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When love and all its fruit come into question, you know you have a problem.

I am about to model for you a form of close reading that does not need effort so much as stealth, and curiosity, and the willingness to wrestle with angels.

[3 Poems from “62 Sonnets”]

Does poetry think with philosophy? Or might we re-pose the question: does poetry rely on philosophy to think?

[Secrets of the Garden of a Vacant House Seen in a Dream]

Perhaps it is the ends of art I hate--the way it is "valued" rather than integrated into the dynamic of being alive.

The first books I saw when I walked in were Franco Moretti’s two-volume history of the novel. I’m in paradise.

[Three Prose Poems]

A garden, like all true relationships, is a pact with loss, with effacement, and when we fear effacement, it already begins to give birth to power and envy and death inside us.

It’s always a relief to me when I see a book published by somebody outside the “poetry ghetto.”


[Psalm for Third Base]

Picasso wrote this well before Mary Ruefle started publishing books, but if his words could be an egg, Ruefle’s Selected Poems would hatch right out of it.

[What do animals dream?]

If Plato came back today and saw the workshop, craft obsessed nature of poetics, he'd give his approval, but not for reasons poets might like: Plato would approve because the stupidity of inspiration has been removed from the writing of poems.