My friend Ian Cheney’s new film, THE SEARCH FOR GENERAL TSO premieres at the Tribeca Film Festival  on Sunday, April 20th at the SVA theater on W. 23rd street. It’s also playing on Monday afternoon and Thursday night if you’re Eastering on Sunday. It will be wonderful, I promise.

“I remember after a reading somebody came up to me and said, I love that political poem of yours, and my husband, who was standing next to me, said, Which one? They’re all political, and I was pleased by that. I would feel the same if she had said, ‘I love that feminist poem of yours.’ It’s a point of view, it’s a stance, it’s an attitude towards life that affects, and afflicts, everything I do.”

Carolyn Kizer

A Widow in Wintertime

by Carolyn Kizer


Last night a baby gargled in the throes
Of a fatal spasm. My children are all grown
Past infant strangles; so, reassured, I knew
Some other baby perished in the snow.
But no. The cat was making love again.

Later, I went down and let her in.
She hung her tail, flagging from her sins.
Though she’d eaten, I forked out another dinner,
Being myself hungry in all ways, and thin
From metaphysic famines she knows nothing of,

The feckless beast! Even so, resemblances
Were on my mind: female and feline, though
She preens herself from satisfaction, and does
Not mind lying even in snow. She is
Lofty and bedraggled, without need to choose.

As an ex-animal, I look fondly on
Her excesses and simplicities, and would not return
To them; taking no marks for what I have become,
Merely that my nine lives peal in my ears again
And again, ring in these austerities.

These arbitrary disciplines of mine,
Most of them trivial: like covering
The children on my way to bed, and trying
To live well enough alone, and not to dream
Of grappling in the snow, claws plunged in fur,

Or waken in a caterwaul of dying.

It was a strange, still, oppressive day…

the green lawn, the gaudy tulips, were hushed and expectant beneath the overcast sky. Somewhere a shutter creaked. Above my head, in the wicked black claws of an elm, a marooned kite rattled convulsively, then was still. This is Kansas, I thought. This is Kansas before the cyclone hits.


Donna Tartt, The Secret History

It was a strange, still, oppressive day…

the green lawn, the gaudy tulips, were hushed and expectant beneath the overcast sky. Somewhere a shutter creaked. Above my head, in the wicked black claws of an elm, a marooned kite rattled convulsively, then was still. This is Kansas, I thought. This is Kansas before the cyclone hits.


Donna Tartt, The Secret History

Consider the hummingbirds,
how they’re gussied up

and monomaniacal
as the worst (or best)
of you.

Consider the bright,
streamlined emergency
they manifest.


from “Scripture,” by Rae Armantrout

Atlas Ballroom, Bloomington

Atlas Ballroom, Bloomington

Nashville

Nashville

Malaprops Books

Malaprops Books

Asheville, NC

Asheville, NC

tristanhutchinson:

I’ve a side project publishing in 2015. I’ll have more information on it in the coming months, and the project will be up on the website soon too.

9 plays

the rolling hills and willow trees
of Carolina wait for me

Thrilled to be reading at Malaprops in Asheville, NC on Sunday.

The Wrong Ones

There are those who make us sad,
maybe not at first; maybe at first

we love them and have been waiting
to love them all our lives, but maybe

they’re really only second chances
to love those we had neglected

to love before—our mothers
and lovers, fathers and strangers—

and maybe we were right
not to love them the first time;

maybe our love was holding out
for a world of its own choosing

and those who make us sad now
make us sad because we’re loving

the wrong ones, the ones we’d hoped
would grow smaller as we walked away

instead of showing themselves again
in those we have failed to love anew.

James Tolan

Gum Wall. 

Seattle, you’re so weird. I love you.

Gum Wall.

Seattle, you’re so weird. I love you.

God in the car radio

Carrie Fisher’s heroine in “Postcards From the Edge” felt that “God was in her car radio, and He would play her songs she liked when He was happiest with her.” I’m not sure about God, but I know that when serendipity provides a perfect soundtrack to my life, I get a rare sense of both contingency and convergence.

Beth Boyle Machlan