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The Best American Poetry
Welcome to The Best American Poetry blog. We launched this blog in January, 2008, to create a place where we and friends can exchange, discuss, and argue about poems and poetry. We soon discovered that it would be even more fun to post about anything that fuels our passions, be it movies or sex or baseball or ballet or cocktails or finance or music, because these are, after all, the same subjects that generate poems. Then we flung the doors open and invited others to join in. And we decided that contributors to the blog need not be poets as long as they share a love of good writing and poetry. The only things we ask our regular and guest bloggers to avoid are personal attacks. You'll find enough of that stuff elsewhere. We celebrate freedom of expression. The opinionS of our contributors are their own and not necessarily those of the blog's editorial team or of other contributors. We welcome comments as long as they keep within the bounds of civil discourse. Our roster of correspondents is always changing. We are large! We contain multitudes! Please visit often.Our roster of correspondents is always changing. We are large! We contain multitudes! Please visit often.
Interests: music, food, finance, cocktails, movies, baseball, sex, poetry, mad men.
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Billy Collins went to outer space, at least his voice did, and launched Emily Dickinson in orbit. Come fly with me, let;'s fly, let's fly away If you can use Some exotic booze There's a bar in far Bombay Come fly away, I'll take you to the stars To Juipter I'll sup on soup with her and drink champagne on Mars with all its cool cool bars Come fly with me let's fly up to the stars [the first stanza by Sammy Cahn, the second by DL] . Grazie a Billy Collins, il più grande poeta contemporaneo vivente, grazie all'astronauta Paolo Nespoli nel ruolo di lettore dei versi di Emily Dickinson. Or the full treatment: Abbiamo visto un poeta ed un astronauta parlare di poesia. Il poeta era un americano, e interveniva dalla sede dell'Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei a Trastevere. L'astronauta era un ingegnere aeropaziale italiano, e interveniva da bordo della stazione internazionale in orbita attorno alla Terra. Chi avrebbe detto che un giorno i ruoli assegnati dalla storia contemporanea - l'arte agli italiani, la tecnologia agli americani - avrebbero potuto così paradossalmente scambiarsi? Oggi, forse, comprendiamo meglio il significato primario del termine "rivoluzione": che nel linguaggio della scienza, l'unico che è sempre sinonimo di progresso dell'umanità, significa compiere un giro per ritornare, gli astri ad esempio, nella stessa posizione tra le stelle. Il 12 ottobre, anniversario della scoperta dell'America, abbiamo visto annullarsi la piega del tempo e rivisto un italiano, esploratore degli spazi fisici dell'universo, incontrare un americano, esploratore degli spazi metafisici del linguaggio. Grazie a Billy Collins, il più grande poeta contemporaneo vivente, grazie all'astronauta Paolo Nespoli nel ruolo di lettore dei versi di Emily Dickinson. Grazie alla John Cabot University che li ha invitati in occasione dell'apertura dell'ottava edizione di "Italy Reads Program" http://www.johncabot.edu/italy-reads/default.aspx , grazie all' Agenzia Spaziale Italiana, all' ESA - European Space Agency e alla NASA Earth. Or, in an official translation amended by DL, with some parts left in the original translationese (the troles "could have so paradoxically exchanged") << We [heard] a poet and an astronaut talk about poetry. The poet was an American, and [did whatever he did] from the headquarters of the accademia nazionale dei lincei in trastevere. The Astronaut was an Italian Engineer, and [took part] from the international station in orbit around the earth. Who would have [predicted] that one day the roles of contemporary history - the art of Italians, technology to the Americans - could have so paradoxically exchanged [could be flipped to their mutual profit, DL guesses]? Today, perhaps, we understand better the primary meaning of the term "revolution": which in the language of science, the only [language] that is [indispensable is the] progress of humanity, is [DL gives up] to take a turn to return, the stars, for example, in the same position among the Stars. On October 12th, the anniversary of the discovery of America, we saw cancel the fold of time [DL would like to do that] and revised an Italian, explorer... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at The Best American Poetry
