A Poem About the Memphis Grizzlies

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Here’s a poem I wrote about the Memphis Grizzlies during last night’s game, when they beat the Oklahoma City Thunder last night to advance to the Western Conference Finals. Game Five I am watching game five, between Oklahoma City and Memphis, And thinking about poetry.  And imagining Zach Randolph as one of Odysseus’s men, glowering […]

Valentine’s Day: A Celebration of Cliches

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This Valentine’s Day, give her a compass. It’s mid-February again, and we are all forced to deal with the oppression and anxiety of everyone’s favorite made-up holiday, Valentines Day.  If there’s one thing a student of literature hates, it’s a cliché. And Valentine’s Day is a national holiday devoted to cliches.  A dozen roses?  Chocolate-dipped […]

After Apple Picking (Part Two)

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More about apple-picking.    I wrote a lot about apples in my last post.  In this post, I would simply like to take a look at “After Apple-picking” by Robert Frost.  This is a poem that meant nothing to me when I read it as a teenager.  This is a perfect example of a work that […]

A Response to “We Real Cool”

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Alas.  Sixty-six years after “We Real Cool,” white America gets the chance to respond. If you were ever a student in my English class, you read two poems–“Hope is the Thing With Feathers” by Emily Dickinson, and “We Real Cool” by Gwendolyn Brooks.  Eighth grade, eleventh grade, twelfth grade, creative writing–it doesn’t matter.  Those two […]