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...in English, when someone is crazy, it's always in a food way?

Grub Street Diet asks various notable people to keep a food dairy for a week and then share it with the world. However, when they ask the "poet laureate of Twitter" (previously) author Patricia Lockwood to contribute, things so a little differently.
posted by The Whelk on Sep 6, 2014 - 24 comments

'Death will not correct / a single line of verse'

Tadeusz Różewicz (1921-2014) was a renowned Polish ‘poet, playwright, screenwriter, novelist, satirist and translator.’ Reckoned by Seamus Heaney as ‘one of the great European poets of the 20th century,’ he died in April at the age of 92: Guardian obituary; NYT obituary. [more inside]
posted by misteraitch on Jul 14, 2014 - 6 comments

Seven roses later ... each rose opens like an ideogram, like a gate

In an essay reflecting on translation, Yoko Tawada reads the poems of Paul Celan as if he had written in Japanese. The essay's translator, Susan Bernofsky, offers context, and in an earlier piece, Rivka Galchen considers "Yoko Tawada's Magnificent Strangeness." More conventional introductions to Celan are available via the Poetry Foundation page on Celan, 14 poems from Breathturn, and a video of Celan reading "Allerseelen" (English sub.; alt. trans.). Tawada's own poetry includes "The Flight of the Moon" (video in Japanese). [more inside]
posted by Monsieur Caution on Jul 13, 2014 - 1 comment

Meet the Next U.S. Poet Laureate: Charles Wright

Various news sources report that Charles Wright will today be named the next Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry of the United States Library of Congress. An extensive biography and 50 poems are available from the Poetry Foundation. [more inside]
posted by Jahaza on Jun 12, 2014 - 21 comments

"I think the mainstream are the outsiders and I'm the way it should be."

Billy Childish is known as a poet, painter, and musician who is routinely reduced to doing the same thing over and over again. A recent interview in The Guardian demonstrates how much he continues to stay the course, going so far to call him a "monomaniac". [more inside]
posted by kendrak on May 22, 2014 - 12 comments

He saves everything

Patrick Roche is a slam poet, and a member of the Princeton Ellipses Slam Team. He was recently awarded Best Persona Poem for "Siri: A Coping Mechanism" at the 2014 College Unions Poetry Slam Invitational. [more inside]
posted by roomthreeseventeen on May 1, 2014 - 9 comments

Melissa May-Dunn is a performance poet.

Melissa May-Dunn is a performance poet who dropped out of divinity school. A successful gofundme campaign sent her to this year's Women of the World Poetry Slam, where she placed seventh out of 72 with a tribute to a Disney villain, Dear Ursula. [more inside]
posted by bilabial on Apr 10, 2014 - 5 comments

The poetry of Hart Crane, from the American epic to personal belonging

Hart Crane was a poet, one who was known by and friends with other notable poets. The poet e. e. cummings claimed that "Crane’s mind was no bigger than a pin, but it didn’t matter; he was a born poet" (Google books preview). Tennessee Williams said he could "hardly understand a single line" but insisted he wanted to be buried at sea at the "point most nearly determined as the point at which Hart Crane gave himself back." Crane had his critics — Marianne Moore and Ezra Pound come to mind, and William Carlos Williams wrote "There is good there but it’s not for me" — but Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg used to read "The Bridge" together, John Berryman wrote one of his famous elegies on Crane and heavyweight Robert Lowell included his “Words for Hart Crane” in "Life Studies." Science/Fiction author, James Tiptree, Jr. (Alice Sheldon) also wrote that "nobody seems to have noticed that Hart Crane really was the first space poet," quoting lines from his epic The Bridge in the story Mother in the Sky with Diamonds. Those are all words by other people, why not read a few from Crane? [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Jan 19, 2014 - 22 comments

Wanda Coleman RIP

The African-American poet died yesterday, at 67, after a long illness. [more inside]
posted by PinkMoose on Nov 23, 2013 - 16 comments

Romance in Ireland

One hundred years ago today, W.B. Yeats published one of his best known poems, September 1913, as a letter to the Irish Times. [more inside]
posted by rollick on Sep 8, 2013 - 7 comments

