I just found my copy of Raw: A Poetic Journey, which has yet another subtitle, Finding a Way From Conflict to Revelation, in my mailbox. The book is edited by Amiee Saude Sims, features a foreword by Jennifer Knapp, and is published by the new press NuWine Press. The book is a collection of poetry and reflections by LGBT Christians and their supporters.
My contribution is a poem and reflection of my Divinity School days, back at the University of Chicago, where I took a summer course with the University’s poet-in-residence, Alane Rollings. The course was, I think, a typical creative writing course, and as a college course cross-listed as a graduate-level course in the summer, it had a bunch of high school kids in the class. In fact, I think I was the only one who wasn’t a high schooler in the class. But Rollings was fantastic, gracious, and engaged, and the whole process of re-learning how to write poetry was liberating and healing for me. The whole summer was one of creative exploration for me as well, as I even wrote and recorded a couple of songs.
I produced my own private chapbook for the class, titled “Love Song For Theo,” and submitted the poetry to lots of publishers and contests and had absolutely no response, and the reality of graduating, working, and deciding what to do after the M.Div. took priority over poetic delusions.
Recently going through this material I re-discovered these writings, and re-worked a few of them, and suddenly one poem, “Enfleshment, Bold and Feline,” is now in the book with a short reflection on the experience.