Tuesday, December 13, 2005


I clicked in to Ploughshares today to find that David St. John edited the new issue. I was pretty excited about that, and interested to see the poems he chose. Among the poets I recognize there are Jane Hirschfeld, David Lehman, Marvin Bell, Norman Dubie, Lorca and Michael Collier. There were others I've heard of, but not read, and a bunch I've never heard of.

Just a couple days ago I put St. John's Study for the World's Body on my list of favorite 2005 poetry acquisitions. Interesting that he took a couple Norman Dubie poems, whom I also just discovered. And I was happy to see Michael Collier's name. I recently cut and paste his "Birds Appearing in a Dream" into my little poem and picture book. It was also at Ploughshares (spring 2004). Wonderful poem, and not unlike Dubie's "Hummingbirds" poem.

Here's the Collier.

Ploughshares, in my view, is the best poetry journal around. The only reason I don't subscribe to it is once a year they put out an all-fiction issue that I just don't want. If they did it the other way around, i.e. two issues of poetry and fiction and one of just poetry, I would be getting the 5-year deal. They also free up all the poetry on the website for general perusal as soon as the next issue comes out. Not the smartest business cookies in the jar. Shhhhh!

I currently subscribe to American Poetry Journal, Atlanta Review, and 32 Poems, though I haven't gotten an issue of 32 yet. I'm letting APJ run out now and trying the other two. I got Poetry for a while but let that expire, too. Usually I just make a random selection of journals when I visit the states. I got five or six this last trip: Barrow Street, goodfoot, Absinthe and a couple others that slip my mind at the moment.


Bob Hoeppner said...

Someone read a David St. John poem at the last poetry discussion group. I liked it.

I regularly buy The Hudson Review and Poetry. I subscribe to The New Yorker, but am not usually thrilled with their poetry.

SarahJane said...

How do you like Hudson Review? That's one I haven't read.
My mother also often sends me the New Yorker. Usually I read the poetry first and then the cartoons. But sometimes I read the cartoons first.
Often the poetry is great, and sometimes I wonder what's up. Now, do they take anonymous submissions there? Or they look at the name on the envelope and decide straight out?

Bob Hoeppner said...

I like the Hudson Review's articles particularly. That's how I learned about Adam Zagajewski. I usually like their poetry.

I don't know how the New Yorker picks their poems, but I suspect it's not anonymous, First, sometimes there are several poems by someone featured in a current article (e.g. John Ashbery a few issues back.) Second, the names of the poets are more consistently well-known than the poems are consistently good.

michi said...

sarah, just wanted to let you know i put a link to your blog on my blog site, hope that's okay. michi

SarahJane said...

Michi -
Of course - that's really nice of you. Once I figure out how, I hope to do some of that myself...
Cheers, Sarah

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