The Page
poetry, essays, ideas
"Blood may be the physical image that connects all types of violence in Don’t Call Us Dead, but it is also the route to commemoration and love." Sandeep Parmar • Guardian

"I remember, especially, his tug of war with the journalist Matías del Río. Nicanor had agreed to talk to him on the condition that there be no questions or recordings, but del Río took two minutes to break the rules. “You, sir, are a pontificator, and pontiffs belong in Rome,” Nicanor said, suddenly, and walked out without a word." Alejandro Zambra • New Yorker

"The poem’s cast of female characters — princesses, queens, slaves, goddesses — along with its vagueness on the technical details of sailing and war, led Samuel Butler to propose, in his brilliant if zany 1887 book The Authoress of the Odyssey, that the epic was written by a woman." A.E. Stallings • Spectator

"[W]ith this one book, Crase established an immediate place in contemporary American poetry, which was followed by almost complete silence. If you want to obtain The Revisionist now, you are going to have to pay a lot of money for second hand copies and even more for new ones, as this major book has been out of print for a very long time. In a note which accompanies the poems, Crase himself seems to suggest that the pieces in The Astropastorals come from a period between 1979, before the publication of The Revisionist, and the year 2000. If that is the case, then somewhere a major American voice has lost its way. And a major book is, unconscionably, out of print." Ian Pople The Manchester Review
"In his Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Coleridge describes a ‘rotting sea’ full of ‘slimy things.’" Jessica Sequeira • Berfrois

"Any such anthology as this is bound to involve several endlessly controversial trade-offs, but there can only be unqualified approval for the contextual materials, in the form of short introductory essays, notes and glosses, that greatly assist the reader to make both local and overall sense of what could otherwise be a bewilderingly vast and pathless expanse of text. And a brief word in conclusion about one of the two hugely industrious editors. Now approaching his eightieth birthday, Meic Stephens has for half a century been one of the most imposing figures on the Welsh cultural scene. A fine poet and prodigious compiler –for instance of The Oxford Companion to the Literature of Wales – Stephens it was who made possible the thriving Welsh book industry of today thanks to his seminal investment in infrastructure during his culturally transformative years of service as Director of Literature at the Welsh Arts Council." M Wynn Thomas PN Review
"Anybody with an interest in poetry should be reading Leontia Flynn." Kate Kellaway • Guardian

"In Britain we like to point the finger at America for its record on racism. It is only when writers such as Hirsch and Reni Eddo-Lodge are given a platform that we are forced to confront how it plays out on home ground." Bernardine Evaristo TLS
""A big one." It’s a phrase you’ll come across several times in reading Allen Curnow. It could be a fish caught off Kare Kare, a talent another writer didn’t have, an implied assessment of his own." Vincent O'Sullivan • The Spinoff

"If at times I felt too much moderation in the stack of books I was reading through, a too predictable decorum, and could have wished for a clunk, a barbaric yawp or two, even a bit of show-offy artifice, still I liked the understanding that not everything has to be a monument, or to aim at greatness — though there were many great things in these books. I liked tremendously the sense that, rather than a specialized event, poetry can be, simply, a way of living." Daisy Fried Poetry
"I have needed all the genres I have used, and, as a sort of common denominator, I have been the same person with the same concerns from one genre to another." Wendell Berry • Library of America

"I too was a young desperado of a critic, right up to my first (and wholly deserved) death threat, after which I decided that this was not the career for a coward with such a fundamentally lousy attitude." Don Paterson • Guardian

"He was a poet who could get away with putting the words ‘rupestral concentricity’ in a poem, but who also refused to spare himself: ‘how selfishly you serve your own heart’s bent.’ Scarcely anything, now, remains uncontaminated by the shabby depredations of the age, with its drive to monetise, to commodify; not even poetry. In a time when so many important questions are negligently left unasked, Richard Murphy’s work continues both to pose these questions and to answer them." Caitriona O'Reilly Irish Times
"On both sides of the “noble amateur” debate, if that’s what this is, there is, of course, fault to be found, but also virtue: as above, Watts has been accused of sour grapes and everything else, whereas, even if her views seem incorrect, she might just as well be admired for intellectual honesty, as McNish is, and for defying the popular way of thinking." Michael Caines • TLS

