All posts tagged: Wallace Stevens

Wendy Willis: “A Million People On One String – Notes on Poetry and Social Media”

These days, it’s all big data all the time. Over the past few months, I’ve seen headlines ranging from “Big Data or Big Brother?” to “Big Data’s Little Brother” to “Big Data at the Oscars.” Just today, I was solicited for a webinar entitled “Big Data is a Big Deal!”(exclamation point theirs). As Duke psychologist and behavioral economist Don Ariely recently quipped on his Facebook page:  “Big data is like teenage sex:  everyone talks about it, nobody knows how to do it, everyone thinks everyone else is doing it, so everyone claims they are doing it.” But the big data debate is not entirely made up of cutesy wordplay. Ever since Edward Snowden first started leaking information about the massive U.S. government spying operation, Americans—for the first time in over a decade—started kicking up some real, honest-to-goodness dust about whether the government can do whatever it pleases if it claims to be protecting us from terrorists. And then there’s the “creepy” index that seems to be the new—if somewhat ephemeral—standard for just how far the …

Afterwords // Patricia Lockwood: The Hour of Bewilderment

By Elizabeth Cooperman and Matthew Kelsey On July 10, 2014, Patricia Lockwood read at Seattle’s Elliot Bay Book Company from her most recent book of poems, Motherland Fatherland Homelandsexuals. The room–a book-lined basement annex with a small raised stage and podium–was full. Over the next few months, editors Elizabeth Cooperman and Matthew Kelsey exchanged a series of emails, sharing their thoughts about the event. This conversation results from that exchange. 1: Meme-Numbed MK: First impressions first: that reading was absolutely feral. The energy that Lockwood exuded seemed barely containable by the typical reading format. This was apparent from the get-go, when the woman introducing Tricia struggled to stay composed or even objective. She was effusive, probably to a fault. But between that anterior energy and the tone of Lockwood’s poems (and that voice!—those are hard poems to read aloud, I think, and she did herself a service), it’s hard to believe we were all seated, quiet and well-mannered, in the basement of Elliott Bay Bookstore, no? I know we’ll have to discuss how Lockwood became …

The Fridges of Famous Poets

Curated by Katharine Ogle Associate Editor     Rilke’s Lemon A lemon came home from the grocery, nestled in the net bag with the rest of the produce, but he hadn’t bought it. How did you get here? Rilke puts the lemon in the fridge next to the lemon juice. Someone has cut a slice from it. Like the corpse of a saint, the lemon remains fresh and sweet-smelling for a suspiciously long time. Rilke thinks: Like a girl almost or like the refrigerator gremlins who eat electricity to stay alive, you have to learn to live with longing. You just have to learn to live with longing. Every waking moment, the lemon is rolling slowly looking for the fridge within the fridge that it knows is there. –Sarah Kathryn Moore   All’s Despite (or, Paul Celan’s Fridge) shellacked and scrubbed green, yawning fingernail caught in a sunken jamb, wailing tin mantras; color of fresh- puckered mint on a rubberrack next to two carrots ocher-stain blush in so styrene a crypt (o and who levered …