The Origami Poems Project

Welcome to the Origami Poems Project
Helping the world, one free micro-chapbook at a time

What is an Origami Poems Micro-chapbook?

The Origami Poems Project publishes micro-chapbooks. Poems are arranged on a single sheet of paper (PDF format) which is then is folded, origami-style, into a palm-sized book. Download the PDF to read and share. Folding hints here.
Origami Poems Project Kindness Contest
Our finalist judge, Peg Quinn, made her selections:
Click the above cover image to download the PDF.
We've published an anthology of 41 selected poems:
The Best of Kindness is now available on Amazon.
Cover image by poet/artist, Lauri Burke, "Rainy Cherry Blossoms"
Alphabetical List of Poems & their Poets in this Anthology available here as a PDF
April 2016 - OPP Newsletter
Above: Runaway Umbrella by Lauri Burke
"April is the month new breezes blow and upset the status quo! Nicely symbolized, I believe, by the wind-lofted umbrella..." - Lauri Burke
Read previous Newsletters (& Sign up Here)
Next newsletter leaves the e-door July 1st 2016
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Recent Origami Micro-Chapbooks Published

Every Micro-Chapbook can be dowloaded as a sincle-page PDF; click the Title to read/print/fold.
Coming Soon
Collections by Martin Willitts, Jr., Bob Carlton, JoyAnne O’Donnell
May 2016
Cover: Begin. End. Again. Again #9 by Jason Hancock
Night Spaces
                                                                               I get up to use the bathroom
                                                                               and all is dark. No little red
                                                                               or green points of light
                                                                               only the blue beams
                                                                               seen from the stovetop
                                                                               at the right angle.
                                                                               This has not happened
                                                                               since we lived in Autumn Park
                                                                               after graduation. Before the advent
                                                                               of Smartphones. Before we had
                                                                               a decent coffeemaker or wireless
                                                                               towers, routers, printers—friends
                                                                               I sometimes try to make them
                                                                               when I can’t find sleep
                                                                               and end up sitting in near darkness
                                                                               among the false stars.
                                                                                  Mark Danowsky © 2016
                                                           Night Spaces was published in Cordite, Issue 49 (2015)
Mark Danowsky's poetry has appeared in Cordite, Grey Sparrow, Mobius, Right Hand Pointing and elsewhere. Originally from the Philadelphia area, he currently resides in North-Central West Virginia and is Managing Editor for the Schuylkill Valley Journal.
Cover: Standing where I am by Garrett Phelan
Two Breaths
                                                                          Our lives bump into one another
                                                                          like prayers in improper places.
                                                                          In the slight disorder of silence
                                                                          we slip behind the sound,
                                                                          in this moment,
                                                                          of our two breaths
                                                                          smoothed and worn by suffering. 
Garrett Phelan © 2016
Garrett's book of poetry, Outlaw Odes, is available on Amazon. He currently teaches poetry in one of Connecticut's prisons.
April 2016
Cover: Moonlight Contemplation by Lauri Burke
Holding On
                                                                         you are light years from here
                                                                         but so close like a falling star
                                                                         did I wish on you?  I needed a
                                                                         Some days I feel so far
                                                                         sinking into the space
                                                                         of what's incomplete —
                                                                         Dreams flicker in faded
                                                                         foxfires of what could be,
                                                                         Your silence more powerful
                                                                         than words. There is a ghost
                                                                         now where a soul should be.
                                                                         Your poems shine moonlight
                                                                         on my skin
                                                                         when I am lost, holding on
                                                                         to your smile
Bradley McIlwain © 2016
Bradley lives in Ontario, Canada and his new book of poems, Elementals, is available on Amazon and Indigo.
Cover: Melusine by Lauri Burke
                                                                                   Panama Hat
                                                                            Poor Panama hat.
                                                                            You used to sit
                                                                            atop my father’s head.
                                                                            You had the best view,
                                                                            slanted to the side,
                                                                            as we sauntered down the beach.
                                                                            He loved the warm climes,
                                                                            the blue blue ocean,
                                                                            the endless bowl of cloudless sky.
                                                                            He sang all the old Venezuelan
                                                                            songs of his past,
                                                                            we ate fresh fish, drank gold rum.
                                                                            He touched your brim, held my hand.
                                                                            Maybe you think
                                                                            as you sit
                                                                            in the dark hall closet,
                                                                            Come back.   
                                                                            It’s been so long.
                                                                            Come back.
                                                                Tricia Marcella Cimera © 2016
Tricia's poetry is displayed by City of Aurora’s Celebration of Poetry in Public Places & Highland Park Library, April 2016-Nat'l Poetry Month
♦  Observations by Martin Willitts Jr.  ♦
Cover:  Hapi - Nile Flooding God by Lauri Burke
                                                                In every short breeze there is laughter.
                                                                You just have to find it.