"Instapoetry, the so-named slips of inspoverse that have propagated on Instagram like the common cold over the past few years, is a boutique of perfectly curated objets de commerce—“Raised lettering, pale nimbus. White,” American Psycho’s ideal business card gone digital—selling a sanitized unreality." Soraya Roberts • The Baffler

"When Richard Wilbur died in October at 96, he left behind a body of work that rivals that of the great modernists." Christian Wiman • New York Times

"In one short poem [Ahren] Warner compares his beloved to a kitten, a porpoise, a dormouse, and a camelid." Paul Batchelor • New Statesman

"In 2015 I heard McNish speak on a panel at the Aldeburgh Poetry Festival, where she was also a main performer. Two things she said struck me then as bizarre, both in themselves and for the fact that she chose to admit them publicly. The first was that her publisher (presumably by then Picador) had sent her a pile of books to read, because they thought she hadn’t read enough poetry. The second was that the poems she was writing presently were the same as the poems she had written in her childhood diaries." Rebecca Watts • PN Review

"Well, my favorite poem is “The Flea” by John Donne. I would have liked to have written “The Flea.”" Paul Muldoon • LARB

"Increasingly in our aggressively nationalist times, inwardness is thought of as high virtue; insularity and stubbornness of vision are promoted as signs of a courageous up-holding of supposedly threatened heritage and values." Christodoulos Makris • Versopolis

"It is wonderful for criticism to be generous to its readers, but is it best for lyric poetry?”" Alibhe Darcy • B O D Y

"Szymborska, on the other hand, loathed the attention thrust upon her. She didn’t like talking about herself or her work, and moreover, as Janusz R. Kowalczyk puts it, “Szymborska did not enjoy ostentation or celebrations—being declared the Nobel laureate was considered ‘the Stockholm tragedy’ by her friends, as it forced her to give more interviews in a month than she had faced in her life.”" Jonathan Russell Clark • Lit Hub

"It is also Aeschylus that forms the link to Balmer’s second book, The Paths of Survival, a larger, less personal enterprise – “larger” in that it covers more than 2,000 years in the history of Aeschylus’s lost play, Myrmidons. Very little of Aeschylus survives at all and only tiny fragments of Myrmidons remain as preserved, quoted or referred to over time. In this sense it represents all lost texts, all destructions by fire, fury, theft, or neglect." George Szirtes • New Statesman

"Plath’s early poetry, the stuff she wrote at Smith and had published in Harper’s, was awful. Written under the burdensome influence of Dylan Thomas, it was, as Thomas could occasionally be, showy and aimless. (“Go get the goodly squab in gold-lobed corn / And pluck the droll flecked quail where thick they lie.”)" Anwen Crawford • New Yorker

"Not everyone was blown away by the book. Georg Christoph Lichtenberg, the physicist-satirist of Göttingen, was no more enthusiastic about the novella than he was to be about Goethe’s scientific efforts: “I think the smell of a pancake is a better motive for staying in this world than all young Werther’s ponderous reasons for leaving it.” I must myself confess a congenital antipathy to Goethe’s novels. The characters seem to swim about in a glaucous haze like electronically controlled fish." Ferdinand Mount • NYRB

"I have needed all the genres I have used, and, as a sort of common denominator, I have been the same person with the same concerns from one genre to another." Wendell Berry • Library of America


"We can choose to ignore the noise of other people’s certainties with a close-minded conviction in attending to our own; we can rig up a contraption of agreement and say we all see it one way, pretending that there is not enough discrepancy in the small print of our subjectivities to prove this a lie, or we can simply admit that Truth in the Universe Knowable to Humankind is really a great diversification of certainties, crystallising endlessly away from a mythical absolute.” This makes sense." Jack Underwood • Poetry Review

