Salt & Fig Books is folksy, narrative, free verse that is down to earth and strangely satisfying. As the poetry imprint of Flying Ketchup Press ®, Salt & Fig was created to develop brave, new and diverse voices in poetry. We publish one anthology each year focusing on international and regional poets, as well as solo collections from Kansas City artists and poets. Our dream is to discover treasure troves of written and illustrated work—to create worlds of wonder and delight; to share your story.
Our first book with Poet t.l. sanders is an award-winning project which also inspired a film. In 2020, we started our Editor in Residence Biannual Program called "Poet-Tree" to help make the publication of poetry exponential--meaning, each of our solo collection poet-authors directs an editorial mentorship as well, helping to guide and shape another poet's work. Submissions throughout the year on Submittable. Check out our Poet in Residence authors under the Salt & Fig Poetry menu above.
News: Our anthology Night Forest will be on shelves by autumn, 2021. Our 2022 anthology Path of Birds is still open for submissions via Submittable.
HERE ARE JUST FEW OF OUR TITLES:
(See our full list under the Salt & Fig Poetry drop-down menu.)
POEMS IN GLASS: HASNA SAL
OUR 2020-2021 POET IN RESIDENCE COLLECTION, WINNER OF OUR HYBRID POETRY CONTEST
Poems in Glass is a uniquely original book--part memoir, part revelation. Through the panes, poems, and practice of glass artist Hasna Sal, you'll find the heart of a poet. "From the pulse of a small city park at dusk, one artist is forever changed." Hasna's insistence that "the artist's role is to bring awareness" sounds simple until you walk the bed of shards Hasna crosses with the people in her community. From a local doctor and his family in crisis, to the invisible victims of human trafficking, to the weary student in need of spiritual sustenance, Hasna explores both outer and inner sanctum, and our deepest needs for spirit and light. Illustrated with her brilliantly cast unpaned glass art, Hasna's lyrical verse harkens back to the form of Sufi poets and the warmth of bygone days where color brings visceral emotion and therapeutic energy to the mind and body. "Color is the elixir of life," she says. Read Hasna's stories and poetry as she lets color and prisms serenade her narratives through art and verse. Read more on our Poet in Residence Page.
THE VERY EDGE: POEMS
2020 ENGLISH, SPANISH, AND FRENCH: INTERNATIONAL POETS & ARTISTS
The Very Edge is an intense collection of urgent and inspiring poetry that brings together writers in English, Spanish, and French. Co-edited by Polly Alice McCann and Araceli Esparza, it celebrates thirty-six contemporary poets including New York poet Anne Whitehouse, and Kansas Poet Laureate, Huascar Medina. Let them take you on a journey across border towns and prairies, then to the top of the Swiss Alps; fly from the waters of the Amazon to Manhattan rooftops, then into an arid land where you can sit at a table and hear stories woven from the frayed edges of our hopes. With art direction by designer Kēvin Callahan, this book features several fine artists, including the work of textile designer and photographer, Samantha Malay, and incredible meditative portraits by award-winning artist, Mano Sotelo. Read more on our blog or our The Very Edge story page.
BLUE CITY: POEMS
2019 POETRY ANTHOLOGY
Blue City Poets: Kansas City, illustrated by SAV Art Gallery's Michael Savage, with Cover Art by Susan Kiefer. Blue City Poets hail from the pulse of a starlit Mid-Town roof to the beat of a cicada-humming, July-blue-summer day; from memories of the rolling prairie to the squeaky wheel of the shopping cart on a blizzard-ready night on the Eastside. Kansas City is home to the blues in a dozen ways, so come sit for a spell with like-minded memories, or visit for the first time. The words of these Kansas City poets will draw you in with a longing that is as real as it is enjoyable, and make you agree, 'There's no place like home.' With lush, buoyant paintings by Michael B Savage, this anthology features works by Malcolm Byers, Kēvin Paul Callahan, William Edward Dozier, Melissa Goodnight, Jamie Lynn Heller, Mary-Lane Kamberg, C.M. Millen, Frances A. Rove, Mary Silwance, T.L. Sanders, Taylor Ware. Read more on our Blue City Poets Story page or our blog.
