We at PennSound wish you a happy Thanksgiving by way of a new episode in the PennSound Podcast series. Here we feature excerpts from six poems of giving thanks. Hardly Rockwellian but we think you'll be stirred by this little grateful anthology all the same. I'm especially moved by Robert Creeley's poem here.
This is the 19th in our podcast series. For links to all the others, just go here.
Here "I" am - my avatar, Alf Fullstop - teaching modernist poetry last night to a group of folks from around the world (one from Puerto Rico, another from Hong Kong) in Second Life's virtual Kelly Writers House.
"Whenever We Feel Like It" is a new poetry series. It's put on by Committee of Vigilance members Michelle Taransky and Emily Pettit. The Committee of Vigilance is a subdivision of Sleepy Lemur Quality Enterprises, which is the production division of The Meeteetzee Institute. Yeah, yeah. There have been three readings so far, the most recent quite recent: October 21. Click here for information about all three events and audio recordings divided by poet. On October 21: Sanae Lemoine, Joshua Harmon, and Andrew Zawacki.
A few weeks ago I wrote about having invited six poets each to teach a short poem to high-school student. I commented in particular about teaching the constraints of the haiku and its possible special connection to high-school kids’ understanding of poetry today — what with their sense of extreme limits (texting, Twitter’s 140 characters, etc.).
University of Pennsylvania: PENNsound, writing.upenn.edu/pennsound and Kelly Writers House webcasts. A stellar project at Penn, PENNsound is “committed to producing new audio recordings and preserving existing audio archives.” Here you can listen to readings from 1950s to today and often find great extras and links to other exciting websites.
In her 1986 book Parts of a Wedding, Alice Notley published a poem I especially admire, called "I the People." (It was republished in Grave of Light: New & Selected Poems, 1970-2005.) The text of the poem is here.
I am the host of a new podcast series called "PoemTalk." At least we think it'll be a new series. On August 2, we recorded a pilot show and now friends and colleagues are having a listen. Once we've heard their responses, we'll decide whether we will go ahead. The plan is to produce a new show every two weeks, beginning in September. In each show I introduce and play a PENNsound recording of one poem, and then I, with three guest poet-critics, discuss it, its influences and manifestations, for about 30 minutes.
"Speakeasy" is the name given to the twice-monthly open-mic performance night at the Kelly Writers House. It's had a remarkable run for a decade. Courtney Zoffness, who now teaches creative writing at CPCW, was then an undergrad and was among Speakeasy's founders.
The Modern Language Association conference was held in Philadelphia last December ('06) and, as usual, the local newspaper feels obliged to cover it. Usually such stories devote most of the space to mockery at arcane, whacky paper topics and seem inevitably to have a jokey, anti-PC, anti-academic tone: how silly, all this.