"On the liner notes to his 1964 album, The Times They Are a-Changin’, Dylan told us that he wrote “with the sounds of François Villon echoin’ through my mad streets.” This makes sense." Allen Barra • The Daily Beast

"Rhyme and meter are natural features of language. But of course in natural speech the rhymes are mostly imperfect, and they occur at irregular intervals. And in natural speech the meter keeps varying too, like the grain of wood or the texture of a forest. That’s the kind of rhyme and meter that appeals to me most. The enchanted forest is really a forest; it isn’t an orchard." Robert Bringhurst • Manchester Review

"While few poets write with such soaring richness as [Kaveh] Akbar, few are as scatterbrained." John Ebersole • Tourniquet Review

"What was Moore’s verbal trapeze work like, then? She was a genius metaphor-maker to begin with, but it was her daring use of form that drew gasps." Ange Mlinko • Poetry

"My Twitter feed is full of writers and critics who relentlessly strive to be up on their field, logging every literary debut like librarians, returning from writing conferences with shareable jpegs of their book-engorged tote bags, or lighting out for yet another reading, the stacks on the book table like some mountain range, the promise of a horizon." Jason Guriel • The Walrus

"This both was and was not a regular Mass, for at the door the poet’s nephew Andrew Montague handed out a printed order of service that included a selection of Montague’s poems, particularly ones about Garvaghey, his neighbours (Like Dolmens Round My Childhood), a mountain spring, the penal rock in Altamuskin, Lynch’s meadow, and First Landscape, First Death, which states his wishes for the burial of his body." Adrian Frazier Irish Times
"i don’t think i have any idea of my own voice. perhaps this is a question for a reader to answer?" Anne Carson • Quarterly Conversation

"The Queen will present Muldoon with his medal in 2018." PA Guardian
"The actual Jerusalem is rather different, of course—a city riven by sectarian conflict, coarsened by tourism, marred by the building of settlements and walls, and by the scars of occupation. This discrepancy between ideal and reality is the premise of Adonis’s poem, in which the heavenly archetype hovers like a mirage above the degraded modern city." Robyn Cresswell • New Yorker

"Throughout House of Lords and Commons, an expansive, elastic line balances a compression of complex and vivid images. " Sandeep Parmar • Guardian "The House of Lord and Commons, like many first and second collections, is a reckoning on two levels: one, with the landscapes of childhood and adolescence in poems that attempt to speak with, and put the dead to rest, in the pursuit of a life and identity the speaker can call their own; the second, a reckoning with language – mining influence, as they did with memory, for what will become their own voice: a place, as Heaney said, ‘where we can at last grow up to that which we stored up as we grew’." Chad Campbell • The Manchester Review

"“The anecdote,” said the poet Anne Boyer, when I met her for the first time in the flesh and not on Twitter, in 2016, “resists authority.” Until late 2016, there were no anecdotes about Elena Ferrante, only about readers’ experiences of accounting for Elena Ferrante, including guesses as to her age, sex, nationality, inheritance, hierarchy, and familial and professional relations." Joanna Walsh LARB
"Don Coles, who died last week at ninety, took a long time over his writing—he was forty-seven when his first book of poems appeared. That legendary patience not only played a role in his becoming one of Canada’s best poets, but if the art form in this country is as vibrant, accomplished, and celebrated as it’s ever been, it’s in good part due to the example he provided to generations of younger writers." Richard Sanger • The Walrus

"What interests me about poetry as a medium is that it tends to make reality – that we in many ways oversimplify in order to survive it – as complex as it needs to be again, as filled with contradiction as it needs to be." Jorie Graham • Guardian

"God, how people smoked in 1981—Joseph with his L&M’s (“Wystan smoked these”), Derek with filterless Pall Malls, Seamus with his Dunhills." Sven Birkerts • Bookhaven

"A poet should be wary of goading poems toward vision or grace. Longley writes of a little girl who has just played the Virgin Mary, probably in a school pageant, “You . . . carry home the spongeware bowl/ Very carefully, still unbroken/ After birth-pangs and stage-fright and/ Large enough to hold the whole world.” The world would have been bad enough; the whole world seems the work of a door-to-door salesman." William Logan • The New Criterion

