Tuesday, January 24, 2006


Some odds and ends

In the first post I put on this blog, I said I would use it to try and write about poetry and related things. Here are a few of the related things.

This last fall, Pulse of the Twin Cities (a weekly paper in Minneapolis) published a highly interesting article on the Bush family oil business, and in particular shedding light on the Bushes' business dealings with the Nazi goverment of Germany during the 1930's and 1940's. The same issue of the paper included a short related sidebar item, a brief amusing recollection of Prescott Bush (George W.'s grandfather) by a man who once worked at an elite club where P. Bush was a member; it's here.

* * * *

A while back I found an informative article by Jonathan Cohen about Waldeen, a dancer, writer and scholar of the early 20th century, and one of the first translators of Pablo Neruda's poetry into English. (She was one of the translators of the landmark Neruda selection Let the Rail-Splitter Awake, published by International Publishers in the 1950's.)

* * * *

I enjoyed a short article by William Duffy in Robert Bly's website, a few anecdotes from 1957 and 1958 when Bly and Duffy were first publishing the groundbreaking poetry magazine The Fifties (subsequently The Sixties, The Seventies, and most recently The Thousands). The author of the article is the same William Duffy named in the title of James Wright's famous poem "Lying in a Hammock on William Duffy's Farm in Pine Island, Minnesota."

* * * *

Poet Jack Beeching first came to my attention years ago when Thomas McGrath mentioned him from time to time. They were long-time friends and colleagues, and had strong political sympathies. A good biographical article about Jack Beeching is in one the online issues of Jacket. Jacket is one of my favorite poetry magazines in general these days; the Jacket main page is here.

* * * *

The online poetry magazine Pemmican some time back published an essay of mine, "On Political Poetry." A while after that, Pemmican published an essay by Eric Racher in response to my article. Following that, at the suggestion of Pemmican editor Bob Edwards, I wrote a response to Eric Racher's response, which Pemmican has also published.

If you care to check out the online debate (or sorts), my original essay is here; Eric Racher's response is here; and my response to Racher is here.

Some poems of mine are also available in Pemmican, in the current Poems section, here, and in the Archive section, here.

There's much excellent poetry and other writing in Pemmican. I encourage you to spend some time there. A couple of print poetry magazines I particularly like these days are Blue Collar Review and Main Street Rag. I encourage you to check them out too.

Lyle, I'm going to take some time this weekend to check these out, thanks for the goodies.
really enjoyed your poems Lyle, especially polyphony, studies in red, ascending numen...

yes, thanks for the links. i still need to read the rebuttal to your political poetry essay (which i liked very much).
Jenni -- Michelle --

Thanks as always for your comments.
I really like your “On Political Poetry” article(s). I read a quote by Grace Schulman, poetry editor of The Nation, a couple of years back that said something like she didn’t believe poetry and politics could go together. On the other side of the issue was Sonia Sanchez, who stated that all poetry is political. And, of course, in human context it is. My only point of difference, is though I dearly love Sharon Doubiago’s poetry (especially Hard Country), I don’t completely agree with your assessment of Marvin Bell being a lesser writer. He does write against war as a theme of his poetry and criticism often, but moreover his poetry seems based on the fundamental issue of the act of communication, like Rukeyser but without revolutionary ends. I don’t know if that redeems him, but I liked his book Rampant, for instance, as a speech act. I did have a master class with him though, and that may skew my opinion possibly, since I liked him as a person.

Anyway, that issue is of little consequence; I was into your organic categories, fun stuff. And I got Thomas McGrath, as per your suggestion, and I am just waiting until I have a large space of time to absorb his poetry fully. Thanks for all the useful links in this post.
Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?