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National Poetry Month and May Day 2012 April 30, 2012: On Saturday, I was again in the 9th floor offices of Domestic Workers United talking about poetry, about the function of politics in the creative writing workshop, about the 99%, about artists’ rights to their creative work, about documentary film, about the use of juxtaposition in couplets and stanzas, & about “show flow” for our [...] by

XCP, African Cities Reader, & other journals April 19, 2012: I've been seeking to find—or print myself—the perfectly structured literary magazine  since I began editing and publishing XCP: Cross Cultural Poetics in the mid-1990s. Those early issues of XCP sought to be a space where social utterance met social inscription, transitioning in the late 1990s into a more directed focus on social [...] by

Poetry’s Public Commitments April 13, 2012: On Thursday night, I gave a lecture at John Carroll Unviversity in Cleveland on "Globalization, Social Action, and Committed Pedagogy"—thanks to an invitation from my pal Phil Metres. It's a triangle of concepts that I've been trying to bring into conversation for some time. That is (for me), how could developments in labor history and labor [...] by

Domestic Workers United Writers’ Workshop April 10, 2012: This past Saturday was, for me, like most Saturdays this year. I slept in, had a mug of Irish Breakfast tea, took the L-train into Manhattan, and spent two glorious hours facilitating a creative writing workshop in the 9th floor offices of Domestic Workers United (DWU)—the group central to the passage of  the New York State Domestic Workers [...] by

May Day May 1, 2011: I was going to write a post this month on Alfred Temba Qabula, the great South African worker-poet whose Collected Writings I’ve been trying to get published here in the States for several years; I was going to tell people to read the Poetic Labor Project blog; I was going to say more on Tillie Olsen's "I Want You Women Up North To Know" [...] by

Workers Across the Americas April 27, 2011: Several times this month, fellow Harietteers have posted wonderful lists of books they’ve been reading, catalogs of their poetry bookshelves, overviews of new poetry volumes, histories of their late modernist avant garde archival projects, and the like. Probably not so surprising to those who read my posts, my own reading patterns tend to drift [...] by

Poets’ Strike (version 2.0) April 24, 2011: A few days ago, Eileen Myles posted – first through Facebook and then here on Harriet – a general call for a poets’ strike on International Workers Day (May Day). I have to confess that, while I love the trajectory of Eileen’s idea, I have my doubts. About a decade ago, I founded a small Marxist organization in the CLR [...] by

New Labor Journalism and the Poets April 15, 2011: Earlier this week, I had the opportunity to spend a few days in conversations with several prominent younger labor journalists at events at the Kalmanovitz Initiative for Labor and the Working Poor in DC and at the school where I teach in Maryland. The journalists included Kari Lydersen, a regular columnist for the In Theses Times labor blog [...] by

“Are you now, or have you ever been, a member of…”: On Wisconsin, Michigan, and the most famous question in the USA April 3, 2011: About a decade ago when I was researching Ronald Reagan for my verse play about the 40th President of the United States firing striking PATCO workers (“Capitalization”), I discovered that the Reagan administration had – like the great cut & paste poets and artists of history and of today – Apple X’d and Apple V’d perhaps the most [...] by

Conceptual Writing [verb, repeat] and Silence April 29, 2010: I think I’m finally beginning to understand Conceptual Writing thanks to Kenneth Goldsmith, who, in his consecutive posts on 4.27 and 4.28, drives home his point by employing the sentence “Conceptual writing [verb]” something like twenty-five times. As conceptual writing’s (oops, sorry, Conceptual Writing’s) spokesperson, Goldsmith uses [...] by