12
FEB
2018

Derek Walcott and #MeToo

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When Nobel laureate Derek Walcott died in March 2017, The New York Times ran a 2,000 word obituary highlighting the brilliance of his imagination as a poet and dramatist.  After the quotations and citations, including one from the Nobel committee, were the following two...
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25
JAN
2018

Tara Skurtu’s The Amoeba Game

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  Elizabeth Alexander chose “Visiting Amber at Lowell Correctional” for an honorable mention when she came to judge UMass Boston’s Academy of American Poets Prize in 2008. Of course she didn’t know Tara Skurtu, but none of us on the creative writing faculty d...
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28
NOV
2017

Krysten Hill’s How Her Spirit Got Out

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Krysten Hill’s chapbook is as fresh as today’s headlines. It calls out a culture where women continually risk abuse, invisibility, and soul-killing erasures, and where black women are particularly threatened. The book begins with found language from a Google search that serially...
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15
AUG
2017

Karen Locascio’s Mortal Wounds

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I’ve written before about Hanging Loose Press, and among its new publications is Karen Locascio’s May All My Wounds Be Mortal. She’s the first winner of the Ron Schreiber Memorial Award—Ron was a professor at UMass Boston, where Karen received her MFA, and where I was lucky to...
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03
AUG
2017

The New Colossus

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Emma Lazarus was a fourth-generation New York Jew. At 17, she published her first book of poems, a volume admired by Ralph Waldo Emerson, who entertained and flirted with her in Concord. She was a friend of Thomas Wentworth Higginson and Henry James. She was also a feminist,...
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12
JUL
2017

A Visit with Donald Hall

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Donald Hall used to have his own zip code. So prodigious was his correspondence, it overwhelmed the Danbury, NH post office where his mail was delivered. Later, his mailing address switched to Wilmot, and he grudgingly obtained an email address for his assistant. But he still...
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24
MAY
2017

Little Kisses by Lloyd Schwartz

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In the final section of his eagerly anticipated new book, Lloyd Schwartz writes, “The older I get, the less and less/I understand this world,//and the people in it.” (“To My Oldest Friend, Whose Silence Is Like a Death”). But throughout Little Kisses, it’s clear that Lloyd—a dear...
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27
MAR
2017

Lola Haskins at Copperfish Books

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Copperfish Books is that small miracle, an independent bookstore in a city with a population not much bigger than my current hometown, and a lot smaller than Lexington, the neighboring Harvard/Tufts/high tech bedroom community where I lived for decades and which lost its three...
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03
MAR
2017

Dan Albergotti’s Millennial Teeth

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On the cover of Dan Albergotti’s Millenial Teeth, a child attacked by lightning bolts configured to look like a dragon staggers backwards (the figures come from a warning label on electrical equipment). Rarely has a book’s cover served so completely as a metaphor for what’s...
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