Thursday, April 09, 2009

The Laurel Review and Style is Joy

The Laurel Review recently published two of my poems in its Winter 2009 issue. The journal can be purchased as is specified below:

Subscriptions to The Laurel Review are $10 per year, $18 for two years.

Individual Copies: $7.00
Available Back Issues: $5.00
Chapbooks are $7.00

Make checks payable to:

GreenTower Press
Department of English
Northwest Missouri State University
800 University Drive
Maryville, MO 64468

Possibly there is an online purchase method on their website as well.

My two poems in the issue are: "Style is Joy" and "Word." I read the entire issue today, as I was locked out of my apartment for a while and had only my mailbox key (where the journals were) with me. The whole issue is very good.

One of my poems, "Style is Joy," I wrote in response to a Goodreads review of my book, AWE. I have found that most poets I know either hate or love the Goodreads site. I have no strong feeling about it whatsoever, but I do think that it must be good for something if it caused me to think about an issue regarding poetry. The issue I thought of in my poem "Style is Joy" is that some readers of poetry seem to have the idea that style is a bad thing in art, and in poetry especially. Or, more so, it seems that some readers of poetry think that some poetry can actually exist without style and thus, *get to* a more truthful or sincere emotion with so-called raw language. I think that's quite an impossible endeavor. To me, there is no such thing as raw art, especially not if it is real art. And I think the search for rawness or sincerity in art is a useless task, as art is always a combination of the real and the unreal. And the combination always makes something refined away from the truth, at least a little bit. (Dare I mention here the Dickinson line about telling the truth slant? No, I won't dare.) But I think this because I think style is joy. I hope you do, too, or that some point, you might entertain the idea.

I read with Gary Parrish, Told Colby, and Buck Downs a few weeks back at the Bowery Poetry Club and Gary Parrish was nice enough to tape record me reading "Style is Joy" for a project he is doing. Here's the link to the video of the poem:

Style is Joy

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