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News Articles, with Rus Bowden


News at Eleven

Still, say Kerouac apologists such as brother-in-law John Sampas, "the academy is realizing Jack was an articulate man of letters."

"He also was a very tender, sweet, warm, gentle intellectual giant," Sampas said from his Lowell home. "Only after reading all his journals and diaries did I come to realize he was a genius."

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: The one less traveled by

Fifty years after On the Road was first published, Kerouac's voice still calls out: Look around you, stay open, question the roles society has thrust upon you, don't give up the search for connection and meaning. In this bleak new doom-haunted century, those imperatives again sound urgent and subversive--and necessary.

from The Smithsonian: Remembering Jack Kerouac

The life of Taslima [Nasrin] should be protected. If India fails to protect her and panders to its Muslim community by not punishing imams who incite hate, then Islamist bigotry and intolerance will have destroyed its secular ideals as surely as they have already destroyed those of Pakistan and Bangladesh.

from Family Security Matters: Exclusive: Taslima Nasreen: A Woman of Moral Substance

From 1986 to 1988, Ms. [Grace] Paley was New York's first official state author; she was also a past poet laureate of Vermont.

Ms. Paley was among the earliest American writers to explore the lives of women--mostly Jewish, mostly New Yorkers--in all their dailiness. She focused especially on single mothers, whose days were an exquisite mix of sexual yearning and pulverizing fatigue.

from The New York Times: Grace Paley, Writer and Activist, Dies

"[The education authorities] haven't twigged it. They think poems are instruments which are an extension of the testing regime. It's a great shame because it says, 'These poems don't belong to you, they belong to us, we clever people who examine and test you. We're giving them to you so we can work out if you're worthy enough to read them and understand them, and mostly we find you're not.' It's terrible."

from The Scotsman: Poetry is the greatest teacher

[Charles] Simic does not seem hopeful about the raising-consciousness part of the job, perhaps because he does not think poetry is something you can force on people. "America is not a country particularly proud of our literature," he says when asked about the state of poetry today. "In the last 10 to 20 years, even classic American writers like Twain and Faulkner have become suspect. Professors are afraid to ask their students to read entire books.

from The Los Angeles Times: The U.S. Poet Laureate starts a new chapter in verse

[Charles Leroux:] Q. Some critics have called your work "surreal," but you've denied that haven't you?

[Charles Simic:] A. It's impossible to be surreal in America. Thousands of people here claim to have been abducted by aliens from space. You can't beat that.

Q. So you think of yourself as an American poet?

from Chicago Tribune: Poet laureate strives to say complicated things simply

Reading these poems in London in 1955, I thought I could understand how important Pushkin was to the Russians, doing for them what hadn't been done before. I put the Walcott as high as that.

from The Guardian: Caribbean Odyssey

Here is [John D.] Sinclair's rendering of the opening of the Paradiso:

The glory of Him who moves all things penetrates the universe and shines in one part more and in another less. I was in the heaven that most receives His light and I saw things which he that descends from it has not the knowledge or the power to tell again; for our intellect, drawing near to its desire, sinks so deep that memory cannot follow it.

Here is Jean Hollander's version:

The glory of Him who moves all things
pervades the universe and shines
in one part more and in another less.

I was in that heaven which receives
more of His light. He who comes down
from there
can neither know or tell what he has

for, drawing near to its desire,
so deeply is our intellect immersed
that memory cannot follow after it.

from The New Yorker: Cloud Nine

A translation of Sahir Ludhiyanvi's Urdu poem, "Kabhi Kabhi"

This poem has been sung (by Mukesh and Lata), and recited (by Amitabh Bachchan) in a much truncated and simplified form in the film Kabhi Kabhi--some of you might be familiar with that truncated version instead. This version, which is the original version by Sahir, is one of my favourite Urdu nazmsand hence I have attempted to translate it here.

from Chowk: Sometimes . . .

Excerpts of his [John Ashbery's] poems will appear in 18 short promotional spots--like commercials for verse--on the channel and its Web site (, which will also feature the full text of the poems). In another first, mtvU will help sponsor a poetry contest for college students. The winner, chosen by the Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Yusef Komunyakaa, will have a book published next year by HarperCollins as part of the National Poetry Series.

from The New York Times: An 80-Year-Old Poet for the MTV Generation

Great Regulars

The emphasis is on the striking photographs of the variety of altars to the different deities, members of a variety of houses preparing for, or engaged in aspects of worship.

By way of background information--A 'house' is a group of devotees of a particular god or goddess under the leadership of a 'babalawo', or priest/priestess.

from Lisa Alvarado: Blogcritics: Santeria Garments and Altars - Speaking Without a Voice (Folk Art & Artists Series)

One of the most intriguing aspects of VS Naipaul's career is that he is both English literature's greatest living "postcolonial" writer and a pariah to the postcolonial academic and literary establishment. To his fellow Caribbean Nobel-winner Derek Walcott, he is "VS Nightfall", possessed with a "chronic dispiritedness", whose brilliant prose is "scarred by scrofula" and a "repulsion towards Negroes".

from Bryan Appleyard: The Sunday Times: The great offender

The phrase "the meanest flower" is taken from the final lines of Wordsworth's "Ode: Intimations of Immortality from Recollections of Early Childhood". [Mimi] Khalvati's book as a whole, and "sonnet v" in particular, can be seen as an ongoing conversation with this brilliant meditation on childhood and loss.

from Charles Bainbridge: The Guardian: The language of flowers

On the other hand, those clever painters, poets, and other artists who merely decorate their art for ego-enhancing purposes do not take their works from their heart's joys; instead they merely "draw but what they see." This artist/speaker insists on drawing from a deeper, even spiritual, well than what the eyes can "see."

from Linda Sue Grimes: Shakespeare Sonnet 24

What's a Literature Factory? I wondered.

"Well, now, that's a silly question, it's simply a factory that makes literature," went the waggish message, posted by Factory creator Andy Fundinger. He described his project as a kind of automated "writer" that compiles letters into words, words into sentences, and sentences into a book-length work.

from Katie Haegele: The Philadelphia Inquirer: At last, books without those pesky authors

For believers in marriage, this poem is for you. It should be recited by the best man (or woman) at a wedding, instead of inflicting a tedious speech about the groom's teenage acne and college indiscretions on the gathered throng.

from Frieda Hughes: The Times: Our house

Poem: "Flash Cards" by Rita Dove, from Grace Notes.

from Garrison Keillor: The Writer's Almanac: For the week of August 27, 2007

The British writer Virginia Woolf wrote about the pleasures of having a room of one's own. Here the Vermont poet Karin Gottshall shows us her own sort of private place.

The Raspberry Room

from Ted Kooser: American Life in Poetry: Column 126

"We are," he [Robert Macfarlane] says during a chapter set in Cumbria, "as a species, finding it increasingly hard to imagine that we are part of something which is larger than our own capacity . . . We have in many ways forgotten what the world feels like."

