As I take up the task of reading and rereading these often prophetic poems, much becomes clear to me simply from the visible letters on the page—and yet I sense, too, that I cannot refuse an interpretation of what is inscribed beneath and within those letters in the invisible ink of Rich’s poetic genius.
Posts Tagged: Adrienne Rich
Over at the New Yorker, Dan Chiasson marks the publication of Adrienne Rich’s collected works with an examination of the incredible arc of her life and career. And instead of condemning her many transformations as a kind of flightiness, he reminds us how admirable it is for a person to be able to change as they learn and grow:
Perhaps no American poet who started in the mode of accommodation so abruptly broke ranks, inventing for herself a new kind of discipline whose ethical rigors demanded fresh forms.
In poetry words can say more than they mean and mean more than they say.
Over at the New Yorker, Claudia Rankine writes about the transformations Adrienne Rich underwent in search of ethics and the willful “I,” from the brief attempt at objectivity in her earliest poems to her refusal of the National Medal for the Arts, and the constant urgency and relevance to the here and now in her poetry....more
I’m spending National Poetry Month at the Millay Colony, former home of Edna St. Vincent Millay. My colleague and friend, poet and writer Jen Fitzgerald, will be writing the Mixtape column this month—and we are all lucky for it. Enjoy Jen’s robust selections and I’ll see you in May....more
If this sounds like a Women’s Lib rap, baby, it is.
For The New Republic, Michelle Dean writes a lovely and winding essay on the life and feminism of Adrienne Rich: its origins in breaking meter, discovery through therapy, her correspondence with Hayden Carruth, the suicide of her husband, and culminating in her National Book Award for Diving into the Wreck....more
When I was younger and lonelier and knew more about other people than I did about myself, I thought...more
I didn’t have time to be devastated on the day Adrienne Rich died, but I still couldn’t keep back the tears.
Like so many others, Rich was The One to me, America’s greatest living everything I ever wanted to be: a titan of poetry, an icon of feminism....more
Adrienne Rich, one of the preeminent poets of the 20th and early 21st centuries, has died at the age of 82, according to the LA Times. I don’t really have much to add–she was an amazing poet and powerful presence on the poetic scene, and her influence can be seen in the work of tons of people writing today....more