SWEETENED CONDENSED: POETRY & PHOTOGRAPHS
Two parts sugar, three parts POET
Rebecca Grabill's Sweetened Condensed is two parts sugar, three parts milk: the life of a writer and mother of six encapsulated into raw moments of lyrical free verse with the author's black and white photography. Rebecca Grabill's first collection brings her readers home to rural Michigan and into the world of a woman on the path less traveled--wife, daughter, teacher, author, and mother. She writes, "I love words, the music they make, their personalities and scents and textures. Words are like Sendak’s Wild Things, each clamoring for their own Rumpus. I love creating stories by taming a few of those wild and wily words, and then inspiring others to explore their own creativity."
Rebecca is an award-winning author of the picture books, Halloween Good Night (Atheneum, Simon & Schuster), Violet and the Woof (Katherine Tegen Books, HarperCollins), A Year With Mama Earth (Eerdmans Books for Young Readers 2019). Her other publications include poetry and essays in a broad range of literary journals. Read more about this project on our Sweetened Condensed Story Page or her blog.
NARRATIVE POETRY BY OUR FOUNDER, POLLY ALICE MCCANN
In her vivid collection, Puss ‘N Boötes: Dark Poems, Polly Alice plunges her readers into dusky dreamscapes and ushers in such folk tale characters as the come-alive flickering stars, lighting the way through a dark night. Meet characters like The White Cat, Dorothy of Oz, Castillo, Red Riding Hood, Gerda & The Snow Queen, and Eve. Polly threads the theme of the Spring constellation, Boötes, the hunter shepherd, to our own times of coming out of darkness into the light. In Kinlight, Polly Alice plunges us down the road of paths unseen and not taken--roads of inspired direction fraught with the need for courage, taking us on the sometimes frightening journey into our own souls. These two collections are companions to a third book of narrative poetry Tea with Alice (2019). Find out more at pollymccann.com.
kNew THE POETIC SCREENPLAY & CHAPBOOK
SUMMER 2021: kNew-Born, the Film
POET T.L. SANDERS
The Poetic Screenplay kNew is a lyrical screenplay at the heart of open mic. Like jazz, T.L. Sanders' poetry is his affinity for sound. “Intense, gripping . . . a one-two punch . . . written in fire and delivered with thunder," writes reviewer Kelly Luck. These debut poems present Dr. James Dean, a quiet family man who goes back to Kansas City to mourn the death of a father he hardly knew. The Blue Room holds just another stage where anyone can spit some lyrics. But this night, a new vision awakens when a community grieves a prodigal father. Something new emerges in the hearts of those willing to speak their truth . . . and who takes the stage might very well surprise you. Read more about Poet. T.L. Sanders on our kNew Story page or our blog, and check out his evocative release The Chapbook.
ROAD MAP: POEMS, PAINTINGS & STUFF
The Gentleman's Artist's Chapbook: A Poetic Journey
"In a world of daily headlines ... it is amazing to read the beauty of the incidental...This is the amazing stuff."
--Hugh Merrill, Artist, Lecturer, Poet
“A long and winding road” the Beatles sang, but this Road Map is a poetic journey through an American Artist's life well-lived. With a keen eye for wisdom, wit, and historically hilarious self-portraits illustrating his travels, you'll want to grab a walking stick and join Kēvin for a globe-trekking adventure from African Safari to the old family farm. Trust us--you'll have a rollicking good time! Read more
Kēvin Callahan, author, artist, and traveler hails from Drake University, and both the Chicago and San Francisco Art Institutes. Kēvin Callahan is an “accidental poet" and the author of two short story collections, many journal-published short stories, and a novel. His award-winning artwork hangs in collections throughout the United States, and in Canada, Europe, and Israel. After a career in graphic design, he now works with Flying Ketchup Press as our design and art expert. His distinctive modern portraits and figures are shown worldwide and include a line of handcrafted wood items at www.PrairiePrimitive.com. He maintains a studio and gallery, the Elegant Line, in Parkville, MO.