Essays and Comment

  • ROOM AT THE TABLE by Charles Coe

    A Sunday afternoon in fall, after a big lunch, sitting with my father watching football, our favorite way of spending time together.
    Issue #135 November 2022
  • Finding the Measure: Robert Kelly, Deep Image and the New American Imagination by Stephan Delbos

    Editors played a key role in American poetry after World War II
    Issue #134 October 2022
  • The Light That Shines Out of the Marble by Chard DeNiord

    THE LIGHT THAT SHINES OUT OF THE MARBLE       In his visionary classic, The Marriage of Heaven and Hell, William Blake avoids the influence of Milton and Dante by undermining their theological tropes with the heretical conceit that wisdom emanates from, of all places, Hell. Rather than following the traditionally sublime avenue from Hades to Heaven, like Dante

    Issue #133 September 2022
  • So I Would Move Among These Things: Maya Deren and The Witch’s Cradle by Fox Henry Frazier

    “I am hailed by all the girls as a sure poet,” Maya Deren wrote to her mother as a young undergraduate student.
    Issue #132 August 2022
  • Sven Birkerts on “The End” by Mark Strand

    I don’t know why this should be, but I find that many important things—I think of them as personal messages—come to me obliquely.
    Issue #131 July 2022
  • Done with Desire Forever: Color Music Poems of the 18th Century by Rosalind Holmes Duffy

    Regardless of how much eighteenth-century French poetry you read, you may be unfamiliar with the miniscule canon of verse about color music.
    Issue #130 June 2022
  • A Kind of Sorcery: On Shame, Defiance and Moral Imagination by Richard Hoffman

    A half-century ago, Kurt Vonnegut, in Slaughterhouse Five, wrote:
    Issue #129 May 2022
  • About Mending Walls…Sort of, by Sydney Lea

    The COVID-19 scourge has moved a horde of people to my home state,
    Issue #128 April 2022
  • Dickinson’s Facsicle 16:  A Book Review by Steven Cramer

    Steven Cramer both enlightens and entertains in his essay, “Dickinson’s Fascicle 16: A Book Review.” In his ambitious undertaking of exegeting Dickinson’s 16th “book,” he writes with a playful erudition that one could easily imagine amusing and even informing Dickinson herself. Acknowledging the futility of trying to divine the “authorial intentions” regarding Dickinson’s fascicles that were last seen intact by

    Issue #127 March 2022
  • SAT PRACTICE TEST by Denise Duhamel & Julie Marie Wade

    having an obstinately uncooperative attitude toward authority or discipline
    Issue #126 February 2022
  • Reading the Qur’an with Rumi by Amer Latif

    Amer Latif, a native of Islamabad, Pakistan and current professor of comparative religions and Islamic Studies at Emerson College who taught also at Marlboro College for many years, wrote his dissertation on Rumi at New York University at Stony Brook. I asked him to write the following essay, which he has titled “Reading the Qur’an With Rumi”. In succinct, lucid

    Issue #125 January 2022
  • All These Red and Yellow Things: Short Papers on Art by Lesle Lewis

    In her ekphrastic essay, “All These Red and Yellow Things, Short Papers on Art,” Lesle Lewis writes with a refreshingly observant eye and ear about some of her favorite works of art, reminding her readers of his or her inherent acumen for discovering exhilarating appreciation for paintings and song. A celebrated prose poet, Lesle widens her vision and aural perception for

    Plume Issue #124 December 2021