Posts Tagged: charles simic
Poet Charles Simic may prefer the “pleasant aftertaste” of a literary amuse-bouche before bed, but when prompted about one of his favorite literary passages, he chose Walt Whitman’s “A Sight in Camp in the Daybreak Gray and Dim.” Over at the Atlantic, Simic explains why the poem moves him through the context of his experiences growing up in Belgrade during WWII:
I’m not a person who gets teary-eyed reading poetry—other people’s poetry, or my own.
Poet Charles Simic, in a piece on the NYRB blog, shares his quest for the perfect bedtime reading strategy. Simic turns to books to settle his mind for the night, but must be careful with his choices:
I read only a passage or two, and at the most a page, because if I read more than that, I’m in danger of staying up half a night.
Both Mark and I had noticed at poetry readings that whenever food was mentioned in a poem—and that didn’t happen very often—blissful smiles would break out on the faces of people in the audience. Thus, we reasoned, in a country where most people hate poetry and everyone is eating and snacking constantly, poems ought to mention food more frequently.
The 1968 Stony Brook World Poetry Conference brought together more than 100 poets of varying styles and personalities. After a boozy weekend, at the farewell party, emotions (and presumably alcohol) spilled over into a massive brawl. Writing for the New York Review of Books, Charles Simic describes the surreal scene:
As soon as the fight started, Allen Ginsberg went down on his knees and began chanting some Buddhist prayer for peace and harmony among all living creatures, which not only distracted those fighting, but also startled a few puzzled couples who had discreetly retreated into the bushes during the party and were now returning in a hurry with their clothes in disarray.
Foreign aspects sometimes have a familiar whiff, and not just to Simic fans who have seen proof of his admission that Serbian poetry has affected his own. They have a familiar whiff because a number of poets in this collection have translated Whitman, T....more
“I don’t know if you are aware of this, but our poet laureates are not called upon to write occasional poems. The position is privately endowed—originally from a fund set up by industrialist scion Arthur M. Huntington in 1936—since it is unimaginable that the Congress of the United States would ever agree to part with a penny for the purpose of promoting poetry....more
This week in New York, Charles Simic reads, Spin Mag hosts Salman Rushdie, The New York Film Festival opens, Philip Seymour Hoffman stars in Peter Sellars’ production of Othello and Robert Lepage’s “Mindblowing” Lipsynch begins at BAM.
Monday, September 28, 2009 – Sunday, October 4, 2009
Monday 9/28: Tosca....more