Good Poems: “Poet Warning,” by Jim Harrison

The best poems often involve compression. They create their emotional response with as few words as possible.  The poem "Poet Warning," written by Jim Harrison, is one of them: Poet Warning He went to sea in a thimble of poetry without sail or oars or anchor. What chance do I have, he thought? Hundreds of … Continue reading Good Poems: “Poet Warning,” by Jim Harrison

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Blue

My poem "Blue" was recently published in The Muddy River Review.  If I was asked what my favorite poem is of the ones I've written, this poem would be high on the list.  Here is the full text: Blue The light of the world was always blue. It found a way into the colors that … Continue reading Blue

A useful difference between simile and metaphor

We've all heard it many times before--similes compare two things through the use of "like" or "as," while metaphors identify one thing as another.  Consider these two examples: My love is like an open sky (simile). My love is an open sky (metaphor). Admittedly, these examples are trite, sentimental, and wouldn't stand a chance of … Continue reading A useful difference between simile and metaphor

The Two Coolest Books I Own

Several years ago, I lost count of how many poetry books I have (can you ever have enough?). But there's absolutely no doubt which are my favorites collections. They are always the signed copies.  Sometimes I get lucky enough to stumble into a used bookstore and find one for cheap.  This was the case once … Continue reading The Two Coolest Books I Own

The World Imagines Rain

My poem "The World Imagines Rain" appears in the March Issue of Ink in Thirds.  Here is the complete poem: The World Imagines Rain When I begin with you I mention rain, the taste of rain falling in watered air. If the weight that forms our lives could be something the world imagines, it would … Continue reading The World Imagines Rain

Risk sentimentality, unless you’re as good as Thomas Lux

If we exclude Billy Collins and Mary Oliver, Ted Kooser is probably the most most accessible and well-read poet in America today.   His advice for poets, which you can get for about four bucks used in  The Poetry Home Repair Manual, is to risk being sentimental because at least one's poetry won't be dry … Continue reading Risk sentimentality, unless you’re as good as Thomas Lux