To relieve my inbox of what ails it, here's a highly incoherent post (My Outlook inbox has become the barometer of my anxiety level. How terrible is that? I'm too sensitive for all these e-mails. What are they really saying!?)
Okay, retournons à nos moutons:
The war of the War & Peace's continues! We never wanted to pick a fight, but, as these things go, it was picked for us. Newsweek runs a feature this week. Galleycat weights one side with links. And Publishers Weekly reports.
The 2007 Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize, which honors the most outstanding book of poetry published the previous year, went to Alice Notley's Grave of Light: New and Selected Poems 1970-2005 (Wesleyan University Press).
Judge Marie Ponsot had this to say, "[Notley's] poems give us thirty-five years of political, personal, death-defying engagement. The nature Notley most loves is human nature. That urban passion propels her speculative dramas of gender, class, and race; of Vietnam and Iraq; of schemes of power and the claims of art. Ardent and agile, she is willing to cry out, to drift, to stammer, so as to put every turn of language to her use. Her aim is to speak to everyone; her book shows her success."
The prize is sponsored by the Academy of American Poets and carries a $25,000 award.
Did you know that HC United, HarperCollins 6-time-defending Metro League soccer champions, has a fight song? I didn't until last week when it was composed by our friend Brock. As you listen, please note that we're singing about the "Libro League" not about the unfortunate, though reasonably successful, league of another era. Download h_c_fightsong_rough1.mp3
I received an e-mail about the launch of Literary Comments, a site run by Daniel E. Levenson, author of the poetry collection Are These My Lions?
Stephen Burt reviews Time & Materials by Robert Hass for the NY Times: "The Limits of Influence".
Thomas Fink interviews Noah Eli Gordon at E-X-C-H-A-N-G-E-V-A-L-U-E-S. Follow the link to read more thoughtful questions like the one below (there are answers too):
TF: Novel Pictorial Noise (New York: Harper Perennial, 2007), selected for the National Poetry Series by John Ashbery, consists of fifty prose-poems, each a page or less in length and each followed by a line or two or three or sometimes more of verse. Sheila E. Murphy’s “American Haibun” is a prose-paragraph followed by one line, but your approach is more variable. I like what Ashbery has to say about this in his blurb—that “each prose-bloc” is “modified or modulated by the ghostly fragments that interleave them,” and the ghostliness often has to do with grammatical anomalies, like two prepositions in direct proximity that don’t normally interact. The modifications that Ashbery talks about are mysterious to me; how did you establish a relationship between the paragraphs and the verse, at least in your own mind?