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My Poetry Picks for 2013 December 2, 2013: I have to preface my choices for the “best poetry books of 2013” with a caveat: I know the people who wrote these books, and I like them very much. But I also admire their work very much, and [...] by

Dark Places (Part Two) April 30, 2013: The easy part was posting other people’s answers to the question: “Why Do You Write?” in Part One. Now comes the tricky part: answering the question myself. One of the first poems I ever wrote, [...] by

Dark Places (Part One) April 26, 2013: More than a month or two ago, poet, librarian and mountain climber James Wagner asked writers (poets, fiction writers, nonfiction writers) to answer the question “Why do you write?” for his [...] by

Instead of Reading This, You Should Be Reading David Markson (Part Two) April 22, 2013: As promised in Part One, here are excerpts from the postcards and letters David Markson sent me from 2003-2010: I still regret that inadequate answer to your letter. (Whatever it is, here—age, the [...] by

Instead of Reading This, You Should Be Reading David Markson (Part One) April 19, 2013: The novelist David Markson died three years ago, in early June. I got my last postcard from him, after a seven-year correspondence that started with the most fawning fan letter imaginable, in late [...] by

Just Saying: On Rae Armantrout’s Latest Book April 18, 2013: 1. I opened Just Saying for the first time to the second poem, “Instead.” I was immediately struck by the first section, which reads: To each his own severance package. The Inca hacked large [...] by

Work. Part Two April 12, 2013: To follow up on my previous post, I’ve gathered some thoughts on work from a few of my favorite poets living here in New York, all of whom happen to have interesting and demanding full-time [...] by

Work. Part One April 11, 2013: Hannah Gamble’s post about the Fence Family Brunch at this year’s AWP conference got me thinking about work. She and Fence Managing Editor Rob Arnold discussed their “worst jobs ever,” and [...] by

Brooklyn + Poets + Moms! April 5, 2013: The doorbell rings. Amanda’s here, with Beckett (4) and Scarlett (3 months). We lug the kids and their attendant gear up three flights of stairs. As soon as we’re all settled inside, the [...] by

In the Waiting Room April 1, 2013: In the last year and a half, thanks to various potential threats to my health, I’ve had ample time to consider the particular space of the waiting room. I always set out for a doctor’s [...] by