"This, as I see it, is because of a pervasive insecurity about the status of poetry in our culture. On the one hand, between large and small independent publishing houses, the U.S. publishes thousands of new books of poetry every year, and where a generation ago there was just one poetry book contest in America, now there are over 300, according to a 2010 article in The Chronicle of Higher Education. And it’s estimated that less than seven percent of Americans even read poetry. Publishing houses accept as a rule that they will almost always take a loss on a publication of a book of poetry." Sarah V. Schweig • Public Seminar

"People disagree on what they like, of course," said lead author Amy Belfi, a psychologist at Missouri University of Science and Technology. "[But] it seems there are certain factors that consistently influence how much a poem will be enjoyed." Tom Jacobs • Pacific Standard

"Without question, Merwin is America’s most important living poet.” Dean Rader • San Francisco Chronicle

"In 1937, while exiled in Svendborg, Denmark, Brecht produced a cycle of unrhymed epigrams that he called Deutsche Kriegsfibel (German War Primer), which he published in the Moscow-based German monthly Das Wort and later included in his Svendborg Poems. Brecht’s frequent collaborator from his Weimar years, the composer Hanns Eisler—who, in American exile, would furnish the score for the anti-Nazi Hollywood film Hangmen Also Die! (1943), co-written by Brecht and directed by fellow European transplant Fritz Lang—soon adapted the epigrams into an operatic composition titled Against War.” Noah Isenberg • The Nation

"One evening, after bathing her daughter and sharing with her their favorite desert — sakuramochi, a pink ball of sweet sticky-rice wrapped in a salty cherry tree leaf — Kaneko went into her study, wrote a letter to her husband asking that he let her mother raise the girl, and took her own life a month before her twenty-seventh birthday.” Maria Popova • brain pickings

"In 1939 Miłosz had found work as a janitor at the Warsaw University library, which was closed to the public, in order to get a daily bowl of soup and have access to books.” Charles Simic • NYRB

"But I was pleased to learn that John Ashbery really liked to tell jokes. One joke John told Ted unrolled in the following circumstance: Ted goes over to Frank O'Hara's to get some poems for "C". It is late Sunday morning. Frank hasn't come out of the bedroom yet, actually. Then John comes over too, and Frank still hasn't come out (I don't know how they got into the apartment! the door had been left open?) They wait, they wait. Then, Jim Brodey comes out of Frank's bedroom, and leaves. Then Ted and John wait some more. Then John tells Ted the following joke. John: Have you heard about the Dumb Bunny Bomb? Ted: No, John. John: You drop it over a large city, and all its inhabitants instantly become stupid. (Pause) I think they dropped it this morning.” Alice Notley • Brooklyn Rail

"Just as I had begun to think Emre’s preferences for personal essays would be disastrous if applied to poetry—because I see poetry as, among other things, consciousness put down on the page—her parsing of Gaitskill’s “mechanicalness” and the importance of being vigilant of its myriad tentacles makes perfect sense when we remember that the worst poetry often mines clichés, the mechanical and rote accommodation of predictable ideation around (as above) dating, the social mediatization of one’s ideas or real-life experience, sexual mores, coolness, troubling political realities, etc.”Nyla Matuk • Berfrois

"Of [Jack] Gilbert's favored words, probably none conveys better the poet -- his life, his work, his ambitions for both -- than magnitude. ” John Penner • LA Times

"The first words spoken by a mortal in Virgil’s poem are Aeneas’ in terror of the storm and in dread of a watery grave.” A.E. Stallings • The Hudson Review

"Away from social media, [Leontia] Flynn archives instead the near past of the pre-internet.” John McAuliffe • The Irish Times

"Was Arnold any good as a poet? Or rather, to anticipate an answer – which is that, yes, I think he was very good – what are we to make of the fact that so many of his readers, both contemporary and since, have thought he wasn’t up to much?” Seamus Perry • TLS

