It seems that Sarah Lindsay has a sure grip of poetry. Some first impressions: Continue reading “First Impressions of Sarah Lindsay’s Mount Clutter”
I guess I haven’t yet described the particular direction of my thesis collection. I’m not entirely sure yet, in fact.
But I do have an inkling. I suppose one is never sure anyways about these things.
The inkling is this: Poetry and Science complement each other. There is a divide in U.S. society about the society’s cosmology, as Pattiann Rogers describes the term. The vastness of the universe – the incomprehensibility of it – begs for poetry. Poetry is how we humans explain to ourselves things we do not fully comprehend. Old myths have fallen by the wayside throughout human history. Progress always supersedes old myths, but only once society has made that choice. Old myths and world views – old cosmologies – fight hard to maintain their power, even to the point of violence. New cosmologies open doors to progress. New cosmologies beg poetry to further their cause. Poetry opens doors to new cosmologies. This is accomplished through wonder, beauty, and honesty. Poetry butts heads. Poetry breaks doors. Poetry does not know everything. Science does not know everything. Neither can describe things they don’t yet know about. Both are necessary for human progress and survival – to maintain a humanity in the face of the vast necessity of everything, in the face of the void, in the face of unknowing.
Discussion, of course, is welcome.
In that post, I mentioned that Pattiann Rogers expands Stevens’ ideas in her essay “Cosmology and the Soul’s Habitation”; however, although her ideas line up and extend Stevens’, she does not specifically mention his name. Perhaps Stevens’ theory has become so ingrained as to be an accepted part of the modern condition of humanity; in Rogers’ words, a piece of our contemporary cosmology. Continue reading “More on Wallace Stevens’ Concept of the Pressure of History”
My summer reading pile is about 18″ high, primarily poetry collections, so that’s about 25 books or so, I’d guess. I haven’t actually counted. And I know there are more that somehow wound up actually on my bookshelf. And I definitely know there are more sitting on my Amazon wishlist (don’t get mad, they make it easy).
– Sidenote here: One benefit, I’ve just realized, of physical books over, say, the Kindle or something, is that you get the sense of accomplishment by shrinking the aforementioned pile as books are read. Awesome sauce – Continue reading “Some Thoughts on Cosmology and Where We Are”
Why you’re here, at this blog, is up to you to decide… How you got here, why you’re reading, and everything else in relation to you sitting there reading this you have to answer for yourself.
Why I’m here is another story. I am using this space to keep track of my thoughts, ideas, inspirations, and everything else that I go through in the process of writing my MFA thesis in poetry. So that’s my motivation. Continue reading “What are We Doing Here?”
Oliver de la Paz’s collection, Requiem for the Orchard, relies on two organizing threads throughout. Those are the “Requiem” poems, which originally appeared as one extended poem in Guernica Magazine, and the “Self-Portrait” poems which appeared in various places. De la Paz confronts the construction and obfuscation of identity and self through these two threads of interrogation, and it is important that the collection resolves with the two threads together. Continue reading “Reflection on Oliver de la Paz’s Requiem for the Orchard”
How does one write poetry about grief, or heartache? Allen Ginsburg’s “Howl” and “Kaddish” might be one approach, but it is a rare poet who can operate in the verse-libre and still convey the absolute misery without devolving into melodrama. Many poets resort to form, which forces a constraint upon poems. In the case of Ashley Anna McHugh, the constraint of form has allowed her to explore loss in great detail. Continue reading “Reflection on Into These Knots”
If that is not clear enough, where a confessional poet’s version of these poems might harp on the “woe is me” shtick, Addonizio manages to allow the reader to experience these poems as though they come from inside, and not from the page. So, not that we are reading a memoir, but experiencing all the love offered to us. Even reminding the reader in a subtle way of other personal experiences. Sometimes, I can almost imagine being the speaker. Whether that is a fault of Addonizio’s writing, or my own empathy, I do not know; but I have an understanding, a connaissance, that is drawn out by the poems in this collection.