Monday, November 26, 2012

Hey! Update your links!!

Lemon Hound has a whole new life...see Volume 2  and keep checking back: more content added weekly.


Jonathan Ball from The Politics of Knives
Mathew Henderson “Migrant
Ange Mlinko Polymer Sonnets
Erin Moure the unmemntionable
Don Share Four Poems

Steven W. Beattie Panning For Gold: The Fate of Short Fiction in a Novelistic World
Jacob Wren from Polyamorous Love Song
Josef Kaplan from Democracy Is Not For The People
Pasha Malla An Abandoned Prologue to People’s Park

Elisa Gabbert
on The Poneme: Elliptical Machines
Catherine Owen on Muriel Ruykeyser
Wanda O’Connor on Robin Blaser

Meredith Darling on Helen Guri’s Match
Jacob Wren on Jena Osman’s Public Figures
Alan Reed on Donato Mancini’s You Must Work Harder to Write Poetry of Excellence
Aimee Wall on Kate Zambreno’s Heroines
Paul Watkins on Jan Zwicky’s Forge
Sarah Bernstein on Emily McGiffin’s Between Dusk and Night
Laura Broadbent on Jacob Spector & JP Fiorentino
*Alexander Rock on George Murray’s Whiteout
*Laura Broadbent on Lise Downe’s This Way

Daniel Zomparelli: Ermahgerd Perertry or How to Build a Language Overnight 
Chris Kraus On Grad School
Ange Mlinko Discipline
Erin Wunker on Clarice Lispector

Sue Sinclair “Poets On Beauty”:  Sonnet L’Abbe

Yaniya Lee on Frédérique Ulman-Gagné
Candice Maddy en conversation avec Steve Giasson
*note that all asterisks mark pieces that were added after the initial launch on November 23rd.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Thanks & Good Night

It's been a fantastic six years and the site, and my relationship to it, and to the Internet, and to poetry, has evolved tremendously. Thanks to all who have stopped by, commented, forwarded, and returned.

Thanks to everyone who has taken part in all of the projects, and to guest bloggers over the years. Thanks to Kate Eichhorn and BookThug for publishing Unleashed, a selection of post from this blog.

Now go fetch!

For Immediate Release -

Oh Lemon Hound we love you get up.
- Announcing the launch of

Montreal, 21 September 2012 - What was a tentative single-author blog has evolved into a multi-author site and  now a bi-monthly literary journal. As of September 21st, launches its new website and first online volume of articles, essays, reviews, and curated content.

Our new first issue includes reviews of Lisa Robertson, Leigh Kotsilidis, and Eileen Myles, interviews with Rae Armantrout, and Jen Benka, fresh poems by Dorothea Lasky, Kathryn Mockler, and Emma Healey, an excerpt of an essay from Lorri Nelson Glenn, a full essay from Lisa Robertson, Adam Sol on Karen Solie and Laura Broadbent on Erin Moure, Elisa Gabbert on the Poneme and more to roll out over the next few weeks.

If you are interested in the slice and swerve we want to tap into your workflow. Queries for reviews of any genre are welcome including art, non-fiction, fiction, poetry, academic work, online work, performance or opera. We want to see things in process, snippets of larger pieces both in the works, and canonical.

If you collect, if you glean, if you have the urge to share, if you want a little cabinet online, think about joining the crew. If you appreciate new fiction, poetry and non-fiction updated bi-monthly and tweaked weekly, bookmark us.

For queries, email us at, essay and creative queries at For more information see our masthead at

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Not Otherwise Specified...

Let me be the judge of that. You should enter this contest because I'm harsh and Les Figues rocks.

We are now accepting submissions for the Second Annual Les Figues NOS Book Contest. All entrants receive a TrenchArt Series title of choice. Deadline: September 15, 2012.

