Vox Populi

Vox Populi: A Public Sphere for Politics and Poetry

Billy Clem: As My Death Approaches

I am gravely ill. Medical tests indicate that my blood and many of my internal organs now fail to perform necessary functions. My body, enervated, starving, looks and feels terrible. … Continue reading

February 22, 2017 · 11 Comments

Shirley Ann Higuchi: Suddenly What Happened to Japanese Americans 75 Years Ago Is Relevant

In May 1942, just six months into World War II, a medical doctor in the U.S. Army went to a notary in Fort Smith, Arkansas and signed over the sale … Continue reading

February 21, 2017 · Leave a comment

Adriana Ramírez: What does it mean to be a poet in the face of violence?

On Black Bodies, Metaphor, and Mourning . What roles does poetry play in response to violence? Can poets write about racialized violence without reinscribing it on others? –Susan B. A. … Continue reading

February 20, 2017 · 2 Comments

George Monbiot: Primal Thrill

Kayaking with basking sharks provides a glimpse of the wonders we could experience if our seas are rewilded. I believe we possess a ghost psyche: a set of capacities that … Continue reading

February 18, 2017 · Leave a comment

Patricia A. Nugent: Only a Nazi Should be Called a Nazi

Drumming nervously on the steering wheel, I begin to mutter to myself. “C’mon, Renee. You told me 7:45, right? Actually, you demanded I pick you up precisely at 7:45. Well, … Continue reading

February 16, 2017 · 2 Comments

Video: Facing Evil with Maya Angelou

. In this video recorded shortly after Maya Angelou’s death in 2014, Bill Moyers remembers a conference on “Facing Evil,” held in the Hill Country of central Texas. Evil was … Continue reading

February 10, 2017 · 1 Comment

Michael Simms: Muse

As a musician, he was solid and reliable, but unimaginative. His chief talent lay in being in the right band. He enjoyed drinking and taking drugs, still in the initial … Continue reading

February 5, 2017 · 3 Comments

Eva-Maria Simms: To be lovestruck, not colorblind

In his Foreword to Michelle Alexander’s book The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness, Cornel West challenges the idea of colorblindness as the driving force for … Continue reading

February 2, 2017 · 5 Comments

John Samuel Tieman: Notes on the beginning of a revolution

I had a nightmare last night. Smoke in my house. I’m confused, afraid. I finally find a glow in my basement. I never did see the flames. I call 9-1-1. … Continue reading

January 24, 2017 · 1 Comment

Nina Pick: Radical Orthography

Taking off the Caps Lock It came to me in a dream: Trump with a lower case t. It appeared in a flash as an ingenious solution, a subtle yet … Continue reading