Tuesday, March 6, 2012

A Thing for Words has moved ~ Please follow me to my new Home!

I have moved A Thing for Words to its new Wordpress home here: http://athingforwordsjahesch.wordpress.com/

I hope all of you followers of the old blog will follow me there. You've made Joe Hesch believe he's a poet. I'd like to show that you were right.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Our First Anniversary -- Hello, Goobye, and Hello Again

This weekend marks my one year anniversary as a blogger. More accurately, as a blogging poet and writer. It has been one of the most remarkable and personally fulfilling years of my life.

At the beginning of February, 2011, at the suggestion of a new online friend, the terrific German poet Claudia Schoenfeld, I built this blog -- A Thing for Words -- to share my poetry. One of the reasons I needed the blog was to join the fun and collegiality of Claudia's and her friends at the One Stop Poetry site. Because of One Stop's One Shot Wednesday feature, I was writing at least a poem a week to share with other poets around the world.

And I was making new friends, some of whom I will cherish for the rest of my days. You know who you are. I tell you that all the time.

With the unfortunate demise of One Stop, I was astonished when Claudia asked if I would be willing to become a staffer with a new online poetry site/community, dVerse Poets Pub. That honor brought even more of you to the blog, and I met more and more of you.

And now it's been a year of blogging my guts out and I am ready for the next moves -- hopefully finding a publisher interested in the poetic impressions of a reawakened man and artist (that's the hard one) and moving A Thing for Words to a new blog platform and design.

So here are two bits of news you might use. One, I never really expected to be a poet. In fact, I didn't want to be one. But once I began, I found poetry fulfilled my need to truly express myself as a man and artist, and it made me feel special. You made me feel special. I still write my short stories, as you have found on these pages, but sometimes it's not so easy. So I write poems, some good, some not so good. But I write them, which is the most important thing, right?

The other bit of news is that you can find A Thing for Words at its new Wordpress home here: http://athingforwordsjahesch.wordpress.com/

I hope all of you followers of the old blog will follow me there. You've made Joe Hesch believe he's a poet. I'd like to show that you were right. Thanks for a year of great thrills and friendship. Bless you all!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

A Sweetheart of an Award

Depending on how deeply you drill into the definition in your German:English dictionary, the word liebster, means dearest  or sweetheart. Recently, my dear/dearer/dearest friend, the sweet-heart British poet Louise Hastings, presented me with a Liebster Blog Award.  Louise best fits that German translation among all the folks I’ve met in my one year out here in the digital wilderness. I unabashedly love this darling girl to bits!

In accepting this award, along with the new skill of gracious acceptance Louise is trying to teach me--rather than my native incredulity--I must agree to:

1. Show my thanks to the blogger who gave me the award by linking back to them. (Every day, and exponentially here.) Louise’s blog, Wings Over Waters, is must-read stuff each and every day if you wish to go places you’ve never been or places you forgot you had.
2. Reveal my top 5 picks for the award and let them know I have selected them as I have been selected. (Love these folks and their blogs. Sorted and complete.)
3. Post the award on my blog. (Obviously--you're reading this.)
4. According to Louise, bask in the love from the most supportive people in the Blogosphere. (Without you, there is no Poet Guy me!)
5. And, finally – have fun and spread the karma! (Cool, I'm a giver at heart. Hey! I am!)

Since I can’t pick Louise and Wings Over Waters, here are my five picks:

Beth Winter (Twitter handle: @beth_winter) has become a good friend and supporter of the Joe Hesch that pops up around the Web. Her blog, Eclipsing Winter, is where she posts her poetry, prose, and “anything else my itchy pen decides to scratch.” Beth also treats us to some cool photographs from not only her native fruited plains of Kansas but around the world at her blog, Eclipsing Winter. 

Ginny Brannan (@GinnyBrannan) is a lot like yours truly, a writer and poet who, as she says, “Came this dance a bit later than some.” But, as she also notes, on her her blog, Inside Out Poetry, the most important thing is that she came here. She is justifiably proud her inner poet and writer has finally emerged… the dreamer was always there! Plus, Ginny’s a homegirl from the chill of the Northeast. A prolific blogger, you can read Ginny’s verse and opinion at Inside Out Poetry

Anthony Desmond (@iamEPanthony) is a twenty year old Detroit born writer. Raised and homeschooled by his single mother, he first discovered his God-given gift for writing at the age of sixteen. His work is eccentric, abstract, and badass. He is intrigued by pain & sadness, and explores these emotions across a wide array of subject areas: politics, death, religion, and the struggles of everyday life. His poetry is honest, unadulterated and often breathtaking. You can be absorbed by the pen of this gifted young man at The Glass Staircase

Joanna Lee (@la_poetessa) is one of those Renaissance people who can do it all, but you like them anyway because they’re so damn sweet and cool. An M.D. in Richmond, Virginia, Joanna’s acaemic and professional journey was not creatively barren, however; an entire section of her first book, the somersaults I did as I fell, was inspired by the intimate experiences she had with life and death while on clinical rotations. A hardworking promoter of poetry events in the Richmond area, Joanna’s own beautiful writing and photography can be found on her blog The Tenth Muse.