2012 Les Figues Press NOS Book Contest—
(NOS = not otherwise specified)
A prize of $1,000 and publication by Les Figues Press will be given for the winning poetry or prose manuscript. Sina Queyras will judge. Submit a manuscript of 64-250 pages with a $25.00 entry fee by September 15th, 2012. Electronic submissions only. All entrants will receive one copy of a Les Figues TrenchArt Series title of their choosing.
Eligible submissions include: poetry, novellas, prose poems, innovative novels, anti-novels, short story collections, lyric essays, hybrids, and all forms not otherwise specified.
Please note: The winning manuscript will be published in a design and format reflective of its content, i.e., it will not be part of the TrenchArt series, with its tall and slim format.
The winning manuscript will be announced in December 2012, with a fall 2013 publication date.
Manuscripts by current and past students of Sina Queyras will not be considered.

Thursday, August 02, 2012

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Essay: An Excerpt from Lissa Wolsak

An excerpt from An Heuristic Prolusion. 

~ To respond, in making linguistic pavés, to exhilarate transformation, with an art of perceiving movement, within being, within language physiques. And question...can we dispense with our proclivity to sacrificial structures?
To subtend the map via fever-chart. To approach separation itself. An enactment of otherness. To exceed speech...language intensifies in retreat from its own nocturnal noise.
I proceed…by letting develop intuitive notions and experience of order, extending to fresh fields of trans-semiotic, a priori intimacy.

To be absorbed, and to wake. These are my methods.

There is no real production, only interdependence           —Buddha

~ Phenomenology, numinosity, discrete packets of light within words, family resemblance, synchronicity, appropriation, clinamen, imaginary acts, construction, animation, rhetoric, chance/non-chance maneuver, radical energy released at the boundaries of affinity and repulsion, at the gap between conceivable and presentable. Tribo-electricity, zizz, dispersion, anagnorosis (the critical moment of recognition or discovery, especially before peripeteia ~ sudden change or falling ~ a sudden turn of events or unexpected reversal), instinct, sound…as I found it, the culturing of surprise, leaning heavily at the mouth of my mouth, in a pointing toward that which withdraws.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Kate Durbin from Anna Nicole Show


CNN: Prosecutors presented this video as evidence that Howard K. Stern conspired to keep Anna Nicole Smith in a drug stupor. Stern’s lawyers say Smith was acting for the cameras.

HOWARD: What do you think Anna? Is Riley going to be your new makeup artist? Is Riley going to be your new makeup artist? Have you found a new makeup artist? Cuz your baby. Your other one of your babies. Your baby down there. That one. Say that again. Say it again. Let me get a shot of the baby. Let me just get a shot of the baby. No. Yeah. Put it there. Okay. You think this is a good time to announce the sex of your baby. Okay. Talk to me Riley. Riley talk to me. Talk to me. For the baby? How do you know it’s not a real baby? How do you know the stork didn’t bring it last night? [Anna,] how come your butt’s wet? Just turned off the music, although it might be too late. Whole tape being usable. You’ll have to see. The camera—Why you taking it off?

RILEY, AGE 7: We’re gonna use these first, bunny. You can open your eyes. Close ‘em. Now close ‘em. I wish you could go on the waterslides. But you’re pregnant. If you’re pregnancy, your heart’s bad, if you have a broken bone, or a back condition. I read the signs! Yep. You can’t. Your other—your baby down here. Why aren’t you pooting, then, or does it hurt? She does. The clown needs some medicine. No, I don’t have some. It’s your baby. It’s your baby. The clown doesn’t need gas medicine, she needs baaaby medicine. Baby. Baby. That’s your baby kicking you. Watch this. She isn’t real. Look. She’s having brain trouble. Brain trouble. It’s fake. Look. It’s a battery baby. Bad. She’s fake. Howard, can I talk to you for a sec? She has major brain trouble. Get the screwdriver. Yes, take one battery out to prove that that’s not a real baby. Howard! I’ll go to the nursery and look, okay? It’s okay. Why don’t you bring it up? Anna, she’s fake. Look! It’s what I’m hearing, huh. It’s fake. Camera, camera. Oh my lord. And now, I couldn’t find it. I couldn’t find it. Can I do it, Anna? I’m going to play along. I’ll go get it. I’ll go get it. I’ll go get it. Can this come off? She might get hot.