The art of Jost Amman: woodcuts, some pared with poetry by Hans Sachs

Jost Amman (1539 – 1591) was a Swiss artist, best known for his woodcut illustrations. He was a prolific artist, with some 1,500 prints attributed to him, in the era when engravings were replacing woodcuttings. Amman also made stained glass (Google books preview) and jewelry, but there are more examples of his woodcut illustrations, as found on the colored cover of this bible from 1564, and the black and white images of biblical scenes. Amman's most widely know work is "the book of trades," Eygentliche Beschreibung Aller Stände auff Erden (Google books; PDFs of sections of the book). Ptak Science Books has 25 images with (most) job titles in English, and here is a full index of English titles, linking back to Wikimedia Commons. But that's only half of the book. The other part is the descriptions of the jobs, which are short poems by Hans Sachs, some of which are translated on the Victoria and Albert Museum.
posted by filthy light thief on Jul 13, 2013 - 2 comments

“seeing is inescapably tied to scarring,"

STREET OF THE IRON PO(E)T, A Paris Diary by Henri Cole: "Today I visited the cenotaph to Baudelaire..." Part 2. Part 3. Part 4. Part 5. Part 6.
posted by Fizz on Mar 31, 2013 - 3 comments

"When I say this, it should mean laughter, not poison."

"Naming restricts. Once restricted, it’s easy to be judged and punished. Identity is more subtle, more liquid, I hope." An interview with Richard Siken, a poet whose work is easy, entertaining even, yet ferocious as all hell. If you're new to Siken, Scheherazade is a short introduction to the man and his style. You Are Jeff is a prose poem in twenty-six short, brutal chapters. Litany in Which Certain Things Are Crossed Out is one of his best: "You get magic gloves! A fish that talks! You get eyes like flashlights! / What more do you want? / I make you pancakes, I take you hunting, I talk to you as if you're / really there." He also paints.
posted by Rory Marinich on Mar 8, 2013 - 21 comments

Love is so short and forgetting is so long.

Pablo Neruda's Body Will Be Exhumed For Autopsy [bbc.co.uk] "A judge in Chile has ordered the exhumation of the remains of the poet Pablo Neruda, as part of an inquest into his death in 1973."
posted by Fizz on Feb 11, 2013 - 8 comments

it ain't the middle of life but I'm still / lost in the woods

Anselm Hollo, Finnish-born poet, translator, and teacher, has died. A major figure in the poetry avant garde for decades, Hollo was a professor at the Naropa Institute's Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics. Robert Archambeau writes: "Hollo's grasp of the gulf between the sublimity of which poetry is capable, and the absurdities into which poets fall in pursuit of that chimera, a 'career in poetry,' made him the ideal person to hold the title of United States Anti-Laureate, to which he was elected by the Buffalo POETICS list back at the turn of the century."
posted by aught on Jan 30, 2013 - 7 comments

Dark Field Microscopy

  • I did not know the incense storing temple,
  • I walked a few miles into the clouded peaks.
  • No man on the path between the ancient trees,
  • A bell rang somewhere deep among the hills.
  • A spring sounded choked, running down steep rocks,
  • The green pines chilled the sunlight's coloured rays.
  • Come dusk, at the bend of a deserted pool,
  • Through meditation I controlled passion's dragon.
Stopping at Incense Storing Temple, Wang Wei (699-759)
posted by lemuring on Dec 17, 2012 - 13 comments

"I went to the root of things, and found nothing but Him alone."

"Perhaps the most remembered and quoted (pdf) woman in Indian history is a sixteenth century poet, singer and saint called Mirabai, or Meera. Versions of her songs are sung today all over India, and she appears as a subject in films, books, dances, plays and paintings. Even Gandhi promoted her, seeing Mira as a symbol of a woman who has the right to choose her own path, forsake a life of luxury, and in nonviolent resistance find liberation (pdf)." ~ Women in World History
posted by infini on Nov 18, 2012 - 5 comments

We should insist while there is still time

Poet Jack Gilbert has passed away; he was 87. [more inside]
posted by eustacescrubb on Nov 13, 2012 - 15 comments

Possible second photograph of Emily Dickinson

The only authenticated photgraph of Emily Dickinson is of a 16 year old girl. Amherst College now believes that a privately owned daguerrotype shows the poet as a 28 year old woman - about the time she wrote the "Master" letters.
posted by Egg Shen on Sep 5, 2012 - 33 comments

We blunder through prophesy / as if through sand

London art space The Mosaic Rooms have mounted a tribute (PDF brochure) to 81 year old Syrian poet, essayist, and now artist Adonis (born Ali Ahmad Said Asbar). The poet's relevance in the era of the Arab Spring has been questioned, but many still considered Adonis a top candidate to win a Nobel in poetry (Tomas Tranströmer edged him out last year).
posted by aught on Feb 10, 2012 - 0 comments

What is this tyranny of head that stifles / The eyes, the senses, / All play on the strings of the heart.

