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From A Long High Whistle: Revere and Condemn
David Biespiel
29 Dec 2014
“A poet’s greatest fear is that she will flinch....”
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From A Long High Whistle: Preface
David Biespiel
29 Dec 2014
“I believe that most people have little trouble reading a poem, that most people like poetry, that most people crave the pure pleasure of poems, and that most people want a poem that’s not too obvious. Human beings admire mastery. We enjoy hearing an extremely talented musician play difficult music. We love watching an elite athlete—like a world-class diver nailing a high-degree-of-difficulty twisting and somersaulting dive with no more splash than a teardrop....”
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Alma Venus Translator's Note
Adrian West
16 May 2014
“Years ago, in a conversation about what he considered to be the dispiriting state of Spanish letters, a friend and former professor mentioned a short novel by a Catalan who wrote like Proust. Later, when I had begun to read Catalan, I asked after the book, Fortuny by Pere Gimferrer....”
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From the Introduction to Sparring with the Sun
Jan Schreiber
22 Mar 2013
“The task of any poet, faced with a bombardment of sensory impression, a vast reservoir of recollected experience and images, and the disorderly swirl of feeling that accompanies them, is to select, record, and respond. Poets do so with the means granted not just by their native abilities but also by their moment in history, their relation to language (do they favor abstractions or concrete details, objective or emotional statements?), and their place in the world. With such means, great or small, poets must, in [Elizabeth] Bishop’s words, spar with the sun.”
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Commentary on Sparring with the Sun
Rhina P. Espaillat
22 Mar 2013
“Sparring with the Sun may not have neutralized the verbal acids contained in some of my collected rejection slips, but it has succeeded in teaching me something about the chemical processes that produce them in critics and poets alike: temperament, background, life experience, the impact of a given environment, the age, tradition, the need for consensus and ‘reassurance,’ and the countervailing need to reject the accepted and reassuring. More surprising still, this richly instructive book has pointed out ways in which those processes, producing those same acids, were—and maybe forever, in some dosage—essential to the creation of poetry.”
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Interview with D.H. Tracy of Antilever Press
Kit Frick (from Sapling #147)
24 Feb 2013
“Antilever Press is a nonprofit organization founded in 2010 “to discover, publish, and promote excellent contemporary poetry and criticism.” As a relatively new small press on the block, what should people know about Antilever?”
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Interview with Sarah C. Harwell
Kit Frick (from Sapling #152)
25 Oct 2012
“Writing gets done in the cracks and crevices, stealing time from one obligation to give to another. In the meantime I cut out all the non-essentials. We eat a lot of take out. I don’t watch much television. I don’t garden. I’m not a great housekeeper. Laundry is done once a month, or less. But I would rather have my daughter than a thousand poems, and I’d rather have a job than starve. Life is messy, which is good, for otherwise there would be no need of poems.”
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Foreword to DIALOGOS
Rosanna Warren
26 Jul 2012
“[Kalogeris] throws the emphasis away from the personality of the translator, and onto the mysterious, atemporal unity of imagination the pairings propose. The effect is startling, revelatory.”
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Commentary on DIALOGOS
David Ferry
26 Jul 2012
“George Kalogeris’s translations in this book, all of them, are instances of realization, realization in several senses but mainly in two: making the poem he is translating be realized, made real in the language it’s being translated into, and realizing it not only by bringing it across like a message of its sense from beyond the border, but by his choices of language and syntax and his versification, making the translation a poem made real in the company of other good poems, whether translations or not—a poem of his own.”
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Foreword to Sit Down Traveler
Christopher Kennedy
26 Jul 2012
“Reading Sarah C. Harwell’s debut collection of poems, Sit Down Traveler, is a bit like rummaging through a forgotten box taken down from a shelf. The box contains old photographs. There is a family trip to an apple orchard, a night out with friends at a country western bar, and a glimpse of flowers placed at a memorial. Except these are not your pictures, not your family and friends. They belong to a stranger, but despite this disconnect there is something about them that compels you to keep looking at them.”
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