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Next Line, Please this week features outstanding poems by some Next Line, Please regulars in response to the previous week's prompt that I posted. The column is called "Time, Fear, Lust, Truth, and Grant’s Tomb." Come give us a visit and check out recent columns. In my posts I quote some of the best poems submitted that week, but for a full flavor of the experience check out our comments field. -- DL Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at The Best American Poetry
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Terence Winch The people in the songs want out. They will not be your baby anymore. You cannot call them sweetheart. You must stop telling them how lovesick you are, how you can’t get by without them. How you cry, smoke, walk the floor. How you can’t stop loving them. They don’t want to hear about your dumb hurt, your feelings about rain and moonlight, how much you miss their kisses. How you want to hold their hand. What you think about their lips and eyes. They’re done. Your desperate love has stolen all their fun. Bonus question:: Reading this poem do you hear Ray Charles singing "I Can't Stop Loving You" or The Beatles's "I Wanna Hold Your Hand"? From Beltway Quarterly Review, this poem from "inside the beltway" comes from a formidable poet who has been named by Irish America Magazine as one of its “Top 100 Irish Americans.” For a second poem by Mr. Winch click here. Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at The Best American Poetry
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Richard Wilbur, who died last night, was born in New York City in 1921 and grew up in rural New Jersey. His father was a portrait painter, and his mother came from a long line of journalists. A graduate of Amherst College (class of 1942), he served during World War II with the 36th Infantry Division. He saw action in Italy, France, and Germany. He taught at Harvard, Wellesley, Wesleyan, Smith, and his alma mater. Dick liked living in the country. With his late wife Charlotte he lived year-round in Cummington, Massachusetts, birthplace of William Cullen Bryant, and spent many springs in Key West, Florida. In 2004 his Collected Poems 1943-2004 appeared from Harcourt. Twice he won Pulitzer Prizes. He wrote the lyrics for Leonard Bernstein’s Candide, and his translations from seventeenth century French drama (Molière, Racine, Corneille) are performed widely in the United States and abroad. Dick's greatness as a poet, translator, and wordsmith are (or should be) self-evident to all practicing.poets. He was also the most genial and gracious of individuals. It was an honor to know him and work with him. I profited from his expertise on many subjects: Edgar Allan Poe, the great American songbook, French classical tragedy, Milton, riddles, the haiku stanza put to narrative or expository use. In a New York City hotel in 1981 or '82 I heard Dick read his poem "Lying." He prefaced the reading by rehearsing his doubts about the merit of the work. But James Merrill had reassured him that it passed muster. "Lying" was one of Dick's great poems, I like teaching his "Boy at the Window" alongside Stevens's "The Snow Man." We were lucky to have Richard Wilbur among us for so many years. -- DL Advice to a Prophet Richard Wilbur When you come, as you soon must, to the streets of our city, Mad-eyed from stating the obvious, Not proclaiming our fall but begging us In God’s name to have self-pity, Spare us all word of the weapons, their force and range, The long numbers that rocket the mind; Our slow, unreckoning hearts will be left behind, Unable to fear what is too strange. Nor shall you scare us with talk of the death of the race. How should we dream of this place without us?-- The sun mere fire, the leaves untroubled about us, A stone look on the stone’s face? Speak of the world’s own change. Though we cannot conceive Of an undreamt thing, we know to our cost How the dreamt cloud crumbles, the vines are blackened by frost, How the view alters. We could believe, If you told us so, that the white-tailed deer will slip Into perfect shade, grown perfectly shy, The lark avoid the reaches of our eye, The jack-pine lose its knuckled grip On the cold ledge, and every torrent burn As Xanthus once, its gliding trout Stunned in a twinkling. What should we be without The dolphin’s arc, the dove’s return, These things in which we have... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at The Best American Poetry
