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News Articles, with Rus Bowden


News at Eleven

There were some people in those workshops who clearly thought they already knew what good writing was. So they tended to criticize from a particular position they had already taken. That seems a shame. Because there are an assortment of people in a program--both faculty and peers--who can really help you shake up all your perceptions about writing. And that would seem to me to be the best part about being there. If you're really looking to be a better writer, why not be open to every suggestion and see what happens?

from Atlantic Unbound: Writers in Training

For [Moica Arac de] Nyeko, Femrite helped bridge the gap and brought in women writers to the literary landscape through seminars and workshops. The organisation had a room christened 'The Den of Wisdom' furnished with a computer, mattress and blanket only.

"We would go in there and literally close the world out, just thinking about the stories we were working on," she recalls.

from The Standard: It was a long wait for Caine Prize winner

Some major media attention came my way afterward. I was featured in a segment on ABC's "This Week with George Stephanopoulos" and in an article in Time magazine. I should have been thrilled by all the notice. But I've been saddened by it instead.

Even though all three poems I recited had something important to say, the media reduced me from the complex person I am to a one-dimensional figure by repeatedly discussing my reading of just one--the poem about race.

from The Washington Post: I Am More Than Just a Black Woman

--"Always on the Train," by Ruth Stone.

from Times Argus: Poet laureate finds rhyme and reason in ordinary life

By Alan Franks

from The Times: Inverse
also The Times: The Stowaway
also The Times: Lock-In
also The Times: The Poetry of Alan Franks

The markets speak for themselves. From sweet Lancaster corn to zucchini blossoms to Fairy Tale eggplant, seasonal treats abound on farm stand tables throughout the city. If only we could "carry within us an orchard" writes Li-Young Lee in this moving and vivid poem. Enjoy the summer's bounty--the "nectar at the roadside"--before this fleeting season passes.

From Blossoms
By Li-Young Lee

from The Evening Bulletin: Savor Summer's Bounty

City Visible attempts to gather in its arms poets in "dialogue? with one another, "poets who more or less care about the same things and whose work has influenced each others'." As an underlying ideology for the art makers in any region of the world, this seems the freshest and most embracing view of how we interact with stimuli.

from Bookslut: The City Visible: Chicago Poetry for the New Century edited by William Allegrezza and Raymond Bianchi

The land that gave the world Robert Burns also has the dubious honor of producing the "world's worst poet." Now fans of the hapless William McGonagall are campaigning to put him in the pantheon of Scottish literary greats.

from International Herald-Tribune: Love him or loathe him, William McGonagall is a Scottish literary legend

[Natascha Kampusch] ran down the street and appealed for help to the first woman she met, but the woman didn't understand her: how would the dead speak? Natascha spoke like a radio announcer, imitating the only female voice she had heard in eight years. She was a waif, weighing less than six and a half stone; the policewoman who was the first official to see her described her as "white as cheese", an unpoetic but no doubt perfectly exact expression of the effects of the underworld.

from The Guardian: Ghost writing

Another mummy was found buried with a love poem written by his bereaved wife.

Dating to around the time Shakespeare wrote Romeo and Juliet, the verse bears striking similarities to the famous tragedy.

It reads, in part:

You always said [. . .]

from National Geographic: Korean Mummies Reveal Medical Clues, Love Poems

A poem emerges.

In some sort of subtle, magical way, says [James] Brandenburg, poetry--both writing it and reading it--allows participants to circumvent the rational, logical part of the brain and go deep. Metaphor, imagery and symbolism combine to unlock the mind's secrets.

from San Antonio Express-News: Adviser believes in healing power of words

Great Regulars

For example, the line "But syns that I so kyndely ame served" will probably be read as irony by us ("kyndely" been taken to mean unkindly); however, it may actually have meant something like "But since she has treated me in accordance with her nature (kind)". I think that this relates to some of the issues of tradition and the new raised on the Vintage Twins blog."

They fle from me that sometyme did me seke by Sir Thomas Wyatt

from Sarah Crown: The Guardian: Poem of the week

Of course, youth itself will not have aged, and it makes sense that his poems will not age. They will sit eternally on the page ever speaking in the speaker's voice.

However, if he finds that his poems are aging with "time's furrows," he shall expect his own life will atone for his own death.

from Linda Sue Grimes: Shakespeare Sonnet 22

[Edward] Picot said that "many of the ideas of concrete poetry"--in which the shape of the typography on the printed page is an element of the poem--"have been picked up by hyperliterature. Instead of having a poem about a bird which is shaped like a bird, you can have a poem about a bird which is shaped like a bird and moves across the page like a bird."

from Katie Haegele: The Philadelphia Inquirer: Still looking at blackbirds

Perhaps when the diameter of the bomb in the poem reaches beyond the seat of God, and He appears unmoved and ineffective, it is because God knows it isn't His fault. He blames us.

from Frieda Hughes: The Times: Shock waves

Poem: "Tell Me" by Anne Pierson Wiese, from Floating City: Poems.

from Garrison Keillor: The Writer's Almanac: For the week of July 30, 2007

The chances are very good that you are within a thousand yards of a man with a comb-over, and he may even be somewhere in your house. Here's Maine poet, Wesley McNair, with his commentary on these valorous attempts to disguise hair loss.

Hymn to the Comb-Over

from Ted Kooser: American Life in Poetry: Column 122

Even as Professor Lazenby strode about, his students were discovering, through instant messages on their laptops and text messages on their cellphones, that there had been a shooting in one of the dorms that morning and that more shots were being fired in an engineering building nearby. The lecture quickly became an exercise in practicing journalism.

from Charles McGrath: The New York Times: Tales of Two Tragedies

In other words, the flocks plunge him [Mark Cocker] deeply into himself while seeming marvellously other than himself, compelling him to ask questions about how language can contain a sight so amazing, and also to wonder how the birds articulate elements in his deep un- or sub-conscious.

from Andrew Motion: The Guardian: As the crow flies

We are told that Mr. Cogito can "no longer/stand the colloquial turns" (in context, [Zbigniew] Herbert clearly means "commonplace," not "colloquial"), that a prosecutor has a "yellow indicator finger" ("index finger"?), and that you can hear "the tolling of scattered walls" ("collapsing walls"?).

Still, Herbert wrote many poems; mistakes are to be expected.

from David Orr: The New York Times: Translating Zbigniew Herbert

Whether the man-eating creature, said to resemble a giant sloth, exists or not, it reveals something about the human need to imagine a being profoundly other than ourselves that yet somehow reflects (or consumes) US. Here is a poem by Wislawa Szymborska, translated from the Polish by Stanislaw Baranczak and Clare Cavanagh:

Notes from a Nonexistent Himalayan Expedition

from Robert Pinsky: The Washington Post: Poet's Choice

In poetry we are continually being reborn into new fairylands. The poet in the child is a traveller into fairyland, and if at a later stage he returns to reality, he must bring back with him fire from that heaven if he is to remain a poet. He can not be a poet of experience unless he has first been a poet of innocence.

from V Sundaram: News Today: My favourite poems and poets--I

Probably the best known of all [Sir Henry] Newbolt's poems and the one for which he is now chiefly remembered is Vitaï Lampada. It refers to how a future soldier learns stoicism in cricket matches in the famous Close at Clifton College:

There's a breathless hush in the Close to-night
Ten to make and the match to win
A bumping pitch and a blinding light,
An hour to play, and the last man in.

from V Sundaram: News Today: My favourite poems and poets--II

Love is the supreme good; it is the overflowing life, the giving and surrender of ourselves to noble ends and lofty causes. It is the valley of humility and the Everest of Himalayan ecstasy. I can go on joyously this way, endlessly forever and ever. Yet at the same time, finally we can never ignore what Shakespeare (1554--1616) said in conclusion: "Love reasons without reason".

These emotions and feelings surged up in my mind and heart again when I re-read the following poem of Allgernon Charles Swinburne (1837- 1909) called 'A Match'

from V Sundaram: News Today: My favourite poems and poets--III

In poetry, the symbolist procedure--as typified by Verlaine--was to use subtle suggestion instead of precise statement (rhetoric was banned) and to evoke moods and feelings through the magic of words and repeated sounds and the cadence of verse (musicality) and metrical innovation


from V Sundaram: News Today: My favourite poems and poets--IV

[Bert Glick] is a peripatetic poet who was recently on Pacific Avenue in downtown Santa Cruz, toting a copy of his book: "I Used To Be Me." If spotted, approach with caution. He may attempt to read you a poem.

