James Tate, Pulitzer Prize winning poet and long time University of Massachusetts professor, died at 71. He wrote over twenty poetry collections, including The Ghost Soldiers and The Oblivion Ha-Ha.
You ... [ read more ]
British poet and journalist James Fenton has won the Pen Pinter Prize, established in honour of playwright Harold Pinter.
Previous winners of the Pinter Prize include Tom Stoppard, Carol Ann ... [ read more ]
Issue 15 Reading & Party Slideshow
Smartish Pace Issue 15 release party, May 31, 2008, at The Whole Gallery featuring Christopher Cunningham, Douglas Basford, Stephen Kampa, Lia Purpura & Terrance Wedin. Followed by music from Scout, Beans and Baby Venom (slideshow music). SP Editors in the house: Clare Banks, Traci O'Dea, Jared Fischer & Stephen Reichert.
February 16, 2012Interview conducted in August 2011
Beyond Katrina blends personal and collective memories of an event that is not too long gone from the public eye, and is still current for those living on the Gulf Coast. What are the challenges of writing about something topical, even if it has personal resonance for you the writer?Natasha Trethewey: I think the biggest challenge that I faced with writing Beyond Katrina and that particular topic was that, as you said, it is in many ways ongoing for the people who are there, and it is also a thing of contested memory. Contested memory is the hardest part of it, because I found that I was dealing with people who wanted not only to be remembered, but people on the Mississippi Gulf Coast who felt like their story was being forgotten or being subjugated beneath the other story of New Orleans and the levee break. But I was also dealing with narratives from folks who wanted to remember the aftermath in different ways, I think, for political purposes. And so there was often a narrative of Mississippi as ... [ read more ]
Issue 15 of Smartish Pace contains three of my translations from the French of poems by JacquesRéda: "The Jay," "The Milk of Dawn" (a favorite of mine), and "The Dead House." (Note that, as of this writing, the issue is not on-line; I'm referring to the print edition.)Of the other poems in the issue, I especially enjoyed quite a few:Gary J. Whitehead's "The Mouse in the House" ... [ read more ]