February 2010 Cover Image

Odds on Ends

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Molly Giles
Most Chekhov stories as a result do not end; they simply stop.... Chekhov, a doctor, maintained that a writer's job was not to fix a problem but only to reveal it. He believed in diagnosis, not in cure.

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The Poet as Tour Guide: Notes on "Ozymandias"

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Phillip Sterling
To me, in fact, much recent poetry tastes more like fast food than bouillabaisse. I propose, then, that some reflection on Shelley's sonnet-in the form of "links"-may provide contemporary poets with a kind of Michelin Guide to some possibilities for American poetry in the 21st Century.
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Tropic of Tropes: A Conversation with Poet & Art Critic Ricardo Pau-Llosa

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Bruce Allen Dick
For thirty years, Ricardo Pau-Llosa has been publishing poetry that successfully blends references to music, art, and philosophy. It is a blend which comes naturally to a man who has also written copiously on modern and contemporary art—primarily that of Latin America—and one who is steeped in the popular and high culture of his native Cuba, a nation synonymous with music and inter-cultural synthesis.
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Reading Reg Gibbons

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Beverley Bie Brahic
Maybe "authority" is not the best word. This isn't authority-with-answers, these are not poems that seek to convince us of anything other than the urgency and the intensity of the speaker's involvement with-often anguish over-his materials.
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Back to the Narrative: Breathing New Life Into a Tired Form

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Charles Harper Webb
A poem about a parent's hands is not exactly virgin soil. Nor is the situation-adult child visits ailing parent-unfamiliar in contemporary life or poetry. The poem is originality-challenged from the start.
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The Conundrum of the Nonlinear Writer: A Conversation with Abigail Thomas, Paul Lisicky,
Bernard Cooper, & Susanne Antonetta

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Carolyn Walker
Not much takes place in the intellect until later, when I try to make sense of what I'm doing. Images come to me, conversation comes back to me, and I write around and in a cloud of emotion that I'm curious about.
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An Interview with Pam Houston

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Diana Bishop
One thing that is absolutely true about my experience of being here is that no matter how difficult life gets, or complicated or sad or lonely, I'm so honestly enraptured with the physical world. It could be anything.
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Artful Stealing

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Steven Schwartz
Where an author places this fulcrum depends on the emotional potential of the narrative. Too soon and the story tips its hand; too late and insight becomes an afterthought.
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