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Gretchen Tessmer

I always have good intentions when I start writing poetry. It all begins nicely—all naturalist, homespun vignettes on Beatrix Potter-esque subjects—purple finches and green linnets chit-chattering on telephone wires about weather forecasts and sky map coordinates. Beneath the wires, a red fox slinks through gnarled, twiggy underbrush. A shaggy-haired goat forages in the vernal, peaceful glen.

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Fan fiction is the red-headed stepchild of the writing world.  It searches for a home among reputable houses but, walking that fine line between plagiarism and hackneyed parody, it’s forced to live in the leaky, damp cardboard box in the dank and dingy alley outside, hoping tonight’s trash yields more than banana peels and half-burnt muffins for dinner.  The fact that it’s directly responsible for such...

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Fiction is a product of the mind, all gears and levers; poetry is an expression of the soul, all thunderstorms and rustle of feathers.  At least in execution.  And at least to this writer.  I see my own imagination as a forest—dense and much tangled with...

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