Poetry Archive

Review: THE AFTER PARTY by Jane Prikryl

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Jana Prikryl’s The After Party is one of those rare debut volumes, like Stevens’s Harmonium, in which we meet an already fully-inhabited voice. In some such cases, much unforeseeable development may be in store, as with Graham’s Hybrids of Plants and Ghosts; sometimes, as with Delmore Schwartz’s In Dreams

Divine Inspiration: Letting Dante Lead Me

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When I arrived in Florence for an extended trip, I was determined not to look like a tourist. I wanted to carry a leather-bound notebook and sit at sidewalk cafes drinking cappuccinos and looking thoughtful. Mostly, I wanted to read The Decameron and the last two books of The

Blackberries Forever

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In “Trances of the Blast,” the poem from the book by the same name, Mary Ruefle begins with a question and answer: “What is the code for happiness?/Blackberries forever.” Although the book—Trances of the Blast—came out several years ago, this particular line has haunted me ever since.

3 Chapbook Reviews: Beauties of the Web

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While publishing online can mean that a text is more easily widely circulated, the dedication that goes into presenting a chapbook online often goes unsung. For July, I read three e-chapbooks, and each of them had stunningly beautiful covers and design that enhanced the reading experience.

When (And Why) A Poem Goes Viral

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Poets don’t expect to be famous. We may fantasize about it of course—what if Terrance Hayes were to appear on Jimmy Fallon or Ada Limón had her own reality show? What if NBC televised the Poetry Society of America award ceremonies?

Review: GHOST/LANDSCAPE by Kristina Marie Darling & John Gallaher

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In the collaborative poetry collection Ghost/Landscape (Blazevox, 2016) by Kristina Marie Darling and John Gallaher there is no beginning or end. The first poem is “Chapter Two.” So begins traversing a time loop of poems where the reader can really “begin” anywhere. What is a beginning and what is

Review: ENGLISH KILLS by Monica Wendel

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The poems in Monica Wendel’s chapbook are marked by quick dissolves, scenes suddenly opening onto new scenes. The prose poem “Blue” flickers back and forth between “a diner where the waitresses wear their hair swooped up” and a dream of rowing through New York Harbor at night.

Journey into the Unknown: An Investigation of Metaphysical Poetry

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At a poetry workshop recently I heard the word metaphysical used to describe several contemporary American poets of disparate temperaments. At times metaphysical sounded erudite, at times dismissive, and I wasn’t sure I wanted it near poems and poets I loved.

Police Violence & Street Art

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It is not often that poetry goes viral on the internet, but that's what happened last month with a poetry project in Boston, Massachusetts. MassPoetry.Org and the City of Boston have teamed up to introduce poetry into the streets of the city via a water-repellant spray that reveals poems.

In Bookstores Near You: THE BLACK MARIA by Arcelis Girmay

I found Aracelis Girmay's the black maria in a month filled with keen grief, the kind that follows a tragedy like Orlando or the loss of a loved one so paramount to your life that afterward people just going about their lives seem like a perverse mystery.