Press Release: Texas Beat Poet Delivers Best, Even in Death by Michael Aaron Casares, a New Collection of Poetry from Virgogray Press

Title: Even In Death
Author: Michael Aaron Casares
Publisher: Virgogray Press
Genre: Poetry
Page Count: 114
Publication Date: November 8, 2021
Release Date: December 14, 2021

Synopsis: A volume of contemporary poems born in pre-pandemic America that travels through that first solitary year. A collection celebrating life through consequences and the lessons that scar between experiences. Poetry written alone from its inception to its end. The evolution of the process sits silent, concerned with love, isolated in solace. It elucidates experience beyond resolve and repair, dissects the patterns of life as the world begins to slip into silence, and departure. It is a volume written in this subtle sleeve of time; a requiem given for the hearts of many.

About the Author: Michael Aaron Casares is an American poet and writer. He is author of Even in Death (2021), The Vanishing Poet (2020) and The Distance to the End (2016).


Even In Death may be purchased directly from Virgogray Press, via Amazon, or from your favorite place to order books onine.

Michael is available for interviews and other public/online events.


Links: (author webpage) (publisher webpage) authorpage (author Amazon page) (author YT page)

Get Published in Carcinogenic Poetry

Virgogray Press is seeking new poetry for its flagship poetry journal, Carcinogenic Poetry. Started in 2009, Carcinogenic Poetry has proudly featured hundreds of poems from writers around the world. Make no mistake, however, Carcinogenic Poetry is not a publication about cancer, nor does it look to publish poetry on the topic. In regard to why Virgogray Press chose to name the journal “Carcinogenic Poetry,” it has long been held that “The Truth Is To Lies Like Cancer.” That has been the ‘motto’ of Carcinogenic Poetry since it first opened its doors to poets more than a decade ago. Some writers got it. While works of fiction can ring out the truths borne deep of the author’s soul, Virgogray Press has long held that poetry emerges from the birthing place of that truth; as an artform, rather than an academic practice, poetry finds its true value from this truth. In keeping with this truth, Carcinogenic Poetry resonates with writing that eats at readers from the inside. And that is the poetry Virgogray Press seeks to feature in Carcinogenic Poetry.

Carcinogenic Poetry has specific requirements for publication aside from the general, though necessary criteria listed above. These requirements are not stringent, and offer poets the opportunity to share previously published work. However, if one sends previously published poems, make sure these poems were published more than two years ago, and the writer must send bibliographic accounting of this publication (the publication and the date of publication) for each sent poem. Another term of publication, authors must send a physical mailing address with their poetry. In a world so anonymous behind computer screens and avatars, it is necessary to keep a record for receipt. Rest assured, all author information is kept confidential, and is not shared with any third party. Finally, we do not accept poetry sent by literary agents or third parties. All poetry sent to Carcinogenic Poetry must be sent by the poet or author themselves, no messengers or middle members. Here are the complete publishing guidelines:

Publishing Guidelines

  • Send up to 5 poems
  • No simultaneous submissions
  • Previously published work is accepted
    – send title & date of previous publication
    – cannot be submitted within 2 year of previous publication
  • Send 50 word (or less) biographical sketch
  • Send address and contact information
  • ATTACH poems w/name and address in (.DOC) file.
  • Mark subject line: Carcinogenic Poetry / (last name)
  • Email to: virgograypress (at) gmail (dot) com
  • Poets may only submit once per 6 months if published

Thank you for considering Carcinogenic Poetry as a venue for your poems. As the Virgogray Press archive of literature continues to grow, it is hoped your work will be a part of the library.

Firing Up The Press Again

It seems we are firing up the press again over here at Virgogray Press, a long-awaited turn of events that has neither been in the making nor in the plan. But that is how life goes. We’ve been quietly publishing for some years now, both via the perennial and elusive Carcinogenic Poetry, and by way of my own books of poetry and fiction. As ‘the publisher,’ I found Virgogray Press best returned to the vessel it had become, a moniker, a vehicle to house my work, just as it had when this first began. Jumping back to the birth of Virgogray Press, in a computer lab, in a high school somewhere in south central Texas, the press was created for that exact purpose. I, a fledgling poet and writer, unbeknownst to me, a burgeoning publisher, began formatting and printing chapbook after chapbook of poetry. Saddle stitched, twenty page minimum. All of it on Word programs and bound by hand. Oh, yes, those early days of the new millennium could be viewed as tedious, but I never saw it that way. It was exciting to create something I loved as it was exciting to see my poetry in print. I didn’t say it was good poetry, but it was exciting nonetheless.

That is where Virgogray Press started. Some years later, as I took my efforts online, the internet saw fit to introduce me to a cast of poets that I would publish. 2008 is when Virgogray Press officially began publishing the work of other poets and writers. 2009 is when I opened Carcinogenic Poetry, Virgogray’s flagship and oldest poetry journal (and you know, Carcinogenic Poetry is not a journal about cancer, but someday everyone will get it). Carcinogenic Poetry is publishing again. We’ve had three marvelous entries by two US poets, and one Irish poet. One of the poets, Chris Butler, was previously published in CP over ten years ago! It was great to see he was still writing after all this time, but also in our pages once again.

Though I have been writing off and on for almost the entire past decade, and I have published work (The Distance to the End, 2016; A Trick of the Eyes, 2017; The Vanishing Poet, 2020; Even In Death, 2021), I did take a step back from poetry, and any poetry-type scene. The academic and the artistic, poetic or otherwise, in my view, became as infected as the world. With sickness, both mental and intentional. It is my thought that we now stand at the threshold of a true, brave new world, one where the truth and valor of poets is needed more than ever. Just as the comedian speaks truth through laughter and brings a striking levity that drives the point home and makes it stick, the genuine word of the honest and discerning poet will once again fill the cracks and the gaps of our cultural foundation. It is needed. Or we face meaningless, ineffectual, ‘garden variety’ verse empty as the trophies kids receive for showing up with their masks on to school.

With that said…

Where Virgogray Press will go to at this point shall be a daily progress. If you are a writer and would like to pursue publication with the press, your best bet will be via Carcinogenic Poetry. Are there more projects on the horizon? Yes, there are. In the meantime, feel free to peruse our library. Figure us out. We still have a few publications available. I highly recommend getting a copy of Donna Snyder’s I Am South, still quite available, and well worth the read (if you’ve never heard of Donna, she is a passionate poet of the southwest whose verse is timeless). There are a few more VGP publications discoverable out there on the interwebs, whether or not the press will receive any compensation for their purchase is another story. I’d say if you find a saddle stitched chapbook from 2008-2010, get your hands on it. Those are long out of print and I hand-bound all of those chapbooks myself. If you are a poet who has formerly published with Virgogray Press and are interested in working together on a project, I extend an invitation to you now. It would be nice to catch up, and today’s technological conveniences, I think would make for an interesting go at it. Right, then, enough said. Have a wonderful week.

Michael Aaron Casares