ANNA: Huh? I don’t know. Oh. You said open ‘em. With a wha—for a waterpark? I wanna go. Why not. My baby’s over there sleepin. I think I just have a little gas. I think I just I think I’m having some gas trouble. It hurts and I need some gas poot stuff so I can poot it out. Huh do you have some. I need some cuz look how big this belly’s getting cuz its gas. Nu uh. It’s gas. No it’s gas. And for sure—nu uh. Eh gu and you know how when you’re having gas and you feel it and its like owwww. No. My baby’s over there. Don’t open her skin. She might die. Can’t do that. Stop it. Hu huh. Yes. I’m your mama. Hehehe. I think she peed on me. Hold her head up! She’s crying; she needs her binkie! She needs her binkie. It’s cryin. Get a her binkie; it’s cryin. Hmm. My baby whore. I’m gonna go give her her binkie cuz she don’t know how to take care of a baby. Shhh. You’re not fake. Did you put powder in her diaper. Did you put powda. Powder right here. Right that squash. The powder is this in my—by my tub. Powder. She pee pee on herself. What? Hahaha. What? Hey say mama. Want your binkie. What. I love you! You love your mama? Get you some new clothes on. What. What. What. What you sayin. Huh. Ubegububu. Hold on. Hold on. I’m gonna put you something else to wear, okay? Okay? Hey what. Do you look cute? Hehehe.

MECHANICAL BABY: Mama. Mama. Waaah. Waaah. Waaah. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Waaah. Waaah. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Waaah. Waaah. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Waaah. Waaah. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Waaah. Waaah. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama. Mama.

DISTANT MUSIC: “Angel Baby” by Rosie and the Originals

The second of two posts featuring Kate Durbin. “Anna Nicole Show” was first published in E Entertainment (Insert Press). The piece won an &Now Innovative Writing Award, and will be re-printed in the Diamond Edition of E! Entertainment, forthcoming from Insert/Blanc Press. 
Kate Durbin is a Los Angeles-based writer and transmedia artist. She is author of The Ravenous Audience (Akashic Books), E! Entertainment (Blanc Press Diamond Edition, forthcoming), and the post-conceptual fashion magazine The Fashion Issue (Wonder, forthcoming). She has also written five chapbooks, including FASHIONWHORE (Legacy Pictures) and Kept Women (Insert Press, forthcoming). Her projects have been featured in Spex, Huffington Post, The New Yorker, Specs,, AOL, Poets and Writers, TMobile's Your Digital Daily,, VLAK, Lana Turner: A Journal of Poetry and Opinion, Black Warrior Review, Joyland, berfrois, SUPERMACHINE, Drunken Boat, NPR, Bookslut, 1913, LIT, Fanzine, and The American Scholar, among others. She is founding editor of Gaga Stigmata, an online arts and criticism journal about Lady Gaga, which will be published as a book from Zg Press in 2012.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Kate Durbin: from Ravenous Audience


The Clothes

a black embroidered handbag     a pearlescent Bakelite clutch     a jewel-encrusted evening bag with a chain strap     a Lucite handbag     a clear bejeweled handbag with an embellished closure      the same bag filled with matching accessories     a red patent-leather handbag with a gold closer     an arrangement of 13 of Monroe’s bags     a wool hat with two ostrich feathers     a white wool hat with a large satin bow     two lacquered fans      a white fox-fur collar     a sable collar     a black broadtail jacket with a brown mink collar shown with a brown leather handbag     a three-quarter-length black mink coat     a three-quarter-length cheetah-print coat     a cream-colored cardigan with a two-toned mink collar and a diamenté closure     a 1954 appraisal slip valuing a black mink coat at $10,000

