Monday, January 31, 2011
The first issue features fiction by Dustin M. Hoffman, Dan Piorkowski, Emma Bean, M.V. Montgomery, and Carl Peterson, poetry by Ryan J. Browne, Jona Colson, Deana Dueno, Liz Kicak and Tomer Konowiecki, nonfiction by Kelley Rae, Alex Park, Amy Bernhard and Natalia Andrievskikh, artwork by Andrew Abbott and Jim Fuess, and a comic by Chrissy Spallone.
Palooka is available both in print and e-version with online samples of published content.
Friday, January 28, 2011
Poetry judge Craig Santos Perez says the winning poem "manages to weave lyricism, abstraction, narrative, image, symbolism, formal experimentation, character, and deep emotion into a haunting poetic experience. It’s a heartbreaking attempt to 'fill the silence of illness.'"
Fiction judge Lucy Corin says of "Weatherization," "There's something to the flattened tone that suggests something quite gutsy about the issues the story takes up about violence . . . . In the end, what I ask of a story is that it really push itself beyond its initiating premise, that the issues it raises be taken up with as much complexity as possible, evading every easy answer, every self-satisfaction."
Both winners receive $250 and they will appear in the forthcoming issue of Prism Review, to be published this spring.
Thursday, January 27, 2011
Physicist Alan Lightman and philosopher Rebecca Newberger Goldstein discuss how they devise “emotional experiments” in their fiction in order to probe the limits of rational thought. [Full text online]
In a provocative essay, poet and cognitive scientist Pireeni Sundaralingam asks, Are science and poetry inherently at odds with each other? [Full text online]
Authors Suzanne Lummis, Philip Metres, Vincenzo Della Mea, and Tone Hødnebø conduct playful experiments in new poems tied to the issue’s theme.
Berlin-based architect Eric Ellingsen co-opts the repeating structure of the poetic villanelle to remap space and to explore how literature might inform urban design.
Welsh poet-physician Dannie Abse traces the intersections of poetry and medicine in his own life and work.
Playwright Kenneth Lin discusses theater’s ability to convey the grandeur of scientific discovery. [Full text online]
A list of finalists for the award is available here.
Wednesday, January 26, 2011
Also accepted for publication: The Frame Called Ruin by Hadara Bar-Nadav to appear in the fall of 2012
The Green Rose Prize is awarded to an author who has previously published at least one full-length book of poems. Winners are chosen by the editors of New Issues Press.
A full table of contents for this issue is available on The Florida Review website.
A spot in the pilot edition of the Prairie Schooner digital project is open. Artists, filmmakers, and/or programmers may submit finished or near-finished literary-inspired pieces for consideration. Queries also welcome. Submissions/queries accepted through March 15, 2011.
The Prairie Schooner digital project goes live in fall 2011.
Prairie Schooner Online will feature pieces such as: collaborations between authors and visual/video artists, hypertext projects, and other literary multimedia artwork. Among the contributors are author and filmmaker Terese Svoboda and artist Tim Guthrie, along with various visual artists, animators and videographers. The project will also include an adaptation of stories from the Prairie Schooner archives: Eudora Welty’s “The Whistle” and Alice Hoffman’s “The Bear’s House.”
2010 Finalists include Jennifer Beebe, Claire Clube, Rebecca Dunham, Laura Dunn, Rebecca Howell, Hila Ratzabi, and Ruth Thompson.
The 2011 competition is open until August 31, 2011 (postmark). See the AROHO website for downloadable cover sheet and details
Tuesday, January 25, 2011
established creative writers - fiction writers, playwrights, and poets - who are persecuted in their home countries or are actively prevented from pursuing free expression in their literary art. The application/nomination deadline for the next Fellowship is February 15, 2011.
Read the full editorial, with a narrative history of the magazine, online.
First Place: Kevin A. Gonzalez for "Cerromar"
Second Place: Jacob Powers for "Safety"
Third Place: Erika Solomon for "Rules for Jews in Damascus"
Upcoming Narrative contest: The WINTER 2011 STORY CONTEST
Entry deadline: March 31 at midnight, Pacific daylight time.
Monday, January 24, 2011
All merit scholarships are based on the quality of the writing sample supplied as part of the MFA application. Preference will be given to prospective students who complete their application by March 15. Notification of the scholarships will be mailed and also announced at OCU's annual Creative Writing Festival on April 16. Scholarships must be applied towards the first year of study in the MFA program.