My other Renaissance woman named Lee selection, Diana Lee (@Diana605) is a terrific supporter of this old poet guy, but is, most importantly, a brilliant poet and photographer. Her poetry can be found at Diana’s Words and her verse-illuminated photgraphy (21st Century haiga, anyone?) is hung at Life Through Blue Eyes. Diana is one of the greatest supporters of art and poetry in the Twitterverse.

There are many other people I wish I could have chosen to give this award, but according to its rules, I could only pick five. I hope they will pick up some I couldn’t. I appreciate you all as friends and straight up commentators and all readers should take a look at your blogs/sites. They’ll enrich your life. I guarantee it. I love all of them! 


By Joseph Hesch

There are days when I emerge
from this thicket of self-doubt,
scratched and bleeding from
my mad-eyed crashing about,
searching not for you, but for
the me our story has written I am.
It's a dark hollow into which,
limping, mahogany-eyed and
lashed by the old demons behind me,
I think I see my fate carved into
the walls of this mile-long grave of 
my better judgment and best intentions.
But then I see your smiling face,
like dawn above me,
the lips that mend this broken soul.
And I feel it coming back,
that everyday love
of towering dimension, perhaps
a mountain too high
for this small man to climb.
But you, my spirit guide, turn to me
capturing an image in your polished lapis eyes,
mirrors with which you see me.
"Isn't he grand?" you say.
And I climb.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

The Taste of Truth

By Joseph Hesch

I didn't know I needed you
even when I saw you everywhere.
We'd never met, but I was sure
you existed, I'd see you
in the faces of the grocery checkout girl,
that nurse in the ER,
this television newswoman.
They all look, sound like you, yet nothing
like you. They are your pale echoes.

You'd sensed me, too. That breeze
that woke you was my breath
on your cheek, that chill at your neck
my fingertips. That sound, my whistle,
that hum of words harmonizing
with your heartbeat, my hymn in
your angel soul. That's what drew
you toward our inevitable collision
in the cave of the forgotten.

And now we reach for one another
in the dark, beneath a duvet of stars,
upon a mattress of space and time.
And it's real. It's your face, crowned
in gold, I gaze at. As no one has before,
it's me touching you, my Diogenesean tongue
seeking truth in your darkest places,
and finding it wrapped around yours.
You taste of it as we untie our bindings.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Lines of Demarcation

By Joseph Hesch

Surrounding us in every direction, limned
in every possible form, these boundaries
and borders, these lines of demarcation.
We can barely step away from them,
they’ve  so entrapped and squeezed our lives.
Do we draw them to keep others away
or to keep our respective enclaves
of body, mind and soul within?

Strokes of natural and man-made
geography, you mountains, oceans,
rivers, borders, colors, words on a page,
the signatures conscribing them against us,
are constructs that have lost their
constricting hold on this lacerated heart,
this freed mind, this scarred but open soul.

Each day, I look into blazing dawn’s
bright smile blurring and erasing
so many margins long marking my reserve,
my captivity. I know I can cross them now,
like they’re maps strewn across the floor,
mere cursive Ts in my notebook.
This syllogism may be false, but I’m a man
of many faults on the run to the next dawn.

We're linking this poem up to dVerse Poets Pub's Open Link Night, hosted by the incomparable Joy Ann Jones (You may know her as @Hedge_witch). Stop by and let Hedge pour you a tall one and mingle with some of the poetic clientele.

Saturday, January 21, 2012


By Joseph Hesch

The Nun said
I'd said none
Of what she called
Good sense.
"Good sense?" said I,
"you wish me to spout
your sense, Nun.
Nun sense!"
"Perhaps you will speak
such sense anon,"
said Nun. Said I,
"Nun sense anon, nun?

A bit of nonsense poetry, of a figurative and literal ...um...sense, prompted by my friend Laurie Kolp. http://withrealtoads.blogspot.com/2012/01/word-with-laurie-nonsense.html