Joe Weil

On a Harsh Winter

April 7, 2014
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It was night: disorienting. Outside, the stars inside the snow were glittering, and you could hear snow and ice melt all around you if you listened. That was a rough winter. Every winter is rough.

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Not Done With Her Changes: A Review of Maria Mazziotti Gillan’s “The Silence in an Empty House”

April 3, 2014
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The arrogance of triumph comes to inhabit these poems. And their final meaning is nothing less than a luminous joy the poet can affirm even in the midst of loss.

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March 8, 1971

March 8, 2014
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I loved them without hope–the way it should be.

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The Writer and the Introvert go to Dinner

February 19, 2014
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I can’t stand when people “collect” their loves and hoard them. Dragons do that.

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My Favorite Dickinson Poem

February 12, 2014
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This is my favorite Emily Dickinson poem, even though it is not her best. It is the poem for which I have the most affection: “I dreaded that first Robin.”

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How the 90s Went

February 5, 2014
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As I recall people thought muffins were good for you at the beginning of the 90s, and bad for you by the end of the 90s.

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Meditations on Augustine

January 29, 2014
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In terms of revelation, this most well-reasoned church father, this prince of rhetoricians, this ghost that haunts the whole of Derrida is left weeping violently under a fig tree and allowing the chanting voice of some gender undetermined child to determine the course for the rest of his life.

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Notes from A White Working Class That No Longer Exists (or what I have learned while being in the higher realms)

January 22, 2014
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I thought since I had to witness a whole bunch of snotty poets dissect the working class poets (or lack thereof) on a thread today, I’d have some fun and brand them as they brand folks like me.

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My Kind of Tree!

January 15, 2014
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What I like best about black cherries is how ugly they are, how fully without life or merit they seem until flowering in June.

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Tips for Doing a Poetry Reading

January 9, 2014
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The poetry improves, but the presentation of it just keeps getting worse.

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In defense of the motley rather than the trans-disciplinary

December 18, 2013
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Any real learning is contingent upon judicious digression.

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The difference between a loose cannon and a free thinker

December 11, 2013
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Institutional art is an oxymoron. It’s like fat free sausage. Why bother?

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Radical Poetry

December 4, 2013
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The radical poetry of 100 years ago was not radical in terms of style. It was conventional in terms of style and this doomed much of it.

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Why ‘standards’ are the chief power of stupidity in terms of systems

November 27, 2013
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The internet revolution has taken books and publication out of the control of the gatekeepers and the prevailing standard makers. So I predict the “reform” (which is already happening) will not be related to “publish or perish” but to “get grants get prizes, and funding or perish.”

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Forgotten Poet of the Day: Denise Levertov

November 20, 2013
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I came to admire Levertov only after I was approaching forty and she had recently died. I was old enough then to appreciate her seriousness of purpose. I came to admire her the way I had Muriel Rukeyser.

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Against the cult of personality, toward communitas

November 13, 2013
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I have a vision for readings in which everyone is welcome–in which 80 year olds and teenagers, good poets and bad poets, normatives and crazies meet on equal footing because, in the ceremony of bread, in James and Buber, your “personage” is what you leave behind when you enter the temple.

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