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“Read these pieces three times. Once with the ‘rational’ on pause. Again for the music. And the third time because good things come in threes … except when we expect them to. Don’t let these works meet your expectations, they are better than that and naturally resistant.” —From the foreword by Lucas Smiraldo, past poet laureate of the city of Tacoma and author of the poetry collection, The Thing That Gathers
Eighteen-year-old elena botts distinguished herself as a poet of merit while still in high school:
“Elena’s poems are impressively striking. I’m hoping I will someday meet his young lady who appears to breathe poetry from every pore. I was thoroughly moved by her mature handling of deeply complex themes, her masterful command of language, and the sheer emotional impact of her poetic expressions.”
—Sydney March, award-winning poet, essayist, and musician
“High school is not too early to be writing poetry that can be valued as literature. That is what elena botts’ book, a little luminescence, is. Marvel at this girl’s excitingly original imagistic language—moon washed up / in light-seeped sunrise /a gleaming shell on celestial shore; her delicacy with words like those describing love that moves through / the everyday / never mentioned / coming along beside us / silently; and her spiritual awareness—notes of a soul / in this breathing body resounding.”
—Maxwell Corydon Wheat Jr., First Poet Laureate—Nassau County, New York
Botts’s poems address themes such as human mortality, vulnerability, and perception of time. They are meant to trigger a thoughtful response from people of diverse sensibilities.
Says the poet, “I write poetry to pull the light in. I began to write at a young age and honestly cannot remember starting. It seems more like I just always had been writing. But I think the first time I realized what I was doing, or could do with words, was in the fifth grade, when my teacher said to me: ‘You’re a thinker.’ From then on I began to recognize the power of thought in the written word. My first muse was the natural world. And of course, I was always reading—not poetry so much until years later.”
elena botts currently attends college in New York, though she is from the DC metropolitan area. In the past few years, her poems have been published in dozens of literary magazines. She is the winner of four poetry contests, including Word Works Young Poets’. Her artwork has won numerous awards and has been exhibited at the Greater Reston Art Center and Arterie Fine Arts. Another book of poetry, a little luminescence, was published by allbook-books.com, and her chapbook was published by Red Ochre Press. Click here to find elena online.
Here is the poem that inspired the title:
fingers-crept-spiderlike into the crevasse
of my palm. i couldn’t
(breathe) now, not when the lights were coming on,
glowing as dumb and warm
as sleeping eyes
shut tight. we never did touch.
’cause you were as blue as a madman
and she was shooting sparks
and i sitting sullen as a covered moon,
breathing in, breathed out
a tide like deepest night. maybe, come morn,
we’ll stumble out, go beachcomb
for our broken bones
until the damaged children between our temples will
born again with fiery skin.