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Wake Forest
University Press

Wake Forest University Press

Dedicated to Irish Poetry

Wake: Up to Poetry

"The act of poetry is a rebel act."

The Process of Creation

While tidying up around The Press I noticed a pair of eyes outlined in hot-orange staring at me from behind back issues of Poetry Magazine. They belong to poet Alicia Jo Rabins, her poem titled How to Graduate displayed on the back of The American Poetry Review March/April 2011 issue:

God wrote me a letter in invisible ink. But
I got overwhelmed: the parchment, the
lemon juice the light the candle. I
accidentally set it on fire. The smell of
caramel flooded the world.

I thought about my journey as an aspiring designer. Graduating from college in this generation and economic standing can be bleak, especially for those of us who are less fortunate. And at the pace that the publishing world and technology are changing (for better or worse), doing ones best is imperative. I am competing with the best in the country for only a few select spots in a dream career, and it often feels like making mistakes is not an option.

Yet, after reading Rabins words, and listening to my mentor Candide, I have realized that trial and error (making mistakes) is the best way to learn and grow. Some of the greatest things in life were born from mistakes (Popsicles for example).  :) The next step is to rise above our failures and create something beautiful.

Teaching myself Photoshop and learning how to run The Press while Candide is away has been difficult for a perfectionist like myself, and filled with countless mistakes. But after taking a step back and reviewing my work, I know I’m getting better every day and I’m proud of the results.

All that’s missing now is the smell of caramel.

~ Ashleigh DePetro


Categories: Poetry

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