The Huffington post is currently running a series called “The Working Poor” about people who work full time and yet are still having trouble making the ends meet. Just today, they posted my article on the subject, which you can read here.
If you read through the article, you’ll here about my own personal experiences with student loan debt, as well as that of people I know. More than that, though, you will learn about the unfair advantage that the federal government gives Big Banking while taking advantage of students around the country. Though banks receive massive loans, they get them at a near 0% interest rate — students pay much more than that. My own loans average 6.8% interest.
This might not seem like a lot, but for someone just starting out in life, it’s rough. And when you think about the government profiting off of its citizens while giving more-than-ideal borrowing conditions to banks and large corporations, you should get mad. You should get mad because it makes no sense. In a country where we are beginning to lag behind the rest of the developed word in terms of education, we should be giving our population every advantage to do well and learn — not shackle them with endless debt.
I hope you agree with me. And if you don’t, I offer only conversation so that you can hear my side and I can hear yours. The link again is: here.
A few months ago I posted some information about Poetica Magazine’s call for submissions for their 2014 Holocaust Edition, which sought works of poetry and fiction, previously published, that dealt with the Holocaust in some way. I was planning to submit, and I wanted to let all of you guys out there know about the magazine and the awesome opportunity to have some of your work reprinted.
Well, I got notice today that one of the poems that I submitted was indeed accepted for publication! If you submitted, though, and haven’t heard anything back yet, don’t despair — they are notifying all submitters by mid-January 2014. So you still have time!
I will post more about the issue once it has been completed, but I’m excited. And I’m proud to be a part of such a wonderful literary journal, in whatever way!
So, I decided today to finally do a search of the Library of Congress’ online records to see if my book,Chronicles of a Bee Whisperer, made it into their system — even though it’s been out for over a year, the Library is slow to enter each new item into its database, so I wasn’t sure if it had made it’s way in yet. I was thrilled to find that yes, my book has been added to the system!
Though it is true that the Library of Congress does not physically hold all of the books submitted to them, it has been estimated that they do in fact add about 10,000 items to their collection each day. Others are traded with partner libraries. Regardless, each item is entered into their database as a legal repository of copyrights, and each publisher is required to send the Library two copies of the book upon printing.
I may never know if a copy of my book is actually sitting on a shelf in the Library of Congress, but knowing that a piece of my work may have made it into the national library of the United States is a really great feeling. However small the chance is, my book of poems could be sharing shelf-space with the great contributors of our society. I could be sharing the shelf with Shakespeare, Jefferson, Chaucer, Lincoln. Or I could just be a number in their catalogue, there for future reference and discovery. (The number dedicated to my book, by the way, is 2012939469, just in case you were wondering.)
Alright, that’s my little philosophical rambling for the day. All of you writers (musicians, artists, etc.) out there, keep this in mind: you could be shelved next to your very own heroes and never even know!
Because I’m just oh so conceited, I present to you some photos from the reading I gave at the UConn Co-Op on November 12th in support of the Covenant Soup Kitchen. All photos are courtesy of the Co-Op’s facebook page.
Fellow reader of the night, Kate Schapira
Kate Schapira read from a number of her collections of poetry, including The Soft Place, How We Saved the City, and a chapbook whose title eludes me. Really a remarkable poet!
Just me addressing a sea of hair
It really was nice to see such a packed audience come out for a night of poetry and community. It’s not too late to help out! Head on over to the Covenant Soup Kitchen’s website to see how you can do your part.
One of the beautiful faces that will greet you at the soup kitchen
My poem, ‘Gastronomica,’ appears in the latest issue of The Write Life, An Ode to Words
One of the poems from my book, Chronicles of a Bee Whisperer, has recently been republished in the latest issue of The Write Life.
The poem, titled ‘Gastronomica,’ puts a new twist on a couple of common phrases that we use today — take a look at the issue, An Ode To Words, to read! The issues are free if you register your email address on the site; a link to view the pdf will be sent to your inbox with each issue. Or, you can download the free app on your iPhone/iPad and purchase copies for a small fee.
Next Tuesday (November 12th) at 6pm I will be reading from my book of poetry Chronicles of a Bee Whisperer at the UConn Co-Op on the Storrs Campus. Titled “Creative Sustenance,” the event is to benefit the Covenant Soup Kitchen in Willimantic, CT.
I’ll be reading alongside fellow poet Kate Schapira whose work includes The Soft Place and The Ground/The Pass/The Wave. Join us to support this amazing cause led by the Creative Writing Program at UConn; bring a canned good or donate a few dollars and I might even sign a copy of my book!
And last but not least, poem #3 from my book Chronicles of a Bee Whisperer reprinted in Eunoia Review:
but Jill doesn’t love Jack,
Jill loves Andy, who has a mustache
and works the next cubicle over,
next to the fax machine; and Andy,
when he gets up to fax his expense reports
out to the central office, smiles at Jill,
but checks out Steph,
the mail delivery girl with blonde hair and nice tits;
and Steph of course thinks that Andy is too old,
and what’s with that mustache?
This isn’t the 80s, and even if it was,
mustaches were never cool.
Maybe if he shaved it off
she’d give him a shot, a handjob
in the supply closet—but right now she’s into Bill,
who pushes the sandwich cart and drives
a red Camaro and is capital H-O-T: hot.
But Bill loves Phil, and Phil loves Kate,
and Kate loves Dave, and Dave loves
Jane, and Jane loves Pat, and Pat—
Pat hopes one day only to love himself.
His mother didn’t hold him enough as a baby,
or so the story goes.
Oh Jack and Jill walk up the hill
on their way to the company picnic,
and Jack leans in for a kiss, but Jill will have none of this
and gives him a slap, and they both lose their footing
The human element in all of this, if you’re looking,
is in the falling.
This is a reprint of work originally published in Chronicles of a Bee Whisperer.
Tim Stobierski is an alumnus of the University of Connecticut’s creative writing program. A freelance writer and editor, he has interned for three summers with Yale University Press and is currently seeking a career in publishing. His first book of poetry, Chronicles of a Bee Whisperer, was published in October 2012 by River Otter Press.