The Jewels

a collection of necklaces bracelets earrings and brooches   a gold necklace possibly by Paul Flato from the early 1960s the long chain is hung with stylized “lily” drops     a necklace with a diamond center stone      a jade beaded necklace     a link necklace with a square clasp      a jade beaded necklace with a gold flower clasp     a diamond necklace with a diamond and ruby pendant     a pearl necklace with a pearl and diamond pendant     a pearl necklace        a diamond Art-Deco style necklace     a pearl necklace with a flower clasp     a Blancpain diamond watch     a Marvin diamond and gold watch     gold ear clips     pearl and gold cluster earrings     pearl drop earrings     diamond and pearl cluster earrings     pearl and gold pineapple earrings     diamond and gold starburst brooches     a pearl and gold brooch     a pearl brooch     a pearl and gold pineapple brooch     a diamond and gold brooch        a diamond and gold link bracelet     a four-strand pearl bracelet with a gold clasp      a diamond and ruby bracelet     a jade and gold bracelet

The Keepsakes

an army-issue sewing kit likely given to Monroe in Korea in 1954     a typewriter belonging to Monroe with a letter to Arthur Miller’s father     the bottle of Chanel No. 5 that Melson found on Monroe’s nightstand after her death    a cookbook of Mexican and Spanish recipes along with recipes of Monroe’s     a tin box filled with stamps     three of Monroe’s cookbooks     six coins found with Monroe’s belongings     an Autobridge set     a Blockhead! game set     a hairbrush comb and mirror set     two silver candelabras      a sequined brown and tan case     a porcelain parakeet figurine     a pair of green dice     a silver tea set   a recording of the Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs song “Some Day My Prince Will Come”     a black leather stamp case     a floral china set with gold trim        a holiday calendar     a folder marked “Photographs/Stills on ‘Something’s Got to Give’”        the back of Monroe’s favorite photograph of herself which shows her standing in a jeep taken by a soldier in Korea during her U.S.O. trip there           a 1958 report card for Robert (Bobby) Miller Arthur’s son    

The Prescriptions

receipts for medications purchased by Monroe and Arthur Miller including Seconal a barbiturate and Noludar a sedative     prescription receipts from Schwab’s Pharmacy     a collage of prescription receipts     a Schwab’s receipt from May 1960     another Schwab’s receipt     more prescription receipts from Schwab’s      receipts from Fairfax Drug Company in Los Angeles      more receipts from Fairfax Drug Company and one from the Prescription Center in Beverly Hills     receipts from the Prescription Center and one from the Westside Hospital Pharmacy     a file folder with pharmacy information

The Legal Documents

a document certifying Monroe’s divorce from James Dougherty dated September 1946     a 1947 letter from Monroe to Twentieth Century-Fox     a 1949 William Morris Agency contract     another page of the contract     a telegram from Twentieth Century-Fox assistant secretary Frank Ferguson     a 1954 letter from Frank Ferguson     an unsigned contract with Ben Hecht from 1954     a contract signed by Hecht and Monroe on March 18, 1954        a 1954 letter from RCA     a 1954 letter to Jacques Chambrun        a telegram from Frank Ferguson     a 1960 sag-Theatrical Agency contract between Monroe and MCA Artists       a 1961 memo from Aaron R. Frosch     page 2 of the memo     page 3 of the memo     page 4 of the memo     page 5 of the memo     page 6 of the memo     Monroe’s birth certificate and other documents     an envelope containing the birth certificate and other materials

The first of two posts featuring Kate Durbin. *“Marilyn: Leftovers” is excerpted from The Ravenous Audience, selected by Chris Abani for the Black Goat Imprint of Akashic Books. Purchase the book on Kindle or in paperback from

