Interviews - June 2016

Illness, lyric, and total contingency

Brian Teare in conversation with Jaime Shearn Coan

Photo of Brian Teare (right) by Ryan Collerd, courtesy of the Pew Center for Arts and Heritage.

Editorial note: What follows is an edited transcript of PennSound Podcast #53, an October 30, 2015, conversation between Brian Teare and Jaime Shearn Coan. Teare and Shearn Coan discuss Teare’s book The Empty Form Goes All the Way to Heaven, described by Shearn Coan as a collection that imagines “how to language what is un-languageable.” 

Sustained and heightened

Laura Mullen on 'Complicated Grief'

Note: Laura Mullen’s Complicated Grief was published by Solid Objects in November 2015. Composed of eight sections, these lyrically unsettled and unsettling prose poems take the reader across multiple modalities of romantic/sexual love (or what passes in that guise), prying open the silence and shame of love’s aftermath, or its “complicated grief.” After a preface, “Demonst(e)ration,” Mullen begins in the immediate collapse of a relationship (or several), lovers coming apart, then moves to fairy tale as cultural premise and on to Jane Eyre, archetypal Little Red and Grandma, a harrowing memoir of molestation, the toxic revenge of Ms. Havisham the jilt, and, finally, the virulent grief of another jilt, Terry Barton, who set the Colorado Hayman Fire of 2002 that killed six people and burned 138,000 acres.