Boston Review Forum: What Nature
with Timothy Donnelly and BK Fischer
“The poems collected in What Nature were written in the predawn of the Sixth Extinction Event. They were written as sea levels rose over a tenth of an inch a year. They were written as albatross on the Midway Atoll fed their young with plastic bottle caps and cigarette lighters mistaken for brightly colored squid. They were written as insect excretions collected from Thai forests formed the shellac that gives jellybeans their sheen. They were not written on Walden Pond or in the Vale of Chamouni. They were not written because poetry can save the Earth …”
Poems for Political Disaster
with Timothy Donnelly and BK Fischer
“In time of crisis, we summon up our strength,” wrote poet Muriel Rukeyser. This collection gathers poems—from the eve of the twenty- first century to the month following Trump’s election—to mark a moment of political rupture, summoning the collective strength found in the languages of resistance and memory, subversion and declamation, struggle and hope. Poetry is a counterforce. We offer these poems to readers as Rukeyser did—“not walls, but human things, human faces.”
ALSO at Boston Review: Read my introduction to our forum on Race and the Poetic Avant-Garde, featuring essays by Dorothy Wang, David Marriott, Lyn Hejinian, Prageeta Sharma, David Lloyd, Mónica de la Torre, Erica Hunt, and John Yau.
and visit the back catalogue of edited essays, including:
- “The Order Is Bullet” (Virginia Konchan on My country, tonight by Josué Guébo, translated by Todd Fredson
- Dispatches from the Land of Erasure: A forum on Arab-American poetry and the work of liberation
- “Manacled to a Whelm” (Cecily Parks on Fast by Jorie Graham
- “A Poetics of Ghosting“: A conversation between Rodrigo Toscano and Aaron Beasley
Founding Editor (with Jennifer Kronovet) of CIRCUMFERENCE: Poetry in Translation
Circumference is a journal whose mission is to support poetry in translation; primarily translations of new work from around the globe, new visions of classical poems, translations of foreign language poets of the past who have fallen under the radar of American readers, and pieces that illuminate translation as a vibrant, necessary interaction. Through our website we facilitate conversations about international literature and translation in real-time, and promote dialogues that enliven our sense of what it means to bring new work into English.
Co-Editor (with Iemanjá Brown, erica kaufman, Kristin Moriah, Conor Tomás Reed, Talia Shalev & Wendy Tronrud) of “What We Are Part Of”: Adrienne Rich Teaching at CUNY (1968-1974). Lost & Found: The CUNY Poetics Document Initiative (Series 4, Fall 2013)
In this collective effort, a team of Lost & Found editors explore Adrienne Rich’s teaching materials from her formative years during the turbulent and exhilarating student strike for Open Admissions in the late 1960s at the City University of New York. Drawing on memos, notes, course syllabi, and class exercises, the collection provides insight into Rich’s dedication, passion, and empathy as a teacher completely dedicated to her students as they take a leading role in reshaping access to higher public education.
Editor of Muriel Rukeyser’s Darwin & the Writers. Lost & Found: The CUNY Poetics Document Initiative (Series 1, Fall 2010)
Darwin & the Writers is an unpublished essay written by Muriel Rukeyser in 1959. An exercise the discovery, collection, and exposition of “meeting-places” between scientific and literary imaginations, it extends the intellectual work Rukeyser started in Willard Gibbs and The Life of Poetry. An intricate web uncovering passionate influence across disciplines, Darwin & the Writers is an exemplary instance of her method, in which she does more than locate debts owed, but excavates linked structures, the building blocks of innovative thinking pitched on relationships, feeling, and chance.