In addition, the Red Earth program is offering $1,000 tuition reductions in the first year of study for all of its inaugural class. The summer residency is slated for July 6-16. For more information about the program, visit the Web site or contact MFA Director Danita Berg: drberg-at-okcu.edu
Kathryn Scanlan, "The Old Mill"
Maria Hummel, runner-up
HeatherWinterer, "from Art's Garage"
Jae Choi and Mary Pinard, runners-up
Deborah Thompson, "Mishti Kukur"
Jendi Reiter, runner-up
Sunday, January 23, 2011
Glimmer Train has just chosen the winning stories for their Short Story Award for New Writers. This competition is held quarterly and is open to all writers whose fiction has not appeared in a print publication with a circulation greater than 5000. The next Short Story Award competition will take place in February. Glimmer Train’s monthly submission calendar may be viewed here.
First place: Clayton Luz [Pictured], of Chicago, wins $1200 for “When the Wind Blows the Water Grey.” His story will be published in the Spring 2012 issue of Glimmer Train Stories.
Second place: Joseph Johns, of Decatur, GA, wins $500 for “Strange Birds.” His story will also be published in an upcoming issue of Glimmer Train Stories, increasing his prize to $700.
Third place: Jonathan Tucker, of Mwanza, Tanzania, wins $300 for “The Coffin Makers.”
A PDF of the Top 25 winners can be found here.
Deadline soon approaching for the Very Short Fiction Award: January 31
Glimmer Train hosts this competition twice a year, and first place is $1200 plus publication in the journal. It’s open to all writers, no theme restrictions, and the word count must not exceed 3000. Click here for complete guidelines.
Having finished David Vann's novel, Caribou Island, I'm still trying to figure out how I can possible forgive this author for writing a novel so compelling I could not stop reading it (or wanting to read it when I couldn't be), and coming to a finish that was so disturbing it has disrupted my thoughts - both while awake and sleeping - for the past several days. I DON'T recommend this one to anyone already suffering from seasonal affect disorder or cabin fever bordering on The Shining.
A half dozen characters take the lead by chapter for the third person omniscient narration. Irene sees her marriage to Gary coming to an end. Their daughter Rhoda can't see it coming any more than she can see the fault line in her own engagement to Jim, her cheating fiancee. Other characters move in and out of the story, like storm clouds across the Alaskan sky, and each seems to be the other's antagonist. In fact, if asked, I'm not sure I could clearly identify a single protagonist in this story. I suppose each character has their moment: Carl, when he finds out Monique is banging Jim and takes of into the cold Alaskan night; Gary as he struggles against the northern snow and wind to build his "dream" island cabin; Irene as she finally sees a doctor who might just help her to understand the cause of the splitting headaches she suffers.
But just as it seems a character is the lead of the plot, breaking away from adversity, each is confronted yet again with an adversary - another of the characters or the unflinching, damnable Alaskan nature.
Vann's story is an exploration of the human psyche, that which fails us is that which we are and continue to grasp onto. Each character seems to realize this: Gary knows in fits and starts that his cabin is a stupid idea, but he stubbornly persists; Irene knows their marriage is ending, but goes along with the cabin building because she knows they have to play the final card; Rhoda knows her relationship to Jim is nothing more than what she always felt was the right thing to want, whether she feels passionately about it or not. It's this kind of knowing that makes the writing both so compelling and devastating to read. As much as I would like to see one thing work out well for one character, there are no happy endings here. This is simply a reflection of real life that has its moments of just enough insight to help us accept what we have as good enough and move on. Or not.
Friday, January 21, 2011
Charlotte Pence is a Ph.D. candidate in creative writing at the University of Tennessee and former editor of Grist: The Journal for Writers. She most recently received the 2009 Discovered Voices award from Iron Horse Literary Journal given to one graduate student in the country for poetry each year. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Kenyon Review Online, Prairie Schooner, Southern Review, North American Review, Denver Quarterly, RATTLE, Tar River, and many other journals. She also has an anthology forthcoming with University Press of Mississippi titled Lyrical Traditions: The Intersections Between Poems and Songs.
