Berfrois

A Year Without Summer

A Year Without Summer

A vampire is a thirsty thing, spreading metaphors like antigens through its victim’s blood. It is a rare situation that is not revealingly defamiliarized by the introduction of a vampiric motif, whether it be migration and industrial change in Dracula, adolescent sexuality inTwilight, or racism in True Blood.

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I, I, I, I

I, I, I, I

The most compelling feature of William Carlos Williams’s poetry, for me, has perhaps always been the complex tango of virility and fragility that fight it out in his deeply autobiographical poetry.

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Art is long, but life is short…

Art is long, but life is short…

Image by RubyGoes From Slate: All poetry critics are on the hunt for neon-lined, essential truths about their subjects—but James has an uncanny instinct for where to look. It’s precision not just of vocabulary—of intuiting the right words to describe a tone or style—but of thought. James has mastered...

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‘What is the use’

‘What is the use’

Not everything Gertrude Stein wrote is worth calling poetry. Stein says so herself in “Poetry and Grammar,” because “for me the problem of poetry was and it began with Tender Buttons to constantly realize the thing anything so that I could recreate that thing.”

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Hip-hop is an ecosystem…

Hip-hop is an ecosystem…

I was born in 1989 at the end of hip-hop’s infancy. By the time I dropped into being, hip-hop had a Grammy and platinum records.

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Jeremy Fernando: Pink

Jeremy Fernando: Pink

An offering that might well remain in its being offered.

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Tomas Tranströmer (1931-2015)

Tomas Tranströmer (1931-2015)

For Tranströmer is ever conscious of the split between the fact of routine and a truth of the imagination.

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Filip Noterdaeme on Kenneth Goldsmith

Filip Noterdaeme on Kenneth Goldsmith

“The Body of Michael Brown”; an attempt, as it is, of an intellectual, resolute, unemotional, detached, blasé, imperious person, to cast into literature not merely his wit and arrogance, but pre-existing form and content, unaltered, regardless of convention

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Win Ca$h!

Win Ca$h!

The Big Sur Prize in Poetry honors the astonishing natural beauty of coastal central California, muse to artists such as Robinson Jeffers, Robert Louis Stevenson, John Steinbeck, Henry Miller, Carl Djerassi and Clint Eastwood.

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Has American poetry become more politically relevant lately?

Has American poetry become more politically relevant lately?

The claim for a “new” American poetry of engagement would seem to imply an earlier American poetry that lacked such engagement.

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What rhymes with Kardashian?

What rhymes with Kardashian?

Over the past few years, the art world has been throwing around the term “post-Internet” to describe the practices of artists who use the Web as the basis for their work but don’t make a big deal about it.

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Jessica Sequeira Meets Aalooran Rahman Bora

Jessica Sequeira Meets Aalooran Rahman Bora

what else is a journey around the interior of a tuk-tuk but a journey around the interior of one’s own head?

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“There could be that glimmer of collectivity”

“There could be that glimmer of collectivity”

There’s a weird way in which the novels had a relation to poetry: with 10:04 I wrote that long poem, the one that’s excerpted in the book, before I wrote the novel – but I had no idea that it was going to have a life in the novel....

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A Perfect Grill

A Perfect Grill

Della and Tatum, Sweet Pea and Packy, Ida and Cal. You met a lot of unpretentious people in Philip Levine’s spare, ironic poems of the industrial heartland.

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Andre Gerard Wins!

Andre Gerard Wins!

Congratulations to Andre Gerard of Vancouver, British Columbia, the winner of the inaugural Berfrois Poetry Prize!

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MDMA Four Times a Day

MDMA Four Times a Day

How an obscure 1980s collection might be poetry's best one-night stand.

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Eliot was growing old, Eliot was growing old…

Eliot was growing old, Eliot was growing old…

Young Eliot marks both a milestone and a turning point. First, it coincides with the 50th anniversary of his death.

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Amy Glynn: Ruin Graced

Amy Glynn: Ruin Graced

I suppose the early stage of a journey down a pharmacological rabbit hole is as good a time as any to take in the baked, surreal ruin of Hadrian’s Villa. Crumbling, desiccated, plundered, immense and ancient, the place rambled on for what seemed like miles.

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