What does poetry mean? A talk with Michael Odom

When it comes to writing, a friend's comment has guided me whenever I've reviewed a book or thought about my own work. It's not the size of the book that matters but the distance the reader travels in a sentence (I'm sure he borrowed that idea from someone). I kept thinking about that insight as … Continue reading What does poetry mean? A talk with Michael Odom

Early Nabokov: new in bookstores

Plays are supposed to be performed, not read — that’s the rule, right? An acquaintance of mine once arched his eyebrows when I told him I was rereading Hamlet. "You’re not supposed to read Shakespeare," he said, rolling his eyes. (Ok, sure, but can you point me in the direction of a good, local production of … Continue reading Early Nabokov: new in bookstores

Call of the Siren exclusive: Andrew Frisardi’s response

It isn't criticism that irritates--we're all adults here, right?--but what does is criticism that misinterprets and, in the process, misleads potential readers. When poet and translator Andrew Frisardi was on the receiving-end of such treatment for his translation of Vita Nova (Northwestern University Press) in the pages of the Times Literary Supplement, he did what … Continue reading Call of the Siren exclusive: Andrew Frisardi’s response