Bio: Kate Durbin is a Los Angeles-based writer and transmedia artist. She is author of The Ravenous Audience (Akashic Books), E! Entertainment (Blanc Press Diamond Edition, forthcoming), and the post-conceptual fashion magazine The Fashion Issue (Wonder, forthcoming). She has also written five chapbooks, including FASHIONWHORE (Legacy Pictures) and Kept Women (Insert Press, forthcoming). Her projects have been featured in Spex, Huffington Post, The New Yorker, Specs,, AOL, Poets and Writers, TMobile's Your Digital Daily,, VLAK, Lana Turner: A Journal of Poetry and Opinion, Black Warrior Review, Joyland, berfrois, SUPERMACHINE, Drunken Boat, NPR, Bookslut, 1913, LIT, Fanzine, and The American Scholar, among others. She is founding editor of Gaga Stigmata, an online arts and criticism journal about Lady Gaga, which will be published as a book from Zg Press in 2012.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Natalie Walschots on Reviewing

LH: What do you think the purpose of a review is? If you also write about books on a blog, why? What does blogging let you do differently?

NZW: The purpose of a review, be it a book review or an album review, is to communicate with that text's potential audience, to place the text in its cultural context, and to engage with both the writer and the potential readers about the text's success.

I see two potential purposes that a review may have, and an individual review can embody one or both of these traits. First, to work as a piece of cultural criticism. This involves situating the text within it's cultural context, examining how is upholds or disrupts the status quo within that context, and analysing the cultural work that the text is doing. This can involve categorizing the text within a genre or genres, looking at the text's form and content, identifying moments of innovation and change, and otherwise providing a detailed look at how and where the text operates in the cultural landscape.

Another potential purpose of a review is to match a text with a potential audience.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Two Poems from Helen Guri



Being secret, like a leg brace from childhood.

Not having anything, to eat or worry about.

A bus transfer sailing through seven seas of air. The resting places
of lost raisins.

The lobster, boiling. Surgical procedures to revive the senses of
those born blind and deaf.

Common senselessness, the dripping sponge of it.

Emotions duned like ash from the work week’s smokestacks on a
little side table.

A sudden wind from the patio, its fairy tale.

The cryptic luck of numbers. The ulterior motives of all the objects
in a room.

My little walnut of sadness through clothing. My close-bitten peach
pit of glee. The texture of the legs on all the spiders in the room.

The bath of my senses like several tides around her, the shoal of it.

Certain gadgets reserved like Egyptian artifacts for later.

The island of plastic bottles in the Pacific that is a secret the size
of America.

The wine stain deep in the turning lane of my Pentax-squat.

Why my better half looks so steamed in all the pictures.


Two whatsits cheek by jowl in a kitchen.
She slumped over the bunion of the tuber.

As if the snow globe of the world shook
and they collided, an unlikely set –
Barbie and her jowly pug, heroine and sidekick,
kid at Christmas cradling her rare
albino coal, Madonna and infant
of an irradiated cosmos, shiny as ash.

But it was getting on supper hour.
I cooked romantically – you can guess who lost out.
I cleaned a dozen gleaming sockets
with my peeler’s plover end,
an eye, an eye, an eye.
In time a broom swept through, filtering
the little glints of sight from the tile.
Who knows what anyone sees in anything?

Helen Guri graduated from the University of Toronto’s Creative Writing program, and has taught writing at Humber College. Her work has appeared in many Canadian journals, including Arc, Descant, Event, Fiddlehead andGrain. The above poems are from Match, her first collection, shortlisted for the Trillium Book Award for Poetry. She lives in Toronto. You can read an interview with Guri here and here

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The Allen Ginsberg Project: Mind, Mouth and Page (Gertrude Stein)

AG: Yeah, I think we were talking about that at the end of the last sitting here, when somebody asked me - since Williams, what was done, since Williams, what has been accomplished in poetics? - or, what new thing has been added? - and I was talking about the practice of some poets working out of Gertrude Stein, for whom words were objects, and so it was like the building of little sculptures of words, or symphonic forms, or musical forms, or abstract forms, made out of words. Were you here for that at all?
The Allen Ginsberg Project: Mind, Mouth and Page - 28 (Gertrude Stein): [Gertrude Stein (1874-1946] Student: ["No ideas but in things" (William Carlos Williams) ] - Can you observe words that way? Like, can wor...

