Burning Feelings

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In “A Poet’s Advice,” E.E. Cummings wrote:

“A poet is somebody who feels, and who expresses his feeling through words.

This may sound easy. It isn’t.

A lot of people think or believe or know they feel – but that’s thinking or believing or knowing; not feeling. And poetry is feeling – not knowing or believing or thinking.

Almost anybody can learn to think or believe or know, but not a single human being can be taught to feel. Why? Because whenever you think or you believe or you know, you’re a lot of other people: but the moment you feel, you’re nobody-but-yourself.

To be nobody-but-yourself – in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else – means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting…

And so my advice to all young people who wish to become poets is: do something easy, like learning how to blow up the world – unless you’re not only willing, but glad, to feel and work and fight till you die.”

Feeling can’t be taught or learned. Feeling is part of what makes every individual just that. Actions, thoughts and beliefs can be dissected as desired, but feelings, while they can sometimes be controlled, can seldom be changed.

Poetry gives us as human beings a glimpse at the tides and ebbs and floods and fires inside another animal so alike to us yet so unique, possibly making us a bit more aware of those movements within ourselves.

Show us who you are as nobody-but-yourself and send us your submission at sobotkalitmag@gmail.com.

-NR

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Kiss in the Dark

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Stephen King wrote in the introduction to his short fiction collection Skeleton Crew:

“Reading a good long novel is in many ways like having a long and satisfying affair…a short story is a different thing altogether–a short story is like a quick kiss in the dark from a stranger.”

A great short story is a snapshot, vivid and engaging, which can often have more of an impact than access to the whole album.

At Sobotka, we believe that the shortest embrace can provide the most enduring warmth.

Don’t be shy. Give us a kiss at sobotkalitmag@gmail.com.

– NR

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Smother Your Self-Doubt

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Sylvia Plath on writing:

“And by the way, everything in life is writable if you have the outgoing guts to do it, and the imagination to improvise. The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.”

It’s sometimes hard to admit that you might actually have an original idea worth the time and energy necessary to fully flesh that idea out, especially in this era of penny expression through social media. Stop doubting yourself. Start writing. If you’ve only got one good sentence on a whole page, that’s one more quality sentence than you had before.

String together some solid sentences and send us the result at: sobotkalitmag@gmail.com

– NR

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Burn Through the Journal

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Yasiin Bey, born Dante Smith and formerly known as Mos Def, said of writing:

“What I take from writers I like is their economy – the ability to use language to very effective ends. The ability to have somebody read something and see it, or for somebody to paint an entire landscape of visual imagery with just sheets of words – that’s magical.”

Don’t be afraid to chop your story down to its essential parts. Maybe when you’re done, somebody will feel something because of those little black symbols you’ve strung together.

When you’ve gotten your work down to its bare and beautiful bones, send it over to us at sobotkalitmag@gmail.com.

-NR

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