Less than forty-eight hours after Serial and This American Life released their new true crime podcast, I got a text message from a friend about it. “S-Town podcast. Listen immediately. All seven episodes.”
Pop culture, like poetry, can work like excavation; it authorizes us to ask questions, to uncover, and to translate.
On Twitter, people keep saying this “isn’t normal.” In this story, the villain is an exception to the rule of normalcy. Maybe, I thought, that story is easier to tell than the real one.
I carried Kaveh Akbar’s Portrait of the Alcoholic around for weeks before reading it. I do this from time to time when I know a text is going to challenge me beyond the ways in which poetry is always challenging; I like to prepare for a confrontation.