She said
I had a cookie aura

from Good Times Weekly: Bert Glick

Prayer by Alice Oswald

from The Guardian: The Saturday poem: Prayer by Alice Oswald

Stephen H. Benedict

from The Kansas City Star: Poet's Corner: 'Willow'

Later in Life
by Jorie Graham

from The New Yorker: Poetry: Later in Life

There Is No Time, She Writes
by D. Nurske

from The New Yorker: Poetry: There Is No Time, She Writes

Here, there's a great urge to run [. . .]
[by Sid Miller]

from The Oregonian: Poetry

By Danielle Esplin

My Ode

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [by Danielle Esplin]

I Am Different
[by C Fletcher]

from Portsmouth Herald News: Poem: I Am Different

Microscope by Miroslav Holub translated by Ian Milner

Most of the poems in Signs and Humours: The Poetry of Medicine (Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, 2007, £8.50) are about our bodies, but Miroslav Holub, the Czech poet and immunologist, takes a closer look at the struggles going on in deeper levels of life.

from The Scotsman: Poem of the Week

"War Work (Brooklyn, 1944-45)"
By Barry Goldensohn

from Slate: "War Work (Brooklyn, 1944-45)" --By Barry Goldensohn

Application for a Grant by Anthony Hecht

from The Times Literary Supplement: Poem of the Week

Poetic Obituaries

[The Rev. Ralph Allen Banning's] love for Forge Mountain grew as the years passed. During his retirement, he served as interim pastor to many churches. He also taught Bible studies, wrote poetry, grew a garden most years and regularly visited shut-ins.

from Times-News: Ralph A. Banning, 96

[Gordon] Bishop's political activism dated back to anti-Vietnam war protests and poetry readings in the U.S. in the 1960s and 70s. His photo appeared on the front page of The New York Times in January 1967 after he was arrested along with other anti-war protesters during a sit-in in St. Patrick's Cathedral. He was active in "Angry Arts against the War," crisscrossing New York City on the back of a flat-bed truck, reading his poetry and holding up photos of napalm-affected Vietnamese children.

from The Jakarta Post: Gordon Bishop: A dedicated friend of Indonesia

[Jurgis Blekaitis] joined Voice of America in 1952, when it was based in New York, and followed it to Washington when its headquarters moved in 1954.

He published two books of poetry in the United States and a memoir in Lithuania. He also translated poetry by such esteemed European writers as Czeslaw Milosz, Joseph Brodsky and Ivar Ivask.

from The Washington Post: Jurgis Blekaitis; Theater Producer, Poet Was Editor of Voice of America

Friends and family members said they remember [Kikhiesha] Brooks, a cheerleader and member of the Afro-Haitian dance program during her years at Berkeley High, as a loving, outgoing and especially generous person who was passionate about poetry, music and dance.

from The Daily Californian: Young Mother Dead After Oakland Shooting

Lars Forssell, the longest serving member of the Swedish Academy that awards the Nobel Literature Prize, died Thursday, aged 79.

Forssell, a poet and writer was born 14 January 1928 in Stockholm, and was elected as member to the 18-seat academy in March 1971 and admitted in December the same year.

from Monsters and Critics: Swedish Academy member Lars Forssell dies at 79

The author [Victor Frunza] was forced to leave Romania in 1980 after writing a letter critical of the communist regime led by dictator Nicolae Ceausescu. The letter was published internationally, and Frunza was interrogated by the dreaded secret police.

from News 92.3 KTAR: Romanian Anti-Communist Dissident Dies

Vic [Goertzen] penned 30 columns for highwaySTAR under the banner, A Twist of Freight, beginning in May 2004. In his words, you could read his love for the road, his unending curiosity with life, an unrepentant challenge of convention, and utter devotion to his sons.

He was difficult to edit at times, but always a pleasure to read because you never knew what was coming next. There were many stories in him yet to be told, and he often told me that his dream was to publish a volume of poetry.

from Today's Trucking: highwaySTAR columnist dies in truck crash

A man convicted of raping and beating an 86-year-old woman to death in 1980 and who became a published poet in jail was executed late Thursday in Alabama, prison officials said.

Darrell Grayson, 46, was declared dead from the lethal injection at 2316 GMT, a prison official at Holman, Alabama, said.

from Khaleej Times: US convicted murderer executed in Alabama

The following poem that she [Gwendolyn Lacy] wrote for her cousin Sue described her own attitude toward life, her daughter said.

She'd Wish Us to Dance

from Redlands Daily Facts: Gwendolyn Lacy, 78

[Bianca] Reid says it wasn't unusual to find [Robert] Lynch sitting in the back of their ROTC class, writing songs and poems in his notebook. Despite his love for the arts, it was his talent as a leader that stuck out to those who knew him best--the 2005 Seneca High School Junior ROTC students.

from WAVE3: Friends say slain Marine had big plans, big heart

Jeevan Mykoo had many sides.

As a policy analyst with Environment Canada, the bright Ottawa man was recognized for his work on the Clean Air Act.

Friends could rely on him for advice, a well-crafted poem, a joke, or a profound thought about an issue.

from Ottawa Citizen: Ottawa man drowns on trip to New York

Betty [Jeanne Nirella] continued to teach art at Rustic Canyon Park, the Palisades-Malibu YMCA, and privately on her deck at her Santa Monica home as well as on several international tours that she led. She moved to Mount San Antonio Gardens in Pomona in 1989, where she continued to teach art and enjoy other creative pursuits, including her active participation with the Live Poet Society.

from Palisadian-Post: Betty Jeanne Nirella, 85; Local Art Teacher

[Clarice "Bobbie" Richard] also recited poetry, one of her favorite pastimes. In her final days, she remembered a poem about a butterfly flying into a church.

In addition to poetry, Clarice Richard enjoyed gardening and a good story. She told fictional stories about a woman who lived in a vinegar bottle and factual stories about dodging bullets from a German plane during the peak of World War II.

from The Huntsville Times: She always made others feel important

Loved ones said [Christopher] Scherer joined the Marines right out of Northport High School, and his parents, Janet and Tim, read a poem their son wrote for the family.

"When Chris was getting ready to be deployed he was very short on words," Janet said.

from NY Daily News: L.I. pastor remembers 'solid' Marine as family says final goodbye


News at Eleven

Martín Espada: Yes, that's obviously an expression that's been beaten into the ground. For me, all justice is poetic.

Bill Moyers: How so?

Martín Espada: Well, first of all, because it is so beautiful. To see justice done, there--there's--there's something about that I can--I can't even put into words. And when you see it happen in a courtroom and, you know, there's someone there, again ordinarily silenced and--and suppressed by that system who has an opportunity to speak or to speak through you. And someone that person is vindicated and justice is done. To me, there's no feeling like that.

from Bill Moyers Journal: Bill Moyers talks with poet, Martín Espada

About 100 unpublished poems along with photographs and other belongings of Nobel prize-winning Chilean poet Gabriela Mistral have been found in the United States, a Santiago newspaper said today.

from Herald Sun: Poems by Nobel laureate Mistral found

According to his lawsuit, while researching a book on the 1920s literary group known as the Algonquin Round Table, of which [Dorothy] Parker was a member, Mr [Stuart] Silverstein discovered more than 120 poems which she had never deemed worthy of publication.

He edited them and offered the collection as a book to Penguin in 1994.

from Telegraph: Penguin in battle over Parker poems

"Would you like some information about Fitz-Greene Halleck?" asked Kenan Minkoff of each passerby on the afternoon of July 8, the birthday (in 1790) of the man once dubbed "the American Byron."


"No, thanks."

from The Citizen: Memo to politicians and poets: Fame is fleeting

Two skulls, one poet. It is a riddle that has been vexing experts for years. But now scientists hope to finally determine which skull belonged to Germany's most famous playwright, Friedrich Schiller.

from The Guardian: Schiller's family exhumed as scientists work to crack mystery of the two skulls

In addition to their sweeps of scale--from the cellular to the global--the poems are well-travelled. A regular visitor to the Middle East, [Sarah] Maguire is the founder of the Poetry Translation Centre at London University's School of Oriental and African Studies, responsible for transporting an extraordinary range of poetry from overseas into English. (She is also the only living English-language poet with a book in print in Arabic.)

from The Guardian: All this time on my knees

These two poetic contributions, according to [Ahmed Abdul Rahman] Bamajboor, made a good impression on Saudis and strengthened Yemen's relationship with the Kingdom.

