Hartwick College’s unique January Term (J-Term; my first!) is again starting off unconventionally, but I’m excited to be teaching an intensive month-long course on feminist poetry and poetics. The syllabus: ENGL 247 Four Modern American Poets: Adrienne Rich, Audre Lorde, Bernadette Mayer, and Rachel Blau DuPlessis.
This spring, Hartwick College and the Department of English will present the last two readings of the 2021-22 Visiting Writers Series. All readings take place at 7 p.m. in Eaton Lounge, Bresee Hall at Hartwick College in Oneonta, New York.
Admission to the readings is free and the events are open to the public. Attendees and all campus visitors must be vaccinated for COVID-19 and will be required to provide either their vaccination card or the New York State Excelsior Pass. Any visitor requiring an exception to this requirement must complete this form and receive prior approval from the College. Masks are required in all College buildings.
Krys Malcolm Belc will read on Wednesday, March 2, 2022.
Michael Peters will read on Wednesday, April 13, 2022.
For more information, visit the Visiting Writers Series webpage.
The start to this academic year is again unconventional, but feeling much closer to normal, especially owing to Hartwick College’s reopening plans. I’m again teaching two frequently taught creative writing courses and revisiting Poetry and Technology. The syllabi:
My essay, “‘Is an Archive Enough?’: Megatextual Debris in the Work of Rachel Blau DuPlessis,” has been published in Genre: Forms of Discourse and Culture 54, no. 1 (April 2021): 139–65. This issue is the first of two special issues on “Big, Ambitious Novels by Twenty-First-Century Women,” edited by Courtney Jacobs and James Zeigler. The second issue will be released in July 2021. I also have an interview with DuPlessis forthcoming in boundary 2. I’ve included an abstract of my essay below, along with a table of contents.
I am particularly proud of this essay, as I wrote it predominantly during the summer of 2020–the height of lockdown–and during which we had no childcare and I couldn’t access the library nor my campus office, including its books. Lots of people to thank, consequently, but particularly Racheal Fest, Courtney Jacobs and James Zeigler for their hard work putting this together during an incredibly difficult year, Rachel Blau DuPlessis, and Dawn Baker, Hartwick’s interlibrary loan librarian. (There are more acknowledgments on the first page of my essay.) This essay is also the second published chapter from my work in progress, Too Big to Read: The Megatext in the Twenty-First-Century. For other related work on megatexts and hyperarchivalism, see:
In the twenty-first century, digital technologies have made it possible for writers and artists to create massively unreadable works through computational and collaborative composition, what the author has elsewhere called megatexts. The ubiquity of texts appearing across media that are quite literally too big to read—from experimental novels to television, film, and video games—signals that the megatext is an emergent form native to the era of neoliberalism. But what happens to other long forms, such as the twentieth-century long poem, when written in an era of megatextuality? Rachel Blau DuPlessis’s work, including Drafts (1987–2013) and Traces, with Days (2017–), readily suggests itself as a case study for thinking through a megatextual impulse in the twenty-first-century long poem. Though her work is plainly indebted to its modernist precursors (H.D., Pound, Williams, etc.) while disavowing at every level of its composition a patriarchal will toward totality, DuPlessis’s various experiments in the long poem are also thoroughly contemporary and respond to the economic, military, political, and environmental transformations of the neoliberal era by drawing upon and producing fragmentary, megatextual debris. This essay positions DuPlessis’s work amidst a larger twenty-first-century media ecology, which includes both the megatext and the big, ambitious novel, and argues that rather than simply (and futilely) resist the neoliberal cultural logic of accumulation without end, DuPlessis hypertrophically uses the megatext’s phallogocentric form against itself in order to interrogate more broadly what it means—socially, culturally, economically—to write a long poem in the age of hyperarchival accumulation.
“Big, Ambitious Novels by Twenty-First-Century Women, Part 1,” Genre 54, no. 1 (April 2021).
Eva Hagberg, “The Pandemic Has Remade Friendship.”
Black Lives Matter
Adam Serwer, “The New Reconstruction.”
Jasmyn Wimbish and Jack Maloney, “NBA Protest, Live Updates: Schedule Announced for Resumption of Playoffs on Saturday, Sunday.”
Melissa Gira Grant, “Far-Right Militias Are Learning Impunity From the Cops.”
Hallie Golden, Mike Baker, and Adam Goldman, “Suspect in Fatal Portland Shooting Is Killed by Officers During Arrest.”
Black Lives Matter
Ishmael Reed, “America’s Criminal Justice System and Me.”
Anthony Bogues, “Black Lives Matter and the Moment of the Now.”
Colin Dayan, “Police Power and Can’t Breathe.”
Jonathan Levinson and Conrad Wilson, “Federal Law Enforcement Use Unmarked Vehicles to Grab Protesters off Portland Streets.”
Ken Klippenstein, “The Border Patrol Was Responsible for an Arrest in Portland.”
Katie Shepherd and Mark Berman, “‘It Was Like Being Preyed upon’: Portland Protesters Say Federal Officers in Unmarked Vans Are Detaining Them.”
Charlie Warzel, “50 Nights of Unrest in Portland.”
Conrad Wilson, Dirk Vanderhart, and Suzanne Nuyen, “Oregon Sues Federal Agencies for Grabbing up Protesters off the Streets.”
Gillian Flaccus, “Judge Blocks US Agents from Arresting Observers in Portland.”
I am totally humbled by the inclusion of my poems, “Dead Horse Bay” and “Archives of Winter,” in a special issue of Dispatches from the Poetry Wars: “Poetics for the More-than-Human World: An Anthology of Poetry and Commentary,” edited by Mary Newell, Bernard Quetchenbach, and Sarah Nolan. Other contributors include Rae Armantrout, Rachel Blau DuPlessis, Jane Hirshfield, Cynthia Hogue, Angela Hume, Michael McClure, John Shoptaw, Stephanie Strickland, Harriet Tarlo, Edwin Torres, and many, many others.
The issue also includes a section of commentary, reviews, and criticism, including a review of Kristin George Bagdanov’s Fossils in the Making (2019), and essays by Lynn Keller, Hogue, Cole Swensen, and (again) many others.
Here is the press release from Dispatches:
Announcement: Release of Online Anthology
POETICS FOR THE MORE-THAN-HUMAN WORLD!
We are delighted to announce the special Ecopoetry issue of Dispatches from the Poetry Wars journal, titled “Poetics for the More-than-Human World: An Anthology of Poetry and Commentary,” co-edited by Mary Newell, Sarah Nolan, and Bernard Quetchenbach. The issue offers a core sample of diverse approaches to ecologically oriented poetics, representing 150 contemporary authors from a wide range of bioregions and nations. In addition to poetry, the issue features critical commentary, interviews, a preview selection of Cognitive Ecopoetics,by Sharon Lattig, and reviews of current anthologies.
In this time of planetary challenge from changes to climate and water level, atmospheric pollution, viral scourges, and threats of mass species extinction, our interconnectedness across boundaries of nationality, ethnicity, and other sociocultural labels has been underscored by our common plight. How can we bear witness to this situation, how might we harness our fear, anger, hope, wonder, in ways that will encourage a renewed commitment to live sustainably in our shared home? May this anthology offer fresh impressions of the life of this chaotic but still resplendent planet we share. May you find pleasures, surprises, insights, and inspiration, and may some of the poems resound in you and provide sustenance and energy on your own path toward living conscientiously. Visit dispatchespoetrywars.com.
UPDATE MAY 26, 2020
“2016.05” and “2016.08,” poems from my ongoing sonnet sequence, are in the tenth-anniversary issue of the Sugar House Review.