Friday, March 18, 2011
Monday, March 14, 2011
So in this world, what should we be writing? In the 90s, Carolyn Forche's poetry of witness called for a "social" space within which to grapple with our disastrous world. Take Nick Flynn's new book, The Captain Asks for a Show of Hands. Is this considered poetry of witness? I find the differentiation between personal, political, and social in Forche's description to be the troubling bit. Flynn's book pulls together references to news headlines, lines from Galway Kinnell and Krishna and Arcade Fire songs and Abu Ghraib testimonials to create a timely portrait that is not apolitical, not apersonal, and not asocial. I guess also the other thing I feel weird about is the passivity of the word "witness," as if it could only take information in and then testify. I think the writer should have a powerful opinion because the writer has a powerful conscience.
Monday, March 7, 2011
New York Times' nostalgic vision of poetry by Johannes Goransson (at Montevidayo). Oh, NYT. When will you stop disappointing us?
This is a fantastic book: The Mechanics of Homosexual Intercourse by Lonely Christopher (bonus points for also being a great title to be seen reading on the train, and the cover is so beautiful, with its photograph by Anthony Goicolea).
How to be a woman in a Boys' Club by Molly Lambert (at This Recording). I read this last week. It's so tragic that we have to pander to the boys' club idea but it exists and Lambert has some thoughts being in it... how should I say this? Stylishly and with conscience. (Read also Lambert's post on Fleetwood Mac.)