Bamajboor is able to write poetry in a number of Arabic dialects. "What distinguishes my poems, as many people have described, are their simplicity as well as the clarity of my language.

from Yemen Times: BaMajboor: Uniting a nation through poetry

Certain Character or Personality Patterns include the blood brother, wise grandparent, generous thief, duplicitous clergyman, the prostitute with a heart of gold, the rebel, the Don Juan (womanizer), the all-conquering hero, the braggadocio, the country bumpkin, the local boy who makes good, the self-made man/woman, the hunted man, the siren, the witch and "femme fatale", the villain, the traitor, the snob, the social climber, the guilt-ridden in search of expiation, the damsel in distress, the underdog, the person more sinned against than sinning, and the state of "pre-Fall" innocence.

from Black Voice News: Patterns Inside Poetry And Prose

L=The Markov Chain by Tina Ehrami

from Persian Mirror: L=The Markov Chain by Tina Ehrami

However, when the father realized that Mirza would not be dissuaded, he says: "I see you are determined to go. Then don't come back without Sahiban. It's a question of our honor. Bring her with you!"

Mirza readies his horse, collects his bow and quiver and sets off to Khewa on the day Sahiban's wedding is to take place.

from All Things Pakistan: Folk Tales of Pakistan: Mirza-Sahiban

Meghan Elizabeth O'Rourke and James Michael Surowiecki were married last evening in Fairfield, Conn., at the home of Eleanor and Andrew Beer, friends of the bride's parents. Mary C. Pugh, a justice of the peace in Norwalk, Conn., officiated. The Rev. David O'Rourke, a Roman Catholic priest and the bride's great-uncle, presided over the ceremony.

from The New York Times: Meghan O'Rourke, James Surowiecki

Great Regulars

If the other names on the shortlist for the ?35,000 (£23,000) Cork-based prize are familiar, it is for their achievements outside literature. Iceland's Olaf Olafsson, shortlisted for Valentines, has published three novels but is better-known as the erstwhile CEO of both Sony Interactive Entertainment and Time Warner Digital Media.

from Sarah Crown: The Guardian: Big names miss out on Frank O'Connor shortlist

But ultimately, the only real departure from traditional values was his style, particularly his orthographic alterations. His use of unusual grammatical structures has given [E. E.] Cummings a reputation for rebelliousness that he does not actually deserve.

from Linda Sue Grimes: E. E. Cummings

Our language may alter somewhat, our clothes follow the development of new fabric and styles, our weapons increase in their ability to devastate, but our basic emotional repertoire remains pretty much unchanged.

from Frieda Hughes: The Times: Tongue-tied lover

Poem: "The Clasp" by Sharon Olds, from The Unswept Room.

from Garrison Keillor: The Writer's Almanac: For the week of July 23, 2007

A large white umbrella blown into the street, and an aproned waiter rushing to the rescue. A poem need not have a big subject, but what's there does need to add up to more than the surface details. Notice the way this poem by Mike White of Utah moves beyond realistic description into another, deeper realm of suggestion.


from Ted Kooser: American Life in Poetry: Column 121

"There have been two or three reports of public executions of North Korean young people in major cities including Chungjin, as punishment for having illegally copied and distributed South Korean visual material," said Kang Chul Hwan, vice-chairman of the Seoul-based Committee for the Democratization of North Korea.

from Luisetta Mudie: Radio Free Asia: North Korea Cracks Down on 'Korean Wave' of Illicit TV

Kenneth Koch (1925-2002) puts ships in landlocked Hartford and a walnut detective in the opening simile of this early poem (from his new Selected Poems, well edited by Ron Padgett), not just to mock literary solemnity--that is incidental--but to offer "You" the pleasure of something genuine, as well as genuinely amusing.

That is a tradition in love poetry.

from Robert Pinsky: The Washington Post: Poet's Choice

Especially successful are: "hawking cries of seagulls", the wardrobe door's "magnetic kiss" and "the rush and sucked-in gasp of the toilet flush". Each of these gives us the yes! of recognition.

from Fiona Sampson: The Guardian: Poetry Workshop: Sound writing

As a general observation, one can say that till the beginnings of the renaissance in Europe in the late 15th and early 16th centuries, the main channel of the intellectual communication of a religious tradition was from Insider to Insider. This began to change with the rise of the West and the onset of the modern era. In this phase, as the West became familiar with the religions of the Americas, Africa and Asia, the main mode of transmission about these religions became that from Outsider to Outsider.

from V Sundaram: News Today: Defaming of Hinduism-II

They also claim with authority to have 'academically proved and established' that [Sri] Ramakrishna [Paramahamsa] was a child molester, and one who also forced homosexual activities on Swami Vivekananda. They consider Ramakrishna's mystical experiences and those of other Indian mystics in general as pathological sexual symptoms and conditions which are badly in need of psychoanalysis.

from V Sundaram: News Today: Defaming of Hinduism-III

''Scholarly'' works produced by specially hired scholars under the overall feaudal tutelage and pecuniary stranglehold of the American Academy of Religion (AAR) and Religion in South Asia (RISA) are being used by American Christian groups to describe Hinduism as a 'dirty dignity destroying religion' and as a 'pig-pen from the east'. Let me give some examples to illustrate this point.

from V Sundaram: News Today: Defaming of Hinduism-IV

I fully endorse the view of Rajiv Malhotra that there is the alarming possibility that the combined failure of Indian-Americans to translate their personal professional success into respect for their cultures and traditions might lead to a condition paralleling that of Jews in Europe before the II World War and in the event of an unforeseen or sudden economic downturn in the not very distant future, they could easily become scapegoats in America.

from V Sundaram: News Today: Defaming of Hinduism-V

I would like to oppose these charlatans and quacks from the West by quoting the blazing words of Yevgeny Yevtushenko, the great Russian poet: "Mankind is essentially a single organism, a single body, a single soul. But can we imagine a body surviving if it were hacked into little pieces (even if in these little pieces artificial dams were to be constructed for normal blood circulation)? Would anybody withstand such bestial torture? Yet mankind endures, somehow; even hacked to pieces it somehow exists, and its separate little pieces pulsate, breathe, hope, strive to coalesce. Clearly mankind is a special kind of organism, a special kind of body and soul, possessing supernatural powers of survival."

from V Sundaram: News Today: Defaming of Hinduism-VI

Poetry: The Stars and the Moon
Stephenie Bushra Khan

from The American Muslim: Poetry: The Stars and the Moon

Deeply shocked but not without composure, I accepted a letter from his hands, and in a failing voice promised not to open it until three years had passed. We parted coolly. A few days later he left the town without saying goodbye, nor did we meet again.

from Daily Times: Purple Patch: Message in a bottle --Bertolt Brecht

When I sit down to write a book, I do not say to myself, 'I am going to produce a work of art'. I write it because there is some lie that I want to expose, some fact to which I want to draw attention, and my initial concern is to get a hearing.

from Daily Times: Purple Patch: Why I Write --George Orwell

The Lesson by Edward Lucie-Smith

from The Guardian: The Saturday poem: The Lesson by Edward Lucie-Smith

Element It Has
by Glyn Maxwell

from The New Yorker: Poetry: Element It Has

Four Poems
by Vera Pavlova

from The New Yorker: Poetry: Four Poems

Listening to the neighbor's dog [. . .]
[by Amy Miller]

from The Oregonian: Poetry

By Jake Scott


from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poems: [by Jake Scott]

By Brittany Sherman

Teach Me

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poems: [by Brittany Sherman]

Tree o'Life
[by Elmo St. Newton]

from Portsmouth Herald News: Poem: Tree o'Life

"Green Couch"
By Edward Hirsch

from Slate: "Green Couch" --By Edward Hirsch

Poetic Obituaries

"He's the last person on earth that this would happen to."

[Alexander] Day had varied interests. He loved writing poetry, boxing, performing martial arts and playing football for his high school. He was admired for his strong faith.

from AM New York: Residents stunned at Hempstead teen's killing

Frederick M. Garber, a Thoreau scholar who helped to establish the study of comparative literature at Binghamton when he joined the faculty in the 1960s, died June 26 at the age of 77.

from Inside Binghamton University: Garber, a Thoreau scholar, dies at 77

Never married, [Peter] Phillips was a seeker and traveler, who at one point wanted to be a museum curator. He alternatively was described by friends and family as a guys guy, practical joker, outdoorsman, passionate historian and teacher and sensitive poet.

from Daily Herald: Friends, family mourn Libertyville native killed in Belize

[Ina Wolf Rosenblatt] published a book of poetry in 2001 called "To Life: A Collection of Inspirational Poems."

Friend Tom McElligott said he enjoyed reading her poems because they were so uplifting. He also remembers how she would donate books, musical instruments and drawing materials to a local child-care center.

"She was an educator, and she loved teaching and loved children," he said. "Her music was the thing nearest and dearest to her heart."

from Chicago Tribune: Ina Wolf Rosenblatt: 1910--2007

On Wednesday, July 18, 2007, at 5:47a.m., poet Sekou Sundiata passed away. A highly esteemed performing poet, Sundiata wrote for print, performance, music and theater.

