Charles Wright will be the next Poet Laureate, kicking off his tenure with a Sept. 25 reading of his work.
Wright has 24 poetry collections and two books of ... [ read more ]
From Smartish Pace, Issue 20
Carson Cistulli: “Young People Will Have White Hair”
Leah Falk: “Westview Cemetery”
Andrea Henchey: “The Moon Is So Smart”
Timothy Liu: “The Garden of ... [ read more ]
Matthew Rohrer, Smartish Pace Reading
Matthew Rohrer reads at the Smartish Pace Issue 18 party at KGB Bar in New York City on December 17, 2011. Intro by SP Editor Stephen Reichert.
Rachel Stark: First off, thank you so much for agreeing to this interview. I'd like to start by talking about your subject matter. Your most recent collection, The Highwayman's Wife, draws much of its energy from the way you revitalize mythology. At the same time, you take on the English countryside with both the folklore of the highwayman and your numerous quotations from John Clare's The Shepherd's Calendar. What is it about these things that are important to you?Lynnell Edwards: Some sort of unrelated things converged in the spring of 2004 that I think prompted the Highwayman series, the first of which was "Sonnet for the Highwayman." I was tramping around in a very old cemetery in rural Kentucky where some of my Scottish ancestors (the McBrayers) from the 18th century were buried and I was talking with an elderly relative about that, and then an issue of Gourmet magazine arrived which had a feature on the Scottish Highlands, with several spectacular photos. The photos were gorgeous; I can make only a modest case for Scottish cuisine, however. After that first poem, I started exploring – in other words, I "Googled" – information about English ballads to see ... [ read more ]
Poet Greg Wrenn is classically attuned, but not in any classical sense. His first collection, the chapbook Off the Fire Road, is a brazen, electric collection of poems exploring clandestine desire and tracking said desire amid the AIDS pandemic. On the one hand these poems track discreet sexual encounters along a fire road—a set-aside stretch of dirt traversing unwanted land, a place meant only to give access to somewhere else. But then there’s the other ... [ read more ]