Basho, On Love and Barley (tr., Lucien Styrk). Always magic, always mixing worlds and worlds and worlds.
Donna de la Perriere, “First Love,” in Volt (http://www.voltpoetry.com/images/volt17_Perriere.pdf). A great new poem by a great poet.
Paul Hoover, desolation : souvenir. A great book—one of the most beautiful (one of the wisest) books of poetry I have ever read.
Kathryn Pringle, Fault Tree. If you’re worrying about the future of poetry, stop.
Nijole Miliauskaite (tr., Jonas Zdanys), four poems in The Vintage Book of Contemporary World Poetry (ed., J.D. McClatchey). Miliauskaite’s poems are wonderful and absolutely necessary—I need to find more of her work right away.
Drunken Boat is proud to announce its 2012 Pushcart Prize Nominees–
Supriya Bhatnagar, “Of Kabir and Karma”
Luis Francia, “For the Lovers in Fallujah”
Cróna Gallagher, “Ballypuca”
Amit Majmudar, “Pandemic Ghazal”
Barbara Ellen Sorensen, “Ghost Flower & Wind – A Tale of Deep Brain Stimulation”
Sheera Talpaz, “What We Mean by Ambition”
What I’m reading when I’m reading as I am always reading now:
Two translations of Paul Celan, Pierre Joris’ magnificent THREADSUNS and John Felstiner’s rendering of selected poems and prose. This,in Felstiner’s mirroring of the man in anguish, from“The Meridian,” to remind me: “Art creates I-distantness. Art in a certain direction demands a certain distance, a certain path.”
Selected Essays 1934-45, Simone Weil. “A Medieval Epic Poem,” re an epic fragment poem “Song of the Crusades Against the Albigensians.” A girl does love her heretics.
“Songs and Stories of the Ghouls” by Alice Notley which I blurbed but don’t remember, described by Wesleyan as “an epic poem of genocide, designed to create to create power for the dead.” Hmm. I say: “Songs and Stories of the Ghouls makes thrilling claims for the power of dispossession.”
I-distantness. Lost poems. Forgetting and dispossession, and other severe forms of freedom.
A Desert Book of Flowers. Many, including the Globe-Mallow, Purple Verbena, and red sage, I see looking up from the book, are just flowering now.
1.Brenda Shaughnessy’s newish book of poems Our Andromeda. So far, I am sockless, meaning she has knocked them off. The poems’ emotions: anger, indignation, tenderness, grief, set to such tough, smart music!
2. Listened to Delillo’s Falling Man in my car during a period where I was having to drive constantly, often for 3 hours at a stretch. His prose seems both rich and spare, every sentence tight and honed with almost prescient intelligence, while employing a perfect level of detail. So I’m going on a Delillo kick, now reading White Noise which thus far seems great also and way funnier than Falling Man ( F. M. being a “9/11 novel” and resultantly not a laff riot.)
3. Marjane Satrapi, Persepolis. I love graphic novels and try always to have one next to my bed. Also, it seems a good moment to read something from an Iranian woman’s point of view. Engaging, informative and moving mashup of personal and political history.
4. Mary Ruefle. Selected Poems. Deep, energized delight. Get a load of this: (quoted in its entirety)
O Lord, I did walk upon the earth
and my footprints did keep pace with the rain
and I did note, I did note where orange birds
flew up from the puddles thou hast made
and where the toads leapt from your trenches,
but nowhere was there that I could go
for I could not rise from the firmament
upon which I was placed, and nowhere could I
so I kept until I could no more straight
then bent and said I am down to make room for the more
and you half hearing did send me down
into the soul of another by mistakes
and I would like to thank you for it
from where I lie, risen in the eye of the other.
5. Donald Barthelme. Snow White.
Had never read it. Was ashamed. What a wild, on fire mind. Constantly detonating imagination, to the point where it’s almost tiring to read, but not really, then it becomes more like drinking a LOT of really good, idea-producing coffee.
Julio Cortazar, Terrance Hayes, Atlas of Remote Islands, Jenny Boully.
Congratulations to Michelle Chan Brown, Drunken Boat‘s Poetry Editor, for the publication of her new poetry collection Double Agent! Michelle received the 2011 Kore Press’ First Book Award; you can read Drunken Boat’s blog post about that by clicking here.