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Elegy “She has a knee,” the TSA agent said. a pat-down situation--legs in wrong position. One forward, no, back. No arms overhead. Same strokes for all. First flight since the insertion of a prosthetic knee, first since vacation in a cabin named “Golden Memories.” I was watching the movie Michael chose for me, Scandal Sheet, 1952, with Broderick Crawford and Donna Reed. Michael was in the bathroom, place of danger. Was, in fact, dying. The squad arrived, positioned him, applied the riveting voltage. A tech set my I-pad to the address but I didn’t know how start route. Place with name of hospital was shopping mall, closed. Where Saint Dolly is a billboard, a serene welcome, a beige lace bodice with a feint of cleavage. How nice for her to be outside all the time, part of the scenery. An hour or so before the attack Michael had suggested we go the next day to a magic show. At this, heart sank. Mouth said, “Sure, I’ll go with you.” What magic now and never, what baton, mirror, slipped lock? Arrived at Emergency, the first of grief’s little rooms with its fresh supply of tissues. I didn’t see Michael. He was being prepped for transport to the city: a pallet swung, a spinneret of wings. I drove after, to the big hospital. Shut all down one side, as if by stroke. His chute-like bed. The black board’s goal of the day: Wean From Ventilator. When visiting hours ended, I was shown to a room filled with grief’s La-Z-Boys, grief’s Barcaloungers. People on and off cellphones. The day before, we had cruised the drag of Gatlinburg. It occurred to me that now we would surely never attend the “All-You-Can-Eat Lumberjack Feud Dinner Theater, or dine again at the over-hyped restaurant, its patio with a creek like a bandaged pet stretched alongside. State of the patient’s brain unknown, on the second day its controls sputtered, dials spinning, thermostats deceived— the board erased. “Your partner is very ill,” the nurse said. The summons. The neurologists’ announcement: “We feel we can be direct with you.” --“Just enough brain stem for some respiration. Imagine an aperture retracting, receding as at the end of a cartoon.” “Always assume that they can hear” The brain, swirling with movies, had starved into itself. All medicine too late, though the heart pulsed, stented. Unstinting. Breath held too long while my eyes and brain took in Scandal Sheet, while Michael was scandalously alone then more much more alone. * Death deranges the shoe size. The formal wingtips would not fit. No matter. So apropos, the dark suit, the Jesuit School tie with mascot Blue Jays midflight. I was left alone with him, tissues within reach. To the touch, marble-like. Not the igneous stone— the spherical toy knuckled down into dirt. He had talked of his drawstring bag of keepsies, ushered by manmade flood down the 17th-street canal. Tigers, Swirlies, Deep Blue Seas, Green Ghosts. He had talked of the New Orleans... Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at The Best American Poetry
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Editor's note: Walter Carey writes: "David Huntley, my source for this story, is the pseudonym of an executive at CBS who asked that he or she not be named. -- WC." For seven seasons, Linda Reagan as portrayed by the actress Amy Carlson was a stalwart figure in the hit series Blue Bloods. She plays the wife of hot-headed Danny Reagan, mother to their two boys, daughter in law of police commish Frank Reagan, sister in-law of Erin, brother-in-law of Jamie, aunt of the Columbia undergrad who used to go to Catholic school, granddaughter-in-law of grandpa, and a normal human being, who works as a nurse, lives in Staten Island, demands to be respected by her husband, and concludes phone conversations with him with this exchange: "Love you." "Love you more." "Love you most." Several theories have been making the rounds regarding Linda's sudden departure from the program. In episode one of season eight it is explained that she died in a helicopter crash transporting a patient. To those who believe that this is what happened to Amy Carlson, my source is happy to report that she is very much alive. There is also no truth to the rumor that she got