                                                                 Every nerve ending is waiting
                                                                                    for that touch;
                                                                 the one that can lift you out of your skin.
Martin Willitts Jr. © 2016
Cover by Helen Burke
The Valley of Happy Songs

The valley of happy songs is where I want to live
The valley of happy songs is all that Wales can give
When the midnight Curlew sings
When the Sloeberry blossoms
The valley of happy songs is drifting and a dreaming
The valley of happy songs is where I want to live
The valley of happy songs is a cadence
That I have never heard before
The valley of happy songs overwhelm, overcome me.
The valley of happy songs is where I’ll walk one day with you my love
The valley of happy songs is in my heart and in my head
The valley of happy songs is where I’ll walk one day
The valley of happy songs is beautiful, so beautiful I cannot tell you
The songs you sing there you’ve never heard before
The songs that were sung there were with you when you were born
Will be with you when you leave
The valley of happy songs is where I’ll walk one day
Helen Burke © 2016
Helen Burke's collected poems, Today the Birds will Sing, will be published June 2016 by Valley Press.
March 2016
Cover: Dancing Under the Moon by Lauri Burke
Dancing under the Moon
In the dark before dawn
I pad down the cool cement
of our driveway to
pluck the daily news
from its resting place
at the base of the mailbox.
On those days
when the full moon
is slipping down
behind my neighbor's roof
to rest in the heat
of the day,
I salute his silvery countenance
and, since no one else
is watching, I
dance in his
waning glory
covered in the shimmery
glow of
his last full smile.

Joan Leotta © 2016
Joan's poem, Hearts, is included in the Origami Poems 'Kindness' anthology,
'The Best of Kindness,' available on Amazon.
Cover: Neon sign on Google images

The Daily Special

was a lifetime of joy
and sorrow, dreams
hopes and fears.
But it went fast.
And we're all out.
All we have left
now are the bones
if you still want them.

Jason Heroux © 2016

Jason Heroux's fourth collection of poems, Hard work cheering up sad machines, "takes him to the laboratory. The book is marked by several long serial poems that take his work further than ever before. Working in free verse, more formal structures and the prose poem, Heroux's image-rich verse explores loss, death, angst -- but with wit, an empathetic gentleness, and magic."  It is available this April on Amazon, Chapters.
*     *     *
                  A more complete listing of Micro-chapbooks from previous months are on our Recent Books page
All Original poetry published is considered for our annual Pushcart Prize recommendations

The Origami Poets

Welcome Poets New to the Origami Poems Project
..May 2016..
Mark Danowsky's poetry has appeared in Cordite, Grey Sparrow, Mobius, Right Hand Pointing, Shot Glass Journal, Third Wednesday and elsewhere. Mark is originally from the Philadelphia area, but currently resides in North-Central West Virginia. He works for a private detective agency and is Managing Editor for the Schuylkill Valley Journal.
..April 2016..
Tricia Marcella Cimera is an obsessed reader and lover of words. Look for her work in these diverse places and elsewhere: The Buddhist Poetry Review, Dead Snakes, Foliate Oak, Fox Adoption, Hedgerow, I Am Not A Silent Poet, Mad Swirl, Peeking Cat Poetry, Silver Birch Press, Stepping Stones and others.  She lives with her husband and family of animals in Illinois/in a town called St. Charles/by a river named Fox.
..March 2016..
Joan Leotta - Author, Story Performer, Joan encourages words through Pen and Performance - Giulia Goes to War, Letters from Korea, A Bowl of Rice, Secrets of the Heart - Desert Breeze Publishing & Amazon, Simply a Smile--collection of Short Stories - Cane Hollow Press & Amazon, WHOOSH! Picture book from TheaQ & Amazon. 

And she dances under the moon whenever possible.



..February 2016..
ayaz daryl nielsen (Daryl Nielsen) was born in Valentine, Nebraska, attended schools in Minnesota and Wisconsin, has lived in Monterrey, Mexico and Bonn, Germany, and now lives in Longmont, Colorado with his beloved wife, Judith.  A veteran, former hospice nurse, and ex-roughneck (as on oil rigs), he has been editor of the print publication bear creek haiku for over 30 years, and over 130 issues.  Ayaz can be found online at bear creek haiku—poetry, poems and info.   Ayaz daryl’s poetry has been published worldwide, including senryu chosen in 2010 and 2012 as "best of year" by the Irish Haiku Association, and, with many other deeply appreciated honors, is especially delighted by the depth and quality of poets worldwide whose poems have found homes in bear creek’s print and online presence.
James Croal Jackson's poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in The Bitter Oleander, Rust+Moth, Glassworks, and other publications. He grew up in Akron, Ohio, spent a few years in Los Angeles, traveled the country in his Ford Fiesta, and now lives in Columbus, Ohio.

