We are now in the full porch-swing of summer, which means Summer Poetry Salons at my beloved Lit House. In celebration of the second salon of the summer on June 24 (tomorrow!), I was given the unbelievably fun task of designing and printing a letterpress broadside for Jamaal May's poem "There Are Birds Here," a love song for Detroit.
As much I loved this poem on my first reading (and second and third), it was a particularly difficult design challenge. Don't get me wrong—there are so many ways to illustrate this poem because it is so packed with images. But to illustrate it in a way that actually adds to the text, that builds on the complex foundation set down by the poet—that is the challenge to be met. That is the challenge we always aim to meet at the Literary House Press.
So that means no birds and no buildings. For me, those are the two most obvious, but least important images in this poem. Those details are just the shell around the actual poem. But after playin…
While watching the eagerly-awaited season 2 finale of Hannibal
(one of my absolute favorite TV shows of the moment), I was happily
surprised when a vocabulary lesson emerged mid-conversation between
Hannibal Lecter and Will Graham.
Titles are hard. It's been another busy couple of months since my last update. Here's a quick recap of the fall so far:
Book News September and October were full of readings at home and in the Philadelphia area. I celebrated my dear friend Julia Kolchinsky Dasbach's book launch for her collection The Many Names for Mother. And Julia and I read with our friend Nancy Reddy for our (M)other(ship) events.
I've still got one more reading coming up. If you're near the Washington, DC area, mark your calendars for December 6 at 6:00 p.m. at Zed's Cafe in Silver Spring, MD. See you there! I visited a very welcoming English 101 class at Washington College and talked to them about Catechesis and poems and fairy tales. They were such a smart, curious, and very insightful group.
I was also lucky enough to receive two very generous book reviews for Catechesis so far this fall. Here are some highlights: This collection is a stunning pastiche, interwoven with references to Grimm…