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Roberta Beary - guest poetry reader for The Phare's COAST issue

"As guest poetry reader for this issue of The Phare, I learned something

unexpected about my own writing process. It is hard to put into words."


It was a pleasure to read dozens of vibrant ‘Coast’ poems from poets across the globe. In reading these myriad voices, I looked for fresh and unusual language that drew me into the heart of the poem. The poet’s skill in the construction of each selected poem, from title to final word, caused me to come back for multiple readings. Emotional resonance also ranked high as did the poet’s ability to weave images from everyday words. Each selected poem started exactly at the point in time required, with no superfluous backstory. All made the reader an integral part of the poem.


There were several well-written poems that did not follow the Coast theme. Although they did not make it into the issue, I have no doubt they will find a home. A few well-crafted submissions started out as prose poem and then crossed into flash fiction. I am sure these also will find the right place to call home.


Certain poems did follow the theme but used language that was either overly poetic, archaic, or employed too much wordplay. In several poems, the poet’s voice stumbled before regaining its footing. I thought of these poems as on the path to completion. Endings are hard to get just right, no matter the form. More than a few submissions were ‘an almost’ due to those last two lines.


As guest poetry reader for this issue of The Phare, I learned something unexpected about my own writing process. It is hard to put into words, except to say that my eye is a bit sharper than before. The submission process can be a daunting one. I thank the poets who submitted to this issue for trusting me with their work.


We'd like to thank Roberta for her brilliant feedback and continued support of our magazine.