Born Robert Franklin Feaster in Harlem, on August 22, 1948, Sundiata came of age as an artist during the Black Arts/Black Aesthetic movements of the 1960s and 1970s.

from Black Star News: Sekou Sundiata Funeral Saturday

"Forsythia" (1965) at PEPC
"waterfall" (1973) at PEPC
(both used with the permission of the estate of Mary Ellen Solt)

Poems at UBU (plus essay on U.S. concrete poetry)

Los Angeles Times obituary

New: Mary Ellen Solt EPC author page

from Web Log: Charles Bernstein: Mary Ellen Solt (1920-2007)

"George Tabori--a poet, a director, an actor, a genius of life, a truly unique human being--has reached the close of his life's cycle," the theater, founded by Berthold Brecht, said in a statement.

from KMOV-TV: Playwright George Tabori Dies in Berlin


News at Eleven

Tonight is a night for stories
and tales filled with monsters
and those funny space things. I tell
my children to hush and listen.

In these four lines, [E. Ethelbert] Miller sustains that syllabic control without lapsing into a singsong rhythm. Each line -- except for the second one, which works especially well to achieve a variety of cadence -- has eight syllables. If the reader does not pause at the end of line three in this stanza, the rhythmic flow may be more comfortable for the reader's ear.

from Diverse: Whispers, Secrets and Promises

"African literature is not properly in the British mainstream yet," says [Monica] Arac de Nyeko. "The way it is perceived is very much still in the 1960s. As an African writer, if you are not writing about things like war and famine your authenticity is questioned."

from The Guardian: theblogbooks: Why must authors be tied to their ethnicity?

"Prisoners in military fatigues driving other prisoners, nude, toward cameras filming the victory," he [Mahmoud Darwish] described in his poem the images of Hamas fighters escorting surrendering Fatah men, some of them stripped to their underwear, after days of bloody fighting in the Gaza Strip a month ago.

from Middle East Times: Famed Palestinian poet decries factional infighting

One of the most extraordinary characteristics of first world war poetry is the almost total absence of speculation about what is going to happen when the fighting stops. Most of the poets were junior infantry officers. Perhaps they simply assumed that they would not live to enjoy the peace.

from The Guardian: Comment is free: Poets and patriots

"In China I was like a fossil, because I was buried underground. And when I came to the United States and people discovered me, they dug me out of the earth and I became alive," said Huang [Xiang], whose wife translated.

from Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: Foreign writers find refuge in Pittsburgh

[Zbigniew Herbert] poems are political, but only indirectly so. There are no place names, no naming of tragic events or villains. There is only a nearly constant call to compassion:

in order to revive the dead
and maintain the covenant

Mr Cogito's imagination
moves like a pendulum

it runs with great precision
from suffering to suffering

from The Brooklyn Rail: Poetry: Mister I Think

"Sough" earns its keep, despite being riskily poetical, thanks to its music: that is, its assonantal echoing of the last syllable of "willow" and the pointed contrast, heightened by the unvoiced/voiced "g" and the little gulf of white paper between them, with "grave". What on earth made her think of "grave"?

from The Guardian: A lens of rising water

Above all, Yeats implicitly announced an enterprise that he never really abandoned: a determination to exoticise Irishness, to proclaim the essential difference and originality of his country's culture.

from The Guardian: The golden bird

The greatest poems are worth waiting for (and wading through a lot of the inferior stuff for). In many cases, it is not until a poet gives voice to a particular emotion by rendering it in words that one can experience it fully for the first time.

from Mens News Daily: Poetry Amidst the Kultursmog: An Interview with David Yezzi

But when readers actually spent time with poetry, what were they doing with it? Based on the meager evidence, it is not clear that they were reading the poets as the poets would want to be read.

from The New York Sun: The Old World of American Readers

And then Dave [Dessler] offers up one of his signature observations: "You didn't hear me because you weren't listening. You decided 20 metres back that you were going to tell me you didn't have any spare change." The look on the girlfriend's face said Dave nailed it.

They say an artist must suffer and struggle for his work. That doesn't mean you have to help it happen.
--Crazzy Dave, 15/08/06

from Ottawa Citizen: And now, from the man on the street

Great Regulars

"The first is mass communications, which flood all the channels in which culture might grow with a stream of endless noise, so that it becomes difficult to separate out things that are worth attending to from things that are not. That, combined with the democratisation of everything, means the type of criticism that is vital for separating out the valuable from the trivial becomes very difficult to maintain."
[--Roger Scruton]

from Bryan Appleyard: Knowledge is nothing to be scared of

I no longer needed to make the gear shift that is generally required when you pick up a volume of poetry after reading prose; my ear was attuned to poetry's rhythms, and my eye--accustomed to the sight of poetry on the page--became far quicker at detecting themes, echoes and linguistic flourishes (reading the collections back to back also, of course, allowed me to arrive at qualitative judgments with far greater speed and conviction).

from Sarah Crown: The Guardian: The great poetry binge

But there is an aesthetic issue here. A company performs in front of an audience, and it makes a big difference where the performance takes place - in what country, in the context of what tradition, playing to what expectations, out to shock which sensibilities or (as Jennings found) to exploit what kind of easy complicity.

from James Fenton: The Guardian: Hot foot

Still he recounts his earthly, physical experiences: "Many a time/By bitter speech and sadness driven,/The boat of my life found safety/In the harbor of those two eyes." The speaker metaphorically dramatizes his life as a boat, searching for a safe harbor, and that safe harbor is found only in those two black eyes that he has lost on the earth plane.

from Linda Sue Grimes: Solacing Eyes

About 20 avatars stood and sat around the room, and the chat box on my screen registered everything they said, whether it was to another individual or to the whole group. The crisscrossing conversations were not unlike the chatter of a real classroom before the teacher gets started.

"This is a class on Contemporary Fiction!" [Beth] Ritter-Guth typed, commanding attention. "This is a real class and we have real work to do."

from Katie Haegele: The Philadelphia Inquirer: Second Life literati create 'book world'

We all love a happy ending but, for an ending to be happy, the unhappy journey beforehand must be evident, even if it is only in the mind.


by Kate Bingham (Quicksand Beach, Seren)

from Frieda Hughes: The Times: Free dreams, fond bores

"Having Children" by Barbara Tanner Angell, from The Long Turn Toward Light.

from Garrison Keillor: The Writer's Almanac: For the week of July 16, 2007

The loss of youth and innocence is one of the great themes of literature. Here the California poet Kim Noriega looks deeply into a photograph from forty years ago.

Heaven, 1963

from Ted Kooser: American Life in Poetry: Column 120

My disappointment with the book is that it perpetuates the myth about schools like Harvard, Yale, and Princeton. If one is blessed to attend these institutions, it makes one superior to everyone else.

Well, Cedric makes it to Brown University and is saved--I guess--from the University of Maryland and Howard University.

from E. Ethelbert Miller: Diverse: A Hope in the Unseen

But jitsu wa, to be truthful, my most real relationship with Japanese culture is one of amnesia -- something that has been lost through the process of Americanization and through the political and historical trauma of the internment camps.

In recent years I've been interested in the ways Japan, in part through anime and in part through science fiction, has come to occupy a futuristic alternative cultural space.

from E. Ethelbert Miller: Foreign Policy in Focus: Fiesta!: Interview with David Mura

Authorities in the northern Chinese city of Xian have closed a literary Web site run by a Tibetan, apparently for posting "political" content, the editor said.

The site, known as "The Lamp," claimed some 800 registered forum users.

from Luisetta Mudie: Radio Free Asia: Chinese Authorities Close Tibetan Literary Web Site

"Oil & Steel" [by Henri Cole] has 14 lines, like a sonnet. Instead of end rhyme, its lines often conclude with slight, polysyllabic echoes of consonant or vowel: "mausoleum," "television," "fiction," for example. A similar muffled similarity associates the sounds of "Bushmills," "courtroom," "useful."

from Robert Pinsky: The Washington Post: Poet's Choice

For all of them if most of the people of India were to disappear (to be exterminated!!) like the Red Indians of America did, it would have been no loss and perhaps a great good.