Devin Johnston, "The Needs of Ghosts: On Poems from the Margins of Thom Gunn's Moly"
Elizabeth Arnold, "The Rhythm of the Actual in Basil Bunting's 'Chomei at Toyama'"
Alan Golding, "Louis Zukofsky and the Avant-Garde Textbook"
Mark S. Morrisson, "Ezra Pound, the Morada, and American Regionalism"
Matthias Regan, "Remembering Edward Dorn"
Robert Huddleston, "Myth and Education"
Andrea Scott, "Gerhard Falkner's Ground Zero"
Lynn Keller, "'Post-Language Lyric': The Example of Juliana Spahr"
Peter O'Leary, "Apocalypticism: A Way Forward for Poetry"
Keith Tuma, "After the Bubble"
Thursday, January 20, 2011
Michael M. Naydan, Woskob Family Professor of Ukrainian Studies, The Pennsylvania State University, provides an introduction to the issue, including a historical overview of the Ukraine poetic movements as well as a memorial to three Ukrainian poets - Attila Mohylny, Ihor Rymaruk, and Nazar Honchar, to whom the issue is dedicated.
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
Arc Poetry Magazine's website includes the opening paragraphs of Jenning's attack of the sonnet form (the end lines of which I can at least say you won't find repeated on FCC airwaves) - for the full text, you need to get a hold of a copy of Arc.
Tuesday, January 18, 2011
Dave the Potter: Artist, Poet, Slave illustrated by Bryan Collier, written by Laban Carrick Hill, published by Little, Brown and Company, a division of Hachette Book Group, Inc.
Interrupting Chicken illustrated and written by David Ezra Stein, published by Candlewick Press.
The 2011 Newbery Medal winner is Moon over Manifest by Clare Vanderpool, published by Delacorte Press, an imprint of Random House Children's Books, a division of Random House, Inc.
Turtle in Paradise written by Jennifer L. Holm, published by Random House Children's Books, a division of Random House, Inc.
Heart of a Samurai written by Margi Preus, published by Amulet Books, an imprint of Abrams.
Dark Emperor and Other Poems of the Night written by Joyce Sidman, illustrated by Rick Allen, published by Houghton Mifflin Books for Children, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.
One Crazy Summer written by Rita Williams-Garcia, published by Amistad, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.
Monday, January 17, 2011
From January 12 to January 26 Nunn will donate 100% of all sales of his book Ocean Hearted to flood relief and "to add to that, I will personally give an extra $5 for every book sold." Copies of Ocean Hearted can be purchased for $15 (incl. postage) via paypal or check/money order.
Visit his blog for more details.
All monies will be given to the Premiers Disaster Relief Appeal, a Queensland Government established Distribution Committee that includes representatives from the Australian Red Cross to manage the disbursement of the donated funds.
Editors will be responsible for 3 issues of STATUS HAT, for either the Summer or Fall quarter. SHP seeking editors with diverse backgrounds in the arts, as our editors do not work in one area, but select visual content, fiction, non-fiction and poetry, as well as seek out additional content or explorations of themes as necessary to create engaging issues of Status Hat.
Guest editors must be able to commit to reviewing and selecting submissions for their assigned issues over a 3 month period prior to the quarter (Summer or Fall, 2011) they are working on, and demonstrate excellent communication skills.
Contact editor-at-statushat.org with an inquiry by January 31, 2011. Please have "GUEST EDITOR INQUIRY" in the subject line of your email.
The Singleton feature includes two stories, "Vaccination" and "Jayne Mansfield," which, Editor Stephen Corey notes brings the total number of Singleton stories published by TGR to 11 - putting him "at the head of the quantity class for our fiction writers." But, more importantly, Corey notes, these two selections "show one of America's best seriocomic authors at the height of his varied strengths." Also included in the Singleton feature is "A Holy Impropriety: the Stories of George Singleton" by William Giraldi.
The Weales feature includes "Being Out Front at American Theater: An Interview with Gerald Weales" by Stephen Corey and "American Theater Watch, 1977-2010" - excerpts from decades of Weales annual feature. Corey introduces these selections he made from over 400 pages of Weales's contributions to the magazine.
Lois Roma-Deeley sent the following description: "Where is the place for the women writer within AWP and within the greater literary community? The women's caucus discusses this as well as continuing inequities in creative writing publication and literature. In addition, issues centering on cultural obstacles in the form of active oppression, stereotypes, lack of access to literary power structures, historical marginalization of women's writing, issues and perspectives and the diverse voices of women will explored. Networking opportunities."
