“Black Light / Her Name in a Cup”: Scenes & Impressions: Reading David Dodd Lee’s Animalities

  David Dodd Lee has been there with me since the beginning—not since the beginning of my reading and loving poetry, but of my writing poetry and taking that progress seriously. Of taking poetry seriously, and the idea that there was something to be taken from poetry, to be understood, …

‘This is Not a Pipe’: The Powers of Nature & Grief over Perception & Definition: Reading Ross Gay’s Catalog of Unabashed Gratitude

  I don’t know about you, but in my mind, perception and grief are united. This is not to say that one cannot exist without the other, but only that our perceptions vary based on our state of mind—especially when we are talking about grief. On an average, typical day, …

The Waking, Danger & Consent of the Body & Love: Reading Lisa Mangini’s Bird Watching at the End of the World

  When we spend a lot of time reading poetry, I know we can become critical of the pursuit of love and the defining of boundaries in poetry—but sometimes, a poet chooses to address these exact topics, and they get everything right: they create something new, something meaningful, something entirely …

Clark Kent is a Super Hipster: The Art of Finding Beauty in the Absurd & the Mundane: Reading Shawnte Orion’s The Existentialist Cookbook

  Here I am, attempting to think of what to say, but my coffee spilled, and it made such a lovely and dark display across my table. This is the sort of mindset in which Shawnte Orion places me: an area of in-the-moment appreciation, the odd humor of something spilled …

Stages of Fear & Domestication: Reading Laura Madeline Wiseman’s Some Fatal Effects of Curiosity and Disobedience

  Click here to see my review of American Galactic. You’ve heard the stories—two children lost out in the woods, little girl in a red-hooded cloak, three little pigs—we all have. And, admittedly, I have “red” many poetry collections (whether or not intentionally) that focus exclusively on the fairy tale, …