>> No longer at Slate, the former US Poet Laureate has a new site for discussing poetry, joining the ranks of the WordPress many (link). The current discussion centers around parallels between Edgar Allen Poe’s “Fairy-land” and (potw.org favorite) Elizabeth Bishop’s “The Man Moth”. The comments are robust and engaging. The site is certainly worth bookmarking and visiting regularly.
>> The website Rap Genius crowdsources rap annotations, allowing users to login and supplement the text for lyrics to a range of songs. It has expanded to include close cousins “rock” and poetry. Here’s a link to Shakespeare’s 18th sonnet. Annotations range from “translating” to providing greater historical context to linking to YouTube videos. It is the Internet, after all (note the phrase, “Sometime too hot” links to this video “Attack of the Sun“).
>> Going in the opposite direction is this piece from the NY Times from 2011 that worries, “Will the E-Book Kill the Footnote?“. I personally (and happily) suspect the footnote to be a hardy soul. And we haven’t seen the final iteration of the e-reader. In the meantime, sites like Grantland are keeping footnotes alive and well on the web.
>> It was, in the end, inevitable. poem.oftheweek.org is joining Twitter. Follow @poemotw to keep up with updates (at least a few a year), receive interesting links, and banter about poetry in our modern life.
>> The National Book Award has announced its longlist for poetry. Check out the works here. The winner will be announced October 16.
>> Poetry Foundation has posted a fascinating article by Ruth Graham about the life of editor Ronald Lane Latimer. Latimer (born James Leippert) published Wallace Stevens and William Carlos Williams among many other authors. According to Graham, “he disappeared from the literary scene after just a few years, switching careers, cities, and even religions several times.” Definitely worth a read.
>> There were several articles and tributes written about the Ghanaian poet, scholar, and activist Kofi Awoonor who was among those killed during the Westgate Mall attack in Nairobi on September 21-24. Here is one from the New York Times. Another from The Christian Science Monitor. A more personal recollection comes from Paula Kahumbu. An excerpt from his “Songs of Sorrow“:
Tell them their house is falling
And the trees in the fence
Have been eaten by termites
That the martels curse them.
Ask them why they idle there
While we suffer, and eat sand.
And the crow and the vulture
Hover always above our broken fences
And strangers walk over our portion.
Link Wednesday Thursday is back! Just in time for October. No promise that the links below will be timely or relevant.
>>Twitter seems to be a font of found poetry. @pentamatron joins in by creating rhymed iambic pentameter couplets out of random tweets. Here’s a delightful example:
>>Ever wonder what artifacts and furniture Emily Dickinson might have owned? You can even admire a brooch she owned that Flavorwire so drolly notes she might have worn “For dressing up to go downstairs.”
The New York Times explores the meanings (and poetics?) of the Twitter hashtag. What if Shakespeare had used Twitter? Julia Turner suggests we might have been graced with “Your face. #summerday.” Curiously, he seems to have mostly avoided hashtags altogether.