Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Storytime: Poetry Submission

Hello Poetteers,

In the beginning of my poetry career, I had done a few poetry submissions. After doing those few submissions I saw their appreciation for my work and stuck with their magazines. I eventually stopped doing new submissions. Even after the old ones, I stuck to closed their doors. At the end of 2016, I picked up the poetry submissions again.

All the poetry submissions were to literary journals. I never submitted to small presses. For a while, I didn't find ones that seemed trusting. Once I found a small press it makes me feel better to recognize an author they have published. I may start sending to presses. It's best to find them through Poets Market, P&W, etc.

I’ve heard bad stories about poetry submissions. It never happened to me but then one caught up to me. I found a new literary journal and it was the first one I saw with the theme that it had. It's hard to find literary journals with that theme. I'm not mentioning which journal and theme for the sake of their privacy.

I revised a poem of mine and submitted to them. After emailing me saying my poem has been accepted they promised to send me a link when it will be live. Weeks have gone by and I never got the link. I had to go on their website to search for my poem. After finding it they had a different author listed for the poem. I reached out to them to bring up the misprint to their attention. I heard back quickly and was told she would forward my concern to the main editor. I never heard back. Again I had to search for it myself. They did fix it. And I didn't reach out to thank them because I didn't think they should get one for never having gotten back to me.

What do you think of the situation? 

Stay inspired, 


Thursday, February 23, 2017

Imperfect Boss Reflection

Hello Poetteers,

I'm grateful for this campaign. When I heard of it before I thought it was great but I thought I had nothing to say. Seeing other posts I realized I have things to confess but I'm scared of saying them. I missed the opportunity. As I shared more original poetry I felt stuck. I couldn't move forward unless I shared behind the scenes and truths. I started the series, Poet Confessions (blog and IG). After starting that I felt better. I could finally move forward.

This time when The Imperfect Boss campaign presented itself I jumped at the chance to be a part of it. I felt less alone. I saw myself in many of the fears other people expressed. I came up with more confessions than I shared. More came up as I shared the few you saw. I worried about sharing mine. I worried I would ramble. Maybe I did. I worried if I made sense. After this, I feel understood. Another layer of me was peeled back and seen. I love to reflect on the opportunities I take.

I learned about myself. Some fears are interconnected. As I wrote those newfound confessions and looked back at the questions that were there to help guide us to come up with confessions, I came up with an action plan for myself.

I'm excited about the future! Stay inspired, 

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Repetitive Poetry Titles

Hello Poetteers,

The title is almost as important as the poem itself. Not all my poems include the title within the poem. And that's okay. I believe that sometimes the title of the poem should be within the poem. Together, it connects the two. It gives the reader an AHA moment. It shouldn't be put in there just for the fun of it. It has to add something to the poem. The title has to relate to or deepen the poem in some way or it will just seem repetitive.

Speaking of repetitive, some of our original poems have the same title. If it's my own poems it's frustrating if they share the same title because then I don't know which one is which poem. If your poem does have the same title as someone else's poem there's nothing wrong with that. As you initially write the poem it's alright to leave it without a title or call it 'untitled' but do remember to add a title soon, so that you can distinguish between the poems. Also, you will know that the poem is completed.

"If someone's poem has the same title as mine, I can't really help it. There are only so many words to use. I wouldn't want to use a name of someone else's poem for my poem if I knew of it; I would think up my own instead." @FebruaryGrace.

Make your own titles with the poetry title guide

Stay inspired,


Comment: How do you feel about several of your own or someone else’s poems with the same title?

Friday, February 17, 2017

Poems: Za'atar and Zaytoon

Hello Poetteers,

As people read HER OLIVES I realized I should have added a glossary. Here are two new poems to help you better understand the other poems.

Olives in Arabic
is zaytoon

Olives are this dark green color
of brownish green
of nature and it's fruit
also used as an oil

Olives are bitter
but balances a meal

Olives are from the Mediterranean and
all the countries that border it
it's the skin tone of people from that area.

Olives are a symbol of peace.

Za'atar is thyme
a plant connected to the roots of Palestine
Za'atar is a mixture of herbs
to enjoy on bread
baked similarly to pizza
or dipped with olive oil
or a seasoning for hummus.


I realized Her Olives should have a glossary, download it here

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Poets of Faith

Hello Poetteers, 

As a Muslim poet I love reading poems that show one’s faith in God whether they are a muslim or not. Even if not muslim you can feel their belief and strength for their faith. It is something you want and are reminded to keep in your heart.
  1. ibtasempoetry
  2. Rebeca of blendmylove
  3. Sa'diyya of sadiyyanesar 
  4. rosesoftheqalb
  5. keyballah
  6. seemeehearme 
  7. I have to mention myself: poetfida
Stay inspired,

Comment: Do you know of any poets of faith that I should know of?
Read More: Empowerment Poetry

Monday, February 13, 2017

Her Olives 3rd Anniversary

Hello Poetteers,

Today is the 3rd book anniversary of my poetry book, Her Olives! With that, I give you a new poem.

Traditional Dress

She is given a gift of a dress
and thought of it only as that
loving the design on the cloth
not knowing the depth of the embroidery 

but she walks in
tall and graceful
her dress flows
from her broad shoulders to her feet
in black cloth
the cloth of the chest and arms
embroidered with colored threads
called tatreez

she comes to find
each design hand stitched
the variation in tatreez
holds different symbols
there is also variations of the traditional dress
from different parts of Palestine

She barely scratched the surface
of knowing the stories behind the designs
all with stories and history
of Palestine.

stay inspired,

I realized Her Olives should have a glossary, you can find it here. 

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Changing A Poem

Hello Poetteers,

I always see my poems become something different from the original idea. Sometimes the first stanza stays or I remove it because my poem ends differently than how it started. That change in topic of a poem is what gets me in a groove to write more poems until I have finally gotten down the original idea and how I pictured it.

It's the best feeling when you get the original idea of a poem down in the first try. Sometimes it's not about a missed topic but about the wording. Some words don't give the meaning you want. Or they don't fit the rhythm, so you have to choose a new word or change/rearrange phrases/sentences. Do save the removed words and phrases for future works. 

It can be hard to think of the right words. You have to keep writing until you get where you want to be. Writing poetry is a peaceful act for me but it's a relief when I get exactly what I want down on the page.

My theme is faith and culture. It's carried through all my poetry.
I'm talking about writing about specific situations
for individual poems. | Instagram 

Stay inspired,

Comment: Does that happen to you?
Read More: Poet Confessions | Never Wrote A Sonnet