Love Me, Anyway // Minadora Macheret

Love Me, Anyway examines the body in all of its imperfect glory, surviving chronic illness, and growing into womanhood haunted. Macheret explores the mother/daughter relationship, bridging years of absence with the filaments of the speaker’s own identity, weaving together mother/daughter body/body illness/illness, at once writing letters to herself and the ghost of her mother, still so present in the mirror. “Her ancestors: a current in which she bathes,” she leaves nothing behind, “Dear disease,” she writes: “Please gentle the body—thicken it with sleep.” This collection is tender and honest, bones laid bare, “god-struck” with longing, and stretched wide.  (Porkbelly Press, 2018) » available in our shop » full details




the day you disappeared,
the sports bra made my ribcage
cinch my sharp spine inward
push prepubescent breasts outward
I didn’t know my hormones perched
bodies open waiting for your sign.
Maybe they need a mother
like trail guides, climb the ridge
of my sex—bud into being
and without her? Become unnecessary.


my father brought home a woman
she promised his children an instant of forever
an herb garden stamped the placement of her feet,
of lavender-lush, those thyme tracked trails.
She taught me necessity, green thumb on her brow,
be my Demeter—
stretch-wide my mother’s ghost.


every seven days cells replace themselves
every three years I replace my mother.


in smoky bars you hung
to the curve of bar stools,
mistaken I pressed my lips
to the outline of your shot glass,
I blurred into other.
Breathe me out sweet, Daisy—
before I forget you.


you were an indent of laughter
paintings bloomed from your mouth.

Now, your body sea-strewn,
your words suture me closed.

about the poet

Minadora Macheret is a Ph.D. student and Teaching Fellow at the University of North Texas. She is a Poetry Editor for Devilfish Review and the Co-Coordinator of Poets in Pajamas Reading Series. Her poetry has won the Sigma Tau Delta First Place Poetry Award, Seaton Fellowship, and other awards. Her work has appeared in Tinderbox Poetry JournalRed Paint HillRogue AgentConnotation Press, and elsewhere.

Lost Birds of the Iron Range // Amber Edmondson

Lost Birds of the Iron Range (Amber Edmondson) takes the imagery of birds and spins it into a landscape of imagined moments, underground, above ground, often a secret chamber, bird held in the reliquary of a chest or belly or a cavern, subsisting on what warm and wriggling things can be found in such places. This is an excavation of feather, bone, limestone and lace: “a stowaway, a secret, a weathered map, leading back home.” (Porkbelly Press, 2017) » excerpt & more

about the poet

Amber Edmondson is a poet and book artist who lives in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, near Lake Superior. Her work has appeared in Border Crossing, Menacing Hedge, and Stirring: A Literary Collection, among others. Her first chapbook, Darling Girl, is available from dancing girl press.

about the cover art & artist

Mary Woodworth »
title: “Navigating the Highlands”
media: collagraph
size: 30 x 22 inches

Rooted by Thirst (Tina Mozelle Braziel)

Rooted by Thirst, Tina Mozelle Braziel’s chapbook of poems, is meditation and journey, a circumbulation of this plot of land that reveals pieces of speaker and landscape—a sense of place both had and longed for. Each poem yearns; each page deepens, roots curling into ready loam. The final poem of this book is one of the strongest we’ve yet chosen—it closes and opens at once, spiraling off like light slipping across a field to flash over all that’s hidden in the rest of the day. In the gold, all things are possible. // available in our shop // learn more

Cover art by Kathleen Piercefield.

Pray, Pray, Pray (cover preview!)

E. Kristin Anderson’s forthcoming chapbook of poems, Pray, Pray, Pray: poems I wrote to Prince in the middle of the night. Now available for pre-order.

What folks are already saying about this book:

“It is the most American autumn evening turning to night in E. Kristin Anderson’s spectacular Pray, Pray, Pray. The speaker can’t sleep, but implores the reader to “Put your hand on my back and push.” Comply and crack the spine for these epistolary anthems to love and insomnia. While the poet masterfully assembles the false syllogisms of our contemporary lives, she knows some things are true. For example, “Poems do not lie.” I first met E. Kristin in Minneapolis, at an ethereal dance party celebrating Prince. After reading Pray, Pray, Pray, I imagine her always there, her “mind…an animal, American…down to the bone.” Anderson is “The Kid,” but fresh and female, now dancing and singing under the purple rain by some “halogen miracle.” Let us all join in her praise.”

~Sandra Marchetti, author of Confluence and Heart Radicals

“E. Kristin Anderson’s poems are intimate, brave and driven by a powerful search for calm and security in a world that fails us so often. PRAY, PRAY, PRAY chooses the musician Prince as its muse and–like that musical genius–these poems are equally adept at navigating both the high and low notes of the complex, full life they describe. The voice of the poems is at once exultant and fraught, bringing readers deeply into our America, a country in which “there is only beauty and emptiness,” and anxiety and depression are a “dark secret,” but a pop icon can be “an old friend” or even a savior. These are wonderful, truthful poems. You should read them immediately.”

~Jessica Piazza, author of Interrobang and This is not a sky

2016 Micro Chapbook Line

After a 6 week reading period in which we did our best to answer every submission in 3-7 days, we’re pleased to announce that the following micro chapbooks have been accepted and will appear in 2016:

Dry Spell (Patrick Kindig)

bindweed & crow poison: small poems of stray girls, fierce women (Robin Turner)

Ghost Tongue (Nicole Rollender)

Poems for Ivan (Sara Adams)

Haunting the Last House on Holland Island, Fallen into the Bay (Sarah Ann Winn)

Everything I Own (Angela Just)

Lost Birds of the Iron Range (Amber Edmondson)

Thank you for your patience & your beautiful, fierce words. We look forward to crafting them into tiny books! The release order has yet to be determined, but we should iron it out by mid-September or October. We aim to release most of these titles in the first half of the year.

