Bless their hearts, my department has just asked me to give the annual Gates Reading at Seattle Pacific University, this year.
This summer, it is my good fortune to accompany my colleague, the (extraordinary) poet Jennifer Maier, on Seattle Pacific University's study abroad trip to Rome
In a sense, it isn’t right to call the following errors “pet peeves,” since they are, well, errors. It’s not like they’re idiosyncratic to me; it’s not like they’re pets that I nurture, little annoyances I nurse for the pleasure of hating something. It’s just that these are the writing errors that I’m tired of pointing out. I’d like to move on to getting upset about other mistakes you make, to believe that your sins are unique to you instead of stamped out at some kind of demonic factory.
A little bit ago, I posted about my new poetry collection, 10+ years in the making and how I was ready to send it out. I'm excited, deeply humbled, a little giddy and a little scared to say that it's been picked up for publication this year by Cascade Books.
I was devastated by the Nice attacks. I don't know if it was because this has already been such a difficult year in world events, or because I was just there recently and so know the place, or because of their particularly gruesome nature, but I just can't find any words to say to myself or to anyone else about them.
Thankfully, we don't always have to say things.
I've been writing poems since I was 14 years old. At least, those are the earliest poems I've saved, or that I know anything about. It seems to me sometimes that I must have started earlier though.
When it isn’t summer, I always think of it as a magical time, but can’t always recall why. Sure, the weather is better, but does that really lend so much to my experiences? Last month we moved back to Seattle after 2 years away. It’s bliss. This is some of why.
I am taking a moment at the outset of summer to take stock of the year. Though the natural breaking point for the year is December, and though I usually do feel reflective then, as an academic, my years sheer cleanly along the school calendar’s lines, recently involving moves, new places of employ, and similar obvious points of development. So, what has happened just now?
My favorite part of last night’s American Literature lecture was talking about how Olaudah Equiano’s Interesting Narrative both reads us and revises earlier memoirs.
Can I just say that I love the peer-review process? Sure, it’s a bit cumbersome, and the timeline to publication rather long, but sometimes it’s enormously helpful.
A few years ago, I started writing children’s books about poets. My head is full of anecdotes from literary history that come up in lectures, and I started writing some of them down.
I’m presenting a paper at the Fall 2016 gathering of the North American Victorian Studies Association (NAVSA) hosted by the New College of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences at ASU on the theme of “Social Victorians.”
Only on chapter one, I’m already floored by the resourcefulness of the man, but also his principles. When coalminers staged a strike during his tenure as Chancellor of the Exchequer, he broke it by founding an anti-strikers newspaper. Then, after he’d won, he sided with the miners, steering through parliament a campaign for better wages and safety standards. Noblesse oblige.
There are many ways America could achieve a respectable system in the immediate future. I’m not a student of governance, nor a policy wonk, but these seem to me the most pressing, workable solutions.
I admire Elizabeth Barrett Browning immensely, but I’m tempted sometimes to classify her among the undead.
I read this book by Jon Ronson because Austin Kleon told me to, and I basically do whatever he says.
Here’s a little prayer by Eugenia Leigh that I found on the Poetry Society of America Website.
I was thinking of a special topics class I could offer for graduating seniors in the in English Department here at Northwest University, and came up with the following, for which I mocked up this poster design.
eople like this Paul Ford fellow, who wrote this otherwise excellent article about computer coding, are always holding up statistics like the following, presumably for our collective horror: “less than 30 percent of the people in computing are women.” We’re supposed to say: Can you imagine? That’s disgusting. etc. etc.
But man, 30%! That’s great!
In a typically delightful essay called “What I Found in my Pocket,” G.K. Chesterton refers to "municipal patriotism” as "perhaps the greatest hope of England” (91). By this curious phrase, he means not love of country per se, nor civic machinery as such, but something more like love of the neighborhood. An odd claim, don’t you think?
In class this week, we finished our reading of Faust, and buttressed our discussion thereof with a summary of sublime discourse from Longinus and Burke.
I saw this book on the shelf at the Edmonds Bookshop on my bi-monthly trip to the seaside town for tea.
And now it’s the lead story over at The Chronicle of Higher Education. The new #Wheatongate continues apace and will likely continue so to do until the decision comes down from the Board of Trustees, at which point–whatever the decision–it will all flare up again until we find someone else’s business to be aghast over, or we forget. For the most part, I actually like this convtoversy for the level of conversation it has engendered.
Favorite records of 2015