The editors/authors of this book show that while generations of Indian intellectuals have accepted the above British Colonial lopsided descriptions as more or less true, the future generations in India will not be so accommodating and yet at the same time they will also never fail to test these answers for their truth.

from V Sundaram: News Today: Defaming of Hinduism-I

by Thérèse Bachand

from luce a cavallo

from The Brooklyn Rail: Thérèse Bachand

by Tracie Morris and Charles Bernstein

Truth be Told

from The Brooklyn Rail: Tracie Morris and Charles Bernstein

The White Birds by WB Yeats

from The Guardian: The Saturday poem: The White Birds by WB Yeats


by Rebecca Morgan Frank

from Guernica: Poetry: Rescue

Dinner With a View
by Alarie Tennille

from The Kansas City Star: Poet's Corner: "Dinner With a View"

The Cold Hill Side
by Rachel Hadas

from The New Yorker: Poetry: The Cold Hill Side

Lake Water
by David Ferry

from The New Yorker: Poetry: Lake Water

My grandfather would take the boat out [. . .]
[by Jamie Zerndt]

from The Oregonian: Poetry

By Jocelyn Freed
The Beach

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [by Jocelyn Freed]

By Christopher Selverian
America, from Sea to Shining Sea

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [by Christopher Selverian]

A Lake at Night
[by David Craig]

from Portsmouth Herald News: Poem: A Lake at Night

"Bureau of Missing Persons"
By James Reiss

from Slate: "Bureau of Missing Persons" --By James Reiss

The TLS of July 1961 came with a separate supplement of twenty-two poems, under the banner The Sense of Poetry. Alongside contributions by Spike Milligan, Michael Horovitz and George Melly, "The Large Cool Store" made as much sense as most.

The Large Cool Store
[by Philip Larkin]

from The Times Literary Supplement: Poem of the Week

Poetic Obituaries

In many ways, his [Philip Booth's] poetry had more in common with the boatbuilders, lobstermen and local storytellers, whom he so greatly admired, than with the university professors with whom he earned his living. As he wrote in "Builder":

A stump of a man, Mace works wood:
a pine block first, whittled and shaped
to a model half-hull. "Now you take
the old Annie Gott," he says. He carves
the memory out, pine-chip and spit-
to-windward, lugging full sail, by eye.

from Bangor Daily News: Henry L. Miller: Remembering Philip Booth and his poetry

Montgomery book publisher Randall Wil­liams described [James Noble] Harrell as a "wonderful, com­passionate man who had a long life of great experiences in war and peace.

"To the end of his life, he remained dedi­cated to his real love and joy--writing and literature," said Wil­liams.

from Montgomery Advertiser: Harrell was poet, philanthropist

[Lady Bird Johnson] love of nature didn't confine itself to boardrooms and committee work. The outdoors and natural environment were part of Mrs. Johnson's regular day, as her once-frequent walks along Town Lake made evident, along with her picnic/poetry readings on the lawn fronting the LBJ Library.

from American-Statesman: Lady Bird Johnson dies at 94

Chris (Myrta) Bartlett Nelson, Waupaca, passed away July 15, 2007. She was a wife, mother, grandmother, print and radio journalist, poet, writer, photographer, cat lover and expert at planning and attending parties.

from Appleton Post-Crescent: Nelson, Chris (Myrta) B.

In the past 15 years, [Dmitry] Prigov published over 10 collections of verses and an interview book. The poet composed over 30,000 verses, while he himself cited the figure of 36,000 in 2005.

from RIA Novosti: Dissident poet Prigov dies


News at Eleven

But Shelley delved there constantly. He was fascinated by the difference between his physical self, dragged down with "languour" and kidney spasms and "slight attacks of typhus" and that other, extraordinary part of him, that

. . . aspires to Heaven,
Pants for its sempiternal heritage,
And, ever-changing, ever-rising still,
Wantons in endless being . . .

from The Guardian: Spirit for our age

It was, in [Janet] Todd's view, her rejection by [Percy Bysshe] Shelley, Mary [Godwin] and Claire [Clairemont] that drove her to her pitiful end. In a final twist, Todd suggests it was probably Shelley who ripped the signature from Fanny [Wollstonecraft]'s suicide note, in hypocritical cahoots with Godwin to hush the matter up.

from The Sunday Times: Mad about the boy

Now, possibly threatened by its imminent disclosure - the relevant documents have surfaced lately in [Günter] Grass's Stasi file--or in an attempt to keep some sort of "authorial" control over it, he has published it, and impertinently required readers to pay for it, the only significant revelation in a long and miserably bad book.

from The Guardian: Now I remember, now I forget

[Carolyn Cassady] can never look at On the Road (partly written on her typewriter in the attic of the Cassadys' San Francisco home) with fondness. The book covers the unhappiest of times early in their marriage, when Neal would disappear on frenetic road trips accompanied by Kerouac (Sal Paradise in the book) and often Neal's highly sexed teenaged first wife, LuAnne (Marylou).

from News Statesman: The Beat goes on

In the poem, the writer [Lebo Mashile] chronicles her life as a child born out of the liberation struggle. She talks about her upbringing in the United States of as a child of exiled parents.

from Mmegi: Mashile writes a winner

In ending this article, I have to say a few words about Jane [Alberdeston Coralin]'s poetry. There is such longing, such braiding to familia, even if the price is heartache. There is, too, a sense of heroism, of dignity in the face of loss, and a profound sense of ordinary beauty in both the construction of her work and the lyrical images that are shot through it.

from Blogcritics: A Flower In Her Heart: An Interview With Writer Jane Alberdeston Coralin, Part Two

The majority of these works are nature-inspired. [Robert C.] Jones uses vivid imagery and sharply defined lines to construct brief but profound poems, such as "Portents," the collection's lead work, in which objects from the natural world are transformed into mystical omens: "Two sticks/form a cross/at the edge of the path,/one side in darkness,/one side in light."

from The Kansas City Star: Two- & Three-Part Inventions, a collection of new and selected poems by Robert C. Jones

"The poet Vladimir Mayakovsky appeared with his head high in the sky and asked them to mend his soul," wrote one of the newspapers. "The audience that completely filled the theater burst into loud laughter."

Mayakovsky was described as completely lacking in talent, and writing "empty words of a malaria sufferer"; some people recommended that he be hospitalized immediately.

from Haaretz: The 'raging bull' of Russian poetry

In his essay "On Poetry" [Velimir] Khlebnikov wrote "If we think of the soul as split between the government of intellect and a stormy population of feelings, then incantations and beyondsense language are appeals over the head of the government straight to the population of feelings, a direct cry to the predawn of the soul."

Yet Khlebnikov does not fit into any one school or trend.

from Newropeans Magazine: The Flutes of Dionysus--Velimir Khlebnikov: The Futurian

It isn't possible to know war second-hand, but the words of the following three poets may help convey a sense of what those troops are going through.

The first, "Beat! Beat! Drums!" by Walt Whitman, sounds the frightening, insistent call that swept the nation in the Civil War.

from Concord Monitor: When the rockets' red glare is real

The survey, for the pre-school channel Cartoonito, questioned more than 1,200 parents across Britain, of whom only 12 per cent could recall three or more nursery rhymes in full.

from The Daily Mail: Why nursery rhymes are in danger of dying out

Great Regulars

But when God drops in for a chat, he discovers in Homer a surprisingly convincing theology. Basically, this is that life is tough and humans are hopeless but, without making a fuss about it, God is always there as the last safety net. And, when He's not around, there's love.

from Bryan Appleyard: The Sunday Times: There's nobody like him . . . except you, me, everyone

" . . . In that sense, the whole nation took up the pen name Akhmatova." And in the history of 20th century poetry, Anna Akhmatova is the miracle poet of humanity's inescapable bond with itself.

Native Land

from David Biespiel: The Oregonian: Poetry

One might make an honourable exception of Harold Pinter, who has wisely decided that being a champagne socialist is better than being no socialist at all; but his most explicitly political work is also his most artistically dreary.

from Terry Eagleton: The Guardian: Only Pinter remains

Then the eastern doors, the so-called Gates of Paradise, represented the thorough-going triumph of Renaissance values, leaving Gothic behind for good.

This tradition of making bronze doors for ceremonial buildings is very old indeed--it goes back directly to ancient Rome, and links the earliest Christian art to our own era.

from James Fenton: The Guardian: The perception of doors

He will not paint beauty upon his sonnets by comparing his subjects to heaven, nor will be claim that "every fair with his fair doth rehearse."

This speaker wants to gain a reputation as a plain speaker, not one who uses imaginary notions of what is true and beautiful to enhance is poetry. He wants his poetry to represent truth, not a facsimile of truth.

from Linda Sue Grimes: Shakespeare Sonnet 21

He doesn't scream or shout or call for the police--it's too late for an ambulance (or a vet)--instead he deals with his gruesome visitor with equanimity and lets it in.

from Frieda Hughes: The Times: Something gruesome comes to call

I'm especially attracted to poems that describe places I might not otherwise visit, in the manner of good travel writing. I'm a dedicated stay-at-home and much prefer to read something fascinating about a place than visit it myself. Here the Hawaii poet, Joseph Stanton, describes a tree that few of us have seen but all of us have eaten from.