Friday, July 13, 2012

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

On Lisa Robertson’s Nilling

When I said in an earlier last post that I go to poetry to thinkLisa Robertson was the first poet that came to mind. Hers is a poetry that embraces doubt; that is content to extend rather than conclude, yet never drifts in the sense that Barthes describes in The Pleasure of the Text. “In the pleasant displacement of identity,” she writes, “another time keeps shaping what I will be” (16).
Nilling, Robertson’s latest, is just out from BookThug. It’s a collection of prose essays “On Noise, Pornography, The Codex, Melancholy, Lucretius, Folds, Cities, and Related Aporias.” It’s dense, and lush. Scan the pages and your vocabulary puffs up with delight.  You realize how pale poetry can be. You realize you are starved. You remember too that to create you need to be inspired. You need to have ideas. You need to tap in to the thrum of intellectual desires as much as experience the physical, note the bodily sensations. All work begins in the archive, Robertson has said, and you feel the archive here. That, and the Wordworthian contemplation before the spilling of corseted, buttressed, emotion. Only after weeks of reading does Robertson begin to write. Reflection is what we are starved for. Reaction we have in abundance.
The importance of reading. The community of books. The distinction between the ideas one is reading, and one’s response to them. This is an essential, and contentious point in contemporary poetry.

Adrienne Rich on "Easy Poetry"

Career-minded poets, expending thought and energy on producing a "publishable manuscript," on marketing their wares and their reputations, as young poets are now urged (and even trained) to do, may have little time left over for thinking about the art itself, ancient and contemporary, and why it matters -- the state of the art itself as distinct from their own poems and vitas. This shallowness of perspective shows up in reams of self-absorbed, complacent poems appearing in literary magazines, poems that begin, "In the sepia wash of the old photograph..."; poems containing far too many words (computer-driven? anyway, verbally incontinent); poems without music; poems without dissonance; brittle poems of eternal boyishness; poems oozing male or female self-hatred; poems that belabor a pattern until it becomes numbing; poems with epigraphs that unfortunately say it all; poems that depend on brand names; others that depend on literary name-dropping ("I have often thought of Rilke here...").
Adrienne Rich on editing "Best American Poetry"

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

If a poem costs nothing to write I don't want to read it

MR: Oh, sure. By my early thirties, I think I'd stopped believing I was going to succeed as a poet. It'd been years since I'd had a poem accepted anywhere, and I could tell that what I'd written up to that point was no good. It was indifferent, middling work. I knew that I didn't really know what to do as a poet. I could write semi-competent poems in a couple of different period styles, but they were exercises, nothing more. I continued to write for myself, but I was concentrating on becoming a critic — I'd entered the doctoral program at the University of Chicago and started reviewing poetry for Chicago Review, where I eventually served for a time as contributing editor. It was really because of two people — Srikanth Reddy and Oren Izenberg, both then at the University of Chicago — that I decided to knuckle down and try to be a poet again, for real this time. I showed them some of my middling attempts, and they were both honest and supportive. I remember the first poem I wrote that I thought was good. It's called "Self-titled.” I was 35 years old, had written hundreds of poems, and was only now beginning to feel like I knew what I was doing. More important, I knew what I wanted to do. I knew the sorts of poems I wanted to write and how to write them.
Tweeted the following earlier today: If a poem costs nothing to write I don't want to read it. This interview with Michael Robbins at LARB gets at what that means for me to say. Nothing, not even flarf, or conceptual poetry, or erasures, is good if it's too easy. The world is already full of empty gestures.