In certain predictable ways, his early travels provide him with "the real" that he wants.

from Andrew Motion: The Guardian: Mapping nature's heartlands

Instead, he [John Ashbery] sets out to capture the range of language that bombards us--from the boardrooms, movie theaters, and streets ("Attention, shoppers," one poem begins; "Say, doc," another starts)--and at his best succeeds better than any other writer at conveying how the barrage affects a mind haunted by its own processes and by the unstable patterns that shape-shift around us.

from Meghan O'Rourke: Slate: MTVu's Poet Laureate

"An atheist in the foxhole": Liam Rector (1949-2007) more or less knew he was writing his epitaph in that jaunty, ferociously defiant line of his poem "This Summer," first published in Slate on April 18, 2001.

from Robert Pinsky: Slate: "This Summer": Remembering Liam Rector

The Korean poet Kim Sowol (1902-1934), according to his translator David McCann, was a modernist influenced by Western poetry--but a modernist who also incorporated many traditional techniques, images and forms from Korean folk poetry and folk song. His work is still popular and beloved in Korea. Here is Kim Sowol's "A Later Day," a poem that considers explicitly the relation between old ways and new generations:

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

But, no, [Howard W.] Robertson spends three pages energetically asserting exactly what his poems do and how they do it.

It is, well, insulting.

And baffling to a reader who appreciates reaching his or her own conclusions. To paraphrase Andre the Giant in the movie "The Princess Bride," I don't think it all means what he thinks it means.

from B.T. Shaw: The Oregonian: Toppled by too much

Today (28 August 2007) is full moon day. This day is celebrated as AVANI AVITTAM in Southern India, especially in Kerala, Tamilnadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and in certain parts of Orissa. This day is also called as 'Upakarma' and is considered a very important day for the Brahmin society. On this day, Brahmins change the sacred thread, called the yagnopavitam while chanting mantras.

from V Sundaram: News Today: The glory of Gayatri Mantra and Upakarma

There are blows in life, so powerful . . . I don't know!

This line interrupts, undermines itself, in the middle of seeming to make a sweeping statement.

Or how about:

Night is a cup of evil. Shrilly a police whistle
pierces it, like a vibrating pin

from John Timpane: Philadelpia Inquirer: Vallejo, the bard of Peru

Editor's note: The following poems were written by children serving time in Santa Cruz County Juvenile Hall. The poems were generated in writing workshops conducted by The Beat Within, a weekly, non-profit publication dedicated to providing a voice for incarcerated youth. To find out more about The Beat Within, and how you can help it to achieve its mission, visit

My Father/by Jose

from Good Times Weekly: Poems by children serving time in Santa Cruz County Juvenile Hall

Autumn Collection by Luke Kennard

from The Guardian: The Saturday poem: Autumn Collection by Luke Kennard

'Sunday Morning,' by Jo McDougall

from The Kansas City Star: Poet's Corner: 'Sunday Morning,' by Jo McDougall

End of Summer
by James Richardson

from The New Yorker: Poetry: End of Summer

Ghost Elephants
by Jean Valentine

from The New Yorker: Poetry: Ghost Elephants

The creative act amazes me. Whether it's poetry, whether it's music, it's an amazing process, and it has something to do with bringing forth the old out into the world to create and to bring forth that which will rejuvenate.

"Perhaps the World Ends Here"

from PBS: Newshour: Joy Harjo Reflects on the 'Spirit of Poetry'

By Lucero Medina By Minh Vo By Timothy Walls By Minh Vo By Craig Rand
My Desires

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [by Lucero Medina, Minh Vo, Timothy Walls, Minh Vo, & Craig Rand]

By Molly O'Neill
The Last of the Galapogurts

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [by Molly O'Neill]

By Natalie Staples
Black Silhouettes

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem [by Natalie Staples]

By Maeve Sutherland
Tousled Boy

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [by Maeve Sutherland]

Essence of Smuttynose
[by Kate Leigh]

from Portsmouth Herald News: Poem: Essence of Smuttynose

[by Eileen MacDonald]

from Portsmouth Herald News: Poem: Responsibility

It was not just the story of wild times and reckless kicks; it was an exploration of how the narrator matured past jazzy libertinism and into, maybe not necessarily the man in the gray flannel suit, but, a man who could stand toe-to-toe with him and know that his experience, his existence was at least more authentic and honest. Leland successfully separates Jack Kerouac the author (and his literary alter ego Sal Paradise) from the cult of Dean Moriarty.

from Powells: Review-A-Day: Why Kerouac Matters: The Beat Goes On

Capturing the mysterious and the sensuous world of the moth, this poem from Elizabeth Burns's new collection The Lantern Bearers (Shoestring, £8.95) is typical of her tender and precise insight.

from The Scotsman: Poem of the Week: Elizabeth Burns The Moth Trap

"The Conquerors"
By L.S. Asekoff

from Slate: "The Conquerors" --By L.S. Asekoff

The first of Thom Gunn's poems to appear in the TLS was "Jesus and His Mother", published on August 6, 1954, when he was twenty-four years old. It appeared in his second collection, A Sense of Movement, 1957.

Gunn, who was brought up in Hampstead and went to Cambridge, settled in San Francisco in 1961. He died there in 2004.

Jesus and His Mother

from Times Literary Supplement: Poem of the Week: Jesus and His Mother, by Thom Gunn

Poetic Obituaries

A poet, chef, mechanic and soldier, Pvt. Alan J. Austin was more than just a talented young man, his friends and family said.

from Houston Chronicle: Mourners gather for final farewell to 'great guy' killed in Afghanistan

Everyone around Springfield, it seemed, knew John Deselem. A father of two grown sons, he'd made a name for himself as a poet, leading regular readings at cafes in Springfield and nearby Yellow Springs. He was known for enthusiastic encouragement of those who were scared to share their words before a crowd.

from The Columbus Dispatch: Accident or murder?

The veteran entertainer and poet [Harry Harrison] was one of the best known faces on the area's comedy circuit and was one of the founders of the popular Black Country Night Out events.

He was well-known for his odes to the area he grew up in and also wrote a book of humorous tales entitled Off the Cuff Black Country Stuff.

from Express & Star: Legend Harry dies aged 85

[Pauline Innis] developed polio as a child and, in her solitude, began writing.

One of her poems won a newspaper contest, for which the prize was a basket of candy and cakes. She said the food encouraged her to continue writing, adding, "Don't you think that would set anybody off?"

from The Washington Post: Pauline Innis, 88; Writer Advised on Social Graces

[Thomas Keasbey] documented his experience in a journal. His wife of 54 years said the book is filled with "poems, prayers, a wish list of their first meals, a list of places they'd bombed."

"In the back, in a folder, there's a little piece of barbed wire. That really brings it home," Edie Keasbey said yesterday.

from The Journal News: Patterson resident and activist Thomas Keasbey dies

[Eva Kendel] was a provincial poet laureate and taught in a one-room school house in rural Manitoba, where some of the students were actually older than she was. She began her career as an educator at 16.

from Northern Life: Energetic educator dies at 82

When she [Grace Paley] was 19, she took a class at New York's New School for Social Research taught by poet W.H. Auden, who noticed that she wrote poems in British English. When he asked her why, it produced a revelation. "What he did was he pointed a way for me to be myself," Paley told Oprah magazine this year.

from The Los Angeles Times: Grace Paley, acclaimed short-story writer and activist, dies at 84

[Franklin] Parker, described by his children as a handsome 6-footer, had a large sense of humor to match.

"Dad had a sense of the theatric and liked to recite poetry and limericks," his daughter said. Until recently he could still recite 'The Cremation of Sam Magee."

He also wrote poetry for birthdays and sang in the choir of his church.

from The Boston Globe: Franklin Parker, engineer on Burma Road

Each time a patient of his died [James] Putney, a poetry lover, added lines to a long poem he was writing, "Over a Thousand Petals." His patients, he said, taught him how to live.

