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Posts Tagged ‘poetry’

A Letter To Stephen Dunn

By Richard ChessAugust 16, 2018

Dear Steve, I’ve had to look away for most of three decades now—away from your work. “Why.” That’s the title of a poem, a poem in your book Here and Now, I read this morning. “Because you can be sure a part of yourself is always missing,” the poem begins. When I read your poems…

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Maya Angelou’s Caged Bird and Me

By Allison Backous TroyAugust 15, 2018

But a plea, that upward to Heaven he flings —Paul Lawrence Dunbar, “Sympathy” I first read Maya Angelou’s I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings when I was thirteen. I discovered the book through an interview with Fiona Apple, one of the many female singer-songwriters whose mournful lyrics poured through my boom box speakers while…

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Sonnets in the Prime of My Life

By Tania RunyanJuly 3, 2018

The sonnet, of course, is the gold standard of form, the first one most people identify. That’s why I decided to wait several months before working on sonnets during my Year of Forms. There’s just so much pressure surrounding The One. I mean, come on: My mistress’ eyes are nothing like the sun; Coral is…

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Yehuda Amichai: My One Poet

By Richard ChessJune 18, 2018

If I could have only one poet, I’d choose Yehuda Amichai. He’s the poet of the city where I came to life in my twenties: Jerusalem is a port city on the shore of eternity…. Jerusalem is the Venice of God.   Jerusalem stone is the only stone that can feel pain. It has a…

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Halted by Haiku

By Tania RunyanMay 8, 2018

The last thing the world needs is another post about “living in the moment,” but I just spent a month failing at haiku and can’t help but speak about what I have seen and heard. I’ve been engaging with form this year, so far writing a whole slew of sestinas, villanelles, and most recently, haiku—by…

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Poetry Friday: “hydrangea”

By Tara BrayApril 27, 2018

This is the time of year when I anxiously wait for flowers to reappear. Our valley’s famous tulip fields that are now in full bloom, the show-stopping roses by the front door, and the dramatic yet fleeting peonies that outline our garden beds. We also have a hydrangea outside the living room window and I…

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Singing Silence in A Far Country Near

By Peggy RosenthalApril 10, 2018

“Without the traffic, silence / itself would sound red birdsong…” As I’m reading these lines in the poem “Seeing in Silence” in Murray Bodo’s latest volume, A Far Country Near: Poems New and Selected, I pause and ponder. How can silence “sound”? I could get literal and say that without traffic’s noise we can hear…

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Poetry Friday: “To Begin With”

By Kathleen A. WakefieldApril 6, 2018

Wakefield’s poem presents the metaphor of a peach as the speaker’s body: “I’ll let the sun singe the peach, / my flesh, luxurious, ruined.” The image of the body as a soft fruit blurs the boundaries between human and nature, planting identity within context. In this way, “To Begin With” reminds me of Mark Strand’s…

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Poetry at the Goodwill

By Vic SizemoreApril 5, 2018

When I was a soccer-obsessed fifteen-year-old, I had no use for poetry. I endured my school hours like a crated dog, waiting to get out on the field. One afternoon in the library, I picked up a random book of English verse and flipped through it. Eventually I landed on a song from Charles Kingsley’s…

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Villanelles on Planes

By Tania RunyanApril 4, 2018

I took several short flights this month, the kind in which going through security takes longer than the flight itself and you wonder if you should have just driven. But what you can’t do behind the wheel, if you want to get to your destination intact, is write poetry. I challenged myself to write a…

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