SATURDAY POETRY SERIES PRESENTS: FRANCESCA BELL

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By Francesca Bell:

I LONG TO HOLD THE POETRY EDITOR’S PENIS IN MY HAND

and tell him personally,
I’m sorry, but I’m going
to have to pass on this.
Though your piece
held my attention through
the first few screenings,
I don’t feel it is a good fit
for me at this time.
Please know it received
my careful consideration.
I thank you for allowing
me to have a look,
and I wish you
the very best of luck
placing it elsewhere.


(Today’s poem originally appeared in Rattle and appears here today with permission from the poet.)

Francesca Bell’s poems have appeared or are forthcoming in many journals, including burntdistrict, North American Review, River Styx, Poetry Northwest, Crab Creek Review, and Tar River Poetry. She has been nominated six times for the Pushcart Prize. Her full-length manuscript was a finalist in the Poetry Foundation’s 2012 Emily Dickinson First Book Award competition and a semi-finalist for the 2012 Philip Levine Poetry Prize.

Editor’s Note: Ha! That is really all that need be said regarding today’s poem. Ha! But I will say a bit more. That today’s poem is dedicated to all of my poet and writer friends, to everyone who has ever braved the submission process and the rejection inherent within it. We all thank you, Francesca Bell, for turning our collective suffering on its head and for giving us a way to laugh about it. I, for one, will never look at a rejection letter the same way again.

Want to read more by and about Francesca Bell?
Francesca Bell’s Official Website
phantom limb
River Styx
Women’s Voices for Change
Spark Wheel Press

About Sivan Butler-Rotholz

Sivan is the Contributing Editor of the Saturday Poetry Series on As It Ought To Be and holds an MFA from Brooklyn College. She is a professor, writer, editor, comic artist, and attorney emerita. She is also the founder of Reviving Herstory. Sivan welcomes feedback, poetry submissions, and solicitations of her writing via email at sivan.sf [at] gmail [dot] com.
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3 Responses to SATURDAY POETRY SERIES PRESENTS: FRANCESCA BELL

  1. Maya Elashi says:

    Y I prefer to simply recite my (peaces) and don’t submit ~~~

  2. mick berry says:

    Wonderful poem. Great example of immediate poetry that’s easily understood and applauded.

  3. Isaac Brew says:

    The smile this poem put on my face has remained fixed there for quite a few minutes now.

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