"The new details will not change most perceptions about Wilbur’s “almost suspiciously normal life,” although it should dispel the sense that he shared none of the horrors and despair of his more self-revealing peers.” A.M. Juster • First Things

"Newspapers a century ago often carried verse, and verse, learned by heart at school, was also recited at home. Public verse was high on patriotic hope in 1914. A line from the first stanza of ‘For the Fallen’, lamenting those who have ‘Fallen in the cause of the free’, was absolutely meant.” Michael Alexander • Literary Review

“We are cast by chance into an age in which nothing is worse than to be openly ignorant, nothing more rare than to be fully learned.” John Donne • Guardian

"In his new book, Bunk, a cultural history of hoaxes in America, the poet Kevin Young argues that the popularity of the Sun’s story “owed much to its re-creating on the Moon what many white readers believed could be found at home.” Robert P. Baird • Esquire

"In “To Thom Gunn in Los Altos, California”, his friend Donald Davie wrote: “Conquistador! Live dangerously, my Byron, / In this metropolis / Of Finistere. Drop off / The edge repeatedly, and come / Back to tell us!”” Patrick McGuinness • The Guardian

"Plagiarists rarely confess their sin, the worst a writer can commit. Almost all, when caught, make excuses. The most common are: (1) everyone does it, (2) it’s not really plagiarism, (3) any similarities are slight or irrelevant, (4) I forgot to cite the sources, (5) quotation marks and citations were accidentally removed, (6) the passages are only a small part of the book, (7) I unconsciously memorized the original, (8) my researcher is to blame, (9) drinking, drugs, or mental illness is to blame, and (10) the critic who caught me is to blame.” William Logan • The Walrus

"'Many' or 'multiple' could suggest that he’s much turned, as if he is the one who has been put in the situation of having been to Troy, and back, and all around, gods and goddesses and monsters turning him off the straight course that, ideally, he’d like to be on. Or, it could be that he’s this untrustworthy kind of guy who is always going to get out of any situation by turning it to his advantage. It could be that he’s the turner." Emily Wilson • New York Times

"[Robyn] Sarah’s entire career is an antidote to the pervasive anxiety about poetry’s incomprehensibility. " Anita Lahey • The Walrus

"Modigliani produced several drawings and paintings of the young Akhmatova that captured the elegant lines and distinct features of the poet whom critics would soon call the Russian Sappho." Martin Puchner • Lithub

"I emotionally buckle at this display of passion and lament about paternal relationships." Jonathan Tait • The Stray

"These were the people who had learned from his verses how to shape their dreams and dream their love, and forlorn and enraged, they chanted that their bard was alive inside them." Ariel Dorfman NYT
"I think now though we will start to see better how these poems confront darkness (Wilbur was a soldier in WWII) and irrationality (there was a history of mental illness in the family) as a deliberate act, the subversive cultivation of civilization in the face of evil and entropy." A.E. Stallings • The American Scholar

