The Winter of Ivan Turgenev

One winter in the finished basement of my childhood home, I went on a Turgenev tear, reading all of Ivan's novels in those black Penguin paperback versions. I didn't get much exercise down there, but I surely enjoyed the visit to Russia. Here's a poem from my first collection, The Indifferent World, about those times... …

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The Irony of Pagination in Poetry Books

Thought for the Day: A novel that is 350 pages is 350 pages; a poetry collection that is 77 pages is not 77 pages. Why? Because, with the poetry book, when you like a couple of lines, you stop and reread those couple of lines. Why? Because, with a poetry book, when you like a …

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Poems About Sickness

In the northeast, flu is running at a fevered-pitch with the highest rates we've seen in years. Luckily, I'm only dealing with the oh-so-common cold, but it's slowed me down with its favored weapon, the sinus headache. So instead of some deep, thoughtful, controversial, mind-provoking (all right, enough with the thesaurus) post, today I offer …

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Rupi Kaur vs. Ken Craft, Round-by-Round

It wasn't too long ago that I thought "Rupi Kaur" was a semi-precious jewel or a monetary unit from a faraway, exotic island. Then, wandering lonely as a cloud through the poetry section of a bookstore, I saw end caps with little books titled The Sun and Her Flowers and Milk and Honey. For some …

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The Number One Trait of a True Poet?

What is the number one trait of a true poet? Good question, and one which opens with talking points about the abstract (traits like "creativity") vs. the concrete (harder-edged stuff, like "skills"). For the sake of argument, then, let's dig in with skills. Some skills you'd like to find in an accomplished poet's toolbox might …

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Amazon, Again. Still.

Ah, Amazon dot all-is-never-calm. Because it's true what they say: The more you eat, the hungrier you get. With people, eating begets eating (thus the obesity epidemic). With corporations, jonesing money begets jonesing money (thus, in Amazon's case, the something-silly profits). I've already complained about Amazon's insatiable appetite on these pages, especially as seen through …

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Heads up for Underfoot Poetry!

  Down three rivers in the village of Pittsburgh, Tim Miller runs a smart-looking blog called Underfoot Poetry. On its pages he features a mix of new poets and old. I was honored when he approached me about featuring six of my poems on his site. As the timing of our correspondence came just as Lost Sherpa …

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