Friday, February 27, 2009


I tend to alternate between exclusively instrumental and lyric-having music. On a jazz jag now. I love how jazz is all about moments. Even the albums aren't meant to be big deals in themselves--not like rock albums. They're just records of events, to be taken however a listener wants.
I've become really interested lately in the idea of blogger as a way to communicate with a smeall, predefined group of people--blogs for classes or 4 friends that want to share some particular kind of information.  In that situation, the blog becomes a kind of table, and everyone puts their stuff on it and people can look and comment if and whenever they want to.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Two More Books I'm Excited About


THE NEST, SWIFT PASSARINE by Dan Beachy-Quick (Tupelo, April 2009)
-I love DBQ's first book, NORTH TRUE, SOUTH BRIGHT, but couldn't quick follow him on the two books about Moby Dick, nor on the last book of poems for Tupelo, but I think I'm back on board with this one.

Friday, February 20, 2009


Back in New York.  Had a wonderful time in Chicago...

I'm buried in poetry books.  Will someone please explain to me why it helps for all poetry to be PUBLISHED in april?  Why can't publishers just promote that month?  ugh.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

me in Chicago

The week after awp I find myself in Chicago doing a guest poet gig at u of Chicago. I miss being at a university--makes me feel safe the way hiding I'm a shrub did when I was little.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Me on Starting Today: Poems for Obama's First 100 Days

Last Wednesday was my day on this amazing blog curated by Rachel Zucker and Arielle Greenberg. They assigned a poet to write a poem for each of Obama's first 100 days in office. Here's my poem. I've been writing lots of poems shaped and rhymed like this lately.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

New or Forthcoming Books I'm Excited About


Most are pubbing--you guessed it!--April. Though I bet some were made available early for AWP, where I was not this year.

As If
by James Galvin (Copper Canyon, 2009)
-haven't seen a galley of this yet, but I've liked the poems I've seen in mags.

Rising by Farrah Field (Four Way, 2009)
-Farrah is a good friend and a blazing poet.

The End of the West by Michael Dickman (Copper Canyon, 2009)

It is Daylight by Arda Collins (Yale, 2009)

The Plum-Stone Game by Kathleen Jesme (Ahsahta, 2009)

Transcendental Studies by Keith Waldrop (U of California, 2009)

Chronic by D.A. Powell (Graywolf, 2009. Just released)

Collected Poems and Unfinished Poems of C.P. Cavafy, trans. by Daniel Mendelsohn (Knopf, 2009--March)


The Way Through Doors: A Novel by Jesse Ball (Vintage, 2009)

Close Calls with Nonsense by Stephen Burt (Graywolf, 2009)

The Winter Sun by Fanny Howe (Graywolf, 2009)

Brenda Nominated for NBCC Award

Brenda Shaughnessy, who is, among many other things, my wife, was nominated for the 2008 Nataional Book Critics Circle Award for her second book, Human Dark with Sugar (Copper Canyon, 2008). I'm very excited and I hope you'll all cross your fingers for her.

Just to keep the record straight--I was recently elected to the board of the NBCC, but my term does not start until March 2009, after Brenda's award is decided.


So I've been a bad blogger.  How many times have I said so on my blog over the last several years.  But I'm going to try something new.  Thanks to a widget in the new iWeb, I've been able to put this blog's RSS feed on the home page of my website.  I'm going to try to use this as a space to post news, as such, and musings when I have them.  

Saturday, February 14, 2009

"Ultimately Justice Directs Them" selected for Best American Poetry 2009

I'm very excited and honored to report that guest editor David Wagoner has selected my poem, "Ultimately Justice Directs Them," first published at Notell Motel, for Best American Poetry 2009, to be published by Scribner in September.

Thank you Notell Motel, and Davids Wagoner and Lehman.