Showing posts with label Rosa Mira Books. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Rosa Mira Books. Show all posts

Tuesday, July 02, 2013


Lemons the size of melons   |  Santa Eulalia des Riu, Ibiza, Baleriac Islands 2011


                               This has been a week for citrus 
                               zest and candles, yellow and green - 
                               I see a courtyard there
                               and a lemon tree whose unbound feet
                               turn stones to moss, a random toss
                               of earth incubating delphiniums 
                               for summer.  


This week's editor on the TP hub is Keith Westwater
with Planchette 
by fellow New Zealander James Norcliffe.

You won't want to miss this one (think rhythm, music and 'qwerty') -   

                               "at night the rats
                                are bigger than rats

                                they race back and forth
                                like typewriters. . . "

And speaking of typewriters, today I came across a California-based artist - Jeremy Mayer  - who creates intricate, anatomically-convincing and rather spectacular sculptures out of nothing but old typewriter parts. No glue, screws, nails or any fixings whatsoever aside from those integral to the typewriters. The article I read today introduced his newest work - swallows. Eerily beautiful mechanical birds. With their sharply-determined beaks, soft typewriter key eyes and articulated wings they are imbued with an air of expectancy and inquisitiveness as if poised - and designed - for flight. You can check out his birds here and more of his work on his website.

James's poem with its cast of rats prompts me to direct you to a rat of a different calibre. An unconventional, 'dance-to-your-own-tune' breed of rat. Ratty is PR 'person', office artiste and right-hand assistant to Penelope Todd of Rosa Mira Books. He is also the thoroughly lovable and eccentric partner to exotic Argentian fairy armadillo, Lily-the-Pink and father to three endearing ratadillos. Hop over to the Rosa Mira blog to meet them and to read a fine conversation between Penelope and Australia-based New Zealander Martin Edmond whose essay Winged Sandals is due out from RMB soon. 

It won't be long till Penelope posts an interview with Melissa Green in preparation for the release of Melissa's exceptionally delicate and powerful memoir, The Linen Way. Yay.

Ratty - PR for Rosa Mira Books (brought to life by writer, artist and e-publisher Penelope Todd)

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

TUESDAY POEM | Albatross by Penelope Todd

                                 LEARNING FROM THE BIRDS


                                This parent does not fuss:
                                six days at sea;
                                six minutes now suffice

                                to deliver her burden
                                to the child that waddles over,
                                claps and daddles beak at beak 
                                up comes the mess of squid
                                scooped from the black
                                a thousand miles off.

                                New-fledged, the young must jettison
                                the undigested stuff of infancy:
                                bones and fins, the beaks of octopi.

                                How wings grow slick
                                and open for that years-long
                                maiden flight no parent can impart

                                nor how to wrest eight writhing limbs
                                from the open sea at night.

                          Penelope Todd 

I was happy to be in the audience a couple of Wednesdays ago when Penelope read her poem Albatross. Vegan cafe Circadian Rhythm hosts a monthly poetry gathering here in Dunedin and we were there to listen and read. I barely gave Penelope time to sit down after her turn at the mic before asking if I could please post her poem here - and soon? Thank you, Pen. 

Wee 'Albatross Aside'. . . 

In Dunedin, when the first adult Royal Albatross returns to land after spending many months at sea - and, too, when the first albatross chick hatches - the city's cathedrals bells ring out in celebration.    


This week's editor on the Tuesday Poem hub is Helen McKinlay
with Lines for a New Year 
by iconic NZ poet Sam Hunt.

Sam generously offered up a second - unpublished - poem for readers, titled Tell Me What 

                                  "Tell me what I don't know -
                                   not what I know now

                                   or what I'll know tomorrow. . . "

The end of the year is fast approaching. . . There will be one more Tuesday Poem posted on the hub next week, after which we will all take a break, re-congregating towards the end of January 2013. (2013! Pinch me?) xo

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Peculiar Pair

Not exactly The owl and the pussy cat went to sea in a beautiful sea-green boat, but. . . in this pic., Marzipan (the cat) and Moth (his mouse gal) set off on a private adventure to a far-distant archipelago. . .  

