The Page
poetry, essays, ideas
". A few weeks later, a thickish white envelope addressed in his hand thudded onto my doormat. ‘Ah,’ I thought, nervily, ‘the rebuttal.’" Gerry Cambridge on Seamus Heaney • The Dark Horse
"…Ashbery admits to a preference for the “by-ways of literature”." Anthony Howell • Fortnightly Review
"Lissa Wolsak demands the reader Walt Whitman required: an athlete—alert, engaged, willing to wrestle both angels and devils in order to grasp the poem." Henry Gould • The Critical Flame

"And what riches they are! How tempting are obscure titles like the Earl of Rochester’s Seigneur Dildoe! Or David Garrick’s Shakespearean parody Ragandjaw, in spite of the fact that according to Marshall it “provides little more than sophomoric humor and coarse entertainment.” It makes us wonder which of our own topical satires will stand the test of a couple of hundred years." Brooke Allen • Hudson Review
"To say the poems are meditations is too obvious, except that it is worth saying because such writing is rare; one must say more than that, that the way here as a record in poetic form is unique and, for anyone who has read her poems over decades now, the patient development is of something earned by a kind of stealth." David Hart on Gillian Allnut • Stride
"Perhaps it is in the final nature of something that relentlessly champions the inchoate, that it, too, will become fissiparous and febrile in this necessary book." Ian Pople on Michel Remy's surrealism • Manchester Review

"Perhaps [Andrew] Elliott’s ten-line poem, “Spring in an Ancient City: Demonstration,” shows best what he is about and what his ars poetica shares with other writers: W.G. Sebald’s Austerlitz and any number of Elizabeth Bishop’s poems come to mind. He disturbs us by burrowing, exhaustively, into the surface of phenomena—seeking what?" Beverley Bie Brahic • Boston Review
"Pretending to teach someone to write is a form of charlatanism, he believes. “If you’re giving people confidence in writing about what they know then whatever it is you’re doing it has nothing to do with poetry ... You’re providing a kind of therapy."" Geoffrey Hill • Telegraph
"Once Blake drops us off back at the Hall, a young novelist says, “I have to stop plucking my eyebrows!” “Why?” I ask. “Because I’m costing them 400 dollars a day!” she says, nervously twisting a button on her coat. “It’s taking up too much time!”" Linda Besner • Hazlitt
"With the Creative Writing Program producing as many critics as poets, there will always be someone to write a glowing review. Under such a regime, and I picture a carnival barker saying this, “E-e-everybody gets a book! And every book! gets a Sta-a-aggering review! No one can fail. Step right up!”" Asa Boxer • Encore Literary Magazine
"“Of course, coming from New Jersey and in my case from Ireland,” said Mr. Muldoon, 62, the poetry editor of The New Yorker and a professor at Princeton, “I hadn’t quite put two and two together that one needed money to buy an apartment.”" Paul Muldoon • NYT
"To whelm is to drown something; to cover it completely with water so as to destroy. To submerge it. So, for Hillman, the grind of late capitalism literally extinguishes our fires." Matt Rader on Brenda Hillman and Geoffrey G. O'Brien• Huffington Post
"The democracy of the dead is, Hill said, a force field in which poetry operates, a situation which he found encapsulated in Ezra Pound’s description of iron filings arranged by the lines of force extending from a magnet as “the rose in the steel dust”." Gabriel Roberts • Oxonian Review
"What made Enrique Juncosa’s work as a museum director unique, I think, was his relationship with fiction and poetry. He spent two or three hours reading each morning before going to work. Thus he was completely at home with the new novels and poetry coming out in English and in Spanish. He also devoted a great deal of time to writing poetry. This meant that he understood something fundamental and serious about the concept of an artist at work and the idea of the imagination, an understanding not shared by many other museum directors or curators." Colm Toibin • Irish Times
"You don’t build a culture by publishing poetry. You don’t build a culture by handing a poet $75,000 every year. You don’t build a culture out of author websites, event pages, likes and retweets. You build a culture the hard way: debating which poems and poets matter, what’s good, what’s important." Carmine Starnino • CV2
"The irony, of course, is that arguments against so-called “negative reviews” (a term I’ve never much liked) are themselves a species of negative review — and often far nastier and more personal than anything I could ever pen. On a recent Facebook thread, a female critic suggested that my review of Alice Oswald’s Memorial was the “poetry world’s version of a Twitter rape threat.”" Jason Guriel • Open Book
"Well, that’s how they taste, the xiaolongbao, those Shanghai soup dumplings, when you bite into one of those plaited little darlin’s, nippled at the top, the steamy-hot broth inside spurting into your mouth, bringing along with it the flavor of the pork, shrimp and chives stuffed inside. " August Kleinzahler • Paris Review
"Not as well known as other poets of her generation, May Swenson and her surprising inventions take us to new territory: earthly, lunar, or psychological." Alfred Corn • Poetry
"It’s hard to tell just how serious [Austin] Smith is–since he has at heart, our getting lost." Lucy Burns • Manchester Review
"Dennis [O'Driscoll] only swims in deep waters and it is a pleasure to swim along with him for a little while where the splashing of the paddlers can't be heard. He’s the best kind of elder, one who welcomes the idea-sparking friction of sincere and vigorous intellectual clash." Dave Lordan • The Stinging Fly
"The 'youth' tactic is a clearing of space. It always has been. It’s a binning of senior and threatening poets and editors in order to create a vacant space where youth can mount the stage and claim its audience. The platform on which it is done is perhaps invariably one of the ability to comprehend and cope with a changed world." Peter Riley • Fortnightly Review
"“The artist,” Cézanne said, “must avoid thinking like a writer.” By this I understand him to mean that the painter must avoid narrative in a picture, or taking sides, however briefly, for one tone against another, or offering moral truth or even ironies, or allowing mere feelings to interfere with a picture, including a portrait. It is perhaps for this reason that writers, who much of the time believe also that writers must avoid thinking like writers, have been so interested in Cézanne, and why his work and the legend of his life, as dramatised in these letters, have endured." Colm Toibin • Irish Times
"I’m sure that the fact that both poets under review are the sons of clergymen has no significant bearing on their poems, and I shall try not to mention it again." Peter Riley • Fortnightly Review
"Whether a work is true or lasting or any good is beside the point; smarm makes sure to put it beside the point. So we have an entire class of art or entertainment that relies on other art, parasitically, for its protection or certification." Tom Scocca • Gawker
"Translation (beginning with my earliest versions of [Bonnefoy's] Hier régnant désert) was an attempt to redeem myself from the academic failure which ensured that I, unlike my college friends, had no future as a professional scholar. Translation was my private poetry workshop. " Anthony Rudolf • Fortnightly Review
"At the heart of my life is the idea that I don’t ever want anything to ever change. That’s the basic tenet. This is not a very smart way to live, because that is the only thing you can’t change: that every thing is changing every minute." Lucie Brock-Broido • Guernica

