Archive | March, 2010

“Pacifier” by X. J. Kennedy

[private]her night thoughts


My baby wails. That I may rest

I offer him a rubber breast

And soon as waves by oil suppressed,

He quiets. An underhanded trick

Yet practical and politic-

He cries for bread.… continue reading...

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More Hits from the Bishop Jukebox

Edgar Allan Poe & The Juke Box: Uncollected Poems, Drafts, and Fragments by Elizabeth Bishop, edited and annotated by Alice Quinn. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 367 pp., $30.

continue reading...

Posted in Featured, July 2006: Elizabeth Bishop Special Issue, ReviewsComments (0)

Letters to the Editor – March 2010

Editor’s Note
The Contemporary Poetry Review is pleased to publish selected letters to the magazine, some of which have been edited for content and clarity. The editor can be contacted here.… continue reading...

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The Most Unlikely Muse: Bill Ripley

As Reviewed By: David J. Rothman
Read David Rothman’s elegy here: “Going Like Hello”

“All I want to do is have a little fun before I die.” -Bill Ripley

“All I want to do is have a little fun

Before I die,” says the man next to me

Out of nowhere, apropos of nothing.He says

His name’s William but I’m sure he’s Bill

Or Billy, Mac or Buddy; He’s plain ugly to me,

And I wonder if he’s ever had fun in his life.

continue reading...

Posted in ReviewsComments (1)

Being at Ease

Taking the Occasion by Daniel Brown. Ivan R. Dee, 2008.
Reviewed By: John Foy

In a market flooded with poetry, and so much of it so poorly made, you need a reason to pick up a new book.… continue reading...

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The Tell-Tale Line

Word Comix by Charlie Smith. Norton, 2009.

The History of Forgetting by Lawrence Raab. Penguin, 2009.

Blind Rain by Bruce Bond. Louisiana State University Press, 2008.continue reading...

Posted in EssaysComments (0)

Philip Larkin and Happiness

On “Born Yesterday”

For those familiar with Philip Larkin’s work, the title of this short essay will seem to offer a juxtaposition so improbable as to be laugh-out-loud funny-rather like that old joke staple, the tiny book titled German Humor, or the admittedly unlikely prospect of a panel at a New Formalist conference on “The Achievement of the L-A-N-G-U-A-G-E Poets.” Indeed, if we do associate the word with Larkin, we’re most likely to think of poems in which happiness is mentioned as an absence-as in the narrator’s rueful longing in “High Windows” for “everyone young going down the long slide / To happiness, endlessly.” I don’t want to suggest that Larkin’s poetry gives us glimpses of joy with anything resembling regularity.… continue reading...

Posted in Essays, May 2010: Philip Larkin Special Issue, This MonthComments (0)

An Agenda for Critics: Judgment

As Reviewed By: Jan Schreiber

The task of the critic is judgment. I hope to unravel the complexities of judgment, as it applies to works of literature, and specifically to poetry.… continue reading...

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