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Poetry Friday: “First Kiss”

By Todd DavisNovember 2, 2018

Todd Davis’s poetic imagination is steeped in the natural world. “First Kiss” demonstrates this as much as any poem possibly could. The poem describes a childhood courtship, every action of which either involves elements of nature or is seen in terms of them. This begins with the poem’s very first words: the girl sounds like…

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Bikram Yoga Kicked My Ass

By Bryan BlissOctober 29, 2018

The first time I walked into a Bikram (hot) yoga studio, I was met by a tough-looking man in his late fifties. He had the air of a mechanic, or perhaps a truck driver—the sort of person who innately knew how to fix things. I wasn’t that far off. Steve had been a police officer…

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200 Posts in a Decade of Blogging: Part 2

By Peggy RosenthalOctober 24, 2018

I was invited to write for the Good Letters blog at its inception over ten years ago because of my long-time interest in writing about the experience of reading poetry: how the poetry I read becomes intertwined with my life, and vice versa. One such post, “This Solitude We Learn to Bear,” that reaches for…

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200 Posts in a Decade of Blogging: Part 1

By Peggy RosenthalOctober 22, 2018

This is my 200th post for Good Letters. There’s something about round-number occasions, isn’t there? They move us to reflection, which is what this anniversary has done for me. I’m recalling how Good Letters got started, and how our blog has developed since then. Late in 2008, several of us who’d been connected with Image…

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Poetry Friday: “Walking on Water in Venice”

By Jean JanzenOctober 19, 2018

Anyone who’s visited a city far from daily familiars—surrounded by new language, customs, landscapes, and cuisine—knows how the senses seem on high alert, including our acknowledgment that we inhabit a physical body attempting to maneuver all of the above with grace and even confidence. Here, Jean Janzen’s speaker revisits a romanticized location known for its…

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Waiting for Nothing to Happen

By Caroline LangstonOctober 17, 2018

When I was in my twenties, toward the end of a not-especially-dissolute but nonetheless untethered youth, there was a period of a few months when I spent a lot of time with a man who had been the big local rock DJ when I was in high school. He had moved into my threadbare downtown…

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Morning in a Forgotten Neighborhood

By Morgan MeisOctober 15, 2018

The other day it was raining. The clouds were impossibly low, skimming the tops of buildings as they scuttled across eastern Michigan on their way to somewhere nice. The rain fell not so much as drops but as a fine, coating mist that moistened rather than drenched. A pack of stray dogs picked their way…

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Poetry Friday: “Lord, Sky”

By Betsy ShollOctober 12, 2018

The compelling narrative of “Lord, Sky,” set during the time of an election, is also sheer poetry. The writer repeats diction (“light,” “sky,” “moon,” “grin”) and layers language (“heaven,” “rainbow,” “stars,” “night,” “midnight”) to invite us “little trees of heaven / stuck in concrete” to pay heed to the world above and around us, to…

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Poetry Friday: “The Burned Butterfly”

By Anya SilverOctober 5, 2018

My oldest daughter’s was gifted a butterfly garden for her 3rd birthday. We watched the six larvae plump up. Then each formed a chrysalis and after a few weeks all emerged as beautiful, painted lady butterflies. We fed them watermelon and pineapple and when the day came for release, I wasn’t sure my daughter would…

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