The Page
poetry, essays, ideas
"To return once more to Cassandra, [Anne] Carson envisions that the poet, like the prophet, must ‘prove to you that she is a prophet by telling you unbelievable news, which you will only believe if you already regard her as a prophet’ (‘Cassandra Float Can’). Such a tautology, as Carson calls it, could invite allegations of pushing a ‘low-stakes’ approach to writing poetry." Alexa Winik The Scores
"Elizabeth Bishop’s Complete Poems." Jenny Bornholdt NZ Poetry Shelf
"To some extent this is ground that Kennard has covered before, but Cain is an altogether darker creation, written from the doldrums between youth and middle-age (the stretch that people who don’t hate themselves call their “prime”)." Paul Batchelor New Statesman
"A chronicle of modern St. Lucia, it was also an epic of the New World, weaving from its characters’ encounters with history a deeper, vaster story on a sunken loom. On walks down the Lenape Trail near my childhood home in New Jersey, I listened for the lost Indian languages Walcott heard in the woodcutters’ pyre: “a resinous bonfire that turned the leaves brown/ with curling tongues, then ash, and their language was lost.”" Julian Lucas NYT
"“Poems are visible right now, which is terribly ironic, because you rather wish it weren’t so necessary,” [Jane Hirshfield] said. “When poetry is a backwater it means times are O.K. When times are dire, that’s exactly when poetry is needed.”" Alexandra Alter NYT
"The mother is more appealing, as she struggles to grasp her daughter’s online fame. “No, no, no, no, no, no, Mom,” Patricia [Lockwood] says regarding the viral rape poem. “You must never look at the comments.” “Do not post this on the internet,” Mom vainly commands at another point." Suzi Feay FT
"Lewis’s husband was the poet and critic Yvor Winters. I knew about and read Winters during my graduate work in English in the nineties and early aughts. But I’d never heard of Janet Lewis. Having now read two of her novels and a number of poems, this shocks me. I mean, it does and it doesn’t." Karen Solie Brick
"It’s also brave to choose NOT to speak out of your ‘identity’, though it can feel like you’re letting the side down. It’s ok not to be a ‘voice’. It’s ok to watch the shadows playing on the wall, or listen to the west wind, and quietly bring them into a poem for their own sake. It’s a Paleolithic eye that’s doing the watching, after all, evolved of the deep ongoing human journey. An ancient listening ear which is also your own. How you see and listen is part of your own self." Kathleen Jamie The Scores
"A portrait of Brodsky hangs in Baryshnikov’s pied-à-terre a few blocks away. He had asked the poet to caption it on his 40th birthday: “Our native land is wide, it’s vast. Though neither Mouse nor Cat felt like living there to see their 40th.” “It’s very witty in Russian,” Baryshnikov says. It is also deeply personal. Brodsky called the diminutive Baryshnikov “Mouse”, which in Russian sounds like Misha, Baryshnikov’s nickname. The older, larger Brodsky was “Cat”." Neil Munshi FT

"A WB Yeats Rose created for the 150th anniversary of the poet’s birth in 2015 sits in the corner of a good-sized conservatory at the side of the house. This opens on to the tiered back garden, filled with trees and colourful shrubs, from which there are good sea views." Frances O'Rourke Irish Times
"[David Jones's] In Parenthesis also reaches back and forth in history; because, as Jones puts it in the introduction, ‘at no time did one so much live with a consciousness of the past, the very remote, and the more immediate and trivial past, both superficially and more subtly.’ Dilworth recounts Jones meeting a ‘shit wallah’ carrying two full buckets. Jones commented to the man, ‘You’ve got a dirty, bloody job.’ To which the man replied, ‘Bloody job indeed. The army of Artaxerxes was utterly destroyed for lack of sanitation.’" Ian Pople The Manchester Review "Jones often wrote about “the Break”, the cultural moment somewhere around the beginning of modernity when the European world-view shifted decisively. Instead of a world where things were unique but linked by an unimaginable density of connection and cross-reference, we had created one in which things were unconnected but endlessly repeatable and where everything could be exchanged in the market for an agreed equivalent: above all, for money. Jones saw his work – both as a visual artist and as a poet – as a sustained protest against the Break and an effort to show that the older picture could, after all, be brought to life." Rowan Williams New Statesman
"Several years ago at a writers’ conference, Tate revealed another unusual feature of the poem. He was asked about his approach to revision and said flatly that he never revised. Instead, he would write a promising line and sit and wait for the next good line to come to him." John Morgan NYRB
"AE’s poem, written initially as an Easter Rising elegy, was part of a deliberate effort to build bridges between different political traditions in Ireland. A disenchanted AE resigned from the Convention in February 1918 when it became clear to him that an agreed settlement was no longer achievable." Dan Mulhall Irish Times
"Nevertheless, by the end of browsing through this heartening and life-enhancing selection, some recurrent principles do make themselves felt. Nature in some sense constantly returns. And we see what the editors mean about the re-creation of the “visceral thrill” of the first reading of a poem." Bernard O'Donoghue Irish Times
"A singer of hymns and a student of the harpsichord, her favourite poets George Herbert and Gerard Manley Hopkins and Baudelaire – was she more seventeenth-century, or nineteenth? A delayed Metaphysical or a fearless Victorian traveller in pelerine and hat and veil? She liked littorals and islands, and spent probably half her life outside the United States. She herself noted, “it is odd how I often feel myself to be a late-late Post World War I generation member, rather than a member of the Post World War II generation”, to which technically she belonged, her first book, North & South, having been published in 1946." Michael Hofmann TLS
"We ignore the misuse of language at our peril, the invasions of mind that mirror invasions of land. [Solman] Sharif shows us the consequences of that collective failure. Look demonstrates not only that language is an integral part of the military arsenal but also that poetry remains a subversive act, a refusal to submit to despair or amnesia." Eva FW Linn Critical Flame
"[Michael O'Brien's] poems are spare and exact, but everywhere they remind us of earthly abundance: “here where there is everything instead of nothing.” He liked Lady Murasaki’s answer to the Prince when he asked her why she writes: So there will never be a time when people don’t know these things happened. Michael had a special affinity for resemblances. He loved similes, echoes, and puns. The word “likeness” appears in his poems again and again." Patrick Morrissey Chicago Review
"Victor Hugo was a fine Gothicky-Romantic artist in his own right, and an innovative one too, mixing onto his palette everything from coffee grounds, blackberry juice, and caramelized onion to spit and soot, not to mention what his biographer Graham Robb tactfully terms “even less respectable materials.” Julian Barnes NYRB

New poems

Gillian Allnut The Poetry Review

Rebecca Perry The Scores

Anne Carson New Yorker

Claire Askew The Literateur

Joey Connolly The Manchester Review

Maurice Riordan The Scores

Amy Key New Statesman

Chase Twitchell Massachusetts Review

Ange Mlinko Poetry

Laura Scott PN Review

Nuar Alsadir Granta

Charles Simic Threepenny 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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