Sunday, January 13, 2019

GEOFFREY O'BRIEN IS REVIEWED IN HYPERALLERGIC


Geoffrey O'Brien's Marsh Hawk Press book, The Blue Hill, is reviewed in Hyperallergic. Go HERE for entire review, but here's an excerpt:
"As O’Brien tells us in the notes, he drew his information from Bengt Ankaroo’s academic history, Witch Trials in Northern Europe, 1450-1700, which details the tradition of the Bläkulla, or blue hill, an island in Sweden’s Kalmar Strait and a suspected site of Sabbath occult gatherings. Public executions of 20 suspected witches took place at the site. As much as O’Brien’s work resonates with the recovery work of contemporary documentary poetics, his handling of the material testifies to his investment not in evidence but in innuendo. Paraphrase is particularly important here. Little direct description of the Sabbath makes its way into the poem. Rather, O’Brien shows in increments how the phrase “the blue hill” begins as suspicion and builds into all-consuming construct in the mind of the collective. All the allegorical potential remains intact. While O’Brien paraphrases the academic history of occult persecution, the poem points to the role paraphrase and hearsay play in the accumulative constitution of myth. Each section follows the pattern above. The repeating name of the place underscores the obsessiveness of the subject, enabling O’Brien to convincingly show the link between heresy and hearsay.
"In the end, The Blue Hill situates paraphrase as something other than a method or exercise. With each section, O’Brien returns to the affective weight of being called, treating the urge to rephrase as his calling. It is this ecstatic sense of second-sight that allows a book so painstaking in its craft to yield such visceral pleasure."


Tuesday, January 1, 2019

JANE HIRSHFIELD ON CHAPTER ONE

Jane Hirshfield continues Marsh Hawk Press' "Chapter One" series which features poets' memoirs on how they began as poets. Here's an excerpt:
"The first book I bought with my own allowance money, at age seven or eight, was a book of Japanese haiku, discovered on one of those metal spiral display stands in a stationary store on First Avenue in the East 20s. I have no idea now what a child growing up in New York City found in these poems, whose vocabulary of meaning-making was falling blossoms I’d never known, singing birds I’d never heard, darkness and moonlight I’d seen only by peering past streetlights. The more I’ve since learned about haiku, the more I’ve come to realize how complex their registries of feeling and thought are. I can’t have grasped any of that as a child. But I suspect that I recognized in those poems a world I wanted to live in—a world whose windows opened to a larger existence."



Sunday, December 2, 2018

EILEEN TABIOS CURATES HAY(NA)KU POETRY EXHIBIT

Eileen Tabios has installed the hay(na)ku poetry exhibit today at the Saint Helena Public Library. The exhibit will be up through to the end of the year!



HAY(NA)KU POETRY EXHIBIT
Curator: Eileen R. Tabios
December 2018



EXHIBITED POEMS by
William Allegrezza
Gabriela Pascual Bautista
Charles Bernstein
Aileen Ibardaloza Cassinetto
Melinda Luisa de Jesus
Carol Dorf
Peg Duthie
Vince Gotera
Crag Hill
Kathleen Lawrence
Iris Lee (featured with ekphrastic inspiration, the quilt “Resist” by Alice Brody)
Abigail Licad
Lani T. Montreal
Cesar Polvorosa, Jr.
Zvi A. Sesling
Eileen R. Tabios
Glynda “GT” Velasco
Jean Vengua
Mark Young

HAY(NA)KU BOOKS by
William Allegrezza
Aileen Ibardaloza Cassinetto
Alex Gildzen
Sheila H. Murphy
Ernesto Priego
Eileen R. Tabios

HAY(NA)KU BOOKS edited by
Ivy Alvarez 
John Bloomberg-Rissman 
Ernesto Priego 
Eileen R. Tabios 
Jean Vengua 
Mark Young

Presented with an Invitation to the Public to write hay(na)ku poems.


PHOTOS OF EXHIBIT:
(click on images to enlarge)




















EXHIBITED BOOKS:






CLOSE-UP SHOTS OF EXHIBIT:

















Tuesday, November 27, 2018

MARSH HAWK POETRY PRIZES

December 1 is coming up! Which means the submission period for the Marsh Hawk Poetry Prizes -- judged this year by Marge Piercy -- will soon open. Info at: https://marshhawkpress.org/marsh-hawk-press-poetry-prize-awards/


Monday, November 26, 2018

MARY MACKEY ON CHAPTER ONE

Mary Mackey delivers the third installment in Marsh Hawk Press' Chapter One series which focuses on how writers got their early start. (At prior link, you can see the first two installments by Denise Duhamel and Philip Lopate.) You can see Mary Mackey's essay HERE but here's an excerpt:
I do not have an MFA. I became a poet by running high fevers, tramping through tropical jungles, dodging machine gun fire, and being caught in volcanic eruptions, swarmed by army ants, stalked by vampire bats, threatened by poisonous snakes, and making catastrophic decisions with regard to men. And then there was reading.


Sunday, November 4, 2018

PHILLIP LOPATE ON CHAPTER ONE


Marsh Hawk Press' new "Chapter One" feature -- about how poets got their start -- has released its November feature on Phillip Lopate. It's interesting -- here's an excerpt:
"A higher, “purer” standard of what it took to be a poet seemed to reign in that corner of academia, based partly on the possession of an MFA credential, and partly on the networking of the professional poetry world. I got a real taste of the way that poetry guild mentality operated: the mentoring and bestowal of the blessing on a chosen few acolytes, whose books would then be recommended for publication, and the whole priestly sense of the Poet as someone of rare vatic powers. The non-exclusionary ethos of the Sixties and early Seventies had ended, in the face of the writing program-generated mystique of technique. The impression was conveyed that there could only be two dozen poets at most in one era who had received the vision. I knew I’d never gotten a message from on high: I did not fit that bill. My sense of myself as a poet began to shrivel up. 
"But that simple explanation is false. It would be wrong to blame my colleagues for killing the urge, since anyone who can be discouraged so easily from writing poetry is not cut out to be a poet."
You can see the whole article HERE.


Friday, October 26, 2018

BURT KIMMELMAN MEDITATES OVER PRAGUE AND MEMORY


From a recent half-year stay in Prague, Burt Kimmelman shares his 3-part meditation on "Prague and Memory" over at BODY, a lovely English-language journal headquartered in Prague.