Gregerson, Jacob, Callihan, et. al.
Linda Gregerson on “The Wayfarer” If one were to open the wooden panels on which this painting appears, one would behold a triptych known as The Haywain, also by Hieronymous Bosch. Surrounding the massive hay wagon from which the triptych takes its name is a dizzying assemblage of figures and micro-narratives of the sort for which Bosch is famous: angels
Scheffler, Lindsay, Nuernberger, et.al
Adam Scheffler on “Charade” I think of this poem as a bit of a Frankenstein’s monster. I write poems in batches, filling up a journal until it’s full, and then typing it up, editing it extensively, and discarding most of what I’ve written. The discarded poems and pieces all then end up in a massive Word document I think of
Fagan, Solomon, Codrescu, et.al.
Kathy Fagan on “Fountain” I think “Fountain” is a poem about plans and patterns, how they grow, change and break, how they leave their mark, literally and figuratively. I was interested in thinking through those concepts in the lineation of the poem also, within its units of observation and meditation. I recently lost my mom, and my partner and
Heather Altfeld, Gregory Orr, Donald Revell, et.al.
Heather Altfeld on “The Island to Remind You of Your Childhood” About ten years ago, I decided to teach my young daughters to fish. We cranked up our 1991 Volvo station wagon and went in search of a primitive campground in the Trinity Alps. At a store near Coffee Creek, a woman offered to show my girls how to
Christopher Buckley, Nicole Callihan, Chris Forhan, et.al
Christopher Buckley on ”I’m Nothing” “I’m nothing” has seen many incarnations . . . a longer poem, longer lines, more lyricism, until cut down to this final version. Most of my poems see many revisions over a good deal of time; this saw more. While engaging my usual subjects touching on childhood, science and physics, and the faith vs. doubt
Ron Slate, Thylias Moss, Kristina Bicher, et.al
Ron Slate on “Between the Bed and the Window” “Between the Bed and the Window” was sparked by a dare. My poet friend Elaine Sexton, my artist friend John Kramer, and I occasionally challenge each other to produce something on a theme, phrase, or image. This time, we decided to make something in which the presence in the poem
Jane Springer, Aleksey Porvin, Isaac Stackhouse Wheeler, et.al
Jane Springer on “Paper” Inspiration: This poem is one of a trilogy: rock, paper, scissors. So began the inquiry, what is the nature of paper? What does it mean for it to win. All from there’s imagination, but the stuff of which it’s woven, a thread of K’Naan. Two origami sculptures: dragon, tower. Twin towers. Coins we used to place
Robin Behn, Will Schutt, Partidge Boswell, et.al
Robin Behn on “In my Thorn Dream” and “In My Path Dream” These two poems are from my forthcoming book Quarry Cross (heartfelt thanks to Plume Editions!), in which there are about a dozen poems that mention dreams. Of those, “In my Thorn Dream” was the first dream-poem I wrote. It arose from an actual dream. I almost
Jeff Friedman, April Bernard, Alice Friman, et.al
Jeff Friedman on “Somebody’s Got My Hair” and “Cuffed” I probably began this piece with the idea of retelling the Samson and Delilah story, coupled with the fact that my hair has been disappearing for the last fifteen years. As I was writing, a question came to me, not an angel or a messenger as might have come to
J. Allyn Rosser, Patricia Clark, Kim Addonizio, et.al
J. Allyn Rosser on “The Central” Maturation in America has at times seemed to me – certainly it did on the day I wrote “The Central” – a prolonged process of inuring oneself to disappointment. We are taught from the moment we first get shoved into kindergarten (shoved by that boy who regularly throws up his milk and cookies)
Adam Tavel, Benno Barnard, Wayne Miller, et.al
Readers, as you will note, once more I have this month vacated my space in this note so that we might continue to offer a new element, instead: the authors of the poems (or translations, or both) speaking of their works’ origins, their raisons d’être. I think you’ll find the results fascinating, and enlightening, enriching your reading of the poems,