; “Reverie at the Big Y,” a short story published in ninepatch: A Creative Journal for Women and Gender Studies; and poems, “The Ludlow Mills” and “Flotsam,” published in Review Americana. She earned a B.A. in English from MHC, M.Ed. in education from UMASS, and Ph.D. in English with a focus on the New Woman novelist from the University of St. Andrews in Scotland. She visits the Stimson Room at least once a year.

The Stimson Room, Mount Holyoke College

no choice but to grant her space,
crown her with sky,
~ Rita Dove

Give me the Stimson Room, October afternoon –
iron-rimmed window pushed open,
day’s breath between pages,
marigold sunlight around brick corners –
enter the recesses of the room:

here, I fall in love
with H.D. and Mina Loy, Vincent Millay, Rita Dove,
with words and sound and language;
fall in love with the torn photograph
of women, of these pages, of this room;

escape calculus, politics, reason;
slip from consciousness – meet her,
crown her with sky, for she is one of the many,
and she is each of us, seeking not
bowed-head, demur smile, vacant eye –

I wake, I read, I nod, I am born.


Three Poems by Heidi St. Jean

Heidi (Holliday) St. Jean  ’88 received a master of fine arts degree in creative writing with a concentration in poetry from Fairfield University in July 2012. Her ekphrastic poem, “Goddess,” first appeared in Inklight, a publication of Afterimage: The Journal of Media Arts and Cultural Criticism. Her poetry has also been published or is forthcoming in Theodate, the online poetry journal of the Hill-Stead Museum, and in Long River Run, the journal of the Connecticut Poetry Society. She previously served as poetry editor for Mason’s Road, and as managing editor for Drunken Boat. She has been working professionally as a writer and editor since 1991.

(inspired by the Geoff McGann photograph “Goddess I” on Inklight, publication of Afterimage)

Artemis –
born of a million points
of liquid light,
you move your molecules
into meaning, into form.

Guiding guardian,
draped in maiden’s
moonbeams, your
hands are crescent
horns, your swirling
body a note of music, lifted
from brother Apollo’s lyre.

Lilt your way
through mortal
darkness – come, hunt
our woods for your truth.

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November is National Novel Writing Month!


November is National Novel Writing Month

From November 1-30, NaNoWriMo challenges writers and would-be writers to write a 50,000-word novel in one month.  While the organizers of this event (going on 13 years now) clearly state that quantity is far more important that quality, the main purpose of National Novel Writing Month is to help demonstrate how easily the pages can add up if you simply commit to writing every day.

If you want to sign up for the contest (and last year more than 300,000 people did), please click here.

But I would like to challenge all writers and readers of The Lyon Review to use this month to develop your own writing project–whether that means committing to writing one page a day of anything you are interested in–poetry, stories, plays, a novel, even a journal entry.  I’ve made my own commitment to focus less on trying to get the prose “right,” and indeed simply get Chapter Four of my latest novel down on the page and worry about revision later.

Sometimes speaking your promise aloud or telling someone else about it as it helps keep you  on track. It also gives you “permission” to do something just for yourself without worrying about how it will impact the other people in your life for a change.

If you want to join us in this journey, use the form below and “vote” on how you plan to make the most of your November.  If you don’t want to write each day, perhaps pledge to read a certain number of books within 30 days, or paint a picture a day, or do yoga.  Just pick something you love that always wished you had “time” to do every day.  Then do it.

And you don’t even have to wait until November to start!