All posts filed under: Essays

Prose that encourages us to engage with books of poetry, individual poets, and issues of craft or poetics.

Field Note: Why I Write to Birds

“When I can bring identification from field guide to feeling guide and into another’s conscious as a fellow living being worthy of adoration, the work for that sentence or stanza or story is, for the moment, done.”


“In English, speakers are actors and objects are acted upon. A persimmon is there to be eaten. For Powhatan speakers, it just as likely might not be there since the persimmon, like other objects of the natural world, has an agency and animacy of its own.”—an essay by Emily Parzybok

Mother Lode

“I wanted people to fall in love with nature through words and want to protect it, the way I had as a child, writing on a concrete stoop in a subdivision. In a way, words were my quarry. I mined their layers for meaning, and when I made something beautiful and useful from them, I felt lighter somehow, as if the overburden of living—the debris of its many griefs—had been lifted.”—an essay by Melissa Reeser Poulin