#40 – Summer 2013




Open Poetry

Conversation with
Ellen Bass


Rattle #40

Releasing in June, Rattle #40 is our first-ever entirely open issue. With no theme or focus to consider, we simply chose our favorite 42 poems from the tens of thousands that had been submitted to us over the previous six months. One of poetry’s responsibilities is to represent the tenor of the times, and these poems do, covering pop culture and politics, love and lust, truth in beauty, and tragic violence. Jon Sands decodes the Trayvon Martin case, Alison Luterman responds to mass shootings, and Moe Szyslak (of The Simpsons) calls the Listen Lady. In other poems we find canned coats, a lost mermaid, crepe myrtles, and the “ridiculous big” Fried Elvis sandwich. These are poems of horror and humor and heart, with a new story on almost every page.

In the conversations section, Alan Fox discusses poetry and life with the always-vibrant Ellen Bass.


Audio Available = audio available

Open Poetry

Audio Available Cristin O’Keefe Aptowicz Things That Happen During Pet-Sitting
Corrina Bain When the Focus Group Calls …
Audio Available Ellen Bass How I Became Miss America
Audio Available Michael Bazzett The Last Expedition
Francesca Bell I Long to Hold the Poetry Editor’s Penis …
Where We Are Most Tender
Audio Available C. Wade Bentley Storytelling
Audio Available Roy Bentley Ringo Starr Answers Questions …
Tom Chandler A Kind of Lincoln
Bill Christophersen Hole
Bruce Cohen Career-Minded
Steven Coughlin Sacred Heart
Audio Available Kwame Dawes Rope
Audio Available Kim Dower Boob Job
Audio Available Kelly Fordon Tell Me When It Starts to Hurt
Alan Fox Two Poems
Chris Green Christmas Canner
Mark Hendrickson Cupcakes
Tom C. Hunley Moe Szyslak
Audio Available Charlotte Innes The Ex
Audio Available Ann Eichler Kolakowski Triolet for Laika, First Dog in Space
Audio Available S.H. Lohmann What It Means to Be Taken
Alison Luterman When I Heard About the Gunman
Audio Available Marie-Elizabeth Mali Mind Too Much
Audio Available Michael Meyerhofer Virginity
Audio Available Matthew Murrey Box Turtles Fucking
Audio Available Alicia Ostriker Ghazal: Freedom in America
Audio Available Julie Price Pinkerton Why I Opted for the More Expensive …
Audio Available Marge Saiser The Story, Part of It
Jon Sands Decoded
Audio Available Megan Sexton In Favor of Union
Audio Available Eric Paul Shaffer The Word-Swallower
Virginia Smith [The Age We Live In]
Jacob Sunderlin Fried Elvis
William Trowbridge Dead End
Audio Available Twixt Untitled
Wendy Videlock Merchant Culture
Timothy Daniel Welch Bolero
Audio Available Mark Williams Identity Theft
Yim Tan Wong Boy Stirring Puddles With a Stick


Ellen Bass


Doug Brenizer