“On July 20th, 2003, a tour van rolled on I-5 south of Portland, OR, killing three of my friends. They were members of power-pop band The Exploding Hearts, and I’m told their story is one of the biggest “what ifs” in punk rock. I don’t know if that’s true, but I can say for certain that it’s the biggest “what if” in the lives of those they left behind.
Rock & roll, immortality, youth—whatever was shattered that day, this is what I keep.
10 fragments—10 years later…”
“… what I get a little anxious about is talking too much about motherhood. This is not to say you shouldn’t ask. But am I going to be typed as a Mommy Poet? I don’t think I am one—motherhood and politics and sunlight and sex and work and money and weather and, good god, even kittens, are all what we have always with us, so why exclude them from poems?”
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“Sharon Olds has consistently served as a sense-making machine. For 30 years and over ten volumes of poetry, she’s documented both her family of origin and the family she helped to create, exploring the tension between the two to great effect. Where relationships become complicated by violence she has transcended the victim/perpetrator binary, humanizing her subjects, and negotiating the dim territory where ideas about right and wrong conflict with lived experience. This ability to speak from a conflicted perspective has become a trademark, established in her first book, Satan Says, “I love him too, / you know… I love them but / I’m trying to say what happened to us”.”
My favorite blog to be blogged by…
“Cruz: Well, regarding the “big, mythological words living next door to convenience store words,” the idea, in other words, of incorporating both the “high” and the “low” in my work: I love to do this, have always done this, exhibit this in my own life, and am a product of this. For example, when I was a child and we didn’t have much money but still, my parents saved up so we could go to the ballet in San Francisco, my mother still brought us to museums, and they saved their money all year round so we could travel to Europe summers. So I experienced beauty and what would be considered “high culture” from a very young age despite the fact that we didn’t have much. I grew up with piles of fashion magazines on our living room floor and so I saw, early on, the possibilities: haute couture, fantasy, art, painting, literature—it was all in these European fashion magazines my mother brought home. So, though I was growing up in a Northern California beach town (beaches, bikinis, skateboarding, etc.), I had access to this other end of the spectrum.”
Lew Welch, Ring of Bone, Collected Poems.
“Lew Welch was many things; a scholar, a father, a drunk, a laborer, an adman, a madman, a friend, and an ascetic— no better description of him exists than that which came in his own vision, deep in the wilds of the Klamath Mountains, the poem after which the collection is titled:
I saw myself
a ring of bone
in the clear stream
of all of it
always to be open to it
that all of it
might flow through
and then heard
“ring of bone” where
ring is what a
A bell, we might add, also resonates. These 40 years later, Lew, you are missed.”