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The Poems Go On and On

National Poetry Month is ending, but disability poetry goes on. You'll find lots of disability poetry on the Ragged Edge site -- both in our current Poetry Dept. and in our Poetry Archives (and don't forget our Ragged Edge anthology, with lots of the poetry we published during our first 15 years as The Disability Rag). The Advocado Press, our publisher, has also published two collections of poems by Kenny Fries -- Anesthesia (which includes The Healing Notebooks series, winner of the Gregory Kolovakos Award for AIDS writing) and Desert Walking.

There are lots of other places to keep up with disability poetry, too:

A good place to visit -- bookmark it -- is the DisPoet Blog, an outgrowth of Michael Northern's work with the Inglis House Poetry Workshop. You might also want to bookmark Breath & Shadow.

You might enjoy Jim Ferris's Poems with Disabilities, from our Archives. Ferris's chapbook, Facts of Life (Parallel Press), was published last summer. Ferris, who teaches disability studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, is the current president of the Society for Disability Studies. His earlier book of poems, The Hospital Poems, won the 2004 Main Street Rag Poetry Book Award.

Kathi Wolfe is in the midst of writing a series of poems on Helen Keller. We've published Helen Takes the Stage; another of Wolfe's Helen Keller suite is Lunch at the Algonquin Hotel, here published at the Beltway Poetry Quarterly.

The listserv DS-HUM (Disability Studies in the Humanities) operated by the University of Maryland has provided a rich source of disability poetry this April. A dedicated web browser can find a lot of these poems by going to the DS-HUM April, 2006 Archives and clicking on the entries with "poem" in the title. There DS-HUMmers were introduced to British performance poet Semba Jallow-Rutherford's I am... God Damn and Steve Brown's poem Tell Your Story-- lots of other good disability poetry was posted there as well.

For collections of poetry, try these books:

Women with Disabilities:Found Voices edited by Mary Willmouth and Lillian Holcomb (Haworth Press, 1994)

What Happened to You? Writing By Disabled Women (New Press, 1996).

Staring Back: The Disability Experience from the Inside Out, edited by Kenny Fries (Plume, 1997)