Find more at jimjakk.com.
Previous poets new to the OPP
Bobbi Sinha-Morey James Brush • Kim Peter Kovac • Cynthia Anderson • JoyAnne O'Donnell Eugenia Hepworth Petty
(Peruse Pick a Poet page where poets are properly compiled alphabetically by first name - pleasantly)
We received an email in March from Assistant Troop Leader, Jennifer Basile.  Jennifer and her daughters had visited the Origami Poems display ('manned' by Lynnie Gobeille) at the Charlestown Farmers' Market!  She asked the OPP for help with the cadettes' Book Artist Badge.  

The four girls working on the badge wrote a total of 6 poems about scouting and drew a cover!  We hope this helps them get their badge.  Please send us a photo when you do! Below are 2 of the poems:
“A Girl Scouts Haiku”
by Reese

Girl Scouts is very fun
Cadettes are the most splendid
Girl Scouts is the best

“Why I like Girl Scouts”
by Autumn

I like Girl Scouts
because you get to
go camping
and it is fun
and you eat

Oh-So-Nice Comments

 See "Origami Sightings" page for full list of Nice Comments
I just happened upon your site when looking for an April is Poetry Month project for our teens in the library. I would love to be able to have a micro-chapbook display. I see that there are "self-stocked" libraries in Rhode Island but I know it is too late for me to request a sampling.

I would like to make sure that it is okay for us to use the PDF printables and hold a "pay it forward" in the library. So, our teens would fold the PDF's that we print off and pass them out to customers or leave them in the 800's poetry stacks for customers to take at will.

Thank you for the fabulous site and inspiration!

Sincerely, Christy M., Information Services Specialist
Columbus Metropolitan Library, Whitehall, OH
(Editor's Note: We did send the library a sample of Origami books... and with great pleasure! - Jan Keough)
Origami Poems Project, the sweetest little publishing endeavor we have, ‘changing the world one micro-chapbook at a time.’  Six of my poems in an origami chapbook, proof of love, cover art by Lauri Burke, titled, ‘Speak with the Tongue of the Wild Rose.’
  Received ten copies, all in a first class letter, and I am beyond delighted - will share my copies, including one to a Colorado poet/good friend with end-stage cancer (knowing he’ll love it).  Well done, Jan Keough and The Editors, well done, indeed.  Check 'em out, your poems could help change the world one micro-chapbook at a time!
ayaz daryl nielsen, Colorado, 2/28/2016
I'm really excited about this collection and having it be a part of Origami Poems!
Donald C. Welch III, Brooklyn, NY, 1/6/2016
Thank you for your kindness and enthusiasm and excellent suggestions and belief in my work.
Regina Green, Atlanta, GA, 11/29/2015
Love it!  And as usual, the artwork is completely perfect!
A.J. Huffman, Florida, 11/15/2015
I am so glad I figured out how to download the pdf files... and have been copying a bunch of other people’s books to distribute at LitFuse...  I also posted about this on the Poetry Postcard Fest site on FB as well as my own FB page.   The feeling of meeting a comrade in free poetry! and distribution is mutual.
Until we meet again in the origami garden!
Eugenia Petty, Pacific Northwest, 9/19/15
Thank you so much for this opportunity! I am very excited to be considered for your publication.
Veronica Matsuda, California, 7/13/15
Most happy you liked "I Saw Myself" as it is very dear to me and I was starting lose faith in it after many years out there.
Guy Traiber, Middle-east, 5/25
It gave me a real sense of how, through the internet and your own Origami Press publishing work and spreading the word is really making connections through creative writing on a global scale.
Winston Plowes, England  5/17

December - OPP Newsletter
Above: Bowl of Origamis Montage by Kevin Keough
Read previous Newsletters (Sign up Here)
Next newsletter leaves the e-door April 1st 2016


Poet/artist, silent lotus, sent us a photo of his copy of The Best of Kindness after it arrived at his New Jersey home.

* * *
We've been asked, "How do I get an Origami Micro-chapbook?"
Every micro-chapbook can be downloaded as a single-page PDF and printed - for free.  If you don't have a color printer simply choose the "print grayscale" option. Below are Screen Shots of what we mean.
The SINGLE PAGE PDF                                                  SCREEN SHOT of (Our) Printing Options

Micro-Chapbook Display Locations

Wendles' Cafe & Deli maintained by Mary Ann Mayer ♦ 
Wendles' Cafe & Deli, Franconia NH (seasonal) Display provided by Mary Ann Mayer
Poets' group in Lincoln, NB Wildflour Artisan Bakery & Cafe, Decatur, IL
Cafe 164 at Leeds Gallery & at Cafe in York, UK Self-stocked libraries in RI

♦     Due to the widening perimeter of the Origami Poems Project we are hard pressed to replenish the many locations that have previously visited the (primarily) RI locations.  We are happy to send a sampling of chapbooks for a display but cannot "stock" them on an ongoing basis.  We are grateful for your understanding.  If you wish to volunteer to support a location, please ask...   origamipoems(at)gmail(dot)com  

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