"So who is this Seidel anyway?" Matthew Halliday • Wildcourt

"Because poets don’t make any money, he continued to write art criticism in addition to teaching, to make ends meet—a problem alleviated only by a five-year MacArthur Fellowship in 1985. His productivity increased with age: he published a new book almost every couple of years for his last three decades. He was lionized, imitated, studied, analyzed, enshrined, revered. He outlived nearly all his contemporaries, settling gently into eminence in his Victorian manse (bought cheaply and restored slowly) in Hudson. Now he joins the marble busts of American literature." Luc Sante NYRB
"What can one say? As a last resort, I ask my partner: what do you think is behind the poem? “Vanity,” she replies, “And a mid-life crisis.” Harsh, but I’ll let her have the last word." Colette Bryce The Poetry Review
"But where Stein wrote a novel called The Making of Americans, Trump has added a word to the making of contemporary Americans. Sad! And just as much as a time of Trump will have its effect on language, language will reveal the workings of the era of Trump, a whole new terrible layer added to the meaning of that word sad. This is because language will always renew itself. It’s what it naturally does." Ali Smith New Statesman
"Part of my poetic consciousness is embedded in the reality of the poetic self as other to functioning society. The poet as the last custodian of language, on the fringes of capital landfill, and somehow free of it." Chris McCabe the Wolf
"All cries are thin and terse; / The field has droned the summer’s final mass; /A cricket like a dwindled hearse / Crawls from the dry grass." Richard Wilbur NYT
"There are more poets than stray dogs in this country,’ Thitsar Ni, a leader of a Burmese poetic pack was heard to lament at a Yangon teashop. Burma/Myanmar, with its diverse literary and oral traditions, should not surprise you if it brags the highest density on earth of poets per square mile." ko ko thett Asia literary Review
"Challenging assumptions and definitions is important. Challenges also need to be made well, to be heard as anything other than ornery. A ‘book’ has coherence, yet might not make much sense or yield its pleasures and illuminations to a reader dipping in at random. A ‘collection’ may have been rearranged by mentors and editors and will comprise roughly equal, publishable or performable, stand-alone pieces." Vahni Capildeo PN Review
"As well as hunting for poems in at-risk languages, the National Poetry Library has commissioned four poets to write new poems in threatened languages, or languages lost to them personally. Joy Harjo will write in the language of her own Native American Mvskoke (Creek) Nation; Northern Irish poet Gearóid Mac Lochlainn in Irish Gaelic; Iraqi poet Nineb Lamassu will use Assyrian, a language not officially recognised in Iraq; and Ugandan poet Nick Makoha in his mother tongue, Luganda, which he lost when he fled Idi Amin’s dictatorship as a boy." Alison Flood Guardian
"At a more basic level, however, literary community can have a deadly impact. The most obvious fatality: your critical faculty. It becomes harder to file an honest review of a book if you’re always rubbing shoulders. Not long after I first started writing criticism, I ventured out to a reading on the invitation of an editor—and almost immediately encountered a poet whose debut I’d recently been assigned to review. His poetry was dull, but he seemed decent enough. It took me months to file my piece, and even then I pulled my final punch—and I’m one of the few jerks in Canada willing to bloody a book of poetry. How are younger, less jerky writers ever going to develop the independent spirit required to lob a rotten tomato if they’ve committed themselves to nurturing the community garden?" Jason Guriel The Walrus
"Glibness will always be a risk in concrete poetry, and in particular the manipulation of found text can end up little more than a cheap joke, but the collages here maintain a mantic edge. Houédard wrote of Vatican II that it acknowledged the “SACREDNESS of ambiguity”, and the works here are not the sort of thing that can be paraphrased or explained. (Other, more well-known, pieces of Houédard’s, such as the reworking of Basho’s most famous haiku, “frog pond plop”, are.)" Rey Conquer Oxonian Review
"Reading this, I feel I’ve been imprisoned in a poetry theme-park." William Logan • Tourniquet Review

"It is to cultural policy what tweets are to literature, what LinkedIn is to poetry, what Facebook is to friendship. Canadian creativity will, of course, continue to thrive long after Creative Canada has been forgotten, and it will flourish in direct proportion to its capacity to resist the homogenizing, programmatic, and deadening future the policy imagines." Ira Wells The Walrus
"There are worse things to get horribly, almost unthinkably wrong than the winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature. (The outcome of a presidential election, for one.) But there has definitely never been a worse time than 2016 to make bold predictions." Alex Shephard New Republic
"The hope, at least one hope, is that as a poet progresses in their career their sensitivity has not been shuttered and habit made them automatic in their own style: that the reach toward new subjects requires, in the reaching, a new hand." Chad Campbell The Manchester Review
"The tradition of poets not simply making cultural artifacts out of language, but also wielding some sort of intellectual control over the broader shape of culture itself, goes back to the very beginnings of Western thought." Scott Beauchamp The New Criterion