Also of note is the micro submitted by James White—we requested an extended version, which we then accepted as our February 2016 chapbook release:

hiku [pull] (James White)

Chapbook Reading Period Extended!

Submission Limit Reached

Since we’ve capped out on fee-free submissions this month over at Submittable, we’re going to extend our chapbook reading period into February.

We’re still able to take chapbooks with a purchase or chapbooks with a tip jar donation.

Submission Deadline Extended: First 2 Weeks in February

Please check back February 1, 2015 – Feb 14, 2015 to submit your manuscript.

Bodies in Water & Vein of Stone (open edition)

We’re pleased to present you with a first look at the open edition covers of two of our titles. These covers are inkjet printed on matte professional photo paper & feature hand-cut title flags, typewritten on recycled (100% PCW) paper. Each varies slightly.

Bodies in Water Cover Art

“No River Like Craving” (oil, 36 x 48 inches) by Angie Reed Garner.
Garner is a second-generation narrative painter from Kentucky.

Vein of Stone Cover Art

“I Was Listening” (collagraph & monotype, 15 x 22 inches) by Kathleen Piercefield.
Piercefield is a Kentucky based printmaker and fine artist.


Bodies in Water and Vein of Stone are available via Etsy.
Special edition copies (screen printed covers) may also be available. Please check our Porkbelly Press shop section.

Stay tuned for a look at our first micro chapbooks & other titles.

l’appel du vide by Christina Cooke

Our limited special edition release of Christina Cooke’s l’appel du vide is now available!

The cover features a three-color serigraph of hand lettering and a Red-billed Streamertail hummingbird (the national bird of Jamaica). The belly & title ink is an iridescent mix, as you can see from the variation in the photo. This book is available on teal and also grey cover stock. Each issue of the 55 run is sewn by hand with crimson thread.

Cooke pulls from a well of gender, identity, and sexuality, peppers it with a hint of Jamaican rhythm and language, and presents it to us in this chapbook. She coaxes words together in love-lust, examines the gaze, and brings us into the place of a woman-body walking over hot asphalt, the rain on her skin, and the taste of mango jam on her tongue. She does not shy away from the internal voice, self-doubt, or the anxious churning of a wanton body. // more

Want to see some of the process of printing l’appel du vide? Check out: Nicci’s blog.

The beauty of chapbooks

The beauty of chapbooks

On this rainy Thursday morning, I was reading our twitter feed and came across this link (when Submittable tweeted it to ask, “if you were a chapbook, how would you be bound?”). Sampson Starkweather offers some thoughts on chapbooks and how they’re completely amazing, including this gem:

Chapbooks also have such a materiality and visceral physical life, because they are mostly handmade and handbound and come in all shapes, sizes (from Small Fires matchbooks to The Pines LP records) and textures imaginable (god I love texture!), made from old military uniforms, childhood blankets, prison cups, cardboard, vinyl, rubber, bolts, matchbooks, you name it. It is this handmade element and imagination and of course each chapbook’s limited nature that gives them such value, and ties them to history and an archival existence. Chapbooks are a link to the human that I think is more important than ever right now in the face of ever increasing digital media and publishing, Chapbooks are like Sarah Connor and her son (John Connor) facing the Terminators in Terminator 2: the hope of all mankind and the future of the human race lie in their hands. Also, they are perfect to read on the subway! | read more

We agree; chapbooks are handbound artifacts of human-to-human creativity and communication, and it’s why we take the time to make these editions. It’s why we insist on producing them on paper, in a lasting, portable, fondleable form, to be carried about and opened up in those moments between gadget fiddlings.

So, if you were a chapbook, how would you be bound?

Bodies in Water – P. Andrew Miller

Porkbelly Press is pleased to announce the acceptance of its first chapbook, P. Andrew Miller’s Bodies in Water.  | order

This chapbook, forthcoming in the first quarter of 2014, pairs a personal essay (sprinkled with lyric language and just a little shapeshifting magic) with a short story exploring the way the river’s song slowly takes over a woman’s life, and, in some ways, her family. This chapbook explores identity, memory, and obsession—you may yet look differently at the river the next time you cross one.

A sample from “Skins”:

In spring, I will feel the call of the sun and the heat and the water.  In those first few days of 70 degree weather, I will give in to the call that I will hear in my heart and my blood. I will know it is spring and I will answer.

I will wait until dusk, then I will pick up my skin and make my way across the street and then walk down to where the larger creek runs under the road, pouring out and down the hill into the Great Miami. I will climb and slip down the bank to the edge of the creek…

We’re proud to welcome Andy into our family here at Porkbelly Press. He just happens to be a Cincinnati native, and friend to writers around the world. If you’re interested in learning more about him and his other publications, as well as items currently available for purchase online, please check out his blog: Talk Geek to Me

P. Andrew Miller is coordinator of creative writing at Northern Kentucky University. His stories and poems have appeared in many different publications including Sugared Water, Dragon Magazine, Sword & Sorceress 13 and 18, The MacGuffin, Drawn to Marvel, and many others. His first chapbook, The Legacy of the Turquoise Knight was a lyric comic released from Finishing Line Press in 2010. His short story collection In Love, In Water and Other Stories is forthcoming from Post Mortem Press. He lives in Cincinnati and collects dragons, super hero artwork, and Germans.