by Kirby Congdon…….
Al Markovitz and Mary Franke have produced the Summer 2016 issue of their Blue Collar Review Journal of Progressive Working Class Literature with a drawing on its cover. Two men on their knees are giving attention to a third lying on his back. The suggestion of the front grill of a car is indicated but no other explanations are given beyond the drama itself. Like the poems inside we see into the lives of some four dozen poets that provide a cimate for work that wrestles with conflict, assertions and inquiries that are provocative and alive covering every subject from “I have been used” (from Jay Frankston’s “Yesterday’s Hero” out there in California to critical political positions in contemporary life. One poet, Robert Edwards, advertises his collection of work. Alice E. Rogoff finishes a documentary suggesting women’s rights,with two lines: “Now most bartenders are women” and adds the second line with an ambiguous date that is twenty years later. “Where did the bar go?” A photograph of a tent city lies under Gary Beck’s lines illustrating the ironic conclusion to his poem.
in the land of plenty
where there’s never enough
The overall impression is that all these contributors are familiar with the art of poetry and do not want to waste their energy on easy platitudes and painless comforts that can fit into academic or commercial outlets.
This issue is priced at $7.00 A check for $15.00 with your poem permits a contributor to enter a working People’s Poetry Competition with a deadline of May 1st 2017. First prize is $100.00 from Partisan Press, at P.O Box 11417, Norfolk, VA, Zip 23517. Mr. Markowitz and Miss Franke have been providing a not for profit service for their contributors for a number of years.