Tag Archives: Bekah Steimel

Lit / please send healing thoughts to poet Bekah Steimel

Lit

by Bekah Steimel

I am always smoldering
like a stubborn campfire
or a pair of new lovers
two months into their affair
I am not a flickering candle
fearful of the wind
or even a strong set of lungs
I cannot be snuffed out
blown out
You could rid the planet
of umbrellas
gather every drop of water
in this world
and the next
collect even the morning dew
and my embers would still burn
and glow
stoke me and roll the dice

First appeared in Bitterzoet, 2013.

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Bekah Steimel is in the hospital, hooked up to an ecmo machine, trying to recover from complications of Influenza A. She has a long road of recovery ahead of her, but I know my  stubborn baby will not give up. Bekah and I are both atheists, but I’d appreciate whatever healing thoughts you want to send our way. ~Shannon

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Half-Life / The W.I.S.H. Press interview with Bekah Steimel

Half-Life

by Bekah Steimel

I’ve had my fill of emptiness
and I’m starving for hunger
for an appetite of anything-but-this
this chemical buffet
all-you-can-eat elevation
that leaves me low and unsatisfied
My joy comes in doses
My joy has a half-life
As do I.

First appeared in W.I.S.H. Press 2016

In July 2016, Walking is Still Honest Press published this interview with Bekah to accompany her poem, “Half-Life.” The press has since closed.

Q~Can you tell us a little bit about yourself? At what age did you start writing? Have you always written poetry? Who/what first inspired you to start writing? Who are your favorite poets?

A~I’m 36 and last year I eloped in Las Vegas (thank you Supreme Court!!). I’m a poet and lover of all things animal, artistic and pharmaceutical. I’ve attempted poetry most of my life, and started sending out submissions five years ago. My Gramma always encouraged any creative endeavor. In her last letter before her death, she told me to keep writing poems. That’s all it took. My favorite poets are Adrienne Rich and Jim Morrison, for very different reasons.

Q~How do you first start writing a poem? Does it come to you out of the blue, or do you have a set time where you meet with your Muse each day and let the words just … come? Has your idea of what poetry is changed since you began writing poetry?

A~My poems just kind of reveal themselves to me. When they are ready to rise, so am I. I can go for a month or two without writing. Poetic camel, I guess. My idea of poetry is constantly evolving, which definitely keeps me motivated to change with it.

Q~Are you on Facebook or Twitter or any other social media? Does that fit into your writing life, and if so, how? 

A~I am on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. The first thing I like about connecting with other poets is the ‘rejection camaraderie’ we share. I see that rock star poets I admire and respect get the same form emails and ‘best wishes’ I get, too. Secondly, it’s a good place to find submission opportunities.

Q~What words of encouragement can you offer other poets who are trying to get their work noticed?

A~My advice to any struggling poet is just to remember we are all struggling poets. That’s it.

Addictions / The Ramingo’s Porch interview with Bekah Steimel

Addictions

by Bekah Steimel

as universal as love and math
as personal
as the scars of our secrets
we conjure the angels of amnesia
with a cocktail of spells
specific incantations
masquerading as pills
they appear just in time
always just in time
and we commandeer their wings
flying first class in clear skies
putting space and time
between us and our mummified memories
that refuse to rot
and crumble to ash
we rise when they do
strapping feathers to our wounds
until we lose altitude
and nose-dive back into reality

First appeared in The Ramingo’s Porch 2018
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Four of Bekah’s poems–including the above poem–were recently published in the “Love, Spring & Revolution” issue of The Ramingo’s Porch. They also interviewed Bekah. Here is that interview.

Q~How long have you been writing? 

A~My Grandparents printed and framed a couple poems I wrote in fifth grade.  So, I have always been scribbling down my thoughts. But, I kept everything to myself.  I met my wife, who was an English teacher at the time, thirteen years ago.  I gradually began showing her all of my writing, and years later I am working on a poetry interview at 2 a.m.

Q~What do you consider to be your greatest accomplishment as a writer? 

A~Honesty.  I think my willingness to fix a spotlight on my struggles…to track them.. enables me to connect with readers in a really pure and gritty way.

Q~What projects of yours have been recently published? 

A~Since January, I’ve begun posting interviews on my website with female-identified and non-binary poets.

Q~Where can we find your work? 

A~I have links to my publishing credits on bekahsteimel.com, or you can Google me.

Q~How do you react to rejections?

A~I swipe it into a special rejection folder in my email.  I never read a rejection twice.

Q~How do you react when one of your submissions is accepted for publication? 

A~Celebratory casino trip

Q~What is your best piece of advice on how to stay sane as a writer? 

A~I would never advise that.  Writing is like some kind of padded room that it is safe to go bat shit crazy in.

Q~What is your favorite book? 

A~Jeanette Winterson’s Written on the Body

Q~What makes you laugh? 

A~Nothing makes me laugh harder than playing pranks on my wife. Sitting back and waiting for her reaction, trying not to laugh, is such a high for me.

Q~What makes you cry?

A~Missing my dog, Riley.

Q~What is your preferred drink while you write? 

A~Up until a few weeks ago when I was diagnosed with liver damage (no, really), it was vodka and Coke. Now, it’s just Coke.

 

See the interview here. Order a copy of The Ramingo’s Porch Issue #2.