Saturday, August 18, 2012

The Poet Resigns: Early Notice

This is the cover of a book of my essays, due out in a few months as part of the series in Contemporary Poetics from the University of Akron Press.

It will include essays on the situation of poetry in the marketplace, poetry and politics, the real or imagined link between avant-garde aesthetics and left-wing politics, Cambridge school poetry, the post-avant, poetry and power, the question of whether poems can communicate, the attitude of language poets to academe, the New Criticism, the definition of poetry, avant-gardism in critical writing, the meaning of the manifesto, the decadence of the nationalist tradition in Irish poetry, and the state of American poetry.  There will also be essays on individual poets: Reginald Shepherd, Harryette Mullen, C.S. Giscombe, Yvor Winters, James McMichael, John Matthias, Pablo Neruda, Michael Anania, George Oppen, Robert Kroetsch, and Rimbaud.  It ends with a couple of more personal essays about what poetry has meant to me over the course of a life of reading, writing, writing about, and living with the stuff.

It should weigh in at around 300 pages, and will make a great gift for weddings, anniversaries, birthdays, bar or bat mitzvahs, religious holidays in all faiths, and for that most important of Canadian holidays, Bigfoot's birthday.

I'm currently trying to find a photo of myself in which my head looks neither like a giant pinkish egg nor a demonically grinning bearded demon effigy for use on the back cover.  Success has thus far been limited.