sick -- "totally" -- with husband Danny always going off the rails and blowing his stack. That was actually something that endeared him to her, Linda admitted tearfully after one of their quarrels., according to Megin Draper, a close friend. It was really very simple, the actress confided, nursing a glass of Jameson's on the rocks as she negotiated her farewell package. It was "time to move on." The network executive who bears a resemblance to Ned Beatty gave her a skeptical look. "It really is time to move on," repeated the Knox College-alumna, who graduated cum laude, made her TV debut as Josie Watts on Another World in 1993, and currently resides in Chinatown with her kids and her partner. But she winked and touched her nose like Robert de Niro in Good Fellas so her interlocutor knew there had to be more to it. The pro bono work she has done on Frenchkiss Records has never interfered with her work on Blue Bloods, and while her significant other plays bass guitar for the Seth Meyers show on another network, that has never raised any red flags let alone hackles in legal. "Does the real reason have to do with Frank Reagan's political ambitions?" she was asked. "Warmer," she said. "But if you print it, Danny will kill you." Therefore my source has adopted a pseudonym and will employ the subjunctive to describe what the smart money is saying, which is this: Frank Reagan, as played by Tom Selleck, has the distinction of wearing nearly the same tie on every episode of Blue Bloods. Each is a rep (or regimental) tie featuring a red field with diagonal stripes usually containing white, blue, or a combination of the two. I happen to own two such ties myself, purchased... Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at The Best American Poetry
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It's Friday the 13th and I wonder how the superstition got started. I'd always thought it was because there were thirteen diners at the Last Supper but I recently saw a documentary about the Knights Templar according to which King Philip of France mounted a ruthlessly efficient surprise attack on the Templars and tortured them until they confessed they were heretics, gnostics. That happened on a Friday the 13th in the 14th century, and ever since it's been an unlucky day to be caught in a storm or shoplifting or in bed with a person other than your mate or just crossing the street before looking both ways in New York where, from one point of view, it's always Friday the 13th -- from The Daily Mirror (Scribner, 2000) Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at The Best American Poetry
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(Editor's note: As part of a series about new under-the-radar writing workshops, we've asked Rex Weiner, co-founder of the Todos Santos Writers Workshop to tell our readers about the experience of this magical place. Rex tells us that a few spots are open for the January session. sdl) Writers journeying south of the border in January for our fifth annual Todos Santos Writers Workshop will gather under the palm-thatch palapa behind our haunted hacienda for an ancient ritual: Storytelling. The awesome array of problems that challenge creative minds await them. Point of view, voice, structure, the revision process, that bottle of tequila beckoning from the bar. And most daunting of all: finding the guts to put pen to paper. For inspiration, our writers have only to look around them. The little fishing and farming village of Todos Santos is engaged in multiple existential struggles. Open pit gold mines up in the mountains threaten to poison the water that irrigates their fields, the water they drink. Fishermen battling foreign developers find their shores bulldozed for a boutique hotel. Barely recovered from last year’s direct hit from Hurricane Odile two years ago, battered by Hurricane Lidia just last month, this fragile oasis between desert and sea on Baja’s Pacific coast— so unique it’s been officially designated by the Mexican government as a Pueblo Magico—battles for life. As writers and good neighbors we are compelled to respond. Our rallying point is the 27th anniversary of “The Forgotten Language,” an anthology of “Contemporary Poets and Nature,” curated by Christopher Merrill, its title taken from W.S. Merwin: I want to tell what the forests were like I will have to speak in a forgotten language The works by ninety-three poets were assembled twenty years after the first