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Shooting the Skulls: Devotionals

“No skull stays silent. Each spills its neglects.” In a brilliant new sequence of sonnets, Paisley Rekdal tries, in a time of war, to find voices for the abandoned skulls unearthed on the grounds of the Colorado State Mental Institution.


“What did her eyes that gleamed with the glow of extinguished silver see as she was peering into the afterlife?” In this translation from Fady Joudah, Amjad Nasser turns his dying mother’s prayer for him–”May God light your way”–into a meditation on the nature of light itself, wondering all the while, “Is remembering my mother a pretext to write about Noor/Dao, or is writing about them a pretext to remember my mother?”

Telephone Project #1

A conversation in poems, featuring original work from Kimiko Hahn, Idra Novey, Jee Leong Koh, Catherine Barnett, Patrick Rosal, Joshua Weiner, Mihaela Moscaliuc, Dana Levin, Afaa Michael Weaver, Juliana Spahr, Stephen Burt, Peter Campion, Evie Shockley, SS [full name deleted], Matthew Zapruder, Quinn Latimer, Meghan O’Rourke, Bob Hicock, Rachel Eliza Griffiths, A.E. Stallings, Sophie Cabot Black, and Geffrey Davis.

Telephone Project #2

A conversation in poems, featuring original work from Kimiko Hahn, Aracelis Girmay, John Murillo, Roger Sedarat, Jason Schneiderman, Jennifer Kronovet, Ross Gay, H.L. Hix, A. Van Jordan, Marilyn Nelson, Allison Benis White, Kathryn Stripling Byer, J.P. Dancing Bear, Meena Alexander, Paula Bohince, Tara Betts, Kristina Jipson, Ernest Hilbert, David Yezzi, Joanne Diaz, Kazim Ali, Ed Skoog, Erika Meitner, David Caplan, Jennifer Chang, Andre Hulet, Gerald Maa, Jenny Browne, and Ross White.

Scavenger Loop

“Who would I show it so unprocessed to—” David Baker rummages through dozens of texts, finding words for his mother’s death in an America of endless manufacture, modification and forestalled decay.


“It occupies me: this errand out of narrowness.” Christina Davis‘s slender lines send the self out in search of the world, “Thru self to arrive / at selves and thru selves / the self again—”

Until The Beast Was Slain

“repurposed      rubble erect / for these     dirt counties’ / mad whelps     reluctantly / the pity funds     trickle.” Adam Tavel reconstructs the horrors of the Wicomico County Almshouse, twice obscured.

The Night Grove

“The torturer wants to know how one minute blood, one minute / snow. ” In a room where “fictive or lesser / realities kept entering,” Kerri Webster encircles the ghosts of violence, tenderness, and fear.

from To Banquet with the Ethiopians

“He’d never seen the Iliad.” Irreverent and imaginative, Philip Brady sings of Homer’s first encounter with the alphabet.

Short Takes on Long Poems, Volume 6

David Micah Greenberg, Idra Novey, Robert Archambeau, Jee Leong Koh, Joshua Rivkin, Connie Voisine, Sophie Cabot Black, Carmen Gimenez Smith, Jill McDonough, Keith Ekiss and Sarah Blake weigh in (briefly) on their favorite long poems.