Category Archives: Uncategorized

Clouds

From Mark Jarman’s Epistles: 26. In the Clouds Simply by thinking I stood among the clouds. They surrounded and passed me, being and becoming. Blood released into clear water. Breath into cold air. Formlessness entering form, forced into form. . . … Continue reading

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Translation

Emily Wilson’s review of Mark Polizzotti’s Sympathy for the Traitor: A Translation Manifesto (in the current edition of the NYRB) makes me think about my own work as a translator. Should a translation, as Walter Benjamin argued, “be powerfully affected … Continue reading

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Mark Jarman: Devotional Poetry

A couple of years ago, poet, translator, and critic Kimberly Johnson organized a conference at Brigham Young University on Devotional Poetry. Poet Susan Howe suggested that Kimberly invite me to introduce their keynote speaker, Mark Jarman, who had been a … Continue reading

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Michael Ondaatje’s Warlight

We order our lives with barely held stories. As if we have been lost in a confusing landscape, gathering what was invisible and unspoken . . . sewing it all together in order to survive, incomplete. . . . Now … Continue reading

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Into the Unknown with Charles Bowden and Edward Abbey

Scott Carrier begins his foreword to the forthcoming reissue of Charles Bowden’s Some of the Dead Are Still Breathing with a caveat: Instead of a foreword I should start with a forewarning to those with a desire to feel safe—put this … Continue reading

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Hunting the Truth

Reading a review in the NYRB of Beate and Serge Klarsfeld’s memoir, I see a photo of Beate Klarsfeld with her arm raised in the Bundestag where she is shouting at the Chancellor before being removed from the chamber: “Kiesinger, … Continue reading

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River of Lost Souls

I just read Jonathan P. Thompson’s The River of Lost Souls (Torrey House Press, March 2018). The book unsettled me. Profoundly. On August 5, 2015, EPA contractors who were investigating a portal of the Gold King Mine above Durango accidentally … Continue reading

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Gratis Currency / Free Books

On Saturday I finished an essay about the chapbooks Alex Caldiero has been producing at a rapid pace over the last couple of years. In answer to my question about why the sudden and prolific production, Alex said that he … Continue reading

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The Afternoon on the Sava

The journal RIC (red in corner) just published my essay about a long afternoon on a houseboat restaurant outside of Belgrade on the Sava River. It will eventually be a section of the book We: A Friendship, co-authored with Zarko … Continue reading

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skyplains

This morning I finished (or have I just started?) reading Australian novelist Gerald Murnane’s The Plains. The book opens with these paragraphs: The unnamed filmmaker who is the novel’s narrator has in mind a film of the plains that will get … Continue reading

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