M & M are the unlikely prompts for a wee narrative I put together yesterday for Rosa Mira Books. Fellow blogger and e-publisher extraordinaire Penelope Todd is currently featuring tantalizing teasers from the raft of writers whose short stories make up RMB's next - and soon-to-be-released - collection, Slightly Peculiar Love Stories. To find out more about the stories, and to catch another glimpse of Marzepan and Moth, hop over here

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Rosa Mira Books

Today is an auspicious date - 11.1.11. A fine line-up of 1's. It is also the date that marks the launch of Penelope Todd's e-publishing company Rosa Mira Books.  

A few months ago - on 18 June 2010 - our friend, fellow blogger, writer, editor & now-independent e-publisher Penelope Todd wrote on her new Rosa Mira Books blog, "It's two years since I woke one night, as clear-minded as I've ever been, and understood that I would begin in the coming years to publish, promote and sell e-books. . . Recently I came across the words of Russian poet and mystic Daniel Andreev that expressed succinctly the kind of work that draws me, into which I will put my energy - 'work that bears the mark of talent and at least one of the following: a sense of beauty, broad scope, profundity of thought, sharpness of insight, purity of heart, or a joyfulness of spirit alongside a keen awareness of the world's darker depths. . .'"

It has been thrilling and inspiring to witness the gestation and (now-imminent) birth of this soul-centered enterprise. I remember clearly Penelope sharing her experience of waking in the early hours of morning a few months into 2008, responding to the 'call of nature.' Out in her back garden, she was struck by the presence of two particularly brilliant stars in a sky pinpricked by the usual innumerable others. She related afterwards that that potent moment acted as a catalyst for what has grown to become Rosa Mira Books. The idea that  seeded that night, persisted and took root. Today, RMB moves from the realm of 'idea' into that of 'actualized vision.' Wow. 

Many years ago, a Carmelite nun stood up in the final discussion session of a workshop I'd been attending in Cape Town and (this, after observing silence throughout the weekend) made the following  statement; 'Reality is born of dreams: we must write our vision high on a billboard. If we want an idea to take shape in the outer world, we must first imagine it in the inner world; then we must speak it. Speech breathes substance into ideas that – if left unspoken – would otherwise remain in the world of the imagined and un-actualized, and therefore of illusion…’


Penelope invites you - wherever you are, and if you're awake - to 'give Rosa Mira Books and The Glass Harmonica: A Sensualist's Tale by Utah-based author, Dorothee Kocks, your energetic well-wishing when the site and its first publication go live this evening.' Please join us in raising your glass or mug - or tipping your hat - at 5.30PM, NZ Daylight Time* when we gather in Penelope's Dunedin home to celebrate this beautiful 'coming-to-fruition', a door opening to a shimmering set of new possibilities. 

Congrats, Pen - you're an inspiration xo


*GMT 4.30 a.m. 11.1.11
EST 11.30 p.m. 10.1.11
Sydney 3.30 p.m. 11.1.11
Utah 9.30 p.m. 10.1.11
Buenos Aires 1.30 a.m. 11.1.11



Today is also Tuesday which means it's Tuesday Poem day. I'm going to exercise a little poetic license this week and welcome in a second Tuesday (tomorrow or the next day, depending. . . ) on which to post a poem. I would, however, like to direct you to the TP hub where Mary McCallum has written an intimate and moving tribute to dear Harvey McQueen who died on Christmas Day after a long battle with a degenerative illness. A more gracious or courageous man than Harvey it would be hard to meet. We will miss him. His tender appreciation of the natural world - its detail, mysteries and rhythms - was a gift to all who encountered him on his blog Stoatspring. He was a deeply reflective and gentle man. 

Rest in peace, Harvey.