Congratulations to poet Kevin Young, whose poem “Wintering,” published in our Spring 2012 issue, was included in Best American Poetry 2013.
Our favorite phrase from Young’s poem “Pity,” also published in that issue:
The pool we once swam out back
now drained, flooding the street
in mock calamity.
(Photo by Kate Tuttle)
THIS TEXT AND THE ONE
BESIDE IT ARE EQUAL.
I WROTE THIS ONE FIRST,
AND THEN I GAVE IT TO MY
FRIEND CHRISTIAN BOK
AND ASKED HIM TO
GENERATE A NEW TEXT
USING EVERY LETTER AND
MARK THAT I USED IN MINE.
THE OTHER TEXT IS HIS. [by micah lexier]
MICAH LEXIER REQUESTED
IN ADVANCE THAT I
REINVENT HIS TEXT. SO
I UNKNOTTED IT AND
REKNITTED INTO THIS
VERY FORM, BUT THEN I
BEGAN TO THINK THAT HIS
MESSAGE HAD ALREADY
RESEWN A TOUTED ART
OF GENUINE POETRY. HIS
EERIE TEXT WAS MINE. [by christian bok]
"For to swim is also to take hold
On water’s meaning, to move in its embrace
And to be, between grasp and grasping, free.”
—Charles Tomlinson, as quoted by Willard Spiegelman in “Buoyancy: In literature, as in life, the art of swimming isn’t hard to master”
(Photo by IOC/John Huet, courtesy London 2012)
Poets traditionally own cats. Baudelaire would caress his “beau chat” and, being Baudelaire, daydream about his Creole mistress’s pliant body. T. S. Eliot famously celebrated the entire species in the comic verse of Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats.
Michael Dirda muses on famous feral muses, from songbirds to horses. Read.
As we began to walk, he laced his arm through mine. Can you imagine how I felt—a boy from my circumstances, so American, so unfinished—walking along the backs of the Cambridge colleges with the man who wrote A Passage to India and Howards End on my arm as a silent companion?
-Steven L. Isenberg, on his meeting with an 86-year-old E.M. Forster
By way of lunches, Steven L. Isenberg recounts visits with four of the 20th century’s most esteemed English poets and writers in Lunching on Olympus.
(Pictured above: W.H. Auden, E.M. Forster, William Empson)
A poem is not the same poem from reading to reading, because the reader is not the same reader.
Quote from “COMPRESSION WOOD” by Franklin Burroughs, Spring 1998.
Richard Nicholls for The American Scholar.