007.1: Rachel Moritz:: Sumac & Little House
15 March 2010
I normally dislike it when poets are compared to other poets. Flashback to 2002: I was in a poetry workshop during my MFA candidacy and one of my peers writes little else on my poem but: "This shit reminds me of Charles Wright. Send it out!" Not only was she wrong in her comparison, but I scrapped that poem for good. Flash-forward to 2005, where I am teaching a creative writing class and we're discussing Tony Hoagland's "What Narcissism Means to Me" and one of my more apt-minded students blurts out: "He reminds me of that Dean Young dude and that Ruefle lady." Though some may argue there is some truth to this young man's point, the observation has given me the jitters to this very day. However, something in Rachel Moritz's poetry reminds me of the work of Hugh Seidman. He is as important a poet as any who wrote in the last thirty years, one who cannot be pegged in the various "camps" that seemingly all poets get lumped into. I am unsure if Rachel has ever read Seidman, not that that matters either. Where Moritz and Seidman converge is in their delightful play with syntax and form.
007.2: Gillian Conoley:: A Conversation
17 March 2010
"Just in terms of sheer shape and form, I very much felt the presence of a wheel as I was writing the book, a kind of churning machine. We’re hardwired to create narratives about what happens to us during the day so we can sleep at night. And then when we sleep, we create more narratives. It doesn’t seem to be something we can stop, it’s eternal."