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Arts & Society

Amid Alien Corn in the Communion of Hang

September 25, 2013
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Because I knew how Abraham had traveled under a night sky so vast, so glutted with stars and had heard God’s promise, I wept when I first read Mark Twain’s description of Huck and Jim looking up at the night sky and wondering about the origin of the stars, and I was awed by Cervantes when he had Quixote and Sancha under the same sky.

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Factory Art: 798 in Beijing

July 25, 2013
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Critics and fans of the area both describe 798 as a “culture zoo” that brings together communist kitsch, contemporary painting and art, public installation, and international commerce.

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Poetry Essay #3: Checking Out Old Loves

July 3, 2013
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Guns to the right of me! Jargon to the left of me! All volley and hold the thunder (after all, thunder may be perceived as a semiotic indicator of male patriarchy). I look at my daughter and say: “I’m so sorry, but I wanted you to exist.

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Poetry Essay #1

June 19, 2013
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Does feeling write us? Does the landscape watch us vanish without trying to understand us?

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Any Inconvenience Caused: The Heights, A Dispatch from Leh

June 15, 2013
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The donkey.
The dog: the stray and the spaniel.
The cow, the cow, and the other sad looking cow.

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Meditations of an Oaf

June 12, 2013
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Error must find a way to charm bias.

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Preliminary notes to a course on The Death of Ivan Ilyich

June 5, 2013
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This “functionary class” is co-optive, incapable of originality, grafting onto its evil and mundane tree the native “shrewdness” and greed common to the worst peasants, and the pretentiousness and faux complexity/ haughtiness of the worst nobility.

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Any Inconvenience Caused: Charmingly, A Third Time

May 30, 2013
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Delhi is hell. It is hot. It hits one in the face like the exhaust pipe of a long-haul trailer spewing thick blackness into a pristine sky. It smells like ruin.

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The Origins of My Reading Life

March 27, 2013
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I pass the cemetery in Elizabeth where all the revolutionary war heroes have a mixer with the homeless. I am vast. A book is under my coat. The stars are out.

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The Nudists by Kevin Simmonds & Nori Hara

December 17, 2012
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The Nudists mean well but don’t have meaning you can put a finger on

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Contemplation on Mercy

October 31, 2012
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Mercy, unlike good manners or social nicety, can exist in hell.

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Freedom and The Arts

October 24, 2012
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When I was young, I wanted to stain the world with my permanence which is why, I suppose I became a poet.

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On a Flannel Shirt, Which I am Grateful for

October 17, 2012
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My dad dresses like Jack Kerouac–or, rather, Jack Kerouac, and Jackson Pollack, and all those guys dress like my dad: working clothes, work boots. The difference is my father doesn’t write novels. he works 12 hour days in a paper factory, comes home to throw the ball around with me, is sometimes so tired that he falls asleep eating supper at the kitchen table.

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Poetry Monk

October 3, 2012
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Sometimes I no longer desire to teach the way I have been teaching–not because I am ungrateful, but because I wish to do a fair day’s work.

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How I Stumbled Into Teaching In The Arts

September 26, 2012
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I can talk to kids all day. They interest me. They will never pretend to like you. For that I am forever grateful.

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Nat King Cole’s Genius

September 5, 2012
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Cole does not get enough credit for his piano playing, but then again, how do you give genius enough credit?

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