Saturday, March 17, 2012

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Friday, March 16, 2012

The Kelly Writers House Fellowship

March 19 & 20
The University of Pennsylvania
3805 Locust Walk

Monday, March 19 at 6:30 PM

Tuesday, March 20 at 10:00 AM
Brunch & discussion
(discussion & broadcast start @ 10:30)

Seating is limited –

Attendance at
each event is by RSVP only

Both events will be streamed live
via KWH-TV

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Why would a poet who writes 1,000-page poems read haiku? Or pay heed to any manner of minimalism, for that matter? That’s a legitimate question, and one that I asked myself for at least a year before I felt that I fully understood my own personal answer. It’s because the questions of attention are so very similar. There is, in the minimalist poem generally, nowhere to hide. The poet’s attention – and hopefully the reader’s as well, though that’s a different discussion altogether – has to be utterly present. Every detail has to be attended. Individual letters & phonemes are revealed to have a beginning, a middle, and an end. In poems of ten or fourteen or thirty lines, of five pages or fifty, there are many opportunities for the poet’s mind to wander. Not that it needs to – what separates out, say, Frank O’Hara from Robert Lowell is not simply that the latter reads like the former under the influence of Quaaludes, but that O’Hara in his best poems is always fully present. The same is true for Robert Creeley or Philip Whalen or Allen Ginsberg or even Ezra Pound. At their best, they are fully present in the text. A poet like Lowell is far too often concerned about getting from point A to point B, formally or narratively, a concern that functions almost as a film of distraction over the writer’s capacity to observe & react. What drives me crazy about so much poetry, especially of the Quietist tradition, is just how damn slow it is, how long it takes to say or do anything. So when I come upon a poet who wastes nothing – Larry Eigner, Rae Armantrout, Ted Pearson, Joseph Massey, Mark Truscott – I feel more than just thrilled, I feel rescued. In contrast, I can’t even imagine staying awake for the time it takes to slog through many a half-page text by Seamus Heaney. If he’s not fully present in his own poem, why should I be?

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Today in Windsor

At the University of Windsor
CAW Centre Boardroom, 2nd Floor

5:30 PM
Language-Centered Poetry & Grammar:
A Discussion

Monday, March 12, 2012

Sunday, March 11, 2012