February 24, 2011

Mistakes happen, and sometimes you don’t hear about them for years. Today I received an email from poet James B. Nicola expressing his surprise that his poem Pane had been published in Snakeskin way back in 2008. He had not heard anything about it from us, he said. This left me surprised in my turn. All poets are notified when their work is about to appear. What could have happened?
I took a look at the page with Pane on it, and discovered a simple but hugely regrettable error. The email address that the page linked to was that of another poet, who must have received not only my advice of publication, but also any praise or abuse that readers might have been tempted to send the author.
There would have been more praise than abuse, I’m sure, since it’s a good poem. I’ve reprinted it below. Please read it, and send some feedback to James B Nicola at jbnicola@juno.com.


You’d think he should have been content
with having half the sky.
But no, a model of frustration

He could not bear the window shut,
’twas not enough to spy
the other side: he had to get to

And now he lies a testament
upon the windowsill
to the intractability of

But I’ve begun to understand
the folly of the fly,
for there beyond this leaded pane is

One Response to “Mistakes”

  1. Ivor Murrell Says:

    The rediscovery of the poem after 3 years saves it from the fly’s fate, an added dramatic dimension, and still this side of the leaded pane.

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