Did you know the recently elected president of Ireland is actually a noted poet? [The Guardian] Here is another of his works. The Guardian's own Carol Rumens is not a fan.
posted by Fizz on Nov 4, 2011 - 15 comments

"FAME is a fickle food / Upon a shifting plate, / Whose table once a Guest, but not / The second time, is set."

A Coconut Cake From Emily Dickinson: Reclusive Poet, Passionate Baker. [NPR.org] Poet Emily Dickinson withdrew from society for most of her adult life. And yet, she was known to lower a basket full of cakes from the window of the home she rarely left to crowds of expectant children on the street below. The Poet's House in New York City put on exhibit an original manuscript of a Dickinson cake recipe that contained coconut. That recipe calls for the following ingredients. 1 cup coconut, 2 cups flour, 1 cup sugar, 1/2 cup butter, 1/2 cup milk, 2 eggs, 1/2 teaspoon soda, 1 teaspoon cream of tartar.
posted by Fizz on Oct 24, 2011 - 25 comments

Jerry Andrus: messing with your wonderful brain

"A wonderful brain interprets something differently from what it actually is, but it doesn't mean it's made a mistake. It took the information it had and did it's best job." Those are but two tricks from Jerry Andrus (1918-2007), self-taught magician and illusionist, and one of great renown amongst other magicians. But he was more than a slight-of-hand man: he was also a poet, philosopher, inventor, humanist, agnostic, and skeptic. There are an impressive number of videos of him online, these are but a few to get you started down the rabbit hole: Jerry Andrus is visual poetry (Google video / YT, 28 minutes) :: Jerry Andrus at the Magic Castle (G.vid, 49 min), Jerry Andrus at 83 his Optical Illusions (G.vid, 41 min) :: Jerry Andrus and Ray Hyman on Uri Geller (YT, 26 min) :: James Randi on Jerry Andrus (YT, 5 min) :: James Randi - who was Jerry Andrus? :: James Randi describes Jerry Andrus. The last two clips are from Rex Young, a young illusionist who has recreated many of Andrus' illusions on his YouTube channel, and made some of his own.
posted by filthy light thief on Sep 12, 2011 - 25 comments

Dreams Are What We Wake Up From.

Raymond Carver died of lung cancer, August 2, 1988. A remembrance in 1,2,3,4,5 parts. Previously.
posted by timsteil on Aug 2, 2011 - 12 comments

The essays of Kenneth Rexroth

The poet and translator Kenneth Rexroth, one of the central figures in the San Francisco Renaissance, only wrote prose for money. But he did it very well. (way previously) [more inside]
posted by Trurl on Jul 3, 2011 - 8 comments

The Shaman of the Lower East Side is no more

Ira Cohen passed away a couple of weeks ago aged 76 (NYT obit )
He was a friend and collaborator with William Burroughs and Brion Gysin and authored the Hashish Cookbook. He made several short films including The Invasion of Thunderbolt Pagoda.
In Kathmandu in 1979 Ira Cohen photographed the Tibetan Buddhist cremation of his friend Angus MacLise, poet and original drummer with The Velvet Underground.
He has been described as an "electronic multimedia shaman" .
His photographs range from a psycadelically distorted Hendix to Joujouka musicians; whom he described in his book Gnaoua
Ira was also a poet who had several volumes published.
An interview.
posted by adamvasco on May 15, 2011 - 6 comments

"Genetic engineers don't make new genes, they rearrange existing ones."

The Xenotext Experiment is Christian Bök's [Previously],"nine-year long attempt to create an example of “living poetry.” I have been striving to write a short verse about language and genetics, whereupon I use a “chemical alphabet” to translate this poem into a sequence of DNA for subsequent implantation into the genome of a bacterium (in this case, a microbe called Deinococcus radiodurans—an extremophile, capable of surviving, without mutation, in even the most hostile milieus, including the vacuum of outer space)." [Via] [more inside]
posted by Fizz on Apr 4, 2011 - 25 comments

"and tapping my laptop with dots."

