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A Conversation with Marilyn Nelson

By Jeanne Murray Walker Interview

The daughter of a Tuskegee Airman and a teacher, Marilyn Nelson was brought up primarily on military bases and started writing while still in elementary school. She earned her BA from the University of California, Davis, and holds postgraduate degrees from the University of Pennsylvania (MA, 1970) and the University of Minnesota (PhD, 1979). Her…

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Last Judgment in Ferrara

By Will Wells Poetry

Angels prod seven naked sinners chained together by their crimes. Pigeons mock them with excrement and the flapping of wings while God broods, impassive on his throne. From the marble portico, all gape down as demons stir a vat of the damned and season it with another soul, there on the cathedral’s storybook façade. From…

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Stupid Praise

By Alison Pelegrin Poetry

New Orleans, August 29, 2009 One last Katrina poem, the final praise for what I hated. I quit. No more a guard dog of damaged goods chained in the yard, drinking from tadpole puddles, dragging my doom and gloom down happy streets. I swear. No more damaged goods, watchdog groups, or Katrina’s white flags on…

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On Visiting Carthage

By Jeanine Hathaway Poetry

In high-school Latin, I first read Augustine and wary could not, even threatened by grades, be made to care for his florid rhetoric or thieving of pears. Uphill I trudge from the Antonine baths Augustine must have known. The basement remains where puddles reflect fallen columns, their leafy capitals upside down. A corner maquette under…

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A Request

By Brian Doyle Poetry

Please give me the watches, Mother. Engraved 11-6-46. A gold Gruen and bracelet Bulova retired to a worn reliquary, a remote shelf, hall closet ripe: serial cakes of soap, tissue boxes, toothpaste on sale in case of another Depression. I’m surprised there are no smokes in there though Dad dragged on his last too late…

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Orpheus in the Garden

By Andrew Hudgins Poetry

In the garden of the Hesperides, where the golden apples grew, Orpheus caressed strings that out-sang the sirens, charmed hell, and softened the heart of Death. The hills crept close to listen, and marvelous trees, full of dumbstruck birds, bent toward him. —————The great crowd too bent forward, tense. Keepers stabbed torches into the starved…

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Where Do You Stand? Anselm Kiefer’s Visual and Verbal Artifacts

By Daniel A. Siedell Essay

I think it is beautiful to be justified (historically). ———Anselm Kiefer Forgiveness is the only way to reverse the irreversible flow of history. ———Hannah Arendt   ANSELM KIEFER is one of the few artists working today who have transcended the vicissitudes and fashions of the contemporary art world. His stature among artists working after World…

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Cotton Mather Examines Four Children Afflicted by Witchcraft

By Graham Hillard Poetry

Boston, 1688 Four years before Salem would lose itself to hysteria, Mather knew already the subtle workings of the devil, how an oak might shrivel overnight, its leaves as brown and parched as hostler’s leather; or a widow’s fields surrender to drought, her sons unable to save them, while a neighbor’s thrived. Only by confession…

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Name and Nature

By John F. Deane Poetry

Your name, Jesus, is childhood in the body, at times a single malt upon the tongue, Vivaldi to the ears; your name, Christ, forgiveness to the heart, acceptance to the flesh, a troubled joy across the soul; at ever my very best I will plead to you, closest to me, for kindness. Perhaps the silence…

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