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Articles by Clarice Waldman :

Leah Umansky reviewed in Best American Poetry

Posted by Kristina Marie Darling

February 25, 2014

I'm intrigued by Umansky's treatment of the poem as a space in which intervention into literary tradition becomes possible.  Just as she re-imagines Wuthering Heights from a fragmented, postmodern stylistic standpoint, Umansky presents each poem as a theoretical act, an active engagement with the work that came before her own.  Domestic Uncertainties is filled with poems like this one, which read as both conversation with and revision of received wisdom. 

Read the whole review here   

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Flux by Jane Joritz-Nakagawa reviewed in The Japan Times

 

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Flux

BY KRIS KOSAKA

SPECIAL TO THE JAPAN TIMES

Flux, the new collection of poems by Japan-based poet Jane Joritz-Nakagawa, reveals a myriad of fluctuations and transitions in style and theme. From the poet’s diverse choice of form to her penetrating eye on the collection’s wide range of subject matter, the poems here reveal the constant change in the stream of time. Particularly effective are Joritz-Nakagawa’s prose poems. These stream-of-conscience social commentaries condense one women’s lifetime of sexual experiences to their very essence, with Joritz-Nakagawa constantly crossing the boundary between prose and poetry. Her poems reference modern racial tensions and the nuclear disaster in Fukushima, while quoting the disparate words of the singer Morrissey and Albert Einstein, in a shifting perspective of form and fancy.

Read  the whole review here 

Book Information:

 

· Paperback: 104 pages

· Binding: Perfect-Bound

· Publisher: BlazeVOX [books] 

· ISBN: 978-1-60964-155-9

 

$16

 

 

 

 

FLUX by Jane Joritz-Nakagawa Book Preview

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Bill Berkson & Elizabeth Block @ Bird and Beckett

 

Sunday, March 2nd – 2 pm
Writers Bill Berkson & Elizabeth Block
read new poetry

BBgoldieshotBill Berkson is a poet, art critic & corresponding editor for Art in America, who for many years taught literature & art history at the SF Art Institute. Director of Letters and Science at the Art Institute from 1993 to 1998, he taught art history, critical writing & poetry & directed the public lectures program there from 1984 to 2007. He is the author of many books of poetry & prose including Portrait & Dream: New & Selected Poems, published by Coffee House Press in 2009.  Bill will read from his latest poetry collection, Snippets(Omerta, 2014).

Elizabeth blockElizabeth Block is the author of the novel A Gesture Through Time, written under fiscal sponsorship of Intersection for the Arts, in San Francisco.  She is the recipient of a Doris Roberts/ William Goyen fiction fellowship from the Christopher Isherwood foundation and many other awards and residencies. Also a filmmaker, her films have traveled extensively throughout the United States and elsewhere. She has published her work in many genres and media. Elizabeth will read from her new poetry collection, Celluloid Salutations (Blazevox, 2014).

GET THE FULL DETAILS HERE

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Vow by Kristina Marie Darling reviewed in TCJWW

 

VOW BY KRISTINA MARIE DARLING

VowVow
by Kristina Marie Darling
BlazeVOX, 2013
ISBN: 978-1609641603
62 p.p.

Kristina Marie Darling sets the imagination ablaze in her newest work Vow. With a chorus of dark melodies, words come as beautiful colors, gripping scenes happen in mere words, and the haunting promise of the vow becomes exposed. This absorbing collection creeps down the corridors of the mind, illuminating the spaces that a broken vow leaves behind.

“So we bury our vows one by one. We are pieces of an altar collapsing from the inside.” Writing in a coolly detached rhythm, Darling’s understated voice takes hold of each moment, “I dream another me exists in the burning house, reading aloud from what I have written.”

A collection that sits a little more on the unconventional side, what’s especially enjoyable is the meaningfully placed white space and text placement. The non-traditional format supports the creative power of the book and even inspires thought on the concept of the imagination as a whole. Consider that the expectations we have for something—someone—are rooted deeply in our imagination. Darling meditates on just that, using media as metaphor for the way our minds idealize such a commitment:

I had always imagined the day would look like: velvet backdrop
onto which the landscape is projected like a sad film.
Somewhere in that picture, a declaration.


READ THE WHOLE REVIEW HERE

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Scholarship by Joe Safdie Now Available!

Joe Safdie's new book exists in a place where poetry joins with other forms of thought & knowledge - "history, myth, politics, autobiographical narrative, criticism, prose," as he lists them elsewhere - to make a new hybridity in place of what has been kept apart & alien for far too long.  In doing so, he joins a select company of poets for whom nothing human is foreign & everything observed or imagined can enter the field of the poem. That he does it with boundless humor & grace is also worth noting.

 
Jerome Rothenberg
 
Poet Joe Safdie is at his best as he refreshes and renews the ancient story of Orpheus, which opens his new book Scholarship.  Eloquent in his personal yet classic presentation of history, myth, politics and autobiography, he writes with an accomplished yet easily accessible voice that segues through time to the news of the moment, presenting an intimate and politically astute personal view of the ordinary events that make up the classic past and immediate present of poetry.
 
—Joanne Kyger
 
Postmodernism’s bifurcating canyons are notoriously intimidating to all but self-appointed practitioners. For mere bitcoins of close attention, Joe Safdie’s Scholarship will generously guide you both up and down river, and reward you with the knowledge you need to strike out on your own. Never will the sight of a well-stocked library be so alluring and welcoming as when you’ve finished this long-awaited book of poems by one of the most insightful and subtly witty poets working on (and beyond) the West Coast since the 1970s.
 
—Bill Mohr
 
The great Jack Clarke used to load hermetic epigraphs, quotations, and borrowings onto and into his texts. They were (still are) detonations of a sort, opening shafts for difficult thought down and through the rubble of poetic protocol and complacency. Poetry as Scholarship . . . Joe Safdie, whose first full book you hold, is of this secret, somewhat unlicensed poetic company – off on his own, under the Po-biz radar, he follows in Clark’s wildcat tradition, working patiently, with older, tried and true tools, unconcerned with the fads and foibles of the Field. He’s been bringing strange minerals back from below since he learned some of the how as one of Ed Dorn’s closest students back in the day. No doubt if Dorn were here, the back cover of this book would have been occupied by his words, celebrating and calibrating this magnificent work.
 
—Kent Johnson
 
 
 
 
Joe Safdie lives in a coastal community north of San Diego with his wife Sara and his cat Cody, teaches English at a local community college, and petitions the emperor to lift his exile. (Who is the emperor? Good question.) He’s published the chapbooks Wake Up The Panthers (with the assistance of Kayak Press), Saturn Return (Smithereens Press), Spring Training (Zephyr Press), September Song (Oasis Press), and Mary Shelley’s Surfboard (Blue Press); other poems, essays, reviews and opinions about literary matters are floating in the virtual universe and occasionally assume form.
 
 
 
Book Information:
 
· Paperback: 118 pages
· Binding: Perfect-Bound
· Publisher: BlazeVOX [books]
· ISBN: 978-1-60964-164-1
 
$16
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Scholarship by Joe Safdie Book Preview

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Photos on flickr