It’s about planting; it’s about conversation of matter into matter, mattering into mattering.
Hilary Plum on Ghayath Almadhoun’s Adrenalin
Hilary Plum on Ghassan Zaptan’s The Silence That Remains
As I lowered the match / I thought how loss is assured
Kevin Craft (Editor 2010 – 2016) Signs Off Most poetry readers I know chuckle wearily at the steady stream of “poetry is dead” articles that have appeared with astonishing tenacity in various venues, including The New York Times, these past few years. The authors of these articles agonize in some way or another over poetry’s irrelevance to modern culture: poetry is too abstract and obscure, they argue, too much an insider’s game, divorced from the real wants and needs (to borrow a phrase from Whitman’s early review of Keats’s poems) of actual bodies in the 21st century. But why should poetry worry over its relationship to popular culture? Must it be popular (or topical) in order to be vital, in order to sustain a reader, or fortify a readership? What happens to those who win (or live by) popularity contests in the contemporary cultural grind? We know all too well that the speed of the attention-getting news cycle is debilitating. Presidential primaries come and go, talk radio blathers on, discourse hardens, partisans lob grenades …
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 …
Poetry Northwest‘s monthly podcast series, The Subvocal Zoo, features editors and friends of the magazine interviewing poets during the 2014 Association of Writers and Writing Programs (AWP) Conference in Seattle. Each episode will feature lively conversation between writers in a different Seattle location. Episode 3 features Ed Skoog interviewing Dorothea Lasky. Their conversation takes place at the Hiram Chittenden Locks in the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle. It’s a typically steely Seattle afternoon. Topics of discussion include poetry in education, Shelley and Eminem, salmon ladders, and carbonated beverages. And here is a creature that will be discussed but not seen during the interview:
Poetry Northwest‘s podcast series, The Subvocal Zoo, features editors and friends of the magazine interviewing poets during the 2014 Association of Writers and Writing Programs (AWP) Conference in Seattle. Each episode will feature lively conversation between writers in a different Seattle location. Episode 2 features Managing Editor Matthew Kelsey interviewing Richie Hofmann. Their conversation takes place on a ferry traveling from Seattle to Bainbridge Island and back. Topics of discussion include inspirational teachers, silence, Cavafy, and messages in bottles.
Dear Readers, Good news! The Summer-Fall issue* is now available, and we’re excited to see it debut. We call this one The Social Media Issue. Yes, we’ve decided to devote an entire issue to exploring the ways and means of the poetic voice in the age of Click, Like, Share, and Tweet. Why The Social Media Issue? Poetry–especially lyric poetry–has historically drawn from all quarters to make feeling meaningful–imaginatively layered, memorably compressed. It is, in many ways, the original “social” media–the space where the inner life is turned outward, expressed and made public. Where are we now that our least whim and feeling can be instantly published, liked, monitored, and forgotten? We wanted to shed some light–however slant–on this, the inescapable algorithm of our time. Look for new poems by Dan Beachy-Quick, Bill Carty, Katharine Coles, Sharon Dolin, Bob Hicok, Rachel Kessler, Dorothea Lasky, Margaret Ross, Jason Whitmarsh, and many more. Anchoring the issue are essays by Zach Savich and Wendy Willis exploring the valences of poetry tracked and refracted through the instruments of social media and internet surveillance. …
We’re very pleased to introduce Poetry Northwest‘s new audio podcast series, The Subvocal Zoo. This first series will feature editors and friends of the magazine interviewing poets during the 2014 Association of Writers and Writing Programs (AWP) Conference in Seattle. Each episode will feature lively conversation between writers in a different Seattle location.