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 ]
Natalie Shapero, Smartish Pace & 32 Poems reading
Natalie Shapero reading for Smartish Pace & 32 Poems at Topics Cafe, Chicago, March 1, 2012.
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 ]
Q: What is American about American Poetry? A: Some years ago Donald Hall coined a memorable term for school-based, formulaic American poetry: the McPoem. I thought about it recently as I pulled off US 1 to grab breakfast at McDonalds. Has our poetry joined the mass-culture melting pot? The menu on the billboard reads: "Egg McMuffin, Breakfast Fajitas, French Fries, Hash Brown." Typical American gruel to be sure, but showing the mix of ... [ read more ]