The mission of the AWP Women's Caucus is the following:
--to expand networking opportunities for women writers
--to recognize the contributions of women writers nationally and internationally
--to enhance understanding of the relationship between gender and creative writing
--to expand literary and cultural dialogue to encompass all genres of creative writing specific to women writers
--to encourage an open forum for dialogues about feminist literary perspectives
--to support education about the contributions of women writers
--to support women writers on local, national, and global levels
--to advocate for equity in creative writing for all
Friday, January 14, 2011
The PIO Outreach Manager works as part of a team to accomplish a number of goals and objectives for the Center. They include:
• Plan the growth and implementation of the program.
• Build relationships with school administrators, districts, teachers, professional organizations, and students and their families.
• Create new systems and revise existing ones for overall program efficiency and documentation.
• Promote opportunities for collaboration with other organizations.
• Oversee and promote PIO public events.
• Assist the PIO staff with defining the goals for and expanding the various PIO curriculum.
• And act as an ambassador of the program and the Center.
For a complete job description and instructions on how to apply, visit PIO's Get Invovled page.
Thursday, January 13, 2011
In the introduction, Ann Filemyr writes: "Twenty-first century Native American literature is vibrant and evolving. It invites us into the creative lives and ideas of writers whose cultures are demonstrating an incredible capacity for cultural survivance against all odds."
Art, poetry, and prose contributors include: Ungelbah Daniel-Davila, Anna Nelson, Ruben Santos, Paige Buffington, Nathan Romero, Vernon Begay, Sara Marie Ortiz, Alice M. Azure, Ann Filemyr, Jamie Figueroa, Celeste Adame, Autumn Gomez, Evelina Zuni Lucero, and Marcia Smith.
Cover Image: "Timeless" by Marcia Smith
Recently featured publications include:
Tom Kirby Light Passage, with inspiration for his work drawn from extensive travels throughout Europe, Southeast Asia, Japan and North Africa. "Tom’s work is distinctly modern yet deeply influenced by past masters, most importantly, Carravagio. His work is a synthesis of expressionistic and minimalist influences."
Art alive! A Fresh Approach to Teaching the Basics: The Teaching Techniques of Sally Bartalot
With work by almost 100 artists, Visual Journeys: Art of the 21st Century edited by Nina Mihm and Mary Carroll Nelson is a publication of The Society of Layerists in Multi-Media, an international group of artists sharing a holistic world view. The thought that unites the society is, "We are all connected. There exists a oneness and unity to everything, everyone, and the whole.” This philosophical premise distinguishes it from other art societies that are based on a single medium.
Wednesday, January 12, 2011
From the editors: "If the phrase 'working class' conjures vintage images of lumberjacks and Rosie the Riveter [R.I.P.], it’s time to reboot your brain for the twenty-first century. This issue of working-class stories casts a fresh light on the absurdity, banality, and redemption of contemporary wage-slavery. Join us for a shift at the circus, the Outback Steakhouse, a Minnesota dairy farm, a Plaid Pantry convenience store, and more."
Profits from the sale of this issue will be donated to the strike fund of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union.
Tuesday, January 11, 2011
The anthology (at 302 pages) includes stories by Sarah Cornwell, Jefferson Burson, Trent Hergenrader, Kim Goldberg, Richard Wolkomir, Alexander Weinstein, Jennifer Griffin Graham, Vishwas R. Gaitonde, Susannah Mandel, Andrew Hook, John Brantingham, John Zackel, Thoraiya Dyer, William Alexander, Daniel Brugioni, Dallas Woodburn, Nick Jackson, Kevin Frazier, Joseph R. Quinlan, M.Lamaga de Sanchez, N.D. Segal, Lawrence Buentello, Jeffrey Greene, and Roderick B. Overaa as well each each of the four "cover" images by artists Alyson Lamanes, Dan Ruhmanty, Adam Yeater, and Yael Degany.
"From the audience recently, where I sat at the downtown public library in Kansas City, a man asked the visiting speaker, Joyce Carol Oates, how she managed to write her many books all in longhand,as she just had revealed. 'My mind thinks faster than my hand can write,' said the man. 'I need a computer keyboard to keep up with my thoughts.' A general assent seemed to puff across the audience.
"The question highlighted a feature — call it a value — of literary art, not always or easily acknowledged: Literature slows us down. Here was an author, Ms. Oates, emblematic in our culture for productivity, who had just baffled the crowd by her adherence to a human-scale, physical scratching out of one sentence after another, although she happens to do so, as she pointed out, hour after hour, day after day. Of her slow method, she made a joke, citing Shakespeare, who worked in longhand, of course, and, yes, it might be said that his mind was pretty quick.
