Monday, July 11, 2011

Two months off

I'm trying to get back to writing after not doing it for about two months (teaching, reading, trip to the West Coast, the endless needs of the house and garden, etc). I read, all in one sitting, Mule by Shane McCrae yesterday and I'm pleased to say that it made me want to write. Not in the sense of "I can do better than that" but in the sense of here is someone fitting language to experience in a way that makes me feel awake and interested and even impatient with what I've written so far.
The plan is to start small, start badly, but to start. In the words of Dr. Seuss, "Maybe you can, too. I think you ought to try."

Monday, May 2, 2011

Congratulations to our winner!

Through scientifically proven random number sampling (okay, I really just chose the first number that I saw this morning when I woke up), I've chosen Valerie Williams as the winner of Night Work and The Alphabet Conspiracy. I want to thank all of you who entered this year's drawing and say that I would love to give copies to each of you wonderful folks.
I love giving away books. Here in Madison we have Free Little Libraries, very cute little things that sort of look like oversized bird houses, where you can take books and leave books. There is something so pleasing about leaving a book for someone else to discover and love. I hope Valerie enjoys her books!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The Norton Anthology Project

Elizabeth and I began reading the Norton Anthology of Poetry together on Jan. 5, 2009. We try to read one poem from the front of the book and one from the back each night before bed. Some nights we skip it and some poems take a week to read but last night we finally made it to Walt Whitman. Going in reverse, we're now on Edna St. Vincent Millay and just read the cruelest sonnet--perfect for April.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

In Indiana by CE Perry

As promised, here's a poem from Night Work, one of the books I'm giving away this month. I used to keep this poem taped above my desk.

In Indiana

Dead hogs swing in the barn--
discordant pendulums

holding the hour. She braces
each sheep with her thighs

and the wool spills over
like foaming beer. It is

just necessary, nothing
exotic. While the doves

sleep, her pelvis and arms
force time across one

deliberate axis, leaving
the sheep to shiver in

their new blue skin.
This is how the past

becomes the past. This
is how the work gets done.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Great Poetry Giveaway

I'm participating in the Great Poetry Giveaway that Kelli Agodon has run for at least a couple of years now from her blog The Book of Kells. Check out her blog for inspiration and news, as well as info on how to participate in the giveaway if you have your own blog, or how and where to sign up for other free books of poetry.
I'll be giving away a copy of my new book, The Alphabet Conspiracy and C.E. Perry's wonderful book Night Work. All you need to do to enter for a chance to win is to say so and post your contact info into the comments field. I'll choose a name at random on May 1 and send the winner free copies of the two books via the US mail.
Check back at this site for more info about both books.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Great Monsters Reading Last Night

Last night I went to one of the best poetry readings I've been to in a long long time. It was a Monsters of Poetry reading at the Gates of Heaven in Madison. The featured readers were Steve Healey and Matthew Zapruder. Here's a link to one of Healey's poems that appeared in American Poetry Review. And here's a link to Zapruder's blog.
If either of these poets show up in your town, get yourself a front-row seat.