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Monthly Archives: January 2009

But where does contagion end and art begin?

“You cannot hear a poem without it changing you,” she told me. “They heard it, and it colonized them. It inherited them and it inhabited them, its rhythms becoming part of the way that they thought; its images permanently transmuting their metaphors; its verses, its outlook, its aspirations becoming their lives. Within a generation their […]

Yes, you are writing that letter forever.

You tell me how you cannot name your crime because you only suspect what it is and to name it would make it true. – From “Ovid, Old Buddy, I Would Discourse With You a While” by Hayden Carruth

This wax kid and the carrot kid are different people, but we all live pretty much the same life.

At that age, this friend’s a little sex maniac. He’s always jonesing for a better way to get his rocks off. He goes out to buy a carrot and some petroleum jelly. To conduct a little private research. Then he pictures how it’s going to look at the supermarket checkstand, the lonely carrot and petroleum […]

kind of okay

I wrote these yesterday, while at a half-day job I had in a mailroom. The mail didn’t arrive until I’d been there for several hours, and I had nothing else to do, so I texted short poems to friends. Mailroom Poem sorting infinite envelopes winter seeps in at the door Presidential haiku Obama speaks of […]

the Prime Minister appearing in your window

Kate Beaton on what Obama means to Canada.

the girls who love to watch

My Poem Rocks just posted my poem “Crack the Whip Prohibited.”

Inaugural poems

An interview with Elizabeth Alexander, who will recite her poem after President Obama’s inaugural address tomorrow. ETA: Here is the text of the poem. Jim Fisher at on the history of inaugural and occasional poetry. Elitist Obama Inaugural Will Feature Poetry (via) 1000 inaugural poets project Former inaugural poems: Robert Frost’s rather Eurocentric “The […]

oranges ar actually a discouraging off color

altho yu have 5 or 6 billyun peopul walking around beleeving that tomatoez ar red they ar actually blu nd ar sprayd red – from “th tomato conspiracy aint worth a whol pome” by bill bissett, which Brianna Brash-Nyberg reminded me of in her Vary the Line post about language poetry.

Rabbits are the new monkeys

Use your real name, you chicken. You are not a rock star. If you want to be a rock star, learn to play an instrument. – from “For Poets (& Others)” by Brandi Homan (via) Mention rabbits in a poem and there’s a good chance I’ll link to it. Also, this poem is pretty funny. […]

love, love, love,/and I’m sorry the dog died

Elizabeth Alexander, who will be reading a poem at the Inauguration on Tuesday, reads “Ars Poetica #92: Marcus Garvey on Elocution” and “Ars Poetica #100: I Believe” from American Sublime.