Monday, February 01, 2010

New gig at Fringe

I have a new job of interviewing poets for Fringe magazine (whose subtitle I adore: "The Noun That Verbs Your World"). Interviews upcoming will include Cheryl Dumesnil, author of In Praise of Falling, and Kim Addonizio, author of too many books to name, but most especially the brilliant, new collection Lucifer at the Starlite, with a nice review at Rattle by Jeannine Hall Gailey via the link.

Interviewing poets about their work, poems, process, and prospects is exciting. I get to ask all the things I am curious about but rarely have the opportunity to ask, questions like: What is your process of revision? When do you consider a poem ready to send out? What gives you the best chances in book contests? How can you best organize a collection of poetry? What is the meaning of an "occasion" for a poem versus its subject matter? And on. Should be educational for me, and I hope for the readers.

I will also continue to do interviews at Kate Bernadette Benedict's wonderful zine Umbrella, which has now gone to a semi-annual schedule. The next issue is due in May. Stay tuned to hear about those upcoming interviews.

Sunday, January 31, 2010


Diane Lockward has a video of the undefinable, majorly talented poet Taylor Mali over at Blogalicious. If you haven't heard of this guy, take a look and then go to Youtube where you can find lots more. And hope that he comes to your town and you can see him in person!

C.E. Chaffin has a blog post that touched me, about dealing with melancholy, including a quote from Lincoln that was moving. If ever there were a man who dealt with melancholy bravely, it was Lincoln. Craig paraphrases it as: "If all the misery of the world were gathered in one sack and put upon one man's shoulders, I am that man."

I think everyone who deals with sadness -- whether on a daily or occasional basis -- is a brave and pure soul. Pain purifies and makes one clear-eyed and compassionate. Craig ends with a beautiful poem of his own, "Once More for Sanity." (P.S. to Craig: blogging, Facebook, and Twitter are all one now, because I can link this post to Facebook and tweet via the Tweetboard right here on my blog. So it's all a question of where you want to get your news.)

I think that about sums up my day: a paragraph on hilarity, a paragraph on melancholy and finding sanity in what seems an insane world. Yup.