"Elliptical poets try to manifest a person – who speaks the poem and reflects the poet – while using all the verbal gizmos developed over the last few decades to undermine the coherence of speaking selves. They are post-avant-gardist, or "postmodern": they have read (most of them) Stein's [Gertrude] heirs, and the "language writers," and have chosen to do otherwise. Elliptical poems shift drastically between low (or slangy) and high (or naively poetic)." David Fedo • QLRS

"I enjoy pamphlets that are self-contained, more like a concept album than a compilation of hits and filler. To have this thing that you sit down and read in half an hour that tells you a little story." JT Welsch • Interrobang?
"Are we all bound not only to acknowledge the revision, but also to acknowledge the supremacy of the revision?" David Antoine-Williams on Geoffrey Hill • Poetry & Contingency

"After reading Alexandra Oliver’s “Over a Fabergé Owl,” here’s the last thing you think: a slam poet wrote that. Weirdly, it’s also true. A slam poet wrote that." Michael Lista • National Post
"Consider a poem lurking in the pages of The New Yorker. There it is staring you in the face: Do you read it as well as it reads you? In terms of ink on paper, it does nothing more than the prose around it, but in terms of apprehension, it draws in your eye and places the poem in a rarefied position and a totally ignorable one all at once. Oh, look, it’s a precious little chit of words! What a waste of my time!" Mark Yakich • The Atlantic

New poems

Jane Routh Manchester Review

Marianne Boruch Triquarterly

James Byrne 3:AM Magazine

Louise Gluck Poetry

Larry Levis Blackbird

Billy Ramsell Irish Times

Leong Liew Geok Singapore Poetry

Les Murray Little Star

Lorna Goodison Friends of the Earth

Mark Neely AGNI

Matthew Francis Poetry Review

Vona Groarke Manchester Review

Michael Robbins Hazlitt

Nathan Slinker The Puritan

Kay Ryan Threepenny Review

Mark Levine Boston Review

Michael Symmons Roberts New Statesman

Francisco Guevara Offending Adam

Ange Mlinko Poetry

A.E. Stallings The Nation

Jim Johnstone The Walrus

Conchitina Cruz Offending Adam

Ben Downing New Criterion

John Rybicki Paris Review


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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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