The Page
poetry, essays, ideas
"Is the secret hope of poets that capitalism will fall and a new order will rise in which they are valued?" Micah Mattix • American Spectator
"But the overwhelming impression presented by [John] Beer's volume is one of travesty: a grinning juvenile rictus, a presiding spook-mask, prancing in a death-hop over the moral illusions and self-serving sentiments of a perfectly sidelined literary culture. It seems Beer is only capable of making a moral-political statement by eviscerating the pretensions of artists themselves—by revealing, by way of a mock Waste Land, the real void at the heart of poetry." Henry Gould • Critical Flame
"The time is quick: we make the poem before your eyes. It’s like the Benihana of poetry (only with fewer flashing knives, less fire, and arguably a more enduring deliciousness). The space is tight, the distance closed almost to a point that could be uncomfortable for some: too personal or too intense. You can smell us, and we can smell you." Kathleen Rooney • Poetry
"What attracts me most to the poetry to which I am attracted is the fact that it repels me right back—repels understanding, repels attention, and repels absorption in the way facts and opinions and narrative arcs tend to be absorbed." Jared White • Harp & Altar
"But much of today’s most arresting poetry spurns the dream of self-sufficiency for the drama of relation." Siobhan Phillips • Boston Review
"Not exactly Keats and Coleridge, is it?" Derek Mahon on Louis MacNeice • Carcanet
"They were frank, and could be abrasive. They were the new people. Hobsbaum was a Cambridge graduate, a student of the great and fearsome F. R. Leavis. He taught and inspired a future Mayor of London, Ken Livingstone, at Tulse Hill Comprehensive. Redgrove was already a passionate and prolific Cambridge poet. He had been a scientist, and was now a brilliantly-talented no-nonsense mystic. Bell was a little older, an unhappy West London English teacher with a love of European poetry that was requited in his own work. He had been in the army for absolutely all of the Second World War. Porter came from Brisbane, worked in a famous London bookshop, seemed to have a daunting but lightly-wom knowledge of everything, and was approachable, and was interested in you." Alan Brownjohn • TLS
"Again, it may be too much to ask Levenson to connect montage modernism, which exploits 'the resources of speed, discontinuity, and juxtaposition,' with contemporary Hollywood movies. But I can’t resist thinking how much Apollinaire would appreciate the way 21st-century films hurtle through the heights and depths of 21st-century cities from Toronto to Tokyo, Mogadishu to Mumbai." Martha Bayles • Weekly Standard
"Those of us who love [Larkin's] poems—with their characteristic amalgam of yearning and humour, elegy and euphony, apprehension and epiphany—and who regard Aubade as the greatest postwar lyric poem in English, do not love them to bits; not, at any rate, when those bits are dog-eared duds and rabbit-chewed flops." Dennis O'Driscoll • Irish Times
"I want to leave the Bank, and of course the prospect of staying there for the rest of my life is abominable to me. It ought not be necessary to say this.” Lisa Levy on TS Eliot's letters • The Rumpus
"Neither Philadelphia, where the poet lives, nor Dublin, where he was born, appears to be the locus for any of this, which could be anywhere or nowhere, a sifting and reconfiguring of a few archetypal elements." Harry Clifton on Thomas Kinsella • Irish Times
"[The Best British Poetry 2011] is a bit like The Grand National: room for some outsiders at long odds but usually won by the favourite." Angela Topping • Stride
"It is implausible that passengers are buying the Iliad to uphold Western civilisation, so why are they buying it?" Edward Luttwak • LRB
"One recognises the characteristics of Hill’s late style—the defensive attempt to disarm the reader and critic by defying them, the allusions that are so prevalent as to resemble a nervous tic, and an honest attempt to rehabilitate or redeem the sloganeering of contemporary language." Bill Coyle • Oxonian Review
"In my poetry, if the cat’s stuck behind the fridge, then I want to know what kind of fuse there is in the fridge plug and whether it wouldn’t be better rammed in the cat, not to mention a detailed chemical breakdown of the aggregate fatty acids of the whole diorama by way of segue into a stupefying speculation on the connection of credit default swaps to Congolese orgasms." Keston Sutherland in conversation with Laura Kilbride • Literateur
"The road less traveled doesn't pay for groceries." Rachel Friedman • NY Mag
