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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

Featured Blogger

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 […]

São Tomé Notebook

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Nestled off the Bight of Biafra, in the Gulf of Guinea, the island nation of São Tomé and Príncipe consistently makes the list of the world’s least visited nations. Unlike many of its fellow list members, it is a peaceful, multiparty democracy, with abundant natural beauty and pristine beaches. The second-smallest African nation after the […]

On Editing Marianne Moore: Heather Cass White at FSG’s <em>Work in Progress</em>

Poetry News

At FSG’s blog, Work in Progress, Heather Cass White, who has spent the last ten years editing poetry by Marianne Moore, reveals the complications that surround gathering, selecting, and editing Moore’s poetry. Moore frequently revised her poems, her vocabulary draws from “the many branches of knowledge that fascinated her.” White explains its overarching difficulty as […]

Shelby Shaw Interviews Gramma’s Drew Scott Swenhaugen

Poetry News

Seattle-based Gramma editor Drew Scott Swenhaugen speaks with Shelby Shaw at Fanzine about the newest Gramma ventures, which include the press’s first poetry collections, Ugly Time by Sarah Galvin and Community Garden for Lonely Girls by Christine Shan Shan Hou. “Releasing these two titles in tandem was a very conscious decision,” says Swenhaugen. More from […]

Books Received, March 2017

Poetry News

Alysse Aallyn, The Sacred Quiver (tredition) Seth Abramson (editor), Charles Bernstein (editor), Tracie Morris (editor), Jesse Damiani (editor), BAX 2016: Best American Experimental Writing (Wesleyan) Dallas Athent, Maria Pavlovska (artist), THEIA MANIA (AntiSentiMental Society) Jonathan Bate (editor), Paula Byrne (editor), Sophie Ratcliffe (editor), Andrew Schuman (editor), Stressed, Unstressed: Classic Poems to Ease the Mind (William […]

Narrative After Nature

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To the extent that the world is made up of narrative discourse these days, it seems to have two fundamental ingredients or axes: plausibility and syntax. I write, “To the extent..,” because I am unsure how great the influence of narrative on current existence really is—or, for that matter, where narrative is. But to the […]

Yanara Friedland’s <em>Uncountry</em>: A Constant Move Between the Real & the Mythical

Poetry News

Writer, translator, and Asymptote editor-at-large Poupeh Missaghi reviews Yanara Friedland’s Uncountry: A Mythology (Noemi Press, 2016) for EuropeNow, an online journal published by the Council for European Studies (CES) at Columbia University. Lily Hoang wrote of Friedland’s “permeable pages” that they “allow the reader entryway into a ‘mirror [that] becomes an open door,’ a door […]

Split This Rock Interviews Freedom Plow Finalist Francisco Aragón

Poetry News

As you might recall, last week we mentioned Split This Rock’s interview with 2017 Freedom Plow recipient, Christopher Soto, on its blog, Blog This Rock. This week, Blog This Rock presents interviews with the finalists, including Francisco Aragón. Aragón contributes to the Institute for Latino Studies at Notre Dame and oversees the institute’s initiative Letras […]

Forrest Gander Discusses Editing Japanese Poet Yoshimasu Gozo’s ‘Untranslatable’ Verse

Poetry News

At Reading in Translation, Forrest Gander discusses a new editorial project that recently came to book-length fruition, thanks, in part, to the team at New Directions. Gander invited Sawako Nakayasu, Hiroaki Sato, Eric Selland, Jeffrey Angles, Richard Arno, Derek Gromadzki, Sayuri Okamoto, Auston Stewart, Kyoko Yoshida and Jordan A. Y. Smith to translate selections from […]

Poetry Is in the Streets

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1 Under signs of the ruthless gangsterism of American politics, we made it to 2017, the centennial of the Russian Revolution. 1917, a land of lost left-wing dinosaurs, is a world away. It, too, was a moment of imperial degeneration. These days I often think of Jayne Cortez’s lines— the life blood of the earth […]

Reading With Eugene Ostashevsky

Poetry News

NYRB Classics excerpts a longer interview at Shelf Awareness about Eugene Ostashevsky’s reading life (yes: “I am now reading the proofs of Subsisters by the German poet Uljana Wolf, a bilingual edition with translations by Sophie Seita”). They also note some exciting recent publications: “We have two new books out from Eugene Ostashevsky: a book […]