Also, further to my earlier posts about mentoring and supporting, contrary to popular belief, Robbins' poems were not pulled out of the New Yorker slush pile. 
Well, that's not the whole story. Briefly, I'd written to him {Muldoon} to ask a question about one of his poems, he wrote back, I asked if he'd look at some of my poems, he said they were smart, and asked to see more. This was all before he was named poetry editor of The New Yorker, but when he was, I thought there was a chance he'd notice my submissions. So it's bit misleading to say I was just plucked from the slush pile. 
Not to say they aren't worth pulling out of a slush pile, but they weren't....
He rejected the first batch I sent in. "Alien vs. Predator" was in the second batch. Then he took "Lust for Life" from the third. Since then, by the way, he's rejected everything I've submitted, like ten rejections in a row. He always writes a nice note with the rejections, and I certainly don't mind: no one's promised atThe New Yorker, and anyway, who cares. 
But that was validation in spades, yeah. Getting a poem in The New Yorker, seeing it in that font, dealing with the fact-checkers ... it's a trip, I won't deny it. I don't see any point in playing it cool, you know? I was tickled as punch. I told everyone I've ever met. I cried. And then to get a second one accepted almost immediately? No fucking way am I playing it cool.
There are people who think publishing in The New Yorker is selling out (but not when Rae Armantrout does it; love Rae, by the way); there are people who think I'm a narcissist for refusing to affect false modesty. Fuck 'em.
Indeed. I do disagree with one point though. The following:
I had been half-heartedly playing with such fragments, sort of post-Language-poetry lyric-hybrid things. I could name a hundred exemplars, but who needs the grief? Those poems are easy to write: they're easy to write badly, and they're easy to write well. 
Yes, they're easy to write badly, but not so easy to write well, though I guess it would be a matter of going through a list of many and putting them on one side or the other--not so interesting. Can one write off the entire "lyric-hybrid" thing in one swipe? I don't think so, though I agree, there are way, way, way, way, way too many easy poems out there. We're drowning in easy poetry.

Stage Door - Lucille Ball's Story 1/2

One of the greats...these are the Lucille Ball clips...

Friday, July 06, 2012

We Want Reviews: Introducing Laura Broadbent & Call For Work

"The great review is one that approaches the corpus curiously and dissectively, determining if it works and what makes it tick.” -Vanessa Place

Who wants a dull review? A good reviewer is a skilled host: ensure your guests’ enjoyment, present the fare slowly, artfully, and with flourish so it speaks for itself. Make your guests want more. Make us want more.

If Poetry is thinking made visible, reviewing is thinking about the thinking in the poetry made visible. A reader wants a review to make her think.

Look for the larger questions the book may pose. An endorsement is not a review. A review gives analysis, not an impressionistic response. Articulate the larger project of a book, rather than simply synopsize.

What are the text’s particular struggles? What is at work, and how is it working? Are there central questions? Is the work original? Important? How is the book read in its historical, political, and commercial contexts? What is its significance in its field?

Ask intelligent and hard questions while always being respectful to the text. There is a difference between respectful and hard questions and a vitriolic attack. As for the latter, the reader gets a sense of the reviewer’s beef as opposed to the meat of the text in question.

You are familiar with the text, you have read it twice, thrice or you have at least performed a close reading of a couple of poems, or you have considered the work in terms of the author’s oeuvre, or the canon within which it speaks, or you address the dialogue it begs of other canons, if applicable. Check out the list of interviews On Reviewing, also over at Constant Critic,  Poetry and Believer. We are looking for diversity, not sameness. Take downs if they can walk the talk, are welcome, as well as straight up enjoyment of the text and whatever in between you can do with style.

Like or don't like isn't the point. If you can do this in under 1500 words we want you. Queries and samples to Laura at reviewslemonhound (@) Comments on Lemon Hound closed while we're in transition. Merci. Watch out for more, and various calls.
“I argue with the work. I take it on face value and see if it stands scrutiny and thumps on the skull. Is it a fine thing among fine things of its kind? Is it a terrible thing, or is it the kind of second-rate thing that Eliot commended as that lesser version of fine from which we may learn or crib something for ourselves.” -Vanessa Place
Laura Broadbent is a writer, reader, and illustrator from Montreal. Her book OH THERE YOU ARE I CAN'T SEE YOU IS IT RAINING? won the 2012 Robert Kroetsch award and will be coming out with Snare Books in the fall. She is reviews editor at Lemon Hound.