It’s about planting; it’s about conversation of matter into matter, mattering into mattering.
Events featuring David Hernandez, Camille Dungy, Erika Meitner, Geffrey Davis, Keetje Kuipers, Leila Chatti, Olena Kalytiak Davis, Sierra Nelson, Supritha Rajan, Troy Jollimore, Sierra Nelson, Kary Wayson, Wendy Willis, David Biespiel, Heather Altfeld, Laura Read, Zach Savich, and more
by Zach Savich | Contributing Writer
Though my appetite is small, I will prepare a feast.
In June 2014, poet Mathias Svalina promises to operate a Dream Delivery Service. “I will write the dreams, without consultation with the dreamer, & deliver them daily,” Svalina writes. “Each dream is unique to the dreamer/subscriber.” Subscriptions cost $40 if you live within three miles of Svalina’s house, $55 for everyone else. Dream Delivery Service as social media. * Svalina is an editor with Octopus Books. A while ago, another Octopus editor, Zachary Schomburg, started posting portraits of his friends on his blog, The Lovely Arc. He’d honor each as “Person of the Week” and write a brief profile. “Jesse got Clyde Drexler’s autograph three times between fifth and seventh grade,” Schomburg wrote. “He went to a Waldorf school from kindergarten through third grade, so he learned to knit, crochet, paint with watercolor, sculpt beeswax, play the recorder, and count in German before he learned arithmetic.” “Person of the Week” as social media. * Discussions of social media and poetry often focus on poetry’s absorption of—or reduction to—familiar virtual modes.
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 4 features Kevin Craft interviewing Zach Savich. Their conversation takes place at the Washington Convention Center in Seattle. Topics of discussion include George Oppen, where the eyes go after reading a great line of poetry, creative community and collaboration, and Zach Savich’s most recent collection of poetry, Century Swept Brutal.
January 5 Jason Witmarsh, Writers on Writing Lecture Series “Occupy that critical part of your brain–the thing that says, ‘this is useless’–and give that part of your brain a crossword puzzle, while the other part writes.” (J.W. on: writing in form) January 6 Rebecca Albiani on Blake’s Songs of Innocence and of Experience, The Frye “William Blake couldn’t stand falsity in anyone . . . and so he was a difficult companion.” March 11 Barbara Courtney, Tiny House Reading Series, hosted by Emily Johnson “You will have to learn . . . how to dispense with teachers, even me.” April 14 Troy Jollimore, Seattle Arts & Lectures “Any really good poet has to be philosophical . . . if you pursue any field long enough you eventually end up doing philosophy.” April 16 Andrew Feld, Open Books “I don’t think there are that many people these days writing narrative-poems-in-heroic-couplets-that-are-visionary-quests. So, I sort of enjoy doing that.” April 22 Gregory Laynor, Tiny House Reading Series “I think I’m more of a worry doll than a poet . …
May 12, 7:30 pm at Open Books. Two very talented poets with local roots read from their new books. Highly recommended!
Severance Songs Joshua Corey Tupelo Press, 2011 — Put anything in fourteen lines, and someone will call it a sonnet; although each poem in Joshua Corey’s third full-length collection, Severance Songs, shares that number of lines (often with visual variations that slide the tree line of the volta up and down the poems’ slopes), his poems are sonnet-like less for their containers than for the bright shapes they contain. The sense of a sonnet, these poems suggest, isn’t in formal configuration but in a manner of speaking, of talking to oneself, of talking things through. In Severance Songs, this manner reels through landscape to render the “pool of newsworthy airs” that “surrounds my perception.” For Corey, such perception typically comes from pastoral inspiration that he is both suspicious of (“Building sorrows / on a plan of pastoral affection”) and beholden to (“I do not reject terrain”). Early in the collection, a poem begins with a walk; throughout Severance Songs, one sees the record of a mind sent outside by some fever, and what it sees, …