Once the Birds Have Taken Flight

September 21, 2015

Contributor’s Marginalia: Dan Pinkerton on “The Stone is Worldless” by Gina Franco I was never a dedicated reader of Shakespeare and haven’t so much as glanced at one of his plays since college, some twenty years ago. My memory is so porous I remember only bits and pieces: Lady MacBeth trying to scrub the imagined bloodstains from her hands, […]

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Of Sonnets, Deer, and Media Saturation

September 14, 2015

Contributor’s Marginalia: Carol Quinn on “Child Bride Dies of Internal Bleeding on Her Wedding Night” by Benjamin S. Grossberg Elaine Scarry’s The Body in Pain unfolds from the premise that pain is inexpressible, and more than that: that “pain comes unsharably into our midst as at once that which cannot be denied and that which cannot be confirmed.” We […]

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A Car Wreck in Slow Motion

September 7, 2015

Contributor’s Marginalia: Kathleen Winter on “more or less” by Lauri Anderson Alford Besides gun violence, no disaster is as essentially American as a fatal car crash. Combined with the near ubiquity of car ownership and the automobile industry’s more than century-long national prominence, we have the car wreck deaths of cultural icons James Dean, Jackson Pollock, Wallace Stegner, Bessie […]

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Wake Up!

August 31, 2015

Contributor’s Marginalia: Anna Lena Phillips Bell on “Adhan” by Zeina Hashem Beck In Zeina Hashem Beck’s “Adhan,” the morning call to prayer, which can be heard thanks to the loudspeakers of many mosques, moves through a city. The speaker of the poem hears the adhan and offers a message from it: Prayer is better than sleep. Having heard calls […]

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Sharpened Sticks

August 24, 2015

Contributor’s Marginalia: David Yezzi on “Upon News of the Important Fossil” by Brett Foster What get’s me first about this poem is the tone. The tone is sly. Take the word “important” in the title, for example; it makes me smile, as I wonder how exactly we are to take it. The fossil is surely an important discovery (“the […]

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