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Monday, June 26, 2006

Poetry in The News

As I was bemoaning the very lackluster way in which the major hometown newspaper presents coverage of the literary arts an then, I see this:

The Edmonton Journal commissioned several well-known local poets to write poems just for the newspaper. Each month for the next several months, the paper is publishing one of the poems illustrated by a Journal photographer and provide a biographical sketch of the poet. I am truly impressed by this. The first installment can be seen here with poet Diane Buchanan

As to our local paper, my complaint is not with the book editor, who in fact is respectable in his work, but the way the paper integrates the literary material within the paper itself a well as the amount of space dedicated to it. I'm speaking of the Kansas City Star.

Yes, the star features a weakly poem from someone local. There is never any real biographical material on the author. Just so and so lives in (insert general part of the metro area). The space provided for literary arts is quite limited (as I realize it is with most big daily papers) but sometimes we have a literary calendar and sometimes we don't. The new format of the paper is not user friendly though I admit that I very much like the feel of the newspaper stock they are using now. That is a big improvement.

High Five!!! for The Vermont Humanities Council and the Vermont Women's Fund. Together they provided for nine two-hour sessions by for novelist and Vermont Humanities Council Scholar Deborah Lee Luskin to come to the Southeast State Correctional Facility in Vermont, to encourage the creative impulse of women behind bars. (story here)

Poem in Arkansas Junior High class incites parental complaints (here) for use of "f" word.

The virtues of memorized poetry are extolled by Alice Quinn, who talks about her new book, Edgar Allan Poe and the Juke-Box. (here) I am especially interested in reading this book. It has been somewhat controversial among some who believe it is a disservice to the work of Elizabeth Bishop because it contains some of her drafts that have not been published. Honestly, that is precisely why I want to see it.

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