- October 6th, 2007
In his autobiography Straight Life, Art Pepper talked about how deeply he was influenced by John Coltrane – so much so that when he came out of prison in 1964 without his alto horns, he acquired a tenor sax. Ben Ratliff plucks the following quotation from Pepper’s book: “ ‘More and more I found myself sounding like Coltrane,’ he wrote.
- September 30th, 2007On Frank Bidart: Fastening the Voice to the Page, essays edited by Liam Rector and Tree Swenson (Univ of Michigan)
The vexing question raised by Frank Bidart’s poetry: Is the language we speak to each other, in negotiating our days, just a stream of euphemisms? Is the language of poetry any better?
- September 23rd, 2007
In “The Gateway of India,” the middle section of Paul Theroux’s new novel, Dwight Huntsinger is dispatched to Mumbai to close outsourcing deals for his company in Boston. When he returns, he is celebrated as a hero. “He had been welcomed home as though he had been in the jungle, returned from the ends of the earth, escaped the savages, the terrorists, a war zone.
- September 22nd, 2007
Dwight Garner reminded us recently that August 21 was Robert Stone’s 70th birthday and that September marks the fortieth anniversary of the publication of Stone’s first novel, A Hall of Mirrors.
- September 16th, 2007
Chagall arrived in Paris from Belorussian Vitebsk in 1911 and set up his studio in La Ruche, the now famous art colony, alongside fellow Jewish painters Modigliani and Soutine. But he always got along better with his poet friends, such as Apollinaire and Blaise Cendrars, than with other painters.
- September 10th, 2007
In Journal of the Fictive Life, Howard Nemerov took a shot across the bow of lyric poetry, reminding poets of the skills required to avoid slipping into affectation.