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PRJ 1, 2, and 3, and Remaking Moby-Dick: an update

12 Mar

We are now making all issues and projects of PRJ available as free download. If you’d like a print copy, we are offering them at cost.

PRJ 3 print ($7.40 cost plus shipping)free download

PRJ 2 print ($7.04 cost plus shipping)free download

PRJ 1 print ($6.86 cost plus shipping)free download

Remaking Moby-Dick print ($11.48 cost plus shipping)free download; at Scribd; at Amazon


The files are huge, but they are now all yours.

so every photograph turned sepia

9 Apr

so every photograph

turned sepia, instant nostalgia

for a present we possessed as past

but couldn’t walk backwards through

toward some meaning,

— from Melissa Morphew’s beautiful poem “You Left And,” published in the Winter issue of PRJ


The new Pea River Journal. You want one. 30 new poems, plus stories and interviews.

3 Apr

New work from Cindy Anderson; Erin Blauvelt; Averian Chee; Grant Clauser; Steve Coffman; Michael Czarnecki; Robert Daniels; Detor; Joshua Gage; Francisco Enuf Garcia; Molly Gaudry; Robert Gray; Linda Lee Harper; Leslie Ane Mcilroy; Ray McManus; Suzanne McWhorter; Melissa Morphew; Rita Patel; Joseph Sentrock Perez; Jeff Slim; Melissa Squires; Jeff St. James; Sean Thomas Dougherty; Sara Walton; Sam Williams.

And we’re already hard at work on the Fall issue, with dozens of gorgeous poems and a handful of wild, deep stories and memoir pieces and photographs. And more interviews with incredible people.

How can you resist?

front cover 1.1


From the Winter 2013 Issue: Lake Story. Melissa Squires.

28 Mar

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Natasha Trethewey reading The Day I Was Born

24 Mar

Poem. Robert Gray. The Day I Was Born.

24 Mar

The Day I Was Born


whenever i say i’m from alabama

people seem to want to ask

what it was like to hold that fire hose

if i ever had to answer i’d tell them

i was born the day that happened

they seem to want to ask

what it was like to bomb that church

and kill those little girls

i was born that day as well

i was born the day they marched across

the edmund pettus bridge

the day wallace made his stand

the day martin had his dream

the day he saw the mountaintop

and the day after that

i was born innocent

free of all the blood

shed that day

but i was born into blood

i still am washing from my hands





We have issues (Winter and Fall, that is).

9 Mar



We are putting the final final touches on the winter issue. How exciting it is to see everything come together so beautifully. We know you will love it.

And we are already reading for fall. Please consider sending us some glorious work. We look forward to reading and seeing it.



an image from Melissa Squires’ photoessay, “Lake,” in the Winter 2013 issue

4 Mar


We love Melissa Squires and her gorgeous photography website, A Girl in Love.

And if I don’t see white trillium this year, will I be here next year to see it? … we don’t know.

13 Feb

An exchange from our interview with Michael Czarnecki in December 2012:


When you’re surrounded by mortality and things that don’t even seem to be choices, sometimes you’re in the swirl of karma, either as observer or things are happening to you, and things are so far outside the blame/responsibility sphere. This concept of everything outside our control. And what is control, anyway. Why did we want it, and why did we think that was one of our happy human gifts.

And I’m seeing some of that in both images that you post and in your recent haiku. It’s not despairing work, but it seems to have at the center of it the sense that the noticed moment is the only thing we have. The only thing we can control.. I can control my 17 syllables. Or I can control my photograph. And as soon as I shot it, the bird flew away. It has a different resonance now. Am I misreading?



No, I don’t think you’re misreading them. And I don’t know that I’m writing or picturing that consciously.  But certainly it is there.

You never expect to have something like the total loss of your house. Obviously it is going to affect how you go forward. I’ve never been one to be overly attached to material things. I’ve felt strongly for a few decades that death is hanging there over our left shoulder. It’s there, it’s hanging there, and one never knows. And I think I’ve tried at times, not always, to realize that we have no sense of what might happen tomorrow. You know me, the natural world being so important, and the wildflowers and the birds and the experiencing of the life out there in nature. We keep track of the flowers on our property, when they bloom, and when we first see them. And if I don’t see white trillium this year, will I be here next year to see it? There’s that: we don’t know.

(You can listen to the Michael Czarnecki Interview121512 .)

new poem from the Winter 2013 issue: Sean Thomas Dougherty, The Shape of Such Longing.

6 Feb


is light

as the wind

and lets fall
a shirt’s

empty sleeves.




Badger, Party of 7


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