TOPCommunityTW CreativesTW Creatives: Tokyo Poetry Journal

TW Creatives: Tokyo Poetry Journal

Where international and domestic poets in Japan gather to share versatile verse and worldwide words

By Zoria Petkoska

Tokyo Weekender’s series TW Creatives features various works by Japan-based writers, photographers, videographers, illustrators and other creatives in a bid to provide one additional platform for them to exhibit their talent. The works submitted here belong entirely to the creators — Tokyo Weekender only takes pride in being one of their most passionate supporters!

For our latest entry, we present not a person but a group of creatives who have carved out a much-needed space for poetry in English language in Japan. The Tokyo Poetry Journal is that Venn diagram where the international and domestic poetry circles intersect, resulting in brilliant collections of poetry, translations, essays, criticism, and artwork. The biannual publication is known for eclectic and lively book launches bringing other artists to the poetry community, from Butoh dancers to drag performers.

topojo volume 6
Tokyo Poetry Journal volume 6 cover

The Tokyo Poetry Journal has had ten issues so far, as well as three other poetry book publications in their Excursions series.

Launched in 2015, Tokyo Poetry Journal (aka ToPoJo or TPJ) was co-founded by Jeffrey Johnson, Barbara Summerhawk and Taylor Mignon, later joined by Jordan A. Y. Smith (currently serving as Editor-In-Chief). All of them are well-established poets, translators and professors living and working primarily in Tokyo. Other members of the ToPoJo editorial team include: Editor and Designer Xiao Yue Shan, Copy Editors Joy Waller and Simon Scott, Associate Editors Zoria Petkoska and Mat Chiappe, as well as guest editors and other editorial members.

Get drunk on poetry!

You can listen to poetry readings at ToPoJo Soundcloud 

You should check out the ToPoJo Facebook and Instagram too.

For those who want to submit poetry, go to this portion of the ToPoJo website, and those who want to buy a copy should check out the lineup here.

Or just read on here for some poetry excerpts from previous issues:

 

 

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*Top image credit: Andrew Topel

*ToPoJo volume 8 cover art by Mad Dog Jones