Banana Trees

from Ted Kooser: American Life in Poetry: Column 119

And by fitting her contemporary American idiom to the old cadences of blank verse, [Grace] Schulman also celebrates us--the always changing, renewed and not entirely incongruous inheritors of the art.

from Robert Pinsky: The Washington Post: Poet's Choice

Death and Paradise
by Jennifer Doane

from The American Muslim: Poetry: Death and Paradise

This month we introduce you to Maggie Paul. Her work has appeared in Poetry Miscellany, Smartish Pace, the Sarasota Review, Monterey Poetry Review, Rattle and other journals. Her chapbook, "Stones From the Baskets of Others," was published by Black Dirt Press.


from Good Times Weekly: Poetry: Maggie Paul

The Downpour by William Dunlop

from The Guardian: The Saturday poem: The Downpour by William Dunlop

'At Polyglot McDonald's'
by Robert F. Willson

from The Kansas City Star: Poet's Corner: 'At Polyglot McDonald's'

And I think my father let me do it because he thought I would learn a lesson about staying away from effortful drudgery, and I learned exactly the opposite lesson, that most of those people led modest lives, virtuous lives. Those people were substantial and modest in ways that I try to emulate.

"This Failure."
[by Paul Hunter]

from PBS: Newshour: Hunter Discusses Reshaping 'Shopworn' Language

The poem also describes how we might contribute to that great melting pot that is the English language, that, for many of us who have come from different countries, our difficulties with American idioms often lead to unexpected syntactic constructions and surprising turns of phrase which enrich the language and by which we all are enriched.

'Immigrant Picnic'
[by Gregory Djanikian]

from PBS: Newshour: Poet Celebrates Family Picnics and 'Great Melting Pot' of Language

By Rachel Howard
Haddonfield Memorial High School

I would much rather die in a war,

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [by Rachel Howard]

By Damon Lomax
Delsea Regional High School

Will the Rain Ever Clear?

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [by Damon Lomax]

By Nicole Robinson

Colorful Awakening

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: by Nicole Robinson

By Sarah Rote

The Ocean

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [by Sarah Rote]

A world of strides . . .
[by Jeff Donatello]

from Portsmouth Herald News: Poem: A world of strides . . .

Poet and playwright Donald Campbell has spent many years working on versions of the Gaelic poems of the 18th-century bard of northernmost Sutherland, Rob Donn Mackay. The original of this poem - the refrain of any middle-aged man - was dedicated to Rob Donn's wife. From Homage to Rob Donn (Fras, 2007).

from The Scotsman: Poem of the Week

"I Consider My Mother's Mind"
By Lisa Russ Spaar

from Slate: "I Consider My Mother's Mind" --By Lisa Russ Spaar

This was not quite the settled position of the paper, however; for Adrian Henri had been a regular contributor of poems to our pages--at a time when few were taken--in the two or three years before the Penguin volume. "Poem in Memoriam T. S. Eliot" appeared in the TLS of February 11, 1965.

Poem in Memoriam T. S. Eliot

from The Times Literary Supplement: Poem of the Week: Poem In Memoriam T. S. Eliot, by Adrian Henri

Poetic Obituaries

[Lloyd] Alexander's many other books include fairy tales containing a moral lesson on the lines of Aesop, adventure stories and picture books. He continued writing up to his death, and his last novel, The Golden Dream of Carlo Chuchio, an adventure with an Arabian nights theme, will be published in the US in the autumn.

from The Guardian: Lloyd Alexander

In a poem called "First Lesson," Mr. [Philip] Booth wrote to a daughter:

As you float now, where I held you
and let go, remember when fear
cramps your heart what I told you:
lie gently and wide to the light-year
stars, lie back, and the sea will hold you.

from The New York Times: Philip Booth, a Shy Poet Rooted in New England Life, Dead at 81

A poet, [Andre] Chouraqui was best known for translating religious texts, including "La Bible hebraique et le Nouveau Testament" (The Hebrew Bible and New Testament), published in 26 volumes between 1974 and 1977.

from International Herald Tribune: Andre Chouraqui, French-Israeli author and politician, dies at 89

Joseph Francis Connelly, a retired Thomas More professor beloved by his students and known nationally for his expertise on Irish literary studies, died Saturday.

from The Cincinnati Post: Kentucky deaths: Joseph Connelly, retired Thomas More professor

Sandy Crimmins, 55, of West Mount Airy, a poet who performed with musicians, dancers and fire-eaters at bars, bookstores and festivals, died of an apparent heart attack Monday.

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Sandy Crimmins: Poet, performer, 55

Genevieve Czyzewski's life was shaped by grand geopolitical forces.

They pushed her from her native Poland to the Soviet Union to the Middle East, then to Italy, England, Argentina and, finally, Tacoma and Seattle. She was a deportee and a soldier, a shopkeeper and a teacher.

from Seattle Times: World refugee, 86, found home in Northwest

Understanding the power of language to unite people, she [Gladys Ford] wrote as the Wells Tannery correspondent to the Fulton County News and Broad Top Bulletin until her death.

Her gift of writing was accompanied by a lifelong love of composing poetry.

from The Fulton County News: Writer, Poet Gladys Ford Dies

[Johnny] Frigo was also a poet and artist with a keen sense of humor, his son said. When [Johnny] Carson asked him why he'd waited so long to launch his jazz violin career, he replied that he didn't want there to be enough time for him to become a has-been, his son said.

from WBBM 780: Jazz Violin Legend Johnny Frigo Dies

[Harvey] Goldner lived at a rooming house--with the bath down the hall and cheap rent--at First and Vine in Belltown. He drove a taxi a couple of nights a week to pay for the room and buy cigarettes.

The rest of the time he wrote his poems and monopolized a computer at the downtown library checking his e-mail, networking and looking for places to publish his work.

from The Seattle Post-Intelligencer: Harvey Goldner, 1942-2007: 'Bard of Belltown' a 'great poet' and a man of mystery

"Pelham Health Services, 12 Pleasant Street," a poem in the new book [by Sarah Hannah], begins:

How this obscure road winds me sinister, Gas lamps flicker, insinuant in series. Come here, they hiss, linger at this fire.

from The Boston Globe: Sarah Hannah, 40; teacher, poet known for incisiveness, fervence

But it was as a writer of junior fantasies that he will be best remembered, with World of the Stiks (1994) and his Cade trilogy (1996) continuing to combine violent action with strong condemnation of exploitation and corruption in whatever setting.

from The Independent: Douglas Hill

[James] Martin said he has many other poems his son wrote for him on occasions such as Father's Day, but they are too intense to read right now. Michael [Martin] was an avid hunter and fisherman from a very early age, he said.

from The Press Republican: Keeseville motorcyclist dead after Friday accident

Fatollah Minbashian was truly a great man, from a different era. As a child, he always reminded me of James Bond, and I always wanted to be like him, for he was handsome, talented, an athlete (goal keeper for the Iranian national soccer team), a poet, a songwriter, a musician (virtuoso violinist), spoke several languages fluently, and the list goes on and on.

from Payvand: A Great Man Passed Away: General Fatollah Minbashian (1915-2007)

"The circumstances were unfortunate that she could not go to hospital but she knew that she needed to be kept safe."

Emily [Riall] wrote a collection of poems about her experience of mental health problems, to help make society more accepting of them.

They were compiled into a book called A Sinkful of Sky.

from The Express & Echo: Suicidal Emily Was Waiting for Hospital Place

A poem written by Cpl [John Charles] Rigby in tribute to his girlfriend Jess was read out by Padre Paul Wright.

It said: "I no longer feel like I'm chasing shadows when I think of love, when I think of you.

"Our love is natural and constant like the crushing waves upon the timeless, windswept pebbled shores of tomorrow."

from The Daily Mail: Brother gives guard of honour at funeral of twin brother killed in Iraq

[Frederick] Rose was a well-known writer of Lancashire dialect under the nom-de-plume Mick o' Pleasington and he discovered three days before his death that his life's work would be admitted to the John Ryland's Library of Manchester University.

from This Is Lancashire: The final triumph of 'Lanky' poet Fred

"She loved to sit on the back porch and listen to the thunder and lightening," [Aldo] Piscitello recalled [of Gayle Rosenbach]. "She felt that was the ultimate power, that everyone is at the mercy of Mother Nature."

She also wrote poetry about Israel, [Ari] Kagan said. "It was beautiful," he said.

from Brooklyn Heights Courier: Gayle Rosenbach dies at age 64

Poems from Christina and Shayla [Showalter] were read also. The girls told playful stories of kittens and harvest time, and another recalled how Scott Showalter read the girls Bible stories at bedtime.

from The Daily News Record: 'To God Be The Glory'

[Henrietta A. Smith] enjoyed camping on Pike Lake, writing poetry and was also a great cook.

