Editors' Notes

Maria Damon and Michelle Greenblatt
Jim Leftwich and Michelle Greenblatt
Sheila E. Murphy and Michelle Greenblatt

A Visual Conversation on Michelle Greenblatt's ASHES AND SEEDS with Stephen Harrison, Monika Mori | MOO, Jonathan Penton and Michelle Greenblatt

Letters for Michelle: with work by Jukka-Pekka Kervinen, Jeffrey Side, Larry Goodell, mark hartenbach, Charles J. Butler, Alexandria Bryan and Brian Kovich

Visual Poetry by Reed Altemus
Poetry by Glen Armstrong
Poetry by Lana Bella
A Eulogic Poem by John M. Bennett
Elegic Poetry by John M. Bennett
Poetry by Wendy Taylor Carlisle
A Eulogy by Vincent A. Cellucci
Poetry by Vincent A. Cellucci
Poetry by Joel Chace
A Spoken Word Poem and Visual Art by K.R. Copeland
A Eulogy by Alan Fyfe
Poetry by Win Harms
Poetry by Carolyn Hembree
Poetry by Cindy Hochman
A Eulogy by Steffen Horstmann
A Eulogic Poem by Dylan Krieger
An Elegic Poem by Dylan Krieger
Visual Art by Donna Kuhn
Poetry by Louise Landes Levi
Poetry by Jim Lineberger
Poetry by Dennis Mahagin
Poetry by Peter Marra
A Eulogy by Frankie Metro
A Song by Alexis Moon and Jonathan Penton
Poetry by Jay Passer
A Eulogy by Jonathan Penton
Visual Poetry by Anne Elezabeth Pluto and Bryson Dean-Gauthier
Visual Art by Marthe Reed
A Eulogy by Gabriel Ricard
Poetry by Alison Ross
A Short Movie by Bernd Sauermann
Poetry by Christopher Shipman
A Spoken Word Poem by Larissa Shmailo
A Eulogic Poem by Jay Sizemore
Elegic Poetry by Jay Sizemore
Poetry by Felino A. Soriano
Visual Art by Jamie Stoneman
Poetry by Ray Succre
Poetry by Yuriy Tarnawsky
A Song by Marc Vincenz

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An Introduction to Steve Roggenbuck
with questions by Jeremy Hight

Jeremy Hight: What is the relationship you see between how we peruse the net (especially on smartphones) and how we can read, experience, publish, and promote poetry?

Steve Roggenbuck: poetry is very well suited to the reading environment created on the mobile web. poetry, for me anyway, is about capturing powerful ideas and emotions in individual lines or relatively short groupings of lines. those lines could appear in plain text, spoken aloud in a video, or designed into an image. poetry thrives in all those forms, and people are engaging with those forms on a mass scale like never before. you might read a line of poetry on twitter on your lunchbreak, and it will be resounding through your head for the rest of the afternoon. the opportunities have never been richer for poets to affect other human beings with their words.

JH: Is it possible that the reputation and cliché of poetry being of slower days and older technologies (printing press vs net) is just a matter of people failing to grasp the possibilities of sharing text through all the newer avenues and tools online?

SR: absolutely i believe that. if you wanna keep things old school and only make 50 print copies of a chapbook, i genuinely respect that—you can cultivate an intimate, beautiful community that way. but there are huge opportunities to reach people online if you want. i'm personally really excited to reach thousands of people multiple times a day with my poetry, interact with them, and make a living from it. so for me, the internet is a very exciting development in the history of poetry!!

JH: Who are some of your influences? Have they changed over the years?

SR: walt whitman, lil b the based god, @horse_ebooks, and e.e. cummings are some of my biggest influences. cummings has been there since the beginning. i don't think i've come to reject any of my previous influences, i've only kept adding to the mix!

JH: How do you see the connections you have been making in your work (poetry and the net, and your new sense of text and linguistics tied to how we communicate online) progressing in the future?

SR: the distinction between "online" and "offline" is going to get blurrier and blurrier; new social networks and new forms will arise. right now there is a big shift to mobile apps and smartphones—so i'm asking, how can we get poetry onto instagram and vine? in two years, it might be a question of how to get poetry into "google glasses" and stuff like that. i will keep going where the people go, because i love people and i need to connect with people.

JH: What are you working on at the moment?

SR: always more of the same—making poetry and connecting with my audience. but also i have some exciting new projects in Boost House and Vegan Frickwad. Boost House is a press and a house out of which that press is run, the collective goal of which is to make it cool to be positive and activist. Vegan Frickwad is a blog to create excitement around vegan food and ethics.

JH: How would you define "alt lit?"

SR: i wouldn't offer any strict definition. different people have different associations with the term. a couple things i will say: it's more of a community than a style of writing; the styles can vary pretty wildly—some people in the community don't even write—it's held together much more by friendships and shared venues of publication, community blogs and facebook groups. the term "alt lit" has become so loaded, almost no one in the community will use it seriously. many people who are associated with the term (myself included) have expressed uncertainty or even disgust about being considered part of it. it's not a movement with a clear single vision or manifestoes; it's just a name for something(s) pretty broad that is happening organically.

JH: What first drew you to poetry?

SR: reading e.e. cummings in high school :) most poetry before that (and after that) bored me, but cummings's poetry was funny, visual, playful, sexual, and rebellious. it demonstrated that poetry could express things i want to express, in a way that really excites me !!

Steve Roggenbuck is an internet poet from rural Michigan. He's published four poetry collections, been covered by the New York Times and Know Your Meme, and toured the United States at length. He is vegan and drug-free. His online home is livemylief.com.

Jeremy Hight is the Art Director at Unlikely Stories: Episode IV. You can learn more about him at his bio page.

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