About J. S. Renau

J. S. Renau has published poems in the Paris Review, Wallace Stevens Journal, and The Formalist. A native of Charleston, South Carolina, he currently resides in New York City.


J. S. Renau Has written the following articles:


The Rules of Subversion

Questions of Possibility: Contemporary Poetry and Poetic Form by David Caplan. Oxford University Press, 2005. As Reviewed By: J. S. Renau The most charming aspect of David Caplan’s disjointed study of poetic form, Questions of Possibility, is his even-tempered catholicity. Caplan, who teaches in the Department of English at Ohio Wesleyan University, is one of […]

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A New Literary Government?

A panel discussion with Stephen Burt, Adam Kirsch, Meghan O’Rourke, and David Orr. Moderated by Deborah Garrison. Presented by the National Book Critics Circle and Housing Works Bookstore Café, April 10, 2006 As Reviewed By: J. S. Renau Discussion among poetry critics is bound to be, ultimately, a discussion of taste, and as we all […]

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A Literary Montenegro 

A discussion of “The Christian Writer Today” 17th Annual Erasmus Lecture delivered by Dana Gioia Presented by The Institute on Religion and Public Life October 16, 2003 As Reviewed By: J. S. Renau In 1646 Richard Crashaw published Steps to the Temple, a volume of devotional poetry, in which the following gem appears: Luke 11 […]

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Risen Out of Necessity

North Street by Jonathan Galassi. New York: HarperCollins, 2000. As Reviewed By: J. S. Renau Jonathan Galassi has been on the scene for some time now, as a top-notch literary editor, a gifted translator (most notably for his rendering of Eugenio Montale), and lately, as the editor-in-chief of Farrar Straus Giroux. That North Street is […]

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“I Form the Light and Create Darkness”

The Book of Lamentations: A Meditation and Translation by David R. Slavitt, Johns Hopkins University Press, 2001. As Reviewed By: J. S. Renau As a child in a Protestant church, I was required by my elders to commit passages of the Bible to memory, and so it is in many Protestant churches that children become […]

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Posturepedic® Poetry

Cairo Traffic by Lloyd Schwartz. University of Chicago Press, 2000. As Reviewed By: J. S. Renau It would seem, after several generations of practitioners, that the American poet’s appetite for the spare, vaguely surrealistic, free-verse poem is limitless. After all, the composition of such poems takes no particular technical skill and does not make “excessive” […]

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Full Moon Fever

Reflexes from Anathapuri by K. Chandrasekharan. Writers Workshop (Calcutta, India) 2001. As Reviewed By: J. S. Renau I first came upon the poetry of K. Chandrasekharan last year while picking through an issue of Verse magazine dedicated to Indian poets writing in English. His poem “Festival Nights” is a fine creation, easily one of the best […]

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The Poetry We Deserve

Brit Lit: New Writing from the UK and Ireland (October 17, 2002) with Simon Armitage, Mimi Khalvati, Glyn Maxwell, Paul Muldoon & Pascale Petit.  A panel moderated by Todd Swift, and presented by the Council for Literary Magazines and Presses (CLMP), the Baruch Center for the Performing Arts, Rattapallax Press, and Poets House. As Reviewed […]

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Scoundrels and Saints 

To Sound Like Yourself: Essays on Poetry by W. D. Snodgrass. BOA Editions, 2002. In Radical Pursuit by W. D. Snodgrass. Harper & Row, 1977. As Reviewed By: J. S. Renau In 1977 W. D. Snodgrass published his first book-length foray into criticism, In Radical Pursuit, which began with an essay titled “Tact and the […]

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Rich in the Loss

Selected Translations by W. D. Snodgrass. BOA Editions, 1998. As Reviewed By: J. S. Renau W. D. Snodgrass occupies an odd niche in American poetry. One would think a living poet of his generation (he was born in 1926), with a Pulitzer Prize in tow and a legitimate claim to have been one of the […]

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