Henrietta and her sister-in-law, Lucille, have been corresponding weekly until she went into the nursing home.

from Chippewa Herald: Henrietta A. Smith

When she wasn't at school, Chantele [Varona-Fetterly] was designing and sewing her own clothes or writing poetry. She was going to be a writer. A novelist. She was outspoken. She was a spiritual girl, read the Bible, believed in an afterlife and named her puppy Saviour.

from The Hamilton Spectator: Youth arrested in slaying

[Lois Wyse] wrote more than 65 nonfiction books, romance novels, poetry and children's stories.

Her book "Funny, You Don't Look Like a Grandmother," which she co-wrote with Sheilah Rae, became a New York Times and Publisher's Weekly best seller in 1989 and was adapted into a musical.

from The Plain Dealer: Wyse Advertising co-founder Lois Wyse dies in New York


News at Eleven

U Win Tin, former editor-in-chief of the Hanthawadi Daily, spent his 77th birthday in solitary confinement on 12th of March. He is the only journalist- prisoner of conscience under solitary confinement for over 18 years. He also holds the record as the longest serving journalist detainees in the world. On one occasion, the prison authorities had assured the Red Cross that U Win would be released early and that his sentence would not be extended. The promise was a mirage.

from Asian Tribune: Journalist U Win Tin Spends 18 years in Burmese Prison

"[Abdur Rahim Muslim] Dost told us (detainees) in the lock-up that the agencies first kept him for eight months in the cell, then handed him over to the Landi Kotal APA, who detained him for unknown charges," said Muhammad Saifullah, who was released by the political authorities on June 13 after receiving a notice from the Peshawar High Court (PHC) seeking an explanation for Saifullah's detention.

from The Daily Times: 'Afghan writer in custody of Political authorities'

She tenderly explicates Stevens' nurturing image of "a single shawl/Wrapped tightly round us," then flings at them Darlene's poem about killing her husband and the demand of militant poet-playwright Amiri Baraka for "poems shooting like guns." Poetry accommodates ugliness as well as beauty, Holly insists, "and the response of the soul to either extremity: empathy."

from Los Angeles Times: 'Channeling Mark Twain' by Carol Muske-Dukes

Shelley insisted there was 'little to regret' when Harriet [Westbrook] was fished out of the Thames two years later, pregnant at 21 with her third child (which, as [Janet] Todd argues persuasively, may well have been his).

from The Guardian: Shelley: poet, predator and prey

In "Obedience of a Corpse", a woman dies in labour, leaving her child with nothing in the house "but a broken sack of potatoes growing eyes". The midwife worries about the freshness of the mother's milk and wraps the baby in a white shirt: "it's beautiful she thinks--/snow nobody has walked on."

from The Guardian: Arkansas blues

The poem would say everything I needed it to say and it would also silence what needed silencing. It's still very difficult for me to speak up, to say what I want, what I don't want or feel comfortable with. It's a constant battle for me: performing poetry became a stage where I could practice being heard.

from Blogcritics: A Flower In Her Heart: An Interview With Writer Jane Alberdeston Coralin, Part One

Roque [Dalton]'s letter reassured me he would see me soon in Havana.

What I did not know then was that Roque was not in Viet Nam as a war correspondent, but rather was in El Salvador as a guerrilla fighter, as a murdered guerrilla fighter.

from CounterPunch: The Assassination of a Poet: Memories of Roque Dalton

This poem was composed in Cairo during the one week that the Egypt Minister of Culture, Mr. Farouk Hosni, needed to organise a reading for me at the Akhenaton Gallery in Cairo. It was first performed there on 22nd February, 1988 and published in an Arabic translation in the Al-Ahram newspaper.

from The Statesman: The Rosetta stone in the meantime of eternity

So why not make this simple test? Go to a bookstore and find a copy of The Book of Fables. Turn to page 14 and read the rest of "Tergvinder's Stone." By its last sentence you'll know whether this is a book for you. Even then, bear in mind that [W.S.] Merwin's "enigmatic short prose" works best by being read slowly, over time, a special and rare treat. ·

from The Washington Post: These surrealist prose poems narrate rich memories, fantasies and warnings.

And tears are only one symptom. A line of poetry can make his beard bristle as he [A.E. Housman's] shaves, or cause a shiver down his spine, or 'a constriction of the throat' as well as 'a precipitation of water to the eyes'. For so reticent a man it was a surprising performance. It possibly upset his health, and he came to regard the date of the lecture, May 1933, as an ominous moment in his life.

from The London Review of Books: Nothing for Ever and Ever

If the name Li Bai means little in the West, the Tang Dynasty poet stands as tall in the Chinese cultural consciousness as William Shakespeare does in the English- speaking world.

Long a fan of his expressive, sometimes playful writings, Diana Liao conceived the idea of an opera based on his life in 2000 and set about writing a libretto in conjunction with playwright Xu Ying.

from The Denver Post: Poetic justice for "Li Bai"

Great Regulars

But I've had a soft spot for Rochester ever since coming across the splendid 'Song of a Young Lady to her Ancient Lover' years ago, despite the fact that his satires make no attempt whatever to conform to Lady Mary Wortley Montagu's excellent diktat, "Satire should, like a polished razor keen,/ Wound with a touch that's scarcely felt or seen."

from Sarah Crown: The Guardian: theblogbooks: Poem of the week: This week, some bracing satire from the Earl of Rochester.

Only two weeks on from his acceptance of a knighthood, which provoked an international furore, Salman Rushdie is in the news again. He and his wife, Padma Lakshmi, are to divorce after three years of marriage.

from Sarah Crown: The Guardian: Rushdie and Lakshmi to divorce

When you are washing porcelain, do so always with two hands, and always in silence. This was one of Miss Alice Rothschild's rules, which is followed by the National Trust at Waddesdon to this day. Nothing must be allowed to surprise or distract you when washing porcelain.

from James Fenton: The Guardian: Manors maketh man

In the fourth stanza, the speaker likens the "little ones" including himself to a poor bird that cannot sing because it is sitting in a cage. Yet Maya Angelou's famous title claimed, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. Who is correct? Can a caged bird sing or not?

from Linda Sue Grimes: William Blake's 'The Schoolboy'

But after the first eight lines that are describing the sounds of men working, she makes a startling observance, which suddenly transforms those prose-like lines into poetry: "They will always make such sounds,/Years after I am dead and cannot hear them." These lines move the reader to wonder what will come next, why is the speaker thinking about her death?

from Linda Sue Grimes: Amy Lowell's 'Penumbra'

The speaker qualifies his sadness with a fascinating and fairly apt metaphor: "I wish in my sorrow I could strip to the soul,/And dive off in my grave like the old swimmin'-hole." The experience of swimming in the old swimmin' hole has been so attractive to him that he hopes to shed his body like clothes and have his soul experience the grave as his body had experienced the creek.

from Linda Sue Grimes: Riley's 'The Old Swimmin'-Hole'

Phorkyad has promoted the book in-world by placing ads in SL media--including the SL Enquirer and the streaming radio station KONA Radio--and by throwing a release party. The Absence of Shadows also exists as a flesh-and-blood--er, pulp-and-ink--book, available for purchase at the print-on-demand site

So if there are books in Second Life, there ought to be libraries. And schools. Right?

from Katie Haegele: The Philadephia Inquirer: Online, Second Life avatars are prosing and poetizing

I imagine this to be the moment when Adam and Eve ate the apple from the tree of knowledge and were cast out of Eden in disgrace for hiding their nakedness. The mosquitoes follow "two-legs" to a "suddenly impure planet" where the female mosquito, adapting to her new habitat, develops a taste for our blood.

from Frieda Hughes: The Times: The mutating mosquito

Poem: "Pastoral" by William Carlos Williams, from The Collected Poems of W.C. Williams.

from Garrison Keillor: The Writer's Almanac: For the week of July 02, 2007

After all, unless Freud and Jung and Joseph Campbell are all wrong, a poem tends to have one foot in the unconscious and the other in the sunshine. Everyone who has ever written a successful poem knows what I am talking about: In the time necessary to get from the start of a poem to its conclusion, the poet is operating like a pilot in the early days of aviation, relying less on external controls, even in the case of highly formal poetry, and more on his own experience and intuition to gauge the plane's position and performance as he tries to find his way and then bring the craft in for a nice soft landing.

from David Kirby: Why, Poetry?