Earth Day, in the wake of Love Canal, Bhopal, the Chernobyl meltdown and not long after the Exxon Valdez fouled the Alaskan coastline with 750 thousand barrels of crude oil. Its publishing in 1991 was, and still is, a timely reminder of what really is at stake, and how writers may “heal the split between the nonhuman and human realms of existence,” in the words of Merrill’s introduction. Luckily enough, we’ll have Merrill joining us, escaping the Midwest this winter for Baja to inaugurate our poetry workshop. The peripatetic poet, author, translator, journalist and Director of Iowa University’s International Writing Program shuttles between book fairs in Siberia, poetry workshops in the Ukraine, literary confabs in Seoul and other far-flung corners of the globe, lately touting his widely-hailed work, “Self-Portrait With Dogwood.” His earlier volume, “The Forgotten Language” brings strong voices to the front. They include Louise Erdrich, whose Grandpa tells her: “These are the ghosts of the tree people, moving above us, unable to take their rest.” The late poet Agha Shahid Ali counsels us that “Certain landscapes insist on fidelity.” We accompany Jim Harrison on a stroll, “Walking back on a chill morning past Kilmer’s Lake” into a landscape alive with memory. The poems approach nature in... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at The Best American Poetry
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Klein Conference Room, Room A510, Alvin Johnson/J.M. Kaplan Hall Room 510, 66 West 12th Street, New York, NY 10011 More information here. This event is free. Mitch Sisskind, is a Los Angeles-based poet and fiction writer and a renowned wit and savvy commentator on the shifting mores of American life. He is the author of Do Not Be a Gentleman When You Say Goodnight (The Song Cave, 2016) as well as two collections of short fiction: Visitations (1984) and Dog Man Stories (1993). His poems were included in the Best American Poetry anthologies for 2009 and 2013. Moderated by David Lehman, Poetry Chair and Professor, Creative Writing Program. "Donald Barthelme told me, early on, that Mitch Sisskind is the funniest living writer in America—and when I read "A Mean Teacher," I was convinced. This collection renders me helpless with laughter and admiration. Man, is he oblique or what?" —Michael Silverblatt, Host, Bookworm (KCRW) "Mitch Sisskind’s collection of poems and stories, Do Not Be a Gentleman When You Say Goodnight, is a retrospective of a near fifty-year career of provocative, unnerving, absurd, but most of all, searingly funny comic writing. Relying on irony, paradox, and the unexpected to evoke emotion, Sisskind’s comic talent lies in his ability to be at once humorous and moving, reassuring and unsettling." Thomas Moody -- sdl Continue reading
Posted Oct 6, 2017 at The Best American Poetry
I love this sly poem: Sylvia Plath Reads "Mushrooms" from Alex Allan on Vimeo. -- sdl Continue reading
Posted Oct 5, 2017 at The Best American Poetry
This is the epigraph that Edgar Allan Poe chose for "The Murders in the Rue Morgue": "What song the Syrens sang, or what name Achilles assumed when he hid himself among women, although puzzling questions are not beyond all conjecture." -- Sir Thomas Browne, Urn-Burial Formidable and fascinating in its own right, the sentence is perfectly apposite to the story it heads. Poe's example makes me want to compose a succinct ode to the art of the epigraph, which involves not only a cunning eye for a great and somewhat out-of-the-way quotation but also a determination to build on the quoted material -- to use it to quicken a new work into being. T. S. Eliot was terrific at the game. Examples will follow on the first of every month. -- David Lehman Continue reading
Posted Oct 1, 2017 at The Best American Poetry
On the eve of Yom Kippur listen to Barbra Streisand Continue reading
Posted Sep 29, 2017 at The Best American Poetry
