poets

Interview with John Spaulding

May 13, 2013

. From the spring issue of West Magazine, my interview with poet John Spaulding. Your can read Spaulding’s poems in the issue here. John Spaulding holds degrees in English and psychology and earned a PhD in psychology from the University of Arizona, Tucson. He has worked as a psychologist for the Phoenix Indian Medical Center [...]


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“I’m Just a Bad Boy All Dressed Up in Fancy Clothes” (1957): West Poetry

April 23, 2013

. Another poem from John Spaulding, our featured poet in the spring issue of West. Read more here. “I’m Just a Bad Boy All Dressed Up in Fancy Clothes” (1957) by John Spaulding I’m just a bad bad boy all dressed up in fancy clothes a jive bomber a rocket 88 a war baby a [...]


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How We Lived On It (54) – “Scrabble with Matthews”

October 7, 2012

. The kind of poetic conceit etymologicon that delights in the service of deep feeling. Scrabble with Matthews BY DAVID WOJAHN (Poetry magazine October 2002) Jerboa on a triple: I was in for it, my zither on a double looking feeble as a “promising” first book. Oedipal & reckless, my scheme would fail: keep him a couple drinks ahead, [...]


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How We Lived On It (53) – “We are the knife people…”

August 12, 2012

. Maybe none of it, finally, is like bone – not solid and lasting enough – or muscle – not as strong – but cartilage: something in between, partaking of both, lesser, but also greater, because it is all about connections and making them. Some semi-random connections. Robert Hughes died this past week. What we [...]


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Eating Poetry (XL) – As from a Quiver of Arrows

August 4, 2012

. A poem about loss, or the end of things, if there is an end to things, or transformation, or it maybe being the nature in things to be lost, and remembered, so how remembered? Or maybe it is forgetting we want, and where is that, and if we do forget, what was it? To [...]


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Eating Poetry (XXXIX) – “From back when it was Nam time I tell you what”

July 21, 2012

. Here is the vernacular as the purest verbal music, singing the culture from which it is pulled, clots of earth still clinging. You may find it hard to separate the units of meaning on first read. It will be easier on second, and if you listen here to the poet reading it, you will [...]


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Eating Poetry (XXXVIII) – To the One Who is Reading Me

July 13, 2012

. To the One Who is Reading Me by JORGE LUIS BORGES Translated from the Spanish by Tony Barnstone You are invulnerable. Didn’t they deliver (those forces that control your destiny) the certainty of dust? Couldn’t it be your irreversible time is that river in whose bright mirror Heraclitus read his brevity? A marble slab is [...]


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Eating Poetry (XXXVII) – The New Physics

July 6, 2012

THE NEW PHYSICS Al Zolynas for Fritjof Capra And so, the closer he looks at things, the farther away they seem. At dinner, after a hard day at the universe, he finds himself slipping through his food.  His own hands wave at him from beyond a mountain of peas.  Stars and planets dance with molecules [...]


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Eating Poetry (XXXVI) – San Zeno

June 30, 2012

. Zen time. Zen place. by Zach Finch Related articles “The Don Draper of Existentialism” (sadredearth.com) Language Is So Unstable, You Don’t Even Know What I’m Talking About (Do You) (sadredearth.com) How We Lived On It (51) – Route 66: The American Road (sadredearth.com)


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A Günter Grass Manifesto

April 9, 2012

. Ezra Pound is noted, finally, for living the last decade of his life – after his indictment for treasonous, antisemitic broadcasts in support of Mussolini, and his confinement to the asylum of St. Elizabeth’s – in near silence. “I know nothing at all…. I have even forgotten the name of that Greek philosopher who [...]


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Eating Poetry (XXX) – “Every telling has a tailing”

February 11, 2012

. In 1929, James Joyce recorded this rendition of “Anna Livia Plurabelle,” from Finnegans Wake. It is one of only two recordings of Joyce reading from his work, after a a much more sonically primitive 1924 reading of an excerpt from Ulysses. This wonderful animation by savagecabbage offers subtitles to aide in deciphering Joyce’s luccious vocalization of an [...]


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Diction and Democracy

December 27, 2011

. The Huffington Post/Chronicle of Higher Education offered a well-written and observed overview late last week of the Vendler-Dove conflict regarding Dove’s Penguin anthology of twentieth century poetry. Author Peter Monaghan kindly cited my own “The Politics in Poetry” a couple of times, but he unfortunately covered only the more easily reviewed cultural politics – [...]


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Eating Poetry (XXVI) – No worst, there is none

August 27, 2011

“O the mind, mind has mountains; cliffs of fall Frightful, sheer, no-man-fathomed. Hold them cheap May who ne’er hung there.” There are poets, and then there is Gerard Manley Hopkins.  No worst, there is none No worst, there is none. Pitched past pitch of grief, More pangs will, schooled at forepangs, wilder wring. Comforter, where, [...]


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Eating Poetry (XXV) – Some of the Words Are Theirs

May 6, 2011

The close of The Great Gatsby is probably the most famous and referenced ending of any American novel. Lyricized in a lushly romantic invocation of American promise, somehow gone wrong in the stinking, rich like of Tom and Daisy Buchanan, and in the aftermath of Jay Gatsby’s failed striving, with such foolish and criminal élan, [...]


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