Our species has developed monstrous weapons that can kill not only all of us but everything else on the planet, yet when the wind rises we run for cover, as we have done for as long as we've been on this earth. Here's hoping we never have the skill or arrogance to conquer the weather. And weather stories? We tell them in the same way our ancestors related encounters with fearsome dragons. This poem by Minnesota poet Warren Woessner honors the tradition by sharing an experience with a hurricane.


from Ted Kooser: American Life in Poetry: Column 118

So it's hardly a surprise that this summer Nancy has been revived by Hollywood--sporting a BlackBerry rather than bobby socks--or that the movie has drawn a mostly female audience. But the transformation didn't take.

from Meghan O'Rourke: The washington Post: A Sleuth Out of Pluck

The traditional Christian image of St. Francis, so benign and sanctified that the wild birds settle on him, emerges as if by association with the contrasting, ancient Roman image of birds as indicators of divinity. The poet [Carl Phillips] associates the pre-Christian image with the pursuit of an art, finding meaning in the "strays" of apparently random experience.

from Robert Pinsky: The Washington Post: Poet's Choice

Identify four sounds you can hear right now and note down the kind of patterns each makes. For instance: wind seems to blow in long phrases; kids' shouts cluster. Or, if you're indoors with all the windows shut, turn your attention to ticking electrical appliances or your own pulse.

from Fiona Sampson: The Guardian: Poetry Workshop: Fiona Sampson's workshop

[Andro] Linklater gives [Andrew] Ellicott the starring role in the first half of his book, and it's a wise choice, not only because Ellicott's achievements were impressive and consequential--as Linklater writes, "his lines helped define the shapes of no fewer than eleven states and the District of Columbia, as well as the southern and northern frontiers of the United States"--but also because Ellicott was an intriguing figure, and Linklater is highly skilled at character portrayal:

from Frank Wilson: Philadelphia Inquirer: The edges of character
also Book Talk with Frank Wilson: Andro Linklater Interview

According to Engelsing, from the Middle Ages until sometime after 1750, people read "intensively." They had only a few books, and they read them over and over again, usually aloud. By 1800, people were reading "extensively." They read all kinds of material, especially periodicals and newspapers, and read items only once before racing on to the next.

from Daily Times: Purple Patch: The word, in the beginning --J C Nyiri

Nor indeed did the territory he defended belong to him. Not even his weapon or his equipment belongs to him. But he stands under the rain of death from aircraft and burning pitch from city walls, mine and pitfall beneath his feet, pestilence and mustard gas around him, there he stands, flesh-and-blood quiver for javelin and arrow, target, tank pulp, gas inhaler, with the enemy in front of him and the General behind.

from Daily Times: Purple Patch: The incurable disease of imperviousness --Bertolt Brecht

Biblical themes by Alasdair Gray

from The Guardian: The Saturday poem: Biblical themes by Alasdair Gray

Double Reed
by Kazim Ali

from Guernica: Poetry: Double Reed

'The Biology Professor in the Country'
By Mary-Lane Kamberg

from The Kansas City Star: Poet's Corner: 'The Biology Professor in the Country'

by Jean Sprackland

from The New Yorker: Poetry: Hands

Sunday Morning Walk
by Clive James

from The New Yorker: Poetry: Sunday Morning Walk

I ride along on singing rails, . . .
[by Melvin S. Ashwill]

from The Oregonian: Poetry

By Skyler Colton
Horace Mann Elementary
Spring is. . .

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [By Skyler Colton]

By Danielle Frank
No Summer for Our Heroes

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [By Danielle Frank]

By Coleen Kulik
Rancocas Valley Regional High
A Wing of Hope

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [By Coleen Kulik]

By Jessica Trout [The Midnight Drive]
By Damon Lomax [One Touch]
Delsea Regional High School

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [By Jessica Trout, By Damon Lomax]

By Evan McDonnell

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [By Evan McDonnell]

"Expansion" copyright 2007 by Ashley Davis Prend. Prend is a psychotherapist in Portsmouth, a writer, a singer, and a radio talk show host.

from Portsmouth Herald News: Poetry Hoot

Not a Nobody
[by Emma Sullivan]

from Portsmouth Herald News: Poem: Not a Nobody

[by J.D. Landis]
(Exeter Cemetery, 1994)

from Portsmouth Herald News: Poem: X-Country

These poems [by Alexander Taylor] are sprinkled throughout this book like pearls, and I found myself returning to them for re-reading time and time again.

Take, for instance, "Overheard Among the Guerrillas:"

from Powells: Review-A-Day: Dreaming At the Gates of Fury

"I Have Been Given a Baseball . . ."
By Alan Michael Parker

from Slate: "I Have Been Given a Baseball . . ."--By Alan Michael Parker

like a fish
Julie Meslin

from Zeek: like a fish: Julie Meslin

Poetic Obituaries

During her younger years she enjoyed bowling, playing pool, sketching and writing poetry.

from Sheboygan Press: Lola Colleen Arnoldi

During [Philip] Booth's long career, he wrote a dozen books, and received Guggenheim, Rockefeller and National Endowment for the Arts fellowships. His work appeared in magazines such as The New Yorker, The Atlantic Monthly and The American Poetry Review. He was also a Fellow of the American Academy of Poets.

from Bangor Daily News: Poet Philip Booth dies at 81

[Lyle David Jensen] created a successful speckled trout fishing pond on his land and built a camp there, affording many hours of relaxation and pleasure. In his leisure, Lyle was a talented and published poet

from The Mining Journal: Lyle David Jensen

Summer [Kline], the oldest of three children, was "the glue that held the family together," [Christine] Bell said.

After high school, she planned to enroll at Baylor University and become a pediatrician. She loved Elmo and the Dallas Cowboys and filled notebooks with pictures and poems, her aunt said.

from The Austin American-Statesman: 16-year-old killed by hit-and-run driver

[Nazik Al-Malaikah] published her second diwan "Shrapnel and Ashes" in 1947. According to her, "A big wave of uproar took place about it."

By: Nazik Al-Malaikah
Translated by: Adib S. Kawar

from Nazik Al-Malaikah . . . The Iraqi Flute

Mrs. [Anne] Mertz was an elementary school teacher, and later a guide at Hagley Museum. She was a freelance writer who has written and published works on history and genealogy. She also wrote poetry and numerous travel articles for magazines and newspapers.

from The News Journal: Mertz, Anne

"Forsythia," her most popular work, is the clearest example of her concrete verses. The title appears at the bottom of the page. Each letter has a different word "growing" out of it to form a "branch" of the plant.

The poem speeds along on free association: "forsythia out race springs yellow telegram hope insists action."

from Los Angeles Times: Mary Ellen Solt, 86; poet, poetry critic

Called a living classic of Croatian poetry and a poet-institution, [Dragutin] Tadijanovic imposed himself as a norm and standard with special influence on the "krugovasi" generation of poets. The constant interest of the expert and wider reading audience as well as numerous reissuing of his books testify about the popularity of his lyrics.

from Javno: Croatian Poet Dragutin Tadijanovic Dies

Born in My Duc village in the former Ha Tien province (Kien Giang today), poet Mong Tuyet wrote in a variety of genres including short stories, poetry, drama, and essays. She also translated poetry and wrote literature survey works.

from VietNamNet Bridge: Talented female poet dies

While [Matthew E.] Baylis was remembered as outgoing, [Justin A.] Verdeja was remembered as quiet. Verdeja learned Arabic quickly and spoke complete sentences to the Iraqis, his squad leader Gabriel Salas said.

"When he talked, everybody listened, because he never complained," Salas said. "He often wrote a lot of poetry or worked out to escape."

from The Gazette: Outgoing partier, quiet poet memorialized

[Donald Wetzel] was author of eight published novels, several humor pieces and countless articles, poems and essays. His first novel, A Wreath and a Curse, was adapted in the 1950s to a Broadway play, All Summer Long.

from The Tuscon Citizen: Donald Earl Wetzel

JFS headteacher Dame Ruth Robins DBE said: "All JFS students and staff were very deeply saddened and affected by the tragic loss of Rivka Wolfson. Rivka was a thoughtful, mature child with a rare independence of mind - a real free spirit and a prodigious talent. She excelled in all her subjects and had a special fondness for poetry. She had a deeply caring and kind nature. We shall miss her greatly."

from Hendon & Finchley Times: Girl, 15, falls to her death

Hy Zaret, one of the last of the Tin Pan Alley lyricists, whose most indelible work was the oft-recorded 1955 hit "Unchained Melody" but whose oeuvre ranged from jingles to songs about science to ballads of love and war, died yesterday at his home in Westport, Conn. He was 99.

from New York Times: Hy Zaret, 99, Tin Pan Alley Lyricist, Is Dead


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