D.A. Powell

Posted by on 18 09 14 in Criticism | 0 comments

Douglas A. Powell rose to prominence with three collections of poems that documented the gay scene in America and the death by AIDs of well-loved friends: Tea (1998), Lunch (2000) and Cocktails (2004). The style was one he made distinctly his own (and indeed won a clutch of prizes for): long fluid lines, untitled, no capitalization, extended metaphors, double-entendres and a vibrant mix of contemporary diction that included sexual explicitness and gay talk. Take darling can you kill me: with your mickeymouse pillows from Lunch {1} it’s quieter than most poems but is often singled out for special mention. darling can you kill me: with your mickeymouse pillows when I’m a meager man. with your exhaust pipe and hose could you put me out: when I’m a mite splinter a grain a tatter a snip a sliver a whit...

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Juliana Spahr

Posted by on 9 09 14 in Criticism | 2 comments

As the author of eight books of poetry, a volume of literary criticism, and several university posts, Juliana Spahr is one of the better known of contemporary American poets. Though the term ‘political’ is applied rather vaguely -anything from being concerned with politics to being a feminist activist – a deep interest in language, sociological and ecology issues is evident in her poems, which above all aim to be accessible:  ‘communal, democratic, and open process’. {1-3} I look at poems published in the Things of Each Possible Relation Hashing Against One Another (2003), {5} and This Connection of Everyone with Lungs (2005), {6-8} which illustrate these themes. Representative poems can be read on the Internet, and are discussed in Claudia Rankine and Lisa Sewell’s survey of American poetry. {9} Spahr’s open style is probably best introduced by looking at...

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Susan Wheeler’s The Debtor in the Convex Mirror

Posted by on 3 09 14 in Criticism | 0 comments

Susan Wheeler: The Debtor in the Convex Mirror.

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