The one time this question is OK to ask is when you are chastised by your department chairperson because you have missed a faculty meeting devoted to bitching about the athletes in the class who didn't even know X tweeted Y about Z and there's something spooky abut ninety degree weather in Autumn and tell ma about one good thing the human race has done, just one! For all other instances of "Did I miss anything" I recommend this poem by Tom Wayman -- DL Did I Miss Anything? Nothing. When we realized you weren’t here we sat with our hands folded on our desks in silence, for the full two hours Everything. I gave an exam worth 40 percent of the grade for this term and assigned some reading due today on which I’m about to hand out a quiz worth 50 percent Nothing. None of the content of this course has value or meaning Take as many days off as you like: any activities we undertake as a class I assure you will not matter either to you or me and are without purpose Everything. A few minutes after we began last time a shaft of light suddenly descended and an angel or other heavenly being appeared and revealed to us what each woman or man must do to attain divine wisdom in this life and the hereafter This is the last time the class will meet before we disperse to bring the good news to all people on earth. Nothing. When you are not present how could something significant occur? Everything. Contained in this classroom is a microcosm of human experience assembled for you to query and examine and ponder This is not the only place such an opportunity has been gathered but it was one place And you weren’t here —Tom Wayman from Poetry 180: A Poem a Day for American High Schools, Hosted by Billy Collins, U.S. Poet Laureate, 2001-2003 Continue reading
Posted Sep 29, 2017 at The Best American Poetry
The one and only. . .identified as both Cassius Clay and Muhammad Alli. . . with a squeaky voice. . .and with commercials starring the leads of a successful sit-com of the period, Betwitched Continue reading
Posted Sep 24, 2017 at The Best American Poetry
This is the best version. . .Echt Sinatra. Notice the be-bop scat in the second go-round. Yeah, I know the conventional wisdom has it that scatting is not his strong suit. Nevertheless he improvised the most famous scat line in all of popular music. You know: doobie doobie doo. da da da dee .da. . . . Continue reading
Posted Sep 22, 2017 at The Best American Poetry
Sharon Olds will take part. (John Hodgen and Stanley Plumly have had to cancel.)
My lovely freedom my little chestnut blinking your one eye bring back to me a quarter of a century of missing melancholia. For each Fall I missed there was a drought of wistfulness as if I drank my own sweat instead of eyes-shut naked on the balcony I just saw lowered in its entirety by a super-crane operated by Hart Crane in the new Manhattan fantasy of drafting its new skyline that to its credit and to Hart’s allows for better places for jumping from its heights. How thoughtful. Suicide must be given beautiful places to be conducted from. Personal esthetics aside the city owes this much to its surplus of sensitives. I don’t owe anyone any money, I’m a jewel in this city making itself like all America out of the future that will happen whatever the state of your soul bank account or opinion. I can go into business now: there are so many books. They are all about the future when no one will read them. The ones I have written can by themselves tower above us. To the bricks I say don’t worry about me I’m well prepared -- Andrei Codrescu Continue reading
Posted Sep 19, 2017 at The Best American Poetry
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cover image (c) Anna Cypra Oliver Thursday, September 28 at 7 PM - 9 PM The Auditorium at The New School 66 W 12th St, New York, New York 10011 Every year, poets travel from near and far to celebrate the launch of the popular annual anthology. This is your chance to hear poems selected by guest editor Natasha Tretheway and to have the books signed by contributors. Series editor David Lehman will introduce the 2017 volume with readings by the following contributors: Dan Albergotti, Mary Jo Bang, David Barber, Bruce Bond, Jericho Brown, Allison Cobb, Carl Dennis, Vievee Francis, Jeffrey Harrison, W. J. Herbert, David Brendan Hopes, John James, Rodney Jones, Meg Kearney, John Koethe, Jamaal May, Judson Mitcham, John Murillo, Joyce Carol Oates, Sharon Olds, Matthew Olzmann, Rowan Ricardo Phillips, Robert Pinsky, Taije Silverman, Emily Van Kley, Crystal Williams, and Monica Youn. Lehman will also read the late John Ashbery's poem fr om the volume. Sponsored by The New School's Creative Writing Program. Free. Continue reading
Posted Sep 19, 2017 at The Best American Poetry
