You might like it, you might hate it, you might relate to it a lot. But I hope it does something for you. At this point, I have written hundreds of poems, but only these poems I wanted to include in my chapbook. And only about six have been published in journals. But I’m still trying to get this book published. It’s typically a no-no to post an unpublished work online before publication, so I’m going to take this down eventually, I just want to get some reviews on things I did well, or things I could improve on before I submit this manuscript to more publishers.
There’s a lot of good art on this community, that people really love, so I thought maybe some of you would appreciate some poetry too. I am also an artist, but better at poetry. Here is the cover letter for the manuscript:
"Dear Editors of NN,
Page Count: 45 pages
The Glory Tree is a complete chapbook of poetry focusing on themes of mental illness, mania and psychosis, spirituality, and specifically as it relates to frustration with organized religion. It explores how mental illness and spirituality intersect and how that impacts the life of a person seeking treatment. It deals with drug use in many areas, and how that affects the recovery of any person living with a severe mental illness. In some ways, The Glory Tree gives an image of the culture of drug-using youth in the city of San Francisco, but not in a way that at all glorifies drug use. The book, as a collection of poetry, chronicles a rising manic episode, the climax, hospitalization and institutionalization (as well as its impact on a person’s psyche), and eventual healing and atonement. It also opens a discussion on how society medicalizes and dismisses divergent minds.
I am a poet from San Francisco, where I am a member of the queer community, studying English and Spanish literature at [college], and my poem “Nic-town.” has appeared in Raven Chronicles (their final issue, an anthology), “Poker Chips” in Snapdragon: A Journal of Art and Healing (online), “Electro-convulse” in Open Minds Quarterly (print), and my poems “The Modern Lovers” and “The Prophet Elijah” will appear in Manuscription online. I draw much inspiration from my own life and the people in my life, making my poems confessional in style, although not all of the poems are about me. Many of them draw a picture of being a young adult in San Francisco. At one time in my life, I considered becoming a Catholic priest, which has influenced the subject matter of my poetry. I believe this manuscript will make a good fit for this press.
Thank you for considering my proposal,
Let me know if I should change anything in my cover letter.
HERE is a link to the 44-page chapbook: https://docs.google.com/document/d/13KLvb81QAKN1QE_exImQml6sETnIj1xqteXdPS2jPag/edit?usp=sharing
I would REALLY appreciate it if you guys read through this and offered me up some feedback. It would be amazing if I could get a feel for what this community thinks of my poems. 45 pages SEEMS long but it’s poetry, so it’s formatted spaciously; it’s not just a wall of text.
The poems are divided into three sections with different themes:
Part One: Nic-town. - Rising, ascending, knowing
Part Two: Flame and Medicine - Climax, religious ecstasy, euphoria, and sacrifice
Part Three: The Glory Tree - Healing, integration, and atonement
If you want, most of the more exciting poems involving hospitalization are in Part Two, Flame and Medicine. I would really love to know what you guys think. What are your favorite poems? Any tips for publication? Is this complete, or does it need much more work, editing, more poems, more love and care, and more polishing? I have a feeling it needs more polishing.
I just thought I’d offer a form of art not usually seen in this community, that some people here might really relate to. I have made people cry with my poems. And I have literally made myself cry with them, because these poems are basically my heart and soul. I am completely opening myself up to you guys and letting you look inside my soul by letting you read these poems. So I would appreciate comments. Thanks so much guys.