"Therefore, a chronological approach to this extraordinary body of work will not yield any useful results – in fact, his oeuvre almost insists on being discussed only on the terms in which it itself exists: criticism tends to become, perhaps in sheer despair of finding any other approach, mere replication, or, at best, parody. (Ashbery has also commented that his aim was to produce a poetic statement that could not alone not be expressed in any better way, but that could not be expressed in any other way whatever.)" Terence Killeen Irish Times

"On the other hand, a diabolically bad poet is like a rotting corpse." David Blair The Critical Flame
"This auction asks questions of the national culture Yeats knew, questioned and shaped: he was aided by benefactors, John Quinn, Lady Gregory and her nephew Hugh Lane among them, who worked to make new theatre and visual art and poetry available to anyone. Is that culture of artistic patronage still alive? The auction also asks a question of collection policies: is it time for a more co-ordinated approach to protecting Ireland’s literary heritage?" John McAuliffe Irish Times
"Original things always exceed definitive presentation and containment. Long may her poems confound us." Heather Cass White Faber
"There’s a clever-cleverness in contemporary American poetry that keeps alive older verse traditions, straddles generations, and seems very much a boy thing—Frederick Seidel, Paul Muldoon, Michael Robbins, and Adam Fitzgerald come quickly to mind." Joshua Weiner • The Chicago Review
"Every day, it seems, I learn again how little power I have, and how much. In the process of bringing this forum into being, I have been confronted, again, with my complicity in structures of power, and I remain enraged by the way ignorance (my own and others’) greases the wheels of those structures. Knowledge is power, and ignorance is a privilege you pay for in units of power." Evie Shockley Evening Will Come
"When the novelist E. M. Forster wrote to Housman expressing enthusiasm for his poetry, Housman responded with a letter that Forster described as “absolutely hateful … I was so disappointed and hurt that I destroyed it after one rapid perusal."." Adam Kirsch • The Atlantic
"Emily Dickinson, for example, masterfully simplified complex topics with poems like “Because I could not stop for Death,” and many poets are similarly adept. Business leaders live in multifaceted, dynamic environments. Their challenge is to take that chaos and make it meaningful and understandable. Reading and writing poetry can exercise that capacity, improving one’s ability to better conceptualize the world and communicate it — through presentations or writing — to others." John Coleman Harvard Business Review
"Poetry is an ancient art; it’s our communal language. Poetry is not written for experts and it’s not written for scholars and it doesn’t belong to the priests of literature, it belongs to the people. I know a lot of poets, and I don’t know a single one of them that thinks they write for scholars — they write for other human beings." Matthew Zapruder • LA Times
"On 11 May 1922, Marina and Alya boarded a train at the Vindavskii (now Rizhskii) railway station. The train took them to Riga, where they caught another train to Berlin. Alya in her memoir, Marina Tsvetaeva: My Mother, records a list of thirteen valuable items Marina decided to take with her. It includes two I find most interesting: a papier-mâché pencil holder and a bronze inkpot with a drummer painted on the outside." Subhash Jaireth • Sydney Review of Books
"What the speaker enters could be love; it could be water; it could be both. When I read that I felt really emotional. That’s what happens to me when I’m in water." Amy Key • The Poetry Extension
"If the struggle of the modernists was to make peace with bureaucratic institutions without compromising the purity and quality of their work, the question for those who have come after them has been whether to challenge or sustain that peace. The modernist union of poetry, criticism, and bureaucracy has had many obvious benefits: Certainly the levels of comfort, prosperity, and productivity enjoyed by several generations of Anglo-American poets from the postwar era onward as a result of their connection to bureaucratic institutions are nothing to minimize." Evan Kindley Chronicle of Higher Education
" But this is the first publication of new material that precedes Oppen’s storied twenty-five years of silence between the publication of Discrete Series and his next book, The Materials, in 1962. 21 Poems nearly doubles the size of Oppen’s early and influential corpus, and happily, the poems themselves are fascinating." David B Hobbs NYRB
"In one last example, let's return to Elmore Leonard's 10 Rules of Writing. His first rule (#1!) is “Never open a book with weather.”" Ben Blatt PW
"Tom Raworth’s poetry can be read, then, as if Tom’s performance underscores the work’s quick-fire wit. But his masque of collaged differentials also invites slower, more accumulative readings, readings that take note of the decisions and judgments, the omissions and abstractions that make up the texture of his poetry’s knowing condensations. Put simply, Tom knew what he was doing, and what he wasn’t, and not just intuitively. Although he avoided offering a poetics or theory, his writerly practice nevertheless articulates implicit principles of construction. His knowing skill is evident in the comparative absence of traces of literary influence: his occasional borrowings are made new. In conversation, Tom often revealed an exceptionally precise power of recall, and the absence of clumsy repetitions of his or anyone else’s writing speaks to his powers of memory." Drew Milne PN Review
"That it inhabits the uncertain territory between dream and meaning is one of my chief pleasures when reading it." Anthony Wilson Lifesaving Poems
"In one of my favorite Ashbery poems, the early “They Dream Only of America,” whose title always brings to my mind Alfred Stieglitz’s beautiful photograph juxtaposing first-class and steerage passengers arriving in the U.S. (“The Steerage”), John characterizes the poem’s nameless “they” as “lost among the thirteen million pillars of grass”—a profoundly witty amalgam of Whitman’s Leaves of Grass, now replaced by the pillars of the urban landscape, the original Thirteen Colonies, the fate of Lot’s Wife—don’t look back!—and the immigrant dream of the millions of new arrivals in America." Marjorie Perloff • Boston Review
"A lot like the late T.F. Griffin, Ian Parks is an outlier of British poetry whose writing was spotted and praised early by figures whose judgement we would do well attend to. With Griffin, it was Philip Larkin who provided the encomium; with Parks, it is Donald Davie, who commented that Park’s voice was ‘spare, lyrical, memorable and intense’, and remarked on ‘the sheer force of his poetic identity.’ Over the years, that voice has become more particularised; an Ian Parks poem is instantly recognisable. But the lyricism, which has characterised his writing from those early days, has remained as intense, as spare and as memorable as ever." Ian Pople Manchester Review