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The New York School of poetry has long merited a blog or three of its own, and in Locus Solus, edited and written by Andrew Epstein, we who follow the lives and words of Ashbery, Koch, O'Hara, Schuyler and all the great others affiliated with them, we have a superb resource. The name of the blog is taken from the remarkable novel by Raymond Roussel, whom Ashbery and Koch and Trevor Winkfield have done so much to promote to an initially indifferent public. The title has a further ring inasmuch as Ashbery, who toyed with the idea of writing a dissertation on Roussel, grew up in Sodus, New York, a fact not lost upon the editors of Locus Solus, one of the two greatest avant-garde literary magazines of the early 1960s. The editors -- Ashbery, Koch, schuyler, and Harry Mathews -- sometimes called it "Locus Sodus" in their playful transatlantic correspondence. Here is a splendid piece Andrew Epstein posted about Karin Roffman's superb biography of JA's early years. I'll quote a paragraph or three below. -- DL <<< ~ The book includes a few more details about Auden and Ashbery that were new to me: six years later, Auden would of course choose Ashbery’s manuscript for the Yale Younger Poets Prize (passing over Frank O’Hara’s manuscript in the process), an award which led to the publication of Ashbery’s first book. That much is known, but apparently it was Auden “who insisted he pick a title from one of the poems in the volume, and thought Some Trees best, a decision about which John was ambivalent.” Ashbery informed Roffman in an interview that he “had included his best experimental poems in the manuscript, but Auden removed any poem that had objectionable language, including ‘White’ (because of ‘masturbation’) and “Lieutenant Primrose” (because of ‘farting’). Ashbery accepted all Auden’s changes, but he privately objected.” Also, as is well-known, Ashbery wasn’t crazy about the begrudging introduction Auden wrote for Some Trees. Roffman suggests Ashbery’s displeasure may have gotten back to Auden himself, who — she reports for the first time — once told a friend that Ashbery was “‘the most ambitious person’ he had ever known,” which, given Auden’s circle of acquaintances, is saying something… This is just a glimpse of the many gems of literary gossip and new insights that abound in this biography. As I said in my review, “The Songs We Know Best offers up a feast of new details, documents and colorful anecdotes that will be foundational for any future understanding of Ashbery.” >>> Continue reading
Posted Sep 18, 2017 at The Best American Poetry
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Alice slid down the cute and stopped along the way to enjoy -- the poetry of F. T. Prince, represented with three exemplary poems, on Tom Clark's blog -- a profile of Mets' announcer Gary Cohen, the best play-by-play man in baseball today -- Notice that the caption on the TV had it that "Game of Thrones" was not eligible of this year's holocaust." With the sound turned off, I wondered whether it was "telecast" that was meant? -- an interview with French scholar Vincent Debierre of the Unversity of Lyons: the subject, deconstruction; the guest, David Lehman. -- Alice thought about Stanley Fish's statement that as a professor and scholar he was obliged not to speak the truth but to be interesting. Was this statement an example? -- Kafka: "A melancholy conclusion. It turns lying into a universal principle." (The Trial) -- Do you think deconstruction and its strategies as adopted in various disciplines has anything to do with the emergence of "fakery" and the underlying debate on what constitutes truth and falsehood? -- Did you write a poem called "Fuck You, Foucault"? Yes, I did. It was published in Hanging Loose, the new issue of which has some wonderful stuff by such poets as Robert Hershon and Terence Winch. -- Aren't Alan Ziegler's "squibs" swell? -- Whether you have seen "La La Land," or not, the idea that its box office and critical success aroused controversy will seem either a foggy memory or a strange piece of info. But it did, and for its explication, and for excellent insights along the way about the art of Hollywood musicals, you can do no better than read Geoffrey O'Brien's essay "Let's Face the Music and Dance" in The New York Review of Books, April 6, 2017. -- Then Alice, gainfully employed, had to go back to work. on http://tomclarkblog.blogspot.com/2017/09/ft-prince-three-poems-mimicry.html Continue reading
Posted Sep 18, 2017 at The Best American Poetry
And then the Braves of Milwaukee, formerly the Browns of St. Louis (and of Boston previous to that) win the World Series with a lineup lacking a single Russian. -- DL