Two Reviews in Poets’ Quarterly

I have two reviews in the late summer edition of Poets’ Quarterly, both of which combine poetry with other obsessions of mine. Marisa Frasca’s Via Incanto: Poems from the Darkroom, as the subtitle indicates, takes photography as one of its subjects. Carrie Hunter’s Scienza Nuova, on the other hand, builds on Finnegans Wake in a language that seems to be that of a grownup Issy.

Sunday Small Stone 114

shimmer down the night, the green
breadfruit, palm, banana trees
open leaves
down
to where the coconut
crab has creeped from risen sea

the calicos hide close
to crash & foam, dry
beneath their boulders
where human hearts can’t see

I love writing small stones.

Nine Ways to Prepare for the Upcoming Semester

I’m a week away from heading back to work and two from the start of classes for the fall semester, so I thought I’d share some of what I’ve learned about how to prepare for the academic year:

  1. Stock up on non-perishable goods, everything from kitty litter to spaghetti noodles. If you have a plan to eat healthier by cooking on Sunday and freezing the meals ahead of time (for instance), make sure you have a few relatively healthy “cheat” foods so that you don’t end up eating pints of ice cream every night during the week before midterm grades are due.
  2. Sleep a lot, but don’t sleep later than the time you’re going to need to be getting up during the semester. Nap if you can.
  3. Get a haircut.
    i am beautiful boys will love me
  4. Make all the photocopies you can now, before one of your colleagues breaks the machine or the toner runs out.
  5. Practice your meeting face.
    Buffy and Willow looking confused and slightly alarmed.
  6. Get your madwoman in the attic used to being fed only twice a day. You won’t be coming home from campus to give her lunch, let alone a guilty second breakfast or linner.
  7. Make peace with the reality that you are not going to meet your summer writing goals. Decide that not meeting them shows how lofty your ambitions are. This way, you can feel superior to any colleagues who claim to have met theirs.
  8. It’s not too late to add zombies to your syllabus, especially if you have a section that might not run due to low enrollment.
    Killing zombies, from Shaun of the Dead
  9. Make a rubric for your performance during the semester. Include use of sarcasm as a category.