New poems

Matthew Welton Shuddhashar

O. Flote The Poetry Review

Susannah Dickey The White Review

Neal Alexander New Welsh Review

Andrea Cohen The Atlantic

Jane Yeh Poetry London

Bill Manhire Poetry

Naomi Novik New York Times

Richard Murphy Poetry International

Evan Jones The Manchester Review

Gerard Fanning The Manchester Review

Tiana Clark Rattle

Sebastian Agudelo The Manchester Review

Paul Otremba Scoundrel Time

Rachel Custer American Journal of Poetry

Charles Simic Threepenny Review

John Montague Poetry

I remember Sir Alfred, "The gardens of Buckingham Palace / were strewn once with Irish loam"

Sarah Kirsch Modern Poetry in Translation

James Womack PN Review

Katherine Pierpoint Poetry London

Igor Klikovac Poetry (Chicago)

Han Bo Asymptote

Hannah Lowe Magma

Kayla Bashe Hypnopomp

Troy Jollimore Narrative Magazine

Anna Akhmatova Interim Poetics

Medbh McGuckian The Lonely Crowd

Leonard Cohen Literary Hub

Khairani Barokka And Other Poems

Holly Pester The Believer

Michael Farrell Cordite

Gerard Fanning Irish Times

Gerard Fanning Manchester Review

Kavita A Jindal Asia Literary Review

Derek Mahon Irish Times

Simon Haworth Honest Ulsterman

Sebastian Agudelo Scoundrel Time

Colette Bryce The Poetry Review

David Samoylov World Literature Today

George Clooney The Daily Beast

DA Powell The Volta

Adam Crothers Southword

AR Ammons Poetry

Gwyneth Lewis Hudson Review

Vincenz Serrano High Chair

Ida Börjel Asymptote

Ian Pople Poetry



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The Page is edited by John McAuliffe, Vincenz Serrano and, since September 2013, Evan Jones at the Centre for New Writing at the University of Manchester. It was founded in October 2004 by Andrew Johnston, who edited it until October 2009.
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