"Some people travel the world to see gurus to learn the secrets of the world," Putney said. "I learn them every day from my patients."

from The Los Angeles Times: James Putney, 55; chaplain helped ease patients' pain of cancer

Less than three weeks before [Kayla Reynolds,] a 13-year-old Spotsylvania County girl was fatally shot, she wrote a poem almost predicting her death. The first six lines read:

Shoot and end me now.
Don't ask why and don't ask how.
Shoot me dead, that's all you have to do.
Someone'll do it, so why not you.
Big words for a girl who's thirteen.
But it'll surprise me if I turn eighteen.

from The Free Lance-Star: Slaying Victim Obsessed with Gloom


News at Eleven

"I'm travelling Sydney, station
by station, starting from quiet
tennis suburbs. The sun's honey
drips down through the foliage."

No mistaking that for Clapham Junction on a wet Wednesday.

From New York, Annie Bien offered Interborough Transit, about a morning ride on the Subway, on which the passengers are infinitely more fascinating than the train:

"The student rises for the old man
Closing Anna Karenina, isn't that nice"

from The Times: At home we wait, wait and fulminate while abroad they just enjoy the view

Kenneth Rexroth of the San Francisco Chronicle concluded "This novel should demonstrate once and for all that the hipster is the furious square."

What happened between now and then, that this part of Kerouac has been forgotten, is multifold.

from Alternet: 50 Years on, Kerouac's 'On The Road' Reveals the Beatnik as a Tender, Geeky Romantic

Though he [Donald Hall] writes all over the house, there are two favored spots: a railroad desk that he bought from the poet W. D. Snodgrass in the 1970s, and the dining room table. The photographs to the left capture some of sights that surround him when he works. In future installments of Workspace, we will investigate those of other artists.

from The New York Times: Where Sheep Once Grazed, Now Poems Take Root
also The New York Times: Workspace: Donald Hall

"The fact that the poem sits in a white space on the page, with space around it, becomes an indication that the poem is actually displacing silence, the way your body displaces water. Poetry is an interruption of silence and prose is a continuation of noise."

Poetry is also unique for its physical appearance, he [Billy Collins] said.

from Vineyard Gazette: Conversation With a Poet Laureate

I believe that the human intellect is the closest thing we have to the divine. It is the way we can join one another in spirit.

from National Public Radio: The Holy Life of the Intellect

Consider this 1942 fundraising appeal:

Tonight's December thirty-first
Something is about to burst.
The clock is crouching, dark and small.
Like a time bomb in the wall.
Midnight whistles, loud and clear.
Duck! Here comes another year.


It's not their fault, but just their luck,
Some children have no place to duck.
That is why this plea is made;
Remember, please, the Children's Aid.

from Baltimore Messenger: A poet who opened his heart and checkbook to children

The movement of Shelley's verse imitates the rhythm of orgasm in a way that still feels startling:

He reared his shuddering limbs, and quelled
His gasping breath, and spread his arms to meet
Her panting bosom; . . . she drew back a while,
Then, yielding to the irresistible joy,
With frantic gesture and short breathless cry
Folded his frame in her dissolving arms.

When the Poet wakes up, he realizes that he cannot live without seeing the maid again. But this need to pursue "Beyond the realms of dream that fleeting shade," to find the Infinite in the real world, seals his doom.

from The New Yorker: Avenging Angel

Sonnet 110 reads like an apology to his oldest and truest love:

Alas, 'tis true, I have gone here and there,
And made myself a motley to the view,
Gored my own thoughts, sold cheap what is most dear,
Made old offences of affections new.
Most true it is that I have looked on truth
Askance and strangely; but, by all the above,
These blenches gave my heart another youth,
And worse essays proved thee my best of love.
Now all is done, have what shall have no end;
Mine appetite I never more will grind
On newer proof to try an older friend,
A god in love, to whom I am confined.
Then give me welcome, next my heaven the best,
Even to thy pure and most most loving breast.

Such a sonnet from the Man of the Millennium is almost shocking in its bleak self-abnegation.

from The Guardian: Shakespeare in love

Many of Frost's poems also reflected the political situation of the time.

"He wrote 'Mending Wall' at a time of immigrant dispute," Watters said, where the poem discusses the dichotomy of wanting isolation ("Good fences make good neighbors") or accepting diversity ("Something there is that doesn't love a wall"). Frost's neighbor in the poem, Napoleon Guay, who asserted that "good fences make good neighbors" was also a French-Canadian.

from The Citizen of Laconia: In Moultonborough: Frost's work recalled by professor

"The Detainees Speak" is this book's subtitle: but putting aside the real question of whether lyric poets ever "speak" through their art, in the sense of revealing a historical person's actual life story (they have rarely done so through poetry's long history, and often poets "speak" least revealingly precisely when they claim to be telling the truth), in what sense could these poems, heavily vetted by official censors, translated by "linguists with secret-level security clearance" but no literary training, released by the Pentagon according to its own strict, but unarticulated, rationale--"speak"?

from The New York Times: Notes on Prison Camp

When the YouTube video of [Staff Sgt. Lawrence E.] Dean [II], reciting the poem he wrote about defending America's freedom garnered close to 400,000 views in just two days earlier this week, he decided to reveal his identity and speak to

"It almost leaves you speechless," he said on Wednesday of the reaction to his poetry.

from FOX News: Mystery Marine Poet Revealed

Great Regulars

James Billington has said about Simic's poetry, "The range of Charles Simic's imagination is evident in his stunning and unusual imagery. He handles language with the skill of a master craftsman, yet his poems are easily accessible, often meditative and surprising. He has given us a rich body of highly organized poetry with shades of darkness and flashes of ironic humor."

from Linda Sue Grimes: Charles

In 1955, [Malcolm] Cowley wrote to the writer:

"'On the Road'--I think that's the right title for the book, not 'The Beat Generation' . . . What your system ought to be is to get the whole thing written down fast . . . then later go back, put yourself in the reader's place, ask whether and how the first expression ought to be changed. . . .If you do that job of revision too then most of your things would be published, instead of kicking around publishers' offices for years."

from Bob Hoover: Post-Gazette: Mapping the route to "On the Road"

Here's the quick version of "On the Road:"

"Where are we going, man?"

"I don't know, but we gotta go."

This exchange between Sal Paradise (Jack Kerouac) and Dean Moriarty (Neal Cassady) occurs after both have put many miles on their young, aimless lives and they still thirst for travel.

from Bob Hoover: Post-Gazette: 'On the Road' by Jack Kerouac

Someone hoots at him and it echoes the nagging of his wife; it doesn't occur to him that he may have deserved it. Drivers need to give and take, which he won't do on the road or in his marriage--unless it's for a vehicle or a woman he considers to be a superior model.

from Frieda Hughes: The Times: The road to oblivion

Poem:"Earl" by Louis Jenkins, from North of the Cities.

from Garrison Keillor: The Writer's Almanac: For the week of August 20, 2007

The American poet, Ezra Pound, once described the faces of people in a rail station as petals on a wet black bough. That was roughly seventy-five years ago. Here Barry Goldensohn of New York offers a look at a contemporary subway station. Not petals, but people all the same.


from Ted Kooser: American Life in Poetry: Column 125

And because the poems are lyric fragments, rather than extended memoirs, they do not leave us with a sense that we have a comprehensive handle on the author's point of view. Rather, these poems both humanize their authors and keep them obscure to us.And because the poems are lyric fragments, rather than extended memoirs, they do not leave us with a sense that we have a comprehensive handle on the author's point of view. Rather, these poems both humanize their authors and keep them obscure to us.

from Meghan O'Rourke: Slate: Shall I Compare Thee to an Evil Tyrant?

