Steven Pelcman is a writer of poetry and short stories who has been published in a number of magazines and in a number of countries including: Evening Street Press, The Windsor Review, The Innisfree Poetry Journal, Fourth River magazine, River Oak Review, Poetry Salzburg Review, the Tulane Review, The Baltimore Review, The Warwick Review, The Greensboro Review, the Iodine Journal and many others in America, Canada, Great Britain, France, Israel, Austria, Germany, etc. Awarded Adelaide Literary Award Contest Short List Winner Nominee 2017. He was nominated for the 2012 Pushcart Prize for individual poems and like water to Stone was nominated in 2017. Steven has spent the last 20+ years residing in Germany where he teaches in academia and is a language communications trainer and consultant.
Mr. Pelcman grew up in NYC, attended Rockland Community College and State University of NY at New Paltz. He has lived and worked in Los Angeles where he was a script analyst and producer of the Yesterdays Television project. He has also edited the Wings literary magazine (New Paltz) where he published poets such as Alan Dugan, Diane Wakoski, Dan Masterson, Miller Williams and others. Mr. Pelcman attended workshops with poet, Anne Sexton and was mentored by poet, Dan Masterson. He lives and teaches in Germany where he teaches at three universities including the university of education.
As you may know I am an American expat residing in Germany. I have traveled the world these last 20+ years and I have integrated my life experiences, continued educational and emotional development and growth into my writing and even into my teaching In other words, my travels have contributed to my cultural and communication knowledge and all of it has contributed to my literary writing experiences and much of the work I have published. Throughout this course of time, I have made friends far and near and I am very happy to have added this component to my previous Americanized life.
I continue to write and now and then, I have been lucky to get material published. Some of you may know while others probably do not, but my roots stem from parents who came from Poland and were in the camps of WW2. They emigrated to the USA and I was the first born in America. My sister passed away in her 30s due to cancer, so the family history is a troubled one full of challenges, successes and failures. There is far greater depth to all of that, but the key is to share that the writing I have done and am continuing to do has a connection to the above history. The poetry will take you to emotions, moments in time, physical hardships, joy found mostly in hope, the smallest of details that become universal as they share a common human experience easily relatable for each person to see, feel and think about. These poems are full of people and contain beautiful, sad, ugly, realistic and wonderous reflections and moments frozen in time about the human condition with all of its glory and frailties. Good and serious work should be vulnerable, full of images and open a window to the soul. They are about nature, people, animals, hardships, tragedy, and joy, about places and philosophy and much more.
And now with my good friends at Evening Street Press, I have the opportunity to invite you into my world, to share the joy and pain, the observations and stories I have experienced either first or second hand. I want to invite to see and read these private moments, the stories that other have lived and the reminder of life everyday in its smallest moments and in its most epic moments.
Mr. Pelcman has published three volumes of poetry which can be found directly at the publishers, Amazon, Barnes and Noble: They include:
like water to STONE by Adelaide Books 2017 nominated for a Pushcart prize
American Voices by Outlaws Publishing, 2017.
Where the Leaves Darken was released in spring 2018 by Adelaide Books.
As well as:
Riverbed is a modern western and takes place in the state of Montana in the year 1980. Its main characters are three generational family members; Jim Boudin Senior age 82, (mostly referred to as Old Jim or Old man or grandfather) Jim Boudin Junior age 40, (mostly referred to as Big Jim) and Jimmy Boudin shortly before and just after his 13th birthday.
The story revolves around the ongoing conflict of father to son, Boudin’s Sr. and Jr. and their generational differences, values, perspectives on life and relationships. Old Jim is a product of the late19th and early 20th centuries whose history was shaped by western American traditions, values and experiences. His background is varied and covers early American small town/country/ranch life to the Depression, both world wars and the running of a ranch in Montana. His wife Rose, who died at an early age from hard work and disease, is a steady underlying influence in how he looks at the world.
Big Jim is a Vietnam War veteran suffering from lingering nightmares, divorced from his wife Myrna, troubled, and trying to bring up a son alone like his father after his mother had died. He is also trying to cope with the role of boss on the ranch having to take over from his father who was no longer able to manage the job.
Both father and son are unable to communicate, and the story allows us to follow their conflict, miscommunication and attempts to learn how to love one another.
Jimmy is torn between both father and grandfather as he realizes the need to stand on his own and enter the beginning stages of manhood. The issues of his absent mother and his sense of place as well as the conflicts between father and grandfather are explored during a scheduled birthday present hunting trip into the mountains. Old Jim and Jimmy go hunting trip in late fall and are trapped in blizzard-like early winter storm. The adventure that takes place during this snowstorm, their rescue and their struggle against weather and wild wolves bring out all the issues and conflicts in the open and the means by which they are handled.
From additional characters, who provide some insight about their own life stories and their interaction with the Boudins we can develop some understanding of small-town America. Flashback scenes also reveal aspects of relationships and help to shape and form character and personality of central characters.
The issues of war, age, love, relationships, divorce and death, small town life, nature and ownership of land and its importance are central themes. Through these themes we can see certain common denominators from one generation to the next, their conflicts, morality and values played out on a large canvass in the mountains of Montana.
Although the absence of wives, other than the housekeeper and cook Juanita, for the most part is obvious, their influence and underlying presence is crucial and central to the story.
Riverbed is a simple story told with warmth and humor, and a bitter sense of reality in the midst of a sad and tragic experience that helps us to learn about love, the need to know how to communicate while discovering a sense of purpose and identity. Ultimately, it is about the love of family and the life challenges we all confront.
Steven’s photos on the cover of Evening Street Review