Poet Publishes 10,000-Page Poem. David Morice wrote one 100-page poem every day for 100 days–producing a 10,000-page poem. How the book was bound and printed. Opening lines of the epic poem: "Today the sky above Iowa City / is cloudy with tiny droplets / gently blowing in the wind / and tapping my laptop with dots. / In front of the University/ Main Library, Gordon sits / on a marble wall, camera / posed to video the beginning / of this poetry marathon." Image of the massive book.
posted by Fizz on Feb 4, 2011 - 68 comments

Lint In My Pocket - American Civil War poetry

S Thomas Summers teaches writing and literature, and writes poetry about the American Civil War. Some of my favorites. Hat tip: The Atlantic.
posted by Joe in Australia on Aug 12, 2010 - 1 comment

Nothing

Tuli Kupferberg, poet and co-founder of The Fugs, passed away today at the age of 86. [more inside]
posted by psylosyren on Jul 12, 2010 - 36 comments

Anne Spencer: Poet, Gardener, Activist

Anne Spencer (1882-1975) (video tribute from the State Library of Virginia) was a Harlem Renaissance poet, a gardener, a librarian, and an activist. Her work was influential among her peers and successors - as was her legendary and beloved garden in Lynchburg, Va, where she lived for her entire adult life. She wrote only 50 known poems - 25 to 35 of which were published in her lifetime - on topics that were important to her - the beauty of nature, racism and equality, and her faith, including these 8 of her better-known poems , Before the Feast of Shushan, and Lady, Lady. Many of her poems were reprinted in anthologies, but the controversial White Things (c. 1918, published c. 1923, inspired by a particularly horrible lynching of a pregnant woman) was never reprinted. [more inside]
posted by julen on Apr 20, 2010 - 7 comments

Truth to power.

Gil Scott-Heron, Godfather of Rap. Parts 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 and 6.
posted by flapjax at midnite on Apr 16, 2010 - 19 comments

"Hey Dario, I just got your woolly mammoth hairs in, give me a call."

Oak twig carved from dissolved recording of the heartbeat of an unborn child and the last heartbeats of a loved one, bone dust from every bone in the body, ring finger bones coated in bullet lead from various American wars, glass eyes for wounded soldiers coated with trinitite produced during the first atomic explosion, WWI cavalry boots made from a melted record of Skeeter Davis' "The End Of The World".

San Antonio-based artist (he prefers "marterialist poet") Dario Robleto crafts exquisite objects using a physical lexicon that includes bone dust, analog audio recordings, war objects and remnants of extinction. By recontextualizing these items he hopes to reverse "historical amnesia" and to reengage the past by "seeking out and sympathizing with another era's hopes and losses through its people's stories and materials." Highly influenced by music, he considers his work sampling. As he says: "you don't have to make up anything; the world is magical on its own."
posted by nathancaswell on Sep 25, 2009 - 32 comments

Happy Birthday Seamus!

April 13th is Seamus Heaney's 70th birthday, and to celebrate, the Irish press have honored him in many ways. A Catholic from Northern Ireland, his early poems reflected his upbringing on a farm, but his later poems (and time in the States) spoke powerfully of 'the Troubles.' I thought he deserved a mention in the Blue. [more inside]
posted by dbmcd on Apr 12, 2009 - 13 comments

in the street of the sky night walks scattering poems

Should you find yourself wandering around the city of Leiden, the Netherlands sometime, you may notice some curious markings on the city's walls.

These Muurgedichten ("Wall Poems") adorn many of the town's streets (clickable map), and many English-language poets are represented: one John Keats, for instance, inside a bookshop; Dylan Thomas, E. E. Cummings, W.B. Yeats, some guy called William Shakespeare, or this ode to Charlie Parker by American William Waring Cuney. [more inside]
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane on Apr 5, 2009 - 15 comments

Poet and essayist Bill Holm died Wednesday February 26, 2009

Minnesota poet and essayist Bill Holm died on Wednesday. Bill Holm passed away less than a year after receiving some of the recognition he deserved when he was named the 2008 McKnight Distinguished Artist of the Year. He was 65. [more inside]
posted by nanojath on Feb 26, 2009 - 14 comments

What else is there besides matters of taste?