"In passing"--well, not exactly: In a work of art, it may be that every moment is part of the destination. The end-rhyming of the second and third lines of each stanza and the banter of patient and doctor are part of the rich, ambiguous conclusion, where the intimacy of a spoken name rises toward the dead in the night air.

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

This month: Joan Safajek, a retired psychotherapist and former English teacher. Safajek's poems have been published in several anthologies, and she is the recipient of the 2002 Mary Lonnberg Smith Award for Poetry.

On Our First Anniversary At Sphinx Lake

from Good Times Weekly: Poetry of Joan Safajek

Heart by Margaret Atwood

from The Guardian: The Saturday poem: Heart by Margaret Atwood

Thumb, Throat, Affidavit
by Tung-Hui Hu

from Guernica: Poetry: Thumb, Throat, Affidavit

'Wanted,' by Timothy Pettet

from The Kansas City Star: Poet's Corner: 'Wanted,' by Timothy Pettet

The Fever
by Kimiko Hahn

from The New Yorker: Poetry: The Fever

by Philip Schultz

from The New Yorker: Poetry: Why

by Raul Amaya

Poetry is back. This offering is called Questions? . . . "seek and speak the truth of for what, for who, why me, why you?"


from Newspaper Tree: Poetry: "Questions"

[by Maryrose Larkin]
A verb to disguise failure [. . .]

from The Oregonian: Poetry

By Kylie Doran
The Ocean

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [by Kylie Doran]

By Coleen Kulik
Rancocas Valley Regional High
A Peaceful Night

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

By Natalie Malinowski

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [by Natalie Malinowski]

By James Uricheck
11th Street

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [by James Uricheck]

Perhaps Tony Harrison speaks in this poem for writers everywhere. Yet, his Collected Poems (Viking, £30) uncovers a significant body of work with an extensive poetic range. Whether he is writing about war or family or politics, his eye and pen are sharp, and powerfully engaged.


from The Scotsman: Poem of the Week

"A Guide for Spiritual Tourists"
By Hannah Faith Notess

from Slate: "A Guide for Spiritual Tourists" --By Hannah Faith Notess

It was once noted of [John] Ashbery's poems that the pronouns generally seem to have been chosen at random, or "according to an elusive scheme which has nothing to do with representation". In "A Pact With Sudden Death", published in the TLS on November 21, 1980, the "person" of the protagonist is part of the "subject"--if we should call it that.

A Pact With Sudden Death

from The Times Literary Supplement: Poem of the Week: A Pact with Sudden Death, by John Ashbery

Poetic Obituaries

Immensely popular at home, [Khalid] Alig's poetry also struck a cord abroad. During the Algerian independence movement against French colonialism, his poem 'Aljazair' (Algiers) became so popular that it was translated into Arabic and its English version was published by the Time magazine. His only collection of poetry, titled 'Ghazaal-i-Dasht-i-Sagan', was published at the turn of the century.

from Dawn: Veteran poet Khalid Alig passes away

Brooke [Astor] once contributed a poem to a children's book. She called it 'Love is an apple.' It reads:

from The New York Times: City Room: New York Pays Its Final Respects to Brooke Astor

Bob [Blaney] was well-spoken, quick witted, very well-read in many genres and especially delighted in classical literature, poetry and music. He would often, from memory, recite poetry to his wife, Millie, and his family. He would captivate family and friends with his wonderful story-telling ability.

from Green Bay Press-Gazette: Blaney, Robert E. "Bob"

Dr. [Kenneth] Brill is fondly remembered for his bright smile and ability to quote poetry for every occasion.

from The News Journal: Brill, Kenneth

From the fall of 1994, when Eluard [Albert Burt II] developed the Jazz and Poetry Ensemble, he has produced dozens of shows, with not only jazz and poetry, but also vocals, dance, Mardi Gras Indians, and occasionally visual art exhibits, around the city. The groups continued to evolve with Eluard and a community of artists

from The Louisiana Weekly: Eluard Albert Burt II, musician, historian, dies

When I was trying to explain to my grandson about his mother's death, I showed him a picture of Rachel on my knee and told him that just as he was her child, so she had been my child.

"Jacob," I said, "I'm so sorry that you lost your mother."

Avoiding eye contact and splitting his attention between a toy in his lap and a video, Jacob replied: "I'm sorry that your daughter died."

Jacob is five

from Rachel Elizabeth Chaffin: 11/11/1977 - 7/29/2007

[Joan Jose Duran] was also romantic, composing songs and poems for Andrea Silva of Woburn, his girlfriend of two years whom he planned to marry. Silva, 17, returned home one day to find that Duran had sprinkled her bed with rose pedals and decorated the room with images of Tinkerbell, the nickname he gave her.

from The Boston Globe: Tears, disbelief as soldier is mourned

[Laurel] Erb, a 2003 graduate of Wheaton Academy, was in her junior year at Taylor University when the crash occurred. Erb was majoring in art at Taylor, and high school friends recalled her talent in creating both ceramics and poetry.

from The Beacon News: Trucker sentenced in crash that killed SC woman, others

One of the legendary figures she [Joan Finnigan] often returned to was her father, "Fearless" Frank Finnigan, an original Ottawa Senator, who died in 1991 but not before witnessing much of his daughter's tremendous output of 31 volumes of poetry, folklore, short stories, children's stories, plays, scripts and regional histories.

Her last book, the poetry collection Looking for a Turnout, was published this year.

from Ottawa Sun: Celebrated Valley author loses cancer battle

Notably, she [Qurratulain Haider] did not write like an outsider writing about other 'victims' and thus feeling a need to point a finger at someone 'guilty'. Instead, her voice was that of a victim who chooses not to accuse anyone, for who is there to accuse but another victim.

from Outlook India: Aini Apa (1927-2007)

[Henry Johns] was an engineer who retired and said, "Now, I can write," said his daughter Susie Fultz of Denver.

And write he did.

Johns wrote an annual newsletter about his neighborhood, once known as Harman.

He also wrote to the local daily newspapers about the loss of affordable homes in Harman, as well as writing poetry and limericks.

from The Denver Post: Homeowner stayed rooted as area went upscale

[Scott L.] Kirkpatrick left for his second tour of duty in Iraq in May of this year. On his myspace page, Kirkpatrick continued to post poems he wrote while overseas and posted pictures of smiling Iraqis.

"He had no malice toward these people. . . .He's the exact ideal of what every soldier should be," [Tony] Brown said.

from The Fairfax County Times: Friends remember soldier from Reston

An avid writer of poetry, [Erich] Schnurer found a poem [Teresa "Terri"] Mankarious wrote recently entitled "May Angels Watch Over You."

"Hopefully now she is at peace," said [her son] Brendan.

from The Queens Courier: Dog walker killed by alleged DWI driver

An English professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago from 1965 until 1997, Mr. [Ralph J.] Mills [Jr.] published 13 volumes of his own poetry, eight books of criticism, two volumes of essays, and edited the letters and selected prose of the poet Theodore Roethke.

Much of his poetry was in the objectivist style, "dependent on images, tersely presented," said Michael Anania, a poet and colleague of Mr. Mills' at UIC.

from Chicago Tribune: Ralph J. Mills Jr.: 1931 - 2007

Besides his [Liam Rector's] wife, Ms. [Tree] Swenson, the president and executive director of the Academy of American Poets, he is survived by a daughter from his second marriage, Virginia Rector of Brooklyn, and two stepbrothers.

