No one likes to fail. And yet everyone does, every once in awhile. Falling flat on your face is part of being human, though rarely is it anything but terribly embarrassing and painful. I have enough self-respect (well, enough left these days) to know that not trying — a nonattempt, so to speak — is… Continue reading Of Poems and Promises, Meatloaf, Memories, and the Pleasures of Failure
Don’t hate me because I’m a romantic. Pity me, maybe. I’m a hopeless case, after all. Consider this: While other people were sitting around the pool last summer, page-turning their way through the latest John Grisham thriller, I could be found nosing into Li-Young Lee’s new book of poetry, one line at a time. Or worse — composing… Continue reading Isn't It Romantic to Be a Romantic, at Least Once a Year?
I prefer used books. There, I said it. Now, I love a new pair of shoes, even though they often require enduring a short, uncomfortable breaking-in period. And although I have triumphed upon finding a distinctive shirt or sportcoat at a gaudy vintage clothing store, I haven’t had the urge to shop that way in more than 10… Continue reading The Use of Used Bookstores
A recent discovery for me (well, admittedly, one more akin to Columbus’s “discovery” than Mme. Curie’s) is the poet/ publisher/photographer/provocateur Jonathan Williams. Although I had long known about Williams and was aware of his publishing company, The Jargon Society, which produced books for writers I admire (Joel Oppenheimer, for one) I had never actually read anything… Continue reading The Other Poet Williams