Reading Archive

Good Poets You’ve (Probably) Never Read, Part I: Buckram and Burning Birds

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Everyone has them—the books that we loved that got only cursory critical attention, if any.  The friends who managed to get the books finally, finally into print, only to hear a few grains of sand shifting in the long silence as they drive to the liquor store to buy
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Why I Reread “Simon’s Luck”

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Alice Munro has been a popular literary writer of short stories for decades. She moves from subtle interior discomfort to the most blatant of coincidences without apology. “Simon’s Luck” is a short story from the book that could be called her only novel: The Beggar Maid. The book could
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The Pit Bull

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It feels as though every posting starts somewhere else, and this is no exception.  I’ve been reading one of Angela’s “Why I Reread…” postings, in the midst of state and federal budget cuts which, far from rereading much of anything, seem designed to keep the world from reading most
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Why I Reread This Boy’s Life

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I sometimes take comfort in categorizations. The world can always be divided into two populations, it can be obnoxiously insisted: those who send thank-you notes and those who don’t, those who have seen American Idol and those who haven’t…those who get to class on time and those who can’t,
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Why I Reread Winesburg, Ohio

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I’ll go out on a limb, here, as the only person I know who doesn’t love Seinfeld. I watched it quite a bit (in-laws, no cable) and got tickled, sometimes. I’ve been impressed by the way the show appeals to folks across all the demographics I’ve been involved with—from
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Why I Reread Patricia Highsmith

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I came across Patricia Highsmith like a lot of people in my generation probably did—through the Hollywood movie version of her novel The Talented Mr. Ripley. There are many reasons to enjoy the movie, from the brilliant direction of Anthony Minghella to the weirdness of watching healthy Matt Damon
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“No Orangutan”

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I began my public blogging career (brief though it may be) last week with “Start with A”, suggesting that teachers of poetry—who are frequently poets—might want to begin at a more basic level than many of us do. That included beginning with the literal level of a poem, because
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What I Reread: Something Wicked This Way Comes

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I’m not the world’s biggest fan of Ray Bradbury, or sci-fi in general (though I respect it plenty—its speculation on the future, its persistent social commentary, its relentless and somehow familiar glandular imagining). But every fall when I pick up Something Wicked This Way Comes, I feel the way
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Teaching Poetry: Starting with A

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Our third guest blogger, Catherine Carter, is a poet whose poem “Arson in Ladytown” appears in our Spring 2011 edited by Colm Toibin.  Catherine will post on Fridays through August. Hello, Ploughshares readers—it’s my pleasure and privilege to be blogging here for the first time, and as you might
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What I Reread and Why

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This week we welcome three new Get Behind the Plough bloggers to Ploughshares. The first is Angela Pneuman, whose fiction story “Occupational Hazard” appears in our Spring 2011 issue edited by Colm Toibin.  Angela will post on Mondays through August. When I started writing, one thing I never considered
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