Posts Tagged ‘poetry’

Lyric Persuasions at Poets House

Monday, May 10th, 2010

by Vasiliki Katsarou

This spring, just before she was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for her poetry, I went to hear Rae Armantrout read and discuss her work with Zen priest and poet Norman Fischer.  The program was organized by Poets House in New York, at its new, glistening home in Battery Park City.  The evening program was entitled “Lyric Persuasions”and its purpose was to discuss the contemporary lyric poem.

Armantrout is a West Coast poet who has been peripherally attached to the Language Poetry movement.  In recent years, there has been a development in her poetry towards an exquisite collage of “found language.”  From her latest book, VERSED:

The outer world means
State Farm Donuts Tae Kwando?

Thoughts as spent fuel rods.
—from “Outer”

The child fights cancer
with the help
of her celebrity fan club,

“Now I know how hard it is
to be a movie star.”


my avatar’s not working!”


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Poetry in a Tea Shop

Saturday, March 27th, 2010

by Arlene Weiner
(poem by John Balaban at end of this post)

Recently I was in a Vietnamese teashop in Burlington, Vermont. The room in back of the shop was charming. Sunshine came through windows with bright green frames. There were plants on the sills and board games and a few dozen books. From my table I saw what looked like a poetry book.

Yes, it was: Spring Essence, a book of Vietnamese poetry in three presentations: in the familiar Vietnamese typography with its many notations that make it look like a little like musical notation with its slurs and rests; in a calligraphic script (Nôm); and in an English translation by John Balaban. Read the rest of this entry »