It's almost as good as being at John Ashbery's home (bio) and there's more, including a preliminary inventory of his library* (search for "inventories" or scroll down). Ashbery's poetry is still very much invested in the reader's pleasure—more so than many supposedly "approachable" poets. You can hear him read his poems (more), watch him (here's -transcript- a brief taste and a half-hour video) or read a few of his poems. [more inside]
posted by ersatz on Jan 28, 2009 - 20 comments

I walk across High Holborn and think of you with nothing on

Eight years nearly to the day after I read about Adrian Henri's death on the Formica table of a service-station cafeteria, another of my favourite poets has left us. Adrian Mitchell, left-wing poet and romantic, 1932 - 2008. [more inside]
posted by mippy on Dec 23, 2008 - 7 comments

RIP Dorothy Porter

Australian poet Dorothy Porter passed away December 10th Dorothy Porter dead at 54. [more inside]
posted by robotot on Dec 11, 2008 - 5 comments

RIP Hayden Carruth 1921-2008

"Why don't you write me a poem that will prepare me for your death?" Hayden Carruth's wife, thirty years his junior, asked him. He did so, and it became one of his most popular poems. Carruth, who celebrated his 87th birthday last month died last night at his home in Munnsville New York. Carruth was the winner of the the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award for his poetry collection Scrambled Eggs and Whiskey. He edited Poetry magazine from 1949-1950 and was a poetry editor at Harpers. [more inside]
posted by jessamyn on Sep 30, 2008 - 23 comments

Robert Bruce: American Poet

Robert Bruce is an American Poet who eschews Lit and Poetry Journals and instead posts a poem a week to his blog, Knife Gun Pen. [more inside]
posted by mosessis on May 24, 2008 - 26 comments

A completely revised edition of the Masseian corpus with all the flaws taken out

Masseiana - Containing the three major works of Gerald Massey and his minor work commonly titled: The Lectures. Published here in their entirety, fully revised and amended, with additional material by the editor.
posted by tellurian on May 13, 2008 - 3 comments

Caroline Bergvall and More Pets!

Caroline Bergvall writes poems(mp3) modulated by technology(nsfw) . She also gives radio interviews (with more readings).
posted by geos on Nov 15, 2007 - 3 comments

Sekou Sundiata

Poet Sekou Sundiata died on the 18th. If you aren't familiar with his work, you can listen to him here. Interviews here.
posted by serazin on Jul 19, 2007 - 13 comments

If You Are A Dreamer, Come In...

"If you are a dreamer, a wisher, a liar, a hope-er, a pray-er, a magic bean buyer..." ShelSilverstein.com bills itself as "the Official Site for Kids" but, if you're familiar with Sheldon Allan Silverstein's ecclectic career, you don't have to be a kid to enjoy it. Shel was best known for his books and poetry, but he was also a prolific songwriter, working extensively with Dr. Hook & The Medicine Show [sorry, Tripod link]. He also wrote Johnny Cash's hit "A Boy Named Sue" and was posthumously inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall Of Fame in 2002. More songs and stories here. And his amazingly extensive Wikipedia page is here.
posted by amyms on May 1, 2007 - 13 comments

Billy Collins: action poet

Billy Collins: action poet. Animated quicktime video poem readings.
posted by srboisvert on Apr 13, 2007 - 19 comments

This is the YouTube poetry post.

Poets on YouTube: Bukowski; Dylan Thomas; Jim Morrison; Allen Ginsberg; Sylvia Plath; Billy Collins; Cookie Monster; and what the hell, even Jacques Brel.

But there's plenty of readings by amateurs as well: for example, lilcutiewithabooty06 reads e e cummings; Michael reads cummings really fast; Tom Waits and Bono read Bukowski; bearded men read Lewis Carroll and Shakespeare; and what if Emily Dickinson had a ukulele?

Mouseover links to see titles; feel free to add your favourites.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane on Mar 26, 2007 - 29 comments

His gift survived it all

Today is the centenary of W.H. Auden, one of the greatest poets of the twentieth century. Why not commemorate it by attending one of the many events honoring the man and marking the day? Auden wrote about anything and everything; his poems addressed such topics as the advent of World War II ("September 1, 1939", which gained new resonance after 9/11), grief ("Funeral Blues", used to great effect in Four Weddings and a Funeral), physics ("After Reading a Child's Guide to Modern Physics"), commencement addresses ("Under Which Lyre: A Reactionary Tract for the Times") unrequited love ("The More Loving One"), and the way life goes on ("Musée des Beaux Arts"). [more inside]
posted by Vidiot on Feb 20, 2007 - 36 comments

A Poetry Slam, Indeed.

When Poets Attack Tony Snow denies that the president called him a nut, but now, poet Nikki Giovanni called Ken Blackwell an S.O.B., in quite a public place.
posted by tizzie on Oct 15, 2006 - 35 comments

Black Bart - Outlaw P o 8

I've labored long and hard for bread,
For honor and for riches
But on my corns too long you've tread,
You fine-haired sons-of-bitches.
Black Bart, the P o 8.
posted by Joey Michaels on Nov 29, 2005 - 14 comments

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