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<em>The Guardian</em> Remembers Tom Raworth

Poetry News

Geoff Ward has written a proper obituary for Tom Raworth, who passed away in February at the age of 78. “His work challenged the idea that the concept of nationhood could ever be adequate to human aspiration, need and curiosity,” writes Ward, noting Raworth’s wanderlust and acclaim across ponds. More from The Guardian: Raworth was […]

Fourteen Lines: A Personal History

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I looked through my past poems in the morning and discovered I’d been writing the always somehow peripheral sonnet all along without understanding the forms of brief conclusive thought the poems had been taking so often in 14 lines without me. —Bernadette Mayer, 1989 Since 2009 or so the sonnet has functioned in my work […]

<em>Hyperallergic</em> Reports on Growing Support for the National Endowment for the Arts

Poetry News

As you might have gathered from our recent posts about the National Endowment for the Art’s current limbo status, we’re following the headlines with bated breath hoping that the NEA survives President Donald Trump’s proposition to transfer its funds to the national defense budget. At Hyperallergic, Claire Voon discusses a letter penned by over “150 […]

Lisa Robertson’s Must-Inhale ‘Proverbs for a She-Dandy’

Poetry News

Lisa Robertson writes of the she-dandy caused by menopause–yeah, you heard that right–for Buenos Tiempos, Int. This is closely connected to Baudelaire: “…In Baudelaire the menopausal flaneur and the dandy share a descriptive vocabulary. It is her mysterious austerity that is the instructive trait for the new dandy that emerges from the Baudelairean text.” Read […]

Aestheticizing the Stutter

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Although stuttering has a long history in the apocrypha of the West as an impediment serious enough to warrant correction (e.g., Demosthenes putting pebbles in his mouth to correct his speech and, more recently, Alvin Lucier’s experimental sound project “I Am Sitting In A Room,” layered recordings meant to reduce the artist’s stutter to an […]

Poetry Brings Solace to the Courtroom

Poetry News

In his New York Review of Books article “Poetry in the Courtroom,” ACLU National Legal Director David Cole writes about Gavin Grimm’s brave confrontations with the justice system, and a judge’s choice to honor Grimm’s struggle with a poem. Here’s Cole: Poetry and judicial opinions do not often mix. Judging is ordinarily a prosaic task: […]

From the Scene of Wave Books in the Wake of a Pulitzer

Poetry News

Brangien Davis writes for CrossCut about the tides turning Pulitzer for Wave Books this week, after Tyehimba Jess’s book Olio won the prestigious prize on Monday. “‘We saw it on Twitter,’ says Ryo Yamaguchi, publicity and marketing director for Wave, where the morning after the big win, upbeat jazz wafted from speakers and the sole […]

No

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History is full of people who just didn’t.  They said no thank you, turned away, ran away to the desert, stood on the streets in rags, lived in barrels, burned down their own houses, walked barefoot through town, killed their rapists, pushed away dinner, meditated into the light.  Even babies refuse, and the elderly, too.  […]

The Griffin Prize Shortlist Is Here

Poetry News

The Griffin Trust For Excellence in Poetry, based in Canada, awards the Griffin Poetry Prize annually to both Canadian and international poets. Scott Griffin, the trust’s founder, announced the finalists yesterday. From the organization’s press release: Judges Sue Goyette (Canada), Joan Naviyuk Kane (USA) and George Szirtes (UK) each read 617 books of poetry, from […]

Colloquy #1: Words on Freedom, Confusion, Resistance & Poetry

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. . . . . What happened? they ask a question without an answer—our confusion —David Rivard, “Freedom in the Midst” . Insight often disappears but leaves residues, . . . —Elizabeth Alexander, “The Gift” . There are two kinds of writing: sound writing and unsound writing. Sound is grace. We don’t earn it, but […]

Sylvia Plath Archive Comes to Light, Reveals Abusive Last Months With Ted Hughes

Poetry News

In unsettling news, The Guardian’s Danuta Kean reports that some heretofore unseen letters written by Sylvia Plath to Dr. Ruth Barnhouse, who treated Plath in the early 1950s, reveal that then-husband Ted Hughes beat the poet and told her he wanted her dead. “[T]he correspondence is understood to be one of Plath’s only surviving uncensored […]

At <em>The New Inquiry,</em> Chris Chen Interviews Wendy Trevino

Poetry News

Poets Wendy Trevino and Chris Chen talk at The New Inquiry about Trevino’s Commune Editions chapbook, Brazilian Is Not a Race, which “excavates a history of racial violence at the borders of the U.S. and beyond,” and how a radical Chicana politics might better be formed by solidarity in political struggle. An excerpt from this […]

Congratulations to 2017 Pulitzer Prize Winner Tyehimba Jess

Poetry News

The New York Times announced this year’s Pulitzer Prize recipients and we’re thrilled to let you know that this year’s recipient for poetry is Tyehimba Jess. The award was presented for his second collection of poetry, Olio. There’s been an array of coverage on the internet since the announcement was made yesterday, but one of […]

Rain Language

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It’s February 21st, 2017. We woke this morning to the obnoxious sun. We’re about to see what the latest terrifying rains did to our land and the river last night. We’re deep in the Redwood Empire of Northern California, on my family’s farm, a rough paradise I’ve been coming to regularly for the last 35 […]

Poetry News

The John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation announced the recipients of this year’s fellowships on Friday and we’re delighted to fill you in on a few of the poetry-related details. As you might recall, the Guggenheim Foundation awards artists, scholars, and scientists with fellowships each year in fields ranging from Medieval and Renaissance Literature to Choreography […]

Exploring Language & Society Through Work of Jen Hofer & Rodrigo Toscano

Poetry News

At Boston Review, David Micah Greenberg looks at “Poetry and Agency Under Trump.” “It is uncertain how art or artists will act in the short or longer term, but one form to watch is poetry, because poetry explores the nature of agency itself—what it means to summon the presence to act effectively and in relationship […]

Celebratory & Orgiastic Barrage of Smut

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[Excerpt from the notebook I kept in the fall of 2014 when I returned home to my native country, Sweden, to rewrite The Sugar Book, which was published in the spring of 2015.] *** Why do I always cry when I hear this Adele song on airplanes? Such an absurd song: the speaker returns to […]

‘All my writing is a single book’:  Lillian-Yvonne Bertram at <em>The Rumpus</em>

Poetry News

Though it’s billed as a “mini-interview,” there’s enough packed into this piece at the Rumpus to leave the reader more than satisfied. Lillian-Yvonne Bertram discusses a range of topics, beginning with a riff on life-writing and Mallarmé’s insistence that all his work formed a single book. We’ll take it from the top: The Rumpus: You’ve […]

Somalia: A Nation of Poets?

Poetry News

For National Poetry Month, Seattle public radio station KUOW interviews slam poet Hamda Yusuf on its program RadioActive Youth Media. In fact, as RadioActive’s Iman Mohamed reveals through their discussion, Somalia is a nation where the arts are a big part of everyday life. To contextualize their conversation, Mohamed explains, “When Hamda Yusuf was growing […]

Lorine Niedecker’s <em>Lake Superior</em> Resonates in New Contexts

Poetry News

At Ploughshares, Rachel Edelman extends her obsession with geologic inquiry to write about Lorine Niedecker and the Anthropocene. Niedecker “treats research and perception like a geologist treats a rock, as a concrete observation around which a narrative coheres,” writes Edelman. An excerpt from this glorious read: It’s rare to find a complete, preserved account of […]