"[B]oth [auditory and visual] aspects are inherent and vital to the existence of poetic form. Pure sound, as in sound poetry, or heavily acoustic poetry, as in spoken word, stand at one end of a spectrum; on the other end we find shaped poems, with their purely visual effects, crawling into the worm-hole of post-modern art that is concrete poetry." Ernest Hilbert • Contemporary Poetry Review
"[Y]ou let 123 flowers bloom but you give only two or three direct light. And then say, 'Martha, see what I told you, these flowers you got at Schwartz's just don't have the stamina and inner beauty.'" Charles Bernstein in conversation with Jane Malcolm • Jacket2
“'In this century English poetry,' [Philip] Larkin maintained, 'went off on a loop-line that took it away from the general reader.' He offers several 'reasons.' The first, 'the aberration of modernism, that blighted all the arts,' simply begs the question; the second, 'the emergence of English literature as an academic subject, and the consequent demand for a kind of poetry that needed elucidation' reflects his own rejection of modernism and his antipathy for academic criticism." Francis-Noël Thomas • Humanities
"For critics, some of his pronouncements on the 'extinction' of Arab culture, or the 'Arab mind', have an orientalist taint. Yet his translator Khaled Mattawa, an Arab American poet, sees it as measured iconoclasm." Maya Jaggi on Adonis • Guardian
"Poetry, we surmise from these introductory remarks, is essentially a teenagers' pastime. Writing and reading it can help our young people stay off the streets and express their better selves. But such self-expression, friends, has its limits: when we grow up, we must turn from poetry to things that matter - real things! Shades of the prison house, as Wordsworth put it in the great Immortality Ode, begin to close upon us. In the meantime, though, there is 'finding your voice'." Marjorie Perloff on Michelle Obama • PN Review
"[A]s we traverse the folds, the book reveals its story by accrual, through a curated experience of the artist's personal narrative placed in the context of the classical tradition in poetry, and the subjects of death and family, loss and remembrance." Lorraine Martinuik on Anne Carson • Jacket2
"More than most, Irish poets move between languages, and Mahon is an outstanding analyst of the linguistic unhousing that is so much a part of Irish tradition." Aingeal Clare • Guardian
"Art offers us not tools to master our universe but the potential to experience community, interconnectivity, wide identification—the possibility of wisdom." Heidi-Lynn Staples • Interim
"Sher Alam Shinwari, a literary critic, explains that modern Pashtun poetry is a poetry of resistance. 'Every poem created by a poet challenges the Taliban mindset,' he says, adding that more than a hundred poetry collections were published in the first seven months of 2011." Shaheen Buneri • Boston Review
"Which Poetry Editor Are You? (The following is intended for entertainment purposes only and should not be used to ascertain one’s eligibility for grants.)" Lucy Ives • Poetry
"Peters acknowledges their continuing bond but finds what she sees as Zukofsky’s sexism and superciliousness deplorable." Majorie Perloff on Lorine Niedecker • TLS
"After all, considering that we must live either in the country or in the town, the person who does not notice one or the other is more eccentric than the person who does." Virginia Woolf on Edward Thomas (1917) • TLS
"Two millennia ago, the farmer-poet Horace called his plutocratic patron – and friend - Maecenas "the shield and glory of my life". Today's Maecenases need, at least, dialogue not disdain." Boyd Tomkin • Independent

New poems

Stephen Edgar The Flea

Mark Anthony Cayanan Glitter Tongue

Jonny Reid Clinic

Alan Shapiro At Length

Paul Muldoon New Writing

Charles Jensen The Collagist

Martin Villanueva High Chair

Paul Durcan Irish Times

Jonathan Galassi Paris Review

Kristine Domingo High Chair

Dean Young Poetry

Raymond Farr Otoliths

Amy De'Ath The Claudius App

Seth Abramson The Offending Adam

Daniel Hoffman New Criterion

Medbh McGuckian Southword

Julian Stannard World Literature Today

Dana Gioia World Literature Today

AE Stalling Poetry

Maurice Riordan Molossus


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The Page is edited by John McAuliffe, Vincenz Serrano and, since September 2013, Evan Jones at the Centre for New Writing at the University of Manchester. It was founded in October 2004 by Andrew Johnston, who edited it until October 2009.
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