"Shakespeare, let’s admit, might have worked by computer or Tweets if he could have, but the point has been made by the work, itself. It holds up. It rewards patience."
The full Fall 2010 issue editorial is available online.
After a "smashingly successful" third year, Descant presents The BARRACUDA, their latest anthology of student-written stories, poems, and personal essays documenting the success of Toronto's first-ever ongoing writers-in-schools program.
Monday, January 10, 2011
Guest edited by Deb Olin Unferth, the first issue, Fall 2010, includes an interview with Orlando Menes, poetry by Brian Barker and Doug Ramspeck, and fiction by Patrick Dacey. Also featured are reviews by Matthew Ladd, "To a Green Thought," an annual column from Garth Greenwell, and Marginalia - recommendations from contributing and advisory editors.
Not only publishing poetry, PostPoetry is open to a wide range of forms and styles utilizing "quickened language (Epic poetry, diary-parts, comments, essays, plays with thoughts, experimental and absurd texts) that offers a new approach to the political and social landscape of the last century and the present."
PostPoetry does not set any thematic limits, though in future issues "will put a concrete political event or a statement that can be discussed in the centre of PostPoetry" as a way to give writers "the chance to say what you have to say."
In this first issue, writers include Arno Abendschön, Kyle Austin, Gary Beck, Stephanie Bognar, Nahshon Cook, Steve Coffman, Kristian Goldmund Aumann, Marc Nikolas Freund, Gregory Gilbert Gumbs, Charles Johnson, Paul Lomax, Francis Raven, Christian Gabriel Riedl, Clemens Schittko, Wolfgang Uster, and Henry Whittlesey.
Photographers and Artists include Aurélien Huyghe, Katrin Jahn, Sharon Lenger, Francis Raven, Thomas Schlereth, Jennifer Stahlschmidt, Kaspar Steffen, Hadas Tapouchi, and Karsten Wilms.
Henry F. Tonn, a reviewer for NewPages, has a piece featured in this section in which he recounts the story of WWII veteran Richard Daughtry's visit to the Buchenwald concentration camp after the US occupation. Tonn clearly and specifically details Daughtry's harrowing encounter with "freed" prisoners whose bodies and minds were so ravaged by their ill-treatment that they would not live to enjoy their freedom.
Also included are works by Donald Anderson, Christopher Lee Miles, Terry P. Rizzuti, William Childress, Joseph Giannini, Rick Christman, David Abrams, Tim Skeen, Jason Poudrier, Dario BiBattista, Benjamin Simon, Allan Garry, H. Palmer Hall, Greg McBride, Jason Armagost, Adam King, John Balaban, Sonja Pasquantonio, Brian Turner, Benjamin Busch, Kevin Siedlarz, Troy Walker, Horace Coleman, and Pit Menousek Pinegar.
The cover image for the issue is most stunning: "Blood Trail" a digital photograph taken by Benjamin Bush in Ar Ramadi, Al Anbar Province, Iraq (2009). "This is an insurgent's footprint on a sidewalk, left in blood, as he fled from a failed attack on a U.S. Marine position in Ar Ramadi. He died 27 steps from this one. The photographer took this photograph on the morning afterward."
Friday, January 07, 2011
Thursday, January 06, 2011
Wednesday, January 05, 2011
The Neighborhood Writing Alliance has launched a search for a new Program Director/Associate Editor of the Journal of Ordinary Thought. Applications will be accepted through January 17, 2011 for an experienced and enthusiastic candidate with a strong commitment to community-based writing and publishing.
