Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Poets and Rushdie

See: Five Poets You Should Be Reading . . . I'm honored to be on this list!

(Another poet you should be reading: the guy who wrote the list, Collin Kelley.)

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Last night at Bookshop Santa Cruz I saw Ellen Bass and Phyllis Koestenbaum read. As you know from a previous post, I'm a big fan of Ellen's, and last night she did not disappoint. Her new book is brilliant, funny, and deeply moving. And her delivery makes the poems pop in the air.

I'd never before heard Phyllis. She's fascinating. It seems like she's relentless in pushing herself to try new things. She read some fragments and some very long poems.

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I'm reading The Satanic Verses. So far? Pretty damn funny, a romp. I keep thinking, someone wanted to kill him for this? Generally, I'm not big on satire (since I like my literature a bit more character-driven and sincere), but I am carried away by the sheer exuberance of Rushdie's writing.

Besides, Rushdie is visiting our campus in the fall, so I figured I better catch up . . . this novel has been gathering dust in my "published in 1988" pile.
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