I live on the shoreline of Lake Superior. My first chapbook, In the Yellowed House was about an imaginary family living in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. In particular, it was about young women living in a rural, male dominated culture. My second chapbook, Objects May Appear Closer, was a tribute to my parents, to our childhood in the fifties. Heart Radicals is a collaborative book of modern love poetry. In my most recent work, I have returned to the voices of the women of the U.P. Some of these poems recently appeared with the work of Michigan artist Andrea Kowch in the journal Escape Into Life.
I love the poems of Swedish poet, Tomas Tranströmer. His descriptions and images of the sea and woods feel so familiar but I miss the voices of the women that I know here in northern Michigan. My latest project is to blend in my poems the narratives of strong Yooper women with imagery inspired by Tranströmer and by Lake Superior and the forests and towns of the Upper Peninsula.
I try to write every day. Before I get out of bed, I follow this morning routine. I read poetry from books and journals for an hour. I write and revise my poetry for another hour. I have a coffee pot close to the bedroom. This way I am not tempted to watch the news or read emails. The quiet mornings help me focus. If I get stuck on a poem, I walk or snowshoe through the woods behind the house.
Janeen Pergrin Rastall lives in Gordon, MI (population 2). She is hopelessly in love with Lake Superior, the great saltless sea. Janeen is the author of In the Yellowed House (dancing girl press 2014), Objects May Appear Closer (Celery City Chapbooks, 2015) and co-author of Heart Radicals (ELJ Publications, 2016). Her work has been nominated multiple times for a Best of the Net Award and for the Pushcart Prize. She is an Editorial Assistant at ELJ Editions.
Linda K. Sienkiewicz is the author of the award-winning novel In the Context of Love, a story about one woman’s need to tell the truth without shame.
2016 Sarton Women’s Fiction Finalist
2016 Eric Hoffer Book Award Finalist
2016 Readers’ Favorite Finalist
2016 USA Book News Best Book Finalist
2015 Great Midwest Book Fest Honorable Mention.
“…at once a love story, a cautionary tale, and an inspirational journey.” ~ Bonnie Jo Campbell, author of National Book Award Finalist, American Salvage, and critically acclaimed Once Upon a River,and Mothers, Tell Your Daughters