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Archive for the ‘Poetryspotting’ Category

Just saw this article about the passing of Kamala Das, an Indian poet.  Her poetry contains unapologetic discussions of women’s sexual lives.  Read Herons as posted in the NY Times article.

Read more about Kamala Das here.

Kamala Das

Kamala Das

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We Spot Fisher Poets

Check out this article on the NY Times web site about fishermen turned poets. Apparently, there’s been an annual gathering of fisher poets since 1998.

Gathering of Fisher Poets

Gathering of Fisher Poets

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We Spot Diplomacy by Poetry

How fun that poetry has made it to the national fake-news headlines! 😉

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “Diplomacy by Poetry“, posted with vodpod

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In case you didn’t catch these election day poems in the Wednesday, November 5 NY Times, I’ve posted links to them here. At each page, you can hear the poet read his or her work.

When the Fog
by August Kleinzahler 

When the Fog

When the Fog

Election Day

by J.D. McClatchy 

In the Present and Probable Future

by Mary Jo Bang

In the Present and Probable Future

In the Present and Probable Future

 

The Polling Place

by Joshua Mehigan

The Polling Place

The Polling Place

Infomercial 2

by John Ashbery

Informercial 2

Informercial 2

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I just noticed on the NYTimes Web site that the 2008 Pulitzer winners have been announced. This year both Robert Hass and Philip Schultz have won for their poetic contributions. Robert Hass’s prize-winning collection is entitled Time and Materials; Philip Schultz’s collection is entitled Failure.

The NYTimes reviewed Time and Materials last year.

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We received a comment from Isabel who knew the second poem that Liz Smith read at the Poetry and the Creative Mind gala. It is Let America Be America Again by Langston Hughes. She introduced it by saying that Michelle and Barack Obama could make it their mantra in this election year.

Thank you Isabel for your note and the information. Check out Isabel’s blog which she’s called A Room of One’s Own and marries her beautiful photos with lots of poetry. Just lovely!

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National Poetry Month

I’m not April fooling. April is National Poetry month! To kick it off, Jan, Diana and I attended the Poetry and the Creative Mind gala at Avery Fisher Hall in Lincoln Center.  I took notes, so I’ll post a list of the poems that were read. The readers were all great, but Diana Reeves was superb!

You can read more about National Poetry Month at the Academy of American Poets web site.

Also note that April 17 is the first national Poem in Your Pocket Day. Read all about that here.

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My curiousity bested me when I turned to my friend google and began searching for Ides of March poems. I saw several offerings, but this one by Constantine Petrou Cavafy was most interesting.

It’s too bad some our politicians are unable to be fearful of their exalted ranks…

Ides of March

Be fearful of exalted rank, o soul.
And if you are unable to subdue
your aspirations – doubtingly pursue them
and with precautions. And the more you rise,
the more examining, the warier be.

And when you are arrived at the supreme
height of your glory – a Caesar, as it were:
when you are become a man so widely famed:
then specially be wary – at such time
as you come out into the thoroughfares,
a noted ruler with great following:
if peradventure, from the multitude,
some friendly person, an Artemidorus,
bringing a paper, should press near to you
and rap out sharp “Read this without delay;
herein are weighty matters touching you”,
fail not to tarry; fail not to postpone
all talk or business; fail not to turn off
the different hangers-on who bow and scrape,
(you will attend to them in time); let even
the Senate wait; – leave all, and learn at once
the grave things written by Artemidorus.

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I noticed a review of a new biography of Ezra Pound on the NY Times site by A. David Moody and thought I’d share. I was struck by the reviewer’s reference to The Odd Couple, inferring Ezra was Oscar to T.S. Eliot’s Felix…hmmm.

Ol’ Ez hasn’t made it into one of our gatherings yet. He is something of a disagreeable, downright unlikeable personality.  Still, you can read some of his poems here and a NY Times review of his works here

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Wow, twice in one week, poetry on TV…this time it was on Thursday night’s episode of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation entitled “Bull.”  This episode introduced me to an entire genre of poetry known as cowboy poetry. Check it out here and  here .

Here’s the poem from CSI. As far as I know it didn’t have a title and its author was not named. The double entendre here is that on the surface the poem looks like a love poem written by a rodeo bull rider for a woman. But, in fact, as is revealed at the end of the episode, the cowboy wrote this poem for a bull named Windtwister.

I can’t help now but wonder what your brown eyes were concealing.
They just showed me reflections of all that I was feeling.

Our bodies close together like my ride hand in my glove.
Hearts pounding with excitement, and, dare I say it, love.

I know I’ll never own you it’s your nature to run free.
I pray the Lord above that one day you’ll come back to me.

Then, we’ll ride off in glory until our time is done
And, I will be your hero, your cowboy in the sun.

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I was happily eating my breakfast this morning while perusing the morning’s headlines on-line, when I noticed a Twitter post about jazz and poetry. What? Huh? Wait, more caffeine please! I must still be dreaming.

Of course, curious poets need to know…so I clicked on the link which took me to a NY Times article entitled “A Breezy Exchange Between Old Friends (Jazz and Poetry)”.

 It seems that current United States poet laureate Charles Simic and former United States poet laureate Robert Pinsky were on stage last night at the Jazz Standard in New York City.  They read poems while accompanied by a jazz trio…how COOL was that?? If only I had known in advance, I would have made an attempt to go…I hope they do a repeat performance soon.

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Poems show up in all the most unexpected places. This time it was the Sunday, January 6, 2008 episode of Desperate Housewives…yes, Desperate Housewives. Ok. I knew you wouldn’t believe me…but I have video to prove it.

 The poem was written by Mary Frye in 1932 and is entitled Do Not Stand at My Grave and Weep. You can read it here.  The story of its creation is a poignant one. Apparently Mrs. Frye wrote it to comfort a young Jewish girl who was forced to leave her dying mother in Germany.

As for the Housewives, the episode is entitled “Welcome to Kanagawa.” The poem is recited by Mrs. McCluskey as she and Lynette prepare to spread the ashes of a neighbor on a softball field.

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