I strive to re-create the flows of the northeastern Minnesota landscape, and I borrow metaphors that express the pattern of change in individual stories and narrative poems: the erosions, floods, migrations, lightning strikes, industrialization, excavation, mining, roads, and harbors. Night Train Red Dust will become part of a new media project, and I can't wait to get started!
Vestiges / My Geology : short work sample from Sheila Packa on Vimeo.
This is a screen recording of a database driven web film.
For detail about the origin of these poems:
July 25, 2014
July 22, 2014
In the Introduction to History of Violets, translator Jeannine Marie Pitas writes about the Uruguyuan poet Maroso di Giorgio (1932-2004): "Navigating the precarious terrain between recollection and creation, beauty and danger, religious transcendence and violent eroticism, her poetry brings a new world into being." This sentence aptly describes the hyper-sensuality of this gifted poet. Although some reviewers have complained, in reviews of the recent publication by Ugly Duckling Presse, and perhaps found her too odd or hermetic or dwelling too much in childhood and fantasy, I find her work riveting.
Leonardo Garet writes that she has created her own epic mythology: the first three books an account of creation, and the next three "the dance between Eros and Thanatos," and the last books tell the story of "the world on the other side of the looking glass." This is a form of magical realism, and it brings the reader into a world that is innocent and erotic, dreamed and dangerous.
XX.This prose poem is from The History of Violets, and it illustrates the tenor and quality that the poet achieved. It vibrates with a wild energy that reminds me of the liminal state Clarice Lispector induces.
The daisies...were like deformed, circular birds with a single golden or silver head, surrounded by so many wings...burned the whole garden...the pungent fragrance of grapes, figs, honey, daisies set the whole house aflame. Because of them we were emboldened, like the insane, like drunks. And so we went on through the whole night, the dawn, the next morning and through the day, committing over and over again the loveliest of sins.
July 18, 2014
Most poets dread this question and the question: what type of poetry do you write? The landscape, the elements (water, wind, fire, and earth), and the body capture my imagination. I've written erotic poems, love poems, spiritual poems, and dreams. In the past, I've done series about women and cars, fiber and cloth, birds and animals. I often collaborate with other artists and musicians--create confluences. Like many other poets, I hesitate to label myself because labels are for jars.
Surrealism is the word for creative work that is dreamlike. My flash fiction, "The Accomplice," was published in Cortland Review. Through dreams, it explores domestic abuse, tyranny, and escape. Read it here: http://www.cortlandreview.com/issue/46/packa_f.html
July 11, 2014
Dinggedicht, defined by the Oxford Dictionary, is the German world for "a poem focused upon an object, though the object frequently fulfills a symbolic function." Object poems, poems about things, originally seemed to focus on art objects, making ekphrastic poems. Now they focus on any simple object. It can be a household object, a tool, a treasured object or a discarded or found one. The poet can convey a great deal with the very narrow focus of this form.
July 3, 2014
Laments are ritualized crying, and they occur in fixed and non-fixed forms, in ancient and contemporary poetry. Blue Hour by Carolyn Forché provides an eloquent example.