Strangers on a Train: What Poets Can Learn from Hitchcock
This panel featured several poets, including Ralph Angel, David St. John, and LA’s own Suzanne Lummis.
Lummis praised Szymborska’s ability to create suspense in a poem, sometimes even more masterfully than Hitchcock. Both artists created effective suspense by knowing when to withhold and when to reveal key information, like the presence of a bomb, whether it be in a boy’s bag or under the table at a dinner party.
David St. John discussed layers of narrative in Hitchcock and in poetry, and particularly
by Mariel Romero-Ocaranza
Attending the AWP Conference in DC was a valuable professional experience for me because it allowed me to connect with editors from other notable journals. What made the conference truly amazing for me, however, was the opportunity to meet some of my favorite authors at several panels. From an academic standpoint, Francisco X. Alarcón, Rigoberto González and Juan Felipe Herrera’s work will all be featured in my thesis. But on a personal level, there was nothing more exciting than hearing them talk in person about their books, the value of the Latina/o voice in literature and learning about poet activists against senate bill 1070 in Arizona. Going to AWP was an invaluable experience. I invite writers, poets and grad students to go one year. You never know how the workshops, readings and panels will thrill you to the bone, or even help you in your career!
Mariel Romero-Ocaranza is a Contributing Editor at Poetry International, and a graduate student specializing in Children’s Literature.
Jen Lagedrost’s Legit Jubilation
Support for JL’sLJ is brought to you by late mornings in bed remembering. This is “Some Things Reflected”:
Attending my first AWP Writer’s Conference this year in D.C. was like hurtling into the main square bazaar of Writer Mecca, at the crossroads of Scholarship and Creativity. The book fair alone drew me to journals and organizations, from Poetry Foundation and National Endowment for the Arts to innumerable Universities’ journals and independent presses who block-print and hand-bind their own books. Among the color and racket of bright book covers, fonts, featured new poets and honored veterans of the art, was a section of the book fair called Table X. This series of tables formed a tunnel of curious writers squeezing in to lean over the creations of presses like 6X6 or Octopus, featuring accordion-fold, cardstock-torn, sheet-metal-pressed and hand-drawn ink illustrated books, from broadsides to rebound vintage matchbooks with a volume of tiny poems inside. In this muck and music of ingenuity, I found another piece of the poetry world. This piece is where creativity and craft bring the writer’s pen to the art studio. Even larger names had unique creations; McSweeney’s featured their Issue 36 as a cube wrapped in the face of a carnival ringleader’s head that opens into a collection of small books and bits of writing. Just being present in this soup of innovation further inspired within me a world of possibility for writing—and I haven’t even mentioned the panel discussions or readings of famous poets yet. My mind is still braiding together ways and works from that marketplace to weave poems into visual containers of art. Art is expression, is presentation, is sharing our human passion for the vivid.
The Poetry International crew had a great time at the AWP conference this year in DC! We enjoyed seeing all of you who came to our table. Here’s a snapshot of some of the PI staff loving life, literature, and table time.
Jen, Dean, and Monika work their table magic.