Jellyfish Magazine - poetry
Tapestry - poetry
Raft - spoken-word poetry, fiction, essays, and book reviews
Barely South Review - poetry, fiction, nonfiction
Thysia - poetry, creative nonfiction, fiction, art
Psychic Meatloaf – poetry
The Susquehanna Review - undergraduate poetry, fiction, nonfiction
Polari Journal – LGBTIQ short stories, poetry, essays, one act plays/scripts, reviews
Soundzine - poetry, fiction, music, art, photography, readings
Otis - poetry, prose, music, visual art, video
Under the Sun – national print nonfiction mag based out of Tennessee Tech
The New Guard – new print lit mag
Another Chicago Magazine - poetry, fiction, nonfiction
North American Review - poetry, fiction, nonfiction
Independent Publishers & University Presses
Argos Books – poetry, translations, hybrid, collaborations
Magic Helicopter Press
Spooky Girlfriend Press
Mindmade Books – poetry chapbooks
ExquisiteDisarray – mainly poetry from North Western (particularly WA) writers
Writing Conferences, Workshops, Retreats, Centers, Residencies & Book & Literary Festivals
Susquehanna University’s Undergraduate Literature & Creative Writing Conference
Summer Advanced Writers Workshops - Sponsored by Susquehanna University’s Writers Instituted and it is for High School students in grades 11 & 12
Podcasts, Video, Audio
Center for the Art of Translation - Audio
And from Sarah Crow: Read Excerpts From Snooki's Book, Prepare to Have Mind Blown
"Faulkner, Hemingway and Fitzgerald may be widely acknowledged as America's preeminent literary talents, but none of them have gotten down with The Situation in a hot tub. This is where Nicole 'Snooki' Polizzi enters the equation.
"The Jersey Shore star's first novel, A Shore Thing, is scheduled for release this week and early buzz has contenders for the National Book Award shaking in their boots."
And then Crow goes on to compare lines from Polizzi's book with writing by Hemingway, Fitzgerald, Steinbeck, Didion, and Faulkner.
At least it's been worth the laugh.
With some content available online, this inaugural print issue includes a review of Isabelle O'Connell's new album Resevoir, a conversation with violist Kim Kaskashian, poetry by Julia Gordon-Bramer and Kelli Allen, an excerpt from the novel Saint Monkey by Jacinda Townsend, silk screen prints on paper (reproduced in full color) by Ellen Baird, non-fiction by Beth McConaghy, and B&W photograms by Vanessa Woods.
Submissions are open for fiction, personal essay, poetry, visual art, and reviews (books, articles, biographies, catalogues, profiles, DVDs, CDs) with full guidelines available on the WAQ website.
[Pictured: The Blessed Imelda silk screen prints on paper by Ellen Baird]
Tuesday, January 04, 2011
Monday, January 03, 2011
The 2011 Nelligan Prize for Short Fiction is now open March 11, 2011 (postmark)
In addition to its regular content, issue 10 of PMS features the work of Hamilton and six of the Afghan women - Roya, Seeta, Shogofa, Meena Y, Freshta, and Tabasom.
Each issue will also include an introductory essay by an established author, poet, artist, songwriter, etc. who speaks of Twain's influence on his or her art or life.
The magazine is available as PDF download as well as in print.
The first issue includes an opening essay by Pulitzer Prize-winner Ron Powers. Other contributors include: Alec Binyon, Salita S. Bryant, Rachelle L. Escamilla, Richard Garey, Judy Lee Green, Cindy Lovell, Marsha Mentzer, Rosanna Osborne, Dawn Potter, Karen Schubert, Julia Meylor Simpson, Patty Somlo, A.D. Wiegert, Earl J. Wilcox, Melissa Scholes Young, Elizabeth Schumacher, and Dusty Zima.
Saturday, January 01, 2011
"We so easily doubt the things we love. While it is often those who don't read poetry who distrust its motives or dismiss any notion of its utility, many writers and serious readers of poems . . . also wonder what good poems can really amount to, if they really can be enough. Poets are accused of not being political enough. Poets are accused of being too political and not timeless enough. Poets are accused of hiding in their stanzas and not being civic enough. Poems are accused of being too plain and poems are accused of being too cloudy and unclear, of deliberately hiding their meanings. I'd argue that all such fussing at least belies that we acknowledge some underlying importance, and thus usefulness, in poetry. Others agree: Hayden Carruth chides, 'Why speak of the use of poetry? Poetry is what uses us,' and Frost famously has it that any 'little form' (and we can read here, poetry) should be 'considered for how much more it is than nothing.'
"But still, why should we care about a poem about an owl, or the drift of pollen, or chickens in the street, or ageing drywall, or tinnitus? Well, for the same reasons we care about a poem about the recent oil spill, or a poem about perfidy in Washington DC, or a poem about war and the television's witness. William Carlos Williams asserted, in his oft-repeated maxim, that we come to poems not for the usual news, but for something less tangible, with mortal stakes. I think what he did not say is that we come to poems for the world itself, not just the human headlines, and that ignoring the world around us always has mortal stakes."
The full text of Perry's editorial is only available in print.