m a r g i n a l i a

notes from a creative writing PhD candidate

on reading for phd comprehensive exams

“The PhD is the best gift you will ever give yourself.” Author Roxane Gay gave us–a group of fangirling, bushy-tailed creative writing PhD candidates–this tiny morsel of encouragement last year … Continue reading

July 20, 2017 · 2 Comments

“grief calls us to the things of this world”

The morning air is all awash with angels —Richard Wilbur, “Love Calls Us to the Things of This World” The eyes open to a blue telephone In the bathroom of … Continue reading

October 5, 2014 · Leave a comment

“balloons” | a poem by sylvia plath

Since Christmas they have lived with us, Guileless and clear, Oval soul-animals, Taking up half the space, Moving and rubbing on the silk Invisible air drifts, Giving a shriek and … Continue reading

October 5, 2014 · Leave a comment

anne carson & the lyric essay – “very narrow”

               Water is best. – Pindar                Memory is of the past. – Aristotle          … Continue reading

September 21, 2014 · 2 Comments

found poetry | reframing spaces and lines to impart new meaning

A talented creative writing student of mine taught me how to write a “found” poem.  She showed me a marked-up page of Kurt Vonnegut’s Cat’s Cradle, a favorite book of hers, and then … Continue reading

June 3, 2014 · Leave a comment

frank o’hara, “to the harbormaster” (1957)

To the Harbormaster By Frank O’Hara I wanted to be sure to reach you; though my ship was on the way it got caught in some moorings. I am always … Continue reading

May 21, 2014 · Leave a comment

“meditations in an emergency” – frank o’hara

“I’ve got to get out of here.” Meditations in an Emergency Am I to become profligate as if I were a blonde? Or religious as if I were French? Each … Continue reading

May 19, 2014 · Leave a comment

sylvia plath’s “the rival”

We all know someone like this, don’t we?  Nailed it, Sylvia.   The Rival If the moon smiled, she would resemble you. You leave the same impression Of something beautiful, … Continue reading

May 19, 2014 · Leave a comment

a summer reading list

A book a week: that’s my summer reading goal.  A fast reader by nature, I can usually manage a few hundred pages a week; I read two hours a day on the … Continue reading

May 18, 2014 · Leave a comment

anne sexton’s “her kind” & sylvia plath’s “the applicant”

Plath and Sexton: beautifully haunting, confessional female poets that explore similiar themes.  The following two poems were published in the early 1960s, on the cusp of second-wave feminism. The Applicant First, are … Continue reading

May 16, 2014 · Leave a comment

“having a coke with you” by frank o’hara

Who wouldn’t want to have a coke, or spend a day looking at paintings, with the amazing Frank O’Hara?  I love this poem. Having a Coke with You is even … Continue reading

May 15, 2014 · Leave a comment

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