An Odious Comparison?

Norman Mailer once related a story he came across: Somewhere around the turn of the century, Chekhov visits Tolstoy. He takes the train to the nearest station. Let’s say it’s wintertime. He rents two horses…

Denying Adorno

I have no idea that at the same time in the United States of America, Theodore Adorno has come out with the sweeping statement that to write poetry after Auschwitz is barbaric. A meaningful, powerful…

Jack and Allen

This website is indebted in a variety of ways to Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg. For example, I’ve gotten a lot of mileage from their one-liners such as “Be in love with yr life” (JK)…

Plus ça change, plus …

How yet resolves the Governor of the town?This is the latest parle we will admit.Therefore to our best mercy give yourselvesOr, like to men proud of destruction,Defy us to our worst. For, as I am…

Inspiration for the Day (or Decade)

 If I hadn’t heard the Robert Johnson record when I did, there probably would have been hundreds of lines of mine that would have been shut down—that I wouldn’t have felt free enough or upraised…

Exploring di Prima

Dear Poet. I finally got my Walt class together… maybe you could join us as a guest speaker at some point, tell us what you thought of him. But if you are indeed interested/curious about…

Sangha of Poets

Dear Friends, As we are reading Nhat Hanh’s poems for our June session, I thought I’d share a few poems by other Zen poets in the weeks ahead. Here is one by Han-Shan, who lived…

Tolstoy Summer

A Confession and Other Religious Writings (Penguin) The Gospel in Brief: The Life of Jesus (Harper Perennial) Hadji Murat (translation by Pevear and Volokhonsky) The Kingdom of God Is within You (translated by Constance Garrett)…