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On Being Started By a Blog January 13, 2010: I wrote most of this post just before Craig posted his lament for the bloggers. But I was too busy starting up my own new blog, American Witch, to post it until now. Though it may feel to Craig and others (primarily men?) that the great age of blogging is over, it sure doesn't feel like that to someone who is so excited about having created [...] by

A Moment with Maxine (and Robert and Henry) July 20, 2009: Alexs Pate, David Mura, Maxine Kumin, Annie Finch Stonecoast 2009, photo by Suzy Colt Bowdoin college campus. Cool perfect Maine summer night. The warm wake of a great reading---a strong and vivid event, Maxine Kumin and David Mura, each introduced with heart and thought by a Stonecoast student, and each reaching a powerful and somehow [...] by

Muse-Goddess June 30, 2009: For my last post as a Harriet blogger, I wanted to give a shout-out to what makes it work for me. I could say the earth, spirit, guidance, love, chi, or justice— I can see all these as names for what I understand as the goddess, an immanent (not transcendent) spiritual principle, who gets me out of bed in the morning and keeps me reading, [...] by

A Post of Posts June 30, 2009: I have only one day left on Harriet (though they have asked we who are leaving to keep posting occasionally, and I will look forward to that). I’ve been rationing posts, but I’ve nearly run out. There were a lot gestating. One about food poetry. One about finishing the ms. of a book that includes pretty much everything I’ve ever learned [...] by

A Toast for the Fathers June 27, 2009: Roy Finch at Sarah Lawrence College, mid 1960's Father's day came and went, and I've been wanting to say something about my dad, and all my poetic fathers, after all the talk about mothers. I want to thank my dad for a lot of things. For reading "The Night Before Christmas" aloud every year until I got addicted to triple meters. For [...] by

Four Ears: the Curse of the Metrical Code June 27, 2009: Last year I happened to be sitting next to the young poet Jericho Brown at a reading in Los Angeles. Jericho noticed me counting on my fingers and scribbling down some marks on a piece of paper. He nearly leaped out of his seat with delight (anyone who knows Jericho will not be surprised at this exuberance). “Are you scanning??!’ he asked [...] by

Marxist Hexameter: Genevieve Taggard in a Heroic Measure–now with audio! June 25, 2009: Labor Day march across the Mackinac Bridge A poetic measure can mean so many things to different poets. The dactylic measure, for example, evoked serious Homeric epic for Virgil's Aeneid and Longfellow's Evangeline, but a more satirical epic quality for Carolyn Kizer's Pro Femina. Here's a smaller-scale yet equally meaningful kind of [...] by

Why I Am a Woman Poet June 24, 2009: My Sister-in-Law, Sister, Niece, and Me in My Mother's Kitchen Anna Leahy reminds us, in her recent essay “Is Women’s Poetry Passé?” in Legacy, that “in the January 2006 issue of Poetry, the three female poets who had been asked to comment on “women’s poetry” (Meghan O’Rourke, J. Allyn Rosser, and Eleanor Wilner) asserted, [...] by

Overheard at the West Chester Poetry Conference June 20, 2009: “Welcome to the largest conference in the country devoted to poetry.” “Go ahead, tell us about the dactyls and the anapests, we can handle it.” “Thanks—thought I’d go for the Clara Bow look.” “So I said to Madeleine Albright, “good job in Lithuania.”” “That’s it! It’s just a more well-groomed crowd than [...] by

An Evening with Forugh: Iranian Poetry Night June 18, 2009: Forugh Farrokhzād Travis's post and recent events call me to describe something I've been wanting to post about for a while. One of the most moving evenings I've had as an American poet occurred in Farsi. It was at the house of close friends born in Iran, who had asked me to join a circle of Iranian-born Mainers who get together once a [...] by