On hearing of Mr. Rector's death, colleagues began circulating his poem "The Remarkable Objectivity of Your Old Friends." It reads in part:

We did right by your death and went out,

from The New York Times: Liam Rector, 57, a Poet and Educator, Dies

But despite his absence, Sgt. Matthew Soper's words were carried in the hands of thousands Friday: "I went where others feared to go, and did what others failed to do! I fought for my country and I am 'An American Soldier.'"

Those words were inside the pages of a program distributed to the crowd waiting to greet their loved ones returning from Iraq with the 1461st Transportation Company.

from The Jackson Citizen Patriot: Homecoming is bittersweet for family, friends of Soper


News at Eleven

Muslim protesters assaulted the exiled Bangladeshi author and feminist Taslima Nasreen at a book launch in Hyderabad on Thursday, incensed by her repeated criticism of Islam and religion in general.

Some radical Muslims hate Nasreen for saying Islam and other religions oppress women.

from The Moderate Voice: Taslima Nasreen, Poet, Attacked in India: Men Attack Her; Other Men Try to Sheild Her
also YouTube: Taslima Nasreen attacked

"I started readings and comparative studies in religions," he [Mohammed Hegazy] said. "I found that I am not consistent with Islam teachings. The major issue for me was love. Islam wasn't promoting love as Christianity did." After his conversion was discovered, police detained him for three days and tortured him, he said. He was harassed several more times, then in 2001 he published a book of poems critical of the security services.

Kuwait Times: Egyptian Christian convert goes into hiding amid death threats

[Charles] Simic rejects the notion that the poet has any role other than "to write good poems." Every time he is asked about the role of the poet, he thinks of the communists and their "cultural policy."

"They always had duties and roles for writers and poets. Poetry presents poetry. Any poet is an individual voice. If he is a good poet or she is a good poet, the whole question is of trying to do what you do well--the integrity that comes with the work that you do," he said.

from USINFO: New U.S. Poet Laureate Charles Simic Immigrated as Teen

[Charles] Simic: Writers and poets are only noticed in totalitarian regimes. They are either imprisoned and shot, or they become highly-privileged flunkies of the regime. In Democracies, they are marginal figures without any influence. That suits me just fine since I like and need my solitude.

from B92: "I take paeans with a grain of salt"

"I don't know what I'm doing when I embark on a poem," he [Paul Muldoon] says, disarmingly. "I don't have any intentions. What I try to do is figure out what the poem's intentions are, try to figure out from word to word what the impact of the piece of writing is. That's the same with all writing. It's the same with this piece you're going to write about our lunch." The last remark is accompanied by a smile, as if he is laying down a challenge.

from Financial Times: Lunch with the FT

The ideal is for a poem to be so sewn throughout that everything in it has been used up at the end. Line three is aware of the manner and substance of lines one and two, line sixteen is aware of lines one through fifteen, etc. Recurrence, echo--that sort of thing. The old definition of a good lyric poem was that it was like a spider's web: touch one part of it and the whole thing trembles. [--Marvin Bell]

from Bellingham Herald: Poet Marvin Bell's work has been compared to Walt Whitman

[Wilfred Owen] was no stranger to the elegiac fascination of the old Welsh poesy and he knew how to use the haunting effects of its techniques--the strange unease, for example, of the device in which final consonants confidently rhyme, but preceding vowels unsettlingly do not. Profound regret is the prevailing mood of his work, not blazing anger, and the satirical war commentaries of his friend Siegfried Sassoon play no part here.

from The Guardian: The greatest voice of the Great War

Poem by Art Durkee: Apokatastasis

from Monsters and Poem by Art Durkee: Apokatastasis

by Madeleine Barnes

from The Post-Gazette: Mom discovers another poet in the house

The difficulty of [Pierre] Reverdy's poems limited his audience. He founded a short-lived review, Nord-Sud (1916; "North-South"), to promote Cubism. After turning to Surrealism in the 1920s, hereturned to Cubist-inspired poetic techniques. Reverdy published Étoiles peintes (1921; "Painted Stars"), Les Épaves du ciel (1924; "Shipwrecks from Heaven"), and Flaques de verre (1929; "Glass Puddles"). In 1926 he retired to the Abbey of Solesmes, remaining there until his death. In solitude he dedicated himself to a search for the spiritual meaning of the physical world, expressing this vocation in the disciplined maxims of Le Gant de crin (1927; "The Horsehair Glove") and Le Livre de mon bord (1948; "The Book Beside Me"). (Encyclopædia Britannica 2004 CD-Rom)

from Eight Poems by Pierre Reverdy

[Kim] Blank said perhaps with the onslaught of modernist poetry, [Audrey] Brown's romantic-style verses were left behind by anthology editors.

"She was, for a while, probably Canada's most famous poet," Blank said. "Her case is an interesting case study in how someone can become famous and then is forgotten."

from Nanaimo News Bulletin: Wordsmith forgotten

Great Regulars

But, oh! The stories--they are essential--I always had the sense (even when I was very small) that these stories would be the only landscapes in which I'd meet, say, my Great Aunt Tiny, my uncle Samuel, my grandparents, my countries. I knew, too, that the stories were not only important for me & my brother to hear (my sisters weren't born yet), but for my parents to say out loud.

from Lisa Alvarado: Blogcritics: Aracelis Girmay's Teeth

[Sigmund] Freud's death is central to this book because it was, in Edmundson's terms, the death of a prophet, an exemplary death like that of Socrates. The combination of Freud's courage in the face of his pain and his insistence to the end on the universal validity of his vision of the ethical man represents one of the great, prophetic images of our time.

from Bryan Appleyard: The Times: The Death of Sigmund Freud: Fascism, Psychoanalysis and the Rise of Fundamentalism

Yet even while a poet has no control over what a reader privately thinks when reading his or her poems, there is certainly poetry's "singing light"--and that light provides a means for the emotions of our lives to exist in the living world. In his poem, "In My Craft or Sullen Art," Dylan Thomas makes a wonderful stand for this aspect of poetry's endurance--even as he owns up to the public's ambivalence, indifference and opposition to it.

In My Craft or Sullen Art

from David Biespiel: The Oregonian: Poetry

Paramahansa Yogananda's poem "Pikes Peak" from Songs of the Soul dramatizes the majesty of the mountain while inspiring awe that the true nature of the human soul can be united with the Creator of all that beauty.

from Linda Sue Grimes: Pikes Peak: A Spiritual Journey

Because of his inability to speak aloud eloquently, the speaker asks, prayerlike, that his writing, his "books be then the eloquence/And dumb presagers of my speaking breast." What is in his heart is more important than what his tongue is capable of, he insists.

As readers have seen in the other sonnets that comprise this group, the speaker is well aware of his talent for composing poetry.

from Linda Sue Grimes: Shakespeare Sonnet 23

The negative aspects of Richard's character are believable because they are drawn from the human library of emotions to which we can all relate, and from which we make our (sometimes foolish) choices.

Villains are necessary for a good plot, so in these first lines Richard makes obvious his decision to be wicked, planning to dispatch his enemies and so eventually become king.

from Frieda Hughes: The Times: Consumed with rancour

Poem: "The Worriers' Guild" by Philip F. Deaver, from How Men Pray ©. Anhinga Press.

from Garrison Keillor: The Writer's Almanac: For the week of August 13, 2007

Here is a lovely poem about survival by Patrick Phillips of New York. People sometimes ask me "What are poems for?" and "Matinee" is an example of the kind of writing that serves its readers, that shows us a way of carrying on.


from Ted Kooser: American Life in Poetry: Column 124

References to Islam appear in a number of my poems. In my last collection How We Sleep On The Nights We Don't Make Love one will find the poem "Salat" on the first page. I wrote this poem while in Saudi Arabia:


from E. Ethelbert Miller: Poetic Niose 1984: An Interview with E. Ethelbert Miller

The poem declines to accept a pre-chewed notion of what "confession" might mean. In other words, this poem, astringent rather than bland, declines to flatter a taste for the obvious.

An earlier Simic poem is also candid and, in a quite different way, tells its truth by avoiding--even mocking--formulaic habits of mind:

Further Adventures of Charles Simic

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

Carl Sandburg (1878-1967), the American poet gave a beautiful description of immortal poetry: 'Poetry is a spot about half-way between where you listen and where you wonder what it was you heard . . . Poetry is a silence and speech between a wet struggling root of a flower and sunlit blossom of that flower . . . Poetry is the opening and closing of a door, leaving those who look through to guess about what was seen during a moment.' In short, poetry is the art of understanding what it is to be alive.

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

There is the W.H. Auden (he rarely used his first names) of the 1930s, the English political poet who reported on the Spanish civil war and the start of the Sino-Japanese war in 1939. Then, there is the poet living in the USA during the 1940s who became a US citizen and became primarily concerned with what was called at the time "neo-orthodox Protestant" theology.

from René Wadlow's The Flutes of Dionysus: Newropeans Magazine: W.H. Auden: Poet of the Age of Anxiety

As Taleb points out, "in real life you do not know the odds; you need to discover them, and the sources of uncertainty are not defined."

There's also confirmation error--seeking out evidence to confirm what you believe. Know what? You always manage to find it.

And there's the narrative fallacy--making a pattern or story out of a series of connected or even disconnected facts.

from Frank Wilson: Philadelphia Inquirer: A lively, sassy study of what's not known

How It Was Once In Our Country by Eavan Boland

from The Guardian: The Saturday poem: How It Was Once In Our Country by Eavan Boland

'August Afternoon'
By Alarie Tennille

from The Kansas City Star: Poet's Corner: 'August Afternoon'

Driving Home
by Charles Simic

from The New Yorker: Poetry: Driving Home

Love Box
by Gerald Stern

from The New Yorker: Poetry: Love Box

By Bronwyn E. Haynes
Roanoke College


from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [by Bronwyn E. Haynes]

By Max Kane

The Cycle of Friendship

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [by Max Kane]

By Zane T. Roskoph
Cherry Hill High School West

The Universe

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [by Zane T. Roskoph]

By Zachary Silver
Harry B. Kellman Academy

The First Rain

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [by Zachary Silver]

By Stephen Wildemann

Wildwood Days

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [by Stephen Wildemann]

Proud (to be a Scot)
[by Chris Vaughan]

from Portsmouth Herald News: Poem: Proud (to be a Scot)

"Apple Economics"
--for A.B.F.
By Edison Jennings

from Slate: "Apple Economics" --By Edison Jennings

This week's issue features John Buchan's war journalism and the letters of the Carlyles. To augment these, we go back to 1983 and Douglas Dunn's "Land Love", set in a "remote/Local August", one of the poems to his late wife collected in Elegies, which won the 1985 Whitbread Book Prize. Dunn was born in Renfrewshire in 1942, and worked as a librarian (alongside Philip Larkin) at the University of Hull.

from The Times Literary Supplement: Poem of the Week: Land Love by Douglas Dunn

Poetic Obituaries

[Brook Astor] was married three times (once divorced, twice widowed), lived in exotic locales as a child and lavish ones later on, wrote two memoirs ("Patchwork Child: Early Memories" and "Footprints") and two novels ("The Bluebird Is at Home" and "The Last Blossom on the Plum Tree"), was a magazine editor, had her poetry published in The New Yorker, spoke Chinese before she was 10 and never graduated from high school.

from Women's Wear Daily: The Last Queen

Canadian poet Margaret Avison, who was lauded as a "national treasure" when she won the prestigious Griffin Poetry Prize four years ago, has died at age 89.

"Her contribution to Canadian literature was incalculable," said Joseph Zezulka, an English professor at the University of Western Ontario who met Avison in the early 1970s while she was a writer-in-residence at the university.

from The Globe and Mail: Poet Avison's 'incalculable' contribution to Canadian literature

A teacher told of a student who was a gifted writer, avid reader and, later, a lover of poetry.

A friend recalled someone who was always there to support her.

A father remembered a son who made friends wherever he went.

And about 300 members of the Merrill and Hemlock communities where Pfc. Charles T. "Charlie" Heinlein grew up said goodbye to their fallen son during a Friday memorial service at the Hemlock-Merrill Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 7302 in Hemlock.

from The Saginaw News: Farewell to fallen

[Glennie Lail's] son would sometimes go to the brother's house to play with his dogs but would come home when [Charlie Clinard] Jackson showed up because he was scared of him.

A neighbor, Mary Craig, whose family was friends with Jackson, said he was fond of singing and writing songs. His obituary said Jackson "was known as a poet and songwriter."

from Charlotte Observer: 3 killed in Burke Co. shooting rampage

Army life was not something [Scott] Kirkpatrick had considered while growing up in Frederick and parts of Virginia, his uncle said. As a teenager, Kirkpatrick's main interests were poetry, writing and acting.

from The Washington Post: Slam Poet-Turned-Sergeant Is Killed

[Dewey] Knudslien lived in Waterloo until 2003, when he entered the nursing home. He enjoyed writing poetry, attending flea markets, cooking and photography.

from Post-Bulletin: Dewey Knudslien--Harmony

A poem called "Reaching for the Salt" brings to life a creature made out of a straw wrapper.

Bryan Logan Lawrence's words weave together a picture of an afternoon at a fast food restaurant, friends hanging out as they did every day.

from Wichita Falls Times Record News: Late author's poetry flows from notes left

New York artist Elizabeth Murray (who split her time between Tribeca and Washington County, NY) died yesterday after a battle with cancer at the age of 66. Her husband (with whom she had several children), Bob Holman, is the founder of the Bowery Poetry Club.

from Gothamist: New York Artist Elizabeth Murray Dies at 66

Kelly [Neff] was a straight-A student who wrote poetry in her free time and was looking forward to applying for college, her uncle said.

from Suburban Chicago News: Counselors available to students

"Ulrich Plenzdorf was an exact observer of social realities and had a keen sense of attitudes to life, of the young especially," the Academy said in the statement issued from Berlin. "With a mixture of poetry and sarcasm, he became an irreplaceable author for many readers and cinemagoers."

from Bloomberg: Plenzdorf, Author of `New Sufferings of Young W.,' Dies at 72

[Prof. Nandasena Ratnapala] enriched Sri Lankan literature with contributions to Sinhala poetry, short stories and literary criticism, and widened the awareness of society with several books on beggars, drug addicts and prostitution. In addition to his studies in sociology, he also did much in the fields of social psychology and criminology.

from Daily News: Prof. Ratnapala enriched Lankan literature --President

In the early nineties, Tom Peyer and Hart Seely collected some of Rizzuto's best moments, formatted them as poetry, and published "O Holy Cow! The Selected Verse of Phil Rizzuto." The book was a parody of poetry, but it also was poetry, even earning a New York Times review by Robert Pinsky. "O Holy Cow!" is still in print. You should buy it if you don't already have it. Meanwhile, here's one of my favorites:

Go Ahead, Seaver

from AOL News: Phil Rizzuto, Poet (1917-2007)

[Shobhana Singh] wanted to be journalist that was her dream.

It helped that she was a very gifted creative writer, a poet who loved to pen down ghazals. In fact, Shobhana had started rendering poems in Kavi Sammelan's by the time she was just 15! That was she, a prodigy from the start.

from Zee News: Shobhana: A sparkling light fades away

[Lorado] Williams [Jr.] wrote poetry about his friends, about growing up with his mother and about [Monika] Bobrowska, some of which she found in his car after he died.

The two had dated for nearly 11 years, after they were introduced through friends at a party. "We spent the whole night talking, and we haven't been separated since," she said.

He was a man in the midst of change. After boxing for years, he approached [John] Rallo recently to ask for training in mixed martial arts.

from Baltimore Sun: Shooting victim loved boxing, making friends

[Marian Coe Zipperlin] built a track record with fictionalized "confession" stories for MacFadden Publications. But not all of her nine books were fictional. In 1983, she wrote Women in Transition. She arranged the text, some in prose, some in poetry, like a journal or notebook in which a woman could commit her thoughts.

from St. Petersburg Times: 'True confessions' writer Marian Coe Zipperlin dies


News at Eleven

[James H. Billington] referred to a stanza from "My Turn to Confess," a poem from Mr. [Charles] Simic's 2005 collection, "My Noiseless Entourage," also published by Harcourt:

A dog trying to write a poem on why he barks,
That's me, dear reader!
They were about to kick me out of the library
But I warned them,
My master is invisible and all-powerful.
Still, they kept dragging me out by my tail.

from New York Times: Charles Simic, Surrealist With Dark View, Is Named Poet Laureate

"If you practise poetry the way I think it needs to be done, you're going to put yourself in jeopardy." [--Amiri Baraka]

from The Guardian: Revolution song

'What has happened to Shi Tao is a disgrace. We hope that people enjoying the Festival will see the relevance of this case and join our campaign. Standing up for human rights can be as easy as sending a text message.'

Amnesty International's report also examines the continued use of detention without trial as part of Beijing's "clean up" operations of the city ahead of the games.

from Amnesty International UK: Amnesty Scotland steps up festival campaign for Chinese writer as new report marks one year until Beijing Olympics
also Reporters Without Borders: US Congress to probe Yahoo!'s role in cyber-dissident Shi Tao's arrest

"They wanted to talk to me about poetry and literature," she said. "I talked about poetry, and when they asked me about ethics, I gave my opinion regarding ethics, about motherhood belonging to both men and women. They've shut down the newspaper because they don't like having a moderate newspaper at the time of elections."

from Iran shuts down leading reformist newspaper

Rumi does it (in his ghazals), too. This was a poetry that wasn't published, you see. It was memorized. So the only way you could tell who had written it is by the name at the end. So that's just enforced on them so to speak, by the situation.

So it brings something very different into the poem, when you have to look (that way) in the last stanza. You can see that this throws a complication into a poem that's terrifically interesting.

from American-Statesman: On poetry and sorrows: a short conversation with Robert Bly

Carolyn Cassady, the last surviving member of Kerouac's closeknit coterie of friends and fellow Beats, now 84 and exiled in deepest Berkshire, is even more scathing about Noughties youth. 'It's all about money and surface now, the clothes you wear, the things you buy, and no one is the slightest bit ashamed of being superficial. I often thank God that Jack and Neal did not live long enough to see what has become of their vision'.

from The Guardian: America's first king of the road

[Boris] Pasternak distinguished between his love for Evgenia, which gave life to "living children", and his higher romance with [Marina] Tsvetaeva, which pushed at the bounds of what love between a man and a woman can accommodate. Tsvetaeva, meanwhile, "cast herself as a mother to Pasternak's poems", and also fantasized about bearing him a real son.

from The Times: Boris Pasternak and Marina Tsvetaeva

In "The Snake" a man sends a woman a snake with instructions not to bite her. Once she has begun "to accept it, want it,/come home early, saying she had to feed her pets", he sends a second snake with the opposite instruction.

from The Guardian: To the bone

"It's hard to write in the voices of women and make them seem as if they were the actual women.

"I remember so clearly how those women spoke and wrote. They were very original, and they used a lot of street talk, yet they were very funny. I put together an anthology of the poems they wrote in the '70s--I couldn't use them in my book, but they helped me."

[--Carol Muske-Dukes]

from Deseret Morning News: 'Channeling' hits home for writer

Okwonga knew he wasn't a lawyer, he was a poet, a fact harder to break to his mother than his realisation that he was gay. His deeply Christian mother hardly spoke to him for years.

His painful coming-out not only informs much of his poetry, it steeled him for another realisation--a poet has no business practising law.

from The Times: Why rap if you can be a poet?

Over 1,200 aspirants submitted their work to the committee formed by the government to choose the new song.

Finally, the lyrics sent by poet Pradeep Kumar Rai, also known as Byakul Maila, were selected and given to the army as well as Bajracharya and Gurung to do the score.

from Nepal strikes first high note after king's fall
also YouTube: The National Anthem of Napal 2007-08-03

Great Regulars

No matter how much her work is anchored in an urban base, she [Johanny Vazquez Paz] is tethered always to la isla, to Puerto Rico and its sorrow and strength, always writing from a deep place of female dignity. Take a moment and read for yourself.

Daughter of the City

from Lisa Alvarado: Blogcritics: Johanny Vazquez Paz--Streetwise Poems

Summer seems to have barely got going here in Blighty but, in literary calendar terms at least, it's already over: the Man Booker longlist comes out this afternoon, marking the start of autumn's prize season.

from Sarah Crown: The Guardian: theblogbooks: Booker longlist: any guesses?

Four first-time novelists and a near-total absence of literary stars combine to make this year's Man Booker prize longlist announcement one of the most low-key in many years.

In contrast with previous years (the longlist has been announced publicly since 2001), 2007's list is restricted to a 'Man Booker dozen'--a mere 13 titles, compared with the usual 18-24.

from Sarah Crown: The Guardian: Low-key Booker longlist shuns literary stars

[Charles] Simic said that he had not yet decided what he would do with his term, which begins in October. Meanwhile he continues to write for the New York Review of Books and is a poetry editor (with Meghan O'Rourke) of the Paris Review. His new poetry collection, That Little Something, will be published next year.

Paradise Motel by Charles Simic

from Sarah Crown: The Guardian: Charles Simic named US poet laureate

Because a spark of God is in everything in creative, God is both visible and invisible.

And the accomplished yogi who has readied his heart and mind for contact with that Infinitude can see and understand that unity that always exists between the Divine Mother and Her child, or God and His creation.

from Linda Sue Grimes: 'Invisible Mother'

A woman of many parts has died, but leaves memories of herself and her history in the minds of her family and corked with the blackberries. And so it is that we are attached in the minds of others to all the little things that we do.

from Frieda Hughes: The Times: The last of the summer wine

Poem: "The Bachelor" by Leslie Monsour, from The Alarming Beauty of the Sky © Red Hen Press.

from Garrison Keillor: The Writer's Almanac: For the week of August 06, 2007

There is a type of poem, the Found Poem, that records an author's discovery of the beauty that occasionally occurs in the everyday discourse of others. Such a poem might be words scrawled on a wadded scrap of paper, or buried in the classified ads, or on a billboard by the road. The poet makes it his or her poem by holding it up for us to look at. Here the Washington, D.C., poet Joshua Weiner directs us to the poetry in a letter written not by him but to him.

Found Letter

from Ted Kooser: American Life in Poetry: Column 123

The day after the ceremony, Chinese officials threatened two women supporters of Tenzin Delek Rinpoche with detention, and a threat to their lives, if they continued their campaign for him, the sources said.

"In spite of Chinese threats, these two ladies collected a huge rally of local Tibetans and asked the public whether they had support and respect for Tenzin Delek Rinpoche. All shouted loud and clear and raised their hands in support of Tenzin Delek Rinpoche," the caller said.

from Luisetta Mudie: Radio Free Asia: Hundreds Protest in China Over Jailed Tibetan Monk

Charles Simic writes endlessly about insomnia and terror. But he always has that whimsical edge; his poems are more than capable of etching a huge smile on my face. The territory of his imagination is a dream-landscape; but the dream is one of eastern European villages in the Old World. The gallows hangs in the public square.

from Jay Parini: The Guardian: theblogbooks: A poet who deserves his laurels

What is the difference between a poem and a monologue? Clearly, some works are both, but what a gifted stand-up artist or actor does with face, body and voice, poetry does with the rhythms of words and the rhythms of thought, in language. Erin Belieu's "On Being Fired Again," a monologue in form and subject, also exemplifies the kinds of verbal energy peculiar to poetry:

On Being Fired Again

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

Perhaps the great American poet Robert Frost (1874 -1963) had poets like William Blake in mind when he wrote: Like a piece of ice on a hot stove the poem must ride on its own melting . Let us now turn to William Blake's poem 'Ah! Sunflower!'. This poem holds us all by its mere melody

Ah! Sunflower!

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

This poem was reminiscent of the voice of W B Yeats (1865-1939) who wrote a great poem during the I World War titled 'Easter 1916'. Very much like Yeats, Auden gave a poignant description of historical lapses, frustrations and failures gradually moving towards a possible transformation of the landscape in the future. I am giving below a few stanzas from Auden's great poem:

September 1, 1939

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

The poet Naomi Shihab Nye says "whenever I go to any school, the first question they will ask is 'Are you famous?'. I have written this poem in response to this question. Everything is famous if you notice it. This leaf right here is famous if you picked it up".

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

A Poem is the very image of life expressed in its eternal truth. There is this difference between a story and a poem, that a story is a catalogue of detached facts, which have no other bond of connexion than time, place, circumstance, cause and effect; the other is the creation of actions according to the unchangeable forms of human nature, as existing in the mind of the creator, which is itself the image of all other minds.

from Daily Times: Purple Patch: Defence of Poetry --Percy Bysshe Shelley

Poetry Corner presents the three poems selected for prizes and included in "Surveyors of Worlds," the anthology for the 14th Annual Santa Cruz County High School Poetry Competition. The competition was judged by Neli Moody, Robert Sward and Beth Vieira, and conducted by Poetry Santa Cruz.


from Good Times Weekly: Poetry Corner

Flotation by Anthony Thwaite

from The Guardian: The Saturday poem: Flotation by Anthony Thwaite

What or who is in the forest? What's being left at whose ear? Who's coming to get something? Who's trying to get in? "Meanwhile . . ."--what's happening? Who's Peter (substitute any name) and where is he? Ready for what? Who's asking to be disintegrated, and by whom? Recovering from what? Walking where in the yellow boots?

from The Guardian: Poetry Workshop: Matthew Sweeney's poetry workshop

Love Tokens
by Tran Da Tu translated by Linh Dinh

from Guernica: Poetry: Love Tokens

By DeMar Regier

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

by Adam Zagajewski

from The New Yorker: Poetry: Blake

A Village Life
by Louise Glück

from The New Yorker: Poetry: A Village Life

My faint whispered breath lifting [. . .]
[by Peg Edera]

from The Oregonian: Poetry

By Kristina Antunes

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [by Kristina Antunes]

By Corey Brandt
A Walk Through My Dreams

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [by Corey Brandt]

--Audrey Alyse Jenkins

Till Life is Still

from The Philadelphia Inquirer: Your Poem: [by Audrey Alyse Jenkins]

By Brittany Sherman
Sea World

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

If Europe be my grave
[by Warren Lemon]

from Portsmouth Herald News: Random Acts of Poetry: If Europe be my grave

Geography for the Lost (Bloodaxe, £7.95) is the recently published collection by Kapka Kassabova, originally from Bulgaria, now settled in Edinburgh. This, the title poem, explores the disorientation and uncertainty that touch each of us in different ways in today's world.

from The Scotsman: Poem of the Week

"Adjectives of Order"
By Alexandra Teague

from Slate: "Adjectives of Order" --By Alexandra Teague

The Canary (Interior Design)
Tal Nitzan

from Zeek: The Canary (Interior Design): Tal Nitzan

Poetic Obituaries

James Driggs took drama classes at Contra Costa College, played drums and wrote poetry.

"Because of his disability, it (the poetry) sometimes didn't make sense to us," Susan Driggs said. "But when he read it back, it made sense."

from Contra Costa Times: Victim of fatal fire led life of challenges

Noted author and former assistant general secretary of Asam Sahitya Sabha, Dr Prakash Goswami, passed away at his Dhapkota, Jorhat residence around 6 pm today.

from The Assam Tribune: Noted author passes away

[Elsie Hill] also had her hand in many creative enterprises over the years. She was poet and artist, seamstress and furniture refinisher, knitter and gardener. Always eager to learn a new skill or craft, she would then go one step further by sharing her expertise with anyone who wanted to learn!

from Fosters: Elsie Hill

The Bellingham High School Class of 2000 alumnus [Dan Joyce] had a hidden lyrical side, having written poems with a talent that was just discovered by his family. "Some of them were silly," Tim [Joyce] said, "some of them were really, really well written."

from The Boston Herald: Friends, family mourn 'best friends' killed in crash

Between them the Clancy Brothers, of whom only Liam survives, and [Tommy] Makem released more than 100 albums. Makem's more recent works included Ancient Pulsing, a collection of his poetry.

from Telegraph: Tommy Makem

Instead, he [Leonard Nathan] wanted to show that the contemporary poem, of Kinnell and Levine and Ashbury, "is not spontaneous utterance spoken directly out of actual experience, but rather a deliberate and artful form of creating the illusion that spontaneous utterance is spoken directly out of actual experience, because its main aim is pathos and the convention that pathos seems to demand is the personal voice and loosened form and structure."

from On the Seawall: Leonard Nathan, 1924-2007

[Willadene] Nicholas, 97, wrote numerous poems and short stories, and created a vast work of watercolor paintings. Some of her books include "Leo and His Rainbow Brush," "Stories of a Railroad Child," "Minnie the Sunflower," a Latin textbook; and four poetry collections. The special features of her books are her original pen-and-ink sketches.

from Lake County News-Sun: Well-known Grayslake poet, painter dead at 97

[Donald V. Steger Sr.] had a great voice for singing and loved listening to classical music, musicals and Baxter Black recordings. He loved a good joke or a great story and had a great sense of humor.

from The News Leader: Donald V. Steger Sr.

An activist during the 1988 pro-democracy uprising, Tayar Min Wai was arrested in 1991 and served sentences in Insein, Thayawaddy and Thayet prisons.

He was released in 1995 and went o­n to publish nearly 40 books, including novels, poetry and short story collections--all of which sold well throughout Burma.

from The Irrawaddy: Burmese Novelist Tayar Min Wai Dead at 41


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