How To Frame Politics?

It’s a sad, sad state of affairs for the American people when we have to boil our presidential election down to questions of race and gender. And yet, we’ve arrived: Are Americans more racist or sexist? We have to wonder aloud, so that we send the most able opponent up against the Great White Hope,…

Read more How To Frame Politics?

Best Second Book

BEST SECOND BOOK (One time the singer Seal said something about how you have your whole life to write your first album, so people shouldn’t expect greatness out of a second attempt. These five say “go back in the water, Seal.”)Goat Funeral, Christopher Bakken Inflorescence, Sarah Hannah I’m the Man Who Loves You, Amy King…

Read more Best Second Book

In Case We Forgot …

The U.S. entered Iraq with bombs ablaze on March 18, 2003 — nearly five years ago. Many Iraqi citizens, living their lives much like we do, were killed in the middle of the night, and for months to come. Until that night, America was at peace with Iraq, and neither country had attacked the other.…

Read more In Case We Forgot …

Tags: Sexy

This blog has received regular hits for The Knife‘s “Pass This On” ever since I posted it at the end of May 2007. Since then, the video was removed by Youtube or the subscriber who posted it. Today, I found it elsewhere on the site (w/ an annoying “Z” in the upper corner) and posted…

Read more Tags: Sexy

Cheesy Good

Out of shape? Tennis shoes growing cobwebs? Mine too. So I went to Modell’s to buy a trampoline to do some indoor jogging and picked up an “Urban Rebounder” for what I thought was going to be about a hundred bucks. I walked out with the thing for fifty bucks total (the sale/markdown wasn’t even…

Read more Cheesy Good

You May Say So Myself

Ladies, there is no neutral position for us to assume. * Gertrude Stein, Libretto for the opera The Mother Of Us All by Virgil Thomson (1947), from Last Operas and Plays (1949) Poetry is I say essentially a vocabulary just as prose is essentially not. And what is the vocabulary of which poetry absolutely is.…

Read more You May Say So Myself

Benjamin on Baudelaire

 From the “INTRODUCTION” By Michael W. Jennings — THE WRITER OF MODERN LIFE: ESSAYS ON CHARLES BAUDELAIRE by Walter Benjamin: Yes the ragpicker is also a figure for Baudelaire, for the poet who draws on the detritus of the society through which he moves, seizing that which seems useful in part because society has found…

Read more Benjamin on Baudelaire

Who Thought of That?

  ** “The tooth-in-eye technique, pioneered in Italy 40 years ago …” [Blind teen to have parts of tooth, jaw inserted in eye] ** “The procedure used on McNichol involved his son Robert, 23, donating a tooth, its root and part of the jaw.” [Blind Irishman sees with the aid of son’s tooth in his…

Read more Who Thought of That?

Poets Off Poetry

Thanks to Jackie Clark for inviting me to participate in the ten part Poets Off Poetry series. My contribution, “Fed You From The Blood of My Nose: A Medley Melodic,” appears under the heading, “In Which Nearly Every Human Knows This Desire.” Lots of links to music you might enjoy, and I hope you do…

Read more Poets Off Poetry

The Nail on the Head

~~~ Speaking of heads and being right on, Katha Pollitt responds to the recent Washington Post article by Charlotte Allen in her own article, “Dumb and Dumber: An Essay and Its Editors — The question is not why Charlotte Allen wrote her silly piece–it’s why The Post published it.” Why do people still buy into…

Read more The Nail on the Head

How To Help

From PEN American Center World-renowned writers from China and North America marked International Human Rights Day by launching We Are Ready for Freedom of Expression, a campaign that challenges the Chinese government to release all the writers and journalists it is holding in prisons before the August 8, 2008 opening of the Olympic Games. Noted…

Read more How To Help

Happy Fifth Anniversary!

Homework Questions 1. Please remind me — why are we in Iraq again? 2. The 9/11 terrorists came from what country? 3. Is the war in Iraq, and possibly Iran if McCain gets elected, related to the current crisis of the U.S. dollar? These are just a few questions I’ll ask my students today to…

Read more Happy Fifth Anniversary!

Poetry, Politics, & the Planet

Jay Silverheels, best known for his role as Tonto in “The Lone Ranger,” was also a boxer and lacrosse player and even held a position on Canada’s National Lacrosse Team. He also founded the Indian Actors Workshop in Echo Park, California, which no longer seems to exist. The number of Native American actors seems quite…

Read more Poetry, Politics, & the Planet