Category: poetry

“I share this honor with ancestors and teacher…

“I share this honor with ancestors and teachers who inspired in me a love of poetry, who taught that words are powerful and can make change when understanding appears impossible, and how time and timelessness can live together within a poem.” —Joy Harjo, first Native American poet to serve as U.S. poet laureate

Photo: Shawn Miller/Library of Congress

bit.ly/2WRLP6B 

When I was revising…there were two nigh…

When I was revising…there were two nights…where I drank a little gin, listened to nineties hip-hop, and I danced as I wrote and rewrote. I broke night with my poems. In other words, you have to hang out with your book, especially if your book is becoming a living thing.

“It’s a numbers game, folks. The more you try,…

“It’s a numbers game, folks. The more you try, the more you succeed. The less you try, the less you succeed. This is true for everything. If you write more, you will write better. If you think about line length more, you will think about line length better. If you submit more, you will publish more. If you submit better, you will publish better.”

Camille T. Dungy, in “Say Yes to Yourself: A Poet’s Guide to Living and Writing” in the May/June issue of Poets & Writers Magazine (2019)

ebonetnoir: Nothing better than an inspiring b…

ebonetnoir:

Nothing better than an inspiring book and good, strong coffee. Good morning. I’ll be listing this wonderful poetry book by poetess Marcella Agnes Fitzgerald later today.

Another thing I like to do is find one theme i…

Another thing I like to do is find one theme in my previous writing that still has juice, that feels like it hasn’t been fully explored yet, and follow it into the rabbit hole. In a way, my second collection came about because of this method. I took one phrase from a poem in my first book, ‘cowboy theme park,’ and started collecting everything I could that seemed related to that idea. It was like finding a loose thread, tugging, and instead of everything unraveling, discovering that it was tied to a very interesting monster.

I’ve come to some kind of understanding about …

I’ve come to some kind of understanding about what it means for me to be in the act of making….If I’m reading a book, I’m not stuck. If I go to an exhibition, a show, have a drink with friends—if I’m out and I’m engaged with the world, I’m not stuck. If I’m staring at a blank page, frustrated that I can’t get a word out, I am still in the act of making—and to be honest those moments where I can’t produce a thing have been valuable to me, because in some ways it gets me to where I need to be. Some days I want to write, other days I just want to get behind my DJ controller.

I’ve come to some kind of understanding about …

I’ve come to some kind of understanding about what it means for me to be in the act of making….If I’m reading a book, I’m not stuck. If I go to an exhibition, a show, have a drink with friends—if I’m out and I’m engaged with the world, I’m not stuck. If I’m staring at a blank page, frustrated that I can’t get a word out, I am still in the act of making—and to be honest those moments where I can’t produce a thing have been valuable to me, because in some ways it gets me to where I need to be. Some days I want to write, other days I just want to get behind my DJ controller.

I experience my corner of the poetry community…

I experience my corner of the poetry community as very generous and caring, but I have many issues with professionalizing poetry as a career with certain prizes and residencies you ‘have to’ achieve—it can make people greedy, competitive, and encourage a perception of the world based on lack. I think the poetry community works better when it is cooperative and generous. Poetry shouldn’t be just another capitalist product.

I experience my corner of the poetry community…

I experience my corner of the poetry community as very generous and caring, but I have many issues with professionalizing poetry as a career with certain prizes and residencies you ‘have to’ achieve—it can make people greedy, competitive, and encourage a perception of the world based on lack. I think the poetry community works better when it is cooperative and generous. Poetry shouldn’t be just another capitalist product.

Sometimes writing these poems was a reminder t…

Sometimes writing these poems was a reminder that I was still alive and sometimes I resented the reminder.