Plume

  • Pollock, Friman, Lehmann, et. al.

    James Pollock on “Dryer”: “Dryer” is one of four dozen poems about everyday technology that make up my book Durable Goods (Véhicule Press, September 2022). I was inspired by Keats’s ideal of the chameleon poet who enters into things in imagination and takes part in their being. There is a great tradition of Dinggedichte that includes not only Keats but

    Issue #132 August 2022
  • Hassain, Schwartz, Hardwick, et. al.

    Jahangir Hossain on writing “Lover Rain”: The year was 2015/2016. I was present at the Saturday Literature Chat of the Bangladesh Writers’ Club. Seeing a well-dressed woman there, I thought her outfit was not very beautiful. It was ‘Rainy Season’ then. I thought to myself: If it were raining, I would wash all her outfits and decorate her again with

    Issue #131 July 2022
  • Buckley, Levitin, Smith, et. al.

    Christopher Buckley on “Heisenberg’s Principle”: Again the argument of science vs. faith/fate . . . the two main tenents of Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle fitting in quite well, to my mind, and helping to illustrate the facts as they stack up against our beliefs. Since the late ‘80s I’ve looked to science and cosmology for corroboration to my doubts and dialectic,

    Issue #130 June 2022
  • Rosenthal, Stratton, Aizenberg, et. al.

    Mira Rosenthal on translating Tomasz Różycki:   The poems “A Room” and “Wild Strawberries” come from Tomasz Różycki’s tenth book, Litery, forthcoming in my English translation from Archipelago Books in 2023. The collection builds like a detective novel, following a lieutenant on the hunt for any clues that might lead 21st-century human beings out of a sense of emptiness and despair. Set against a

    Issue #129 May 2022
  • Hongo, Hirshfield, Andrews, et. al.

    Garrett Hongo on “To a Soldier in Ukraine”: Like everyone else, I’ve been horrified by the invasion and killings in Ukraine.  I thought of soldiers and innocent civilians having to face death without notice and I was reminded of the poetry of Tadeusz Rozewicz, the great Polish poet who wrote lyrics of humane sentiments, direct statement, and faith in the

    Issue #128 April 2022
  • Rhodes, Shapiro, Moldaw, et. al.

    Martha Rhodes on “Embraced”: It’s awkward (for me) to talk about my own poems — I can just say that this particular poem was written about 4 years ago, the first poem written for the collection I am now working on — and very different tonally from the poems that have come since– so I am not sure I have

    Issue #127 March 2022
  • Brown, Kress, Waldrop, et. al.

    Fleda Brown on “Someone is Walking a Pig”: There were the ordinary days. We call them that, now, since the multiple catastrophes, the apocalypse over the horizon. So the pig appeals to me, the simplicity of her. Might as well write about a pig in the hallway. I haven’t seen her for some time. I hope she’s okay. At the

    Issue #126 February 2022
  • de Voogt, Sadoff, Mitchell, et. al.

    Alex de Voogt on translating Cavafy: In 1915, Constantine Cavafy wrote a poem with hemistiches, a set number of syllables per half-line and a particular meter. It was this new verse form with historical antecedents that he would use for eighteen of his poems. The last one, from 1929, was composed only a few years before his own death in

    Issue #125 January 2022
  • Kanchan, Burns, Scopino, et. al.

    Virginia Konchan on “Liquidation”: “Liquidation” was written at the height of the pandemic, after reading a list of products made obsolete by technology; I thought of how ideas and social formations (even socializing itself) too, could be rendered obsolete by historical forces, some irrevocably so.  The narrative litany that resulted concludes with a challenge to the quote that “elegy is endless,” which

    Plume Issue #124 December 2021
  • Buckley, Ramspeck, Johnson, et. al.

    Christopher Buckley on “Existential” and “Refugee”:   Both of these poems are from a new book, The Consolations of Science & Philosophy, due from Lynx House Press in 2022, the title pushing a heavy cart of irony. . . .   “Existential” is a subject I’ve taken up in the past, but beyond the facts and historical bits, I revisited

    Issue #123 November 2021
  • Prins, Andrews, Barbarese, et. al.

    Richard Prins on Translating Muhammad Kijuma: These verses of Muhammad Kijuma were collected under the category “political songs” in Mohammad Ibrahim Mohammad Abou Egl’s unpublished thesis “The Life and Works of Muhamadi Kijuma.” Here Kijuma offers the porcupine as a metaphor for Kenya’s colonial government. His compatriots learn to make due with the sheddings of this pernicious creature, much as

    Issue #122 October 2021
  • Pastan, Hanzliček, Nazarene, et. al.

    Linda Pastan on “Truce”, “Class Notes” & “On Rereading the 23rd Psalm”: I was an adolescent when I first read Browning’s lines “Grow old along with me! The best is yet to be…” and I was skeptical even then. Now that I’m old myself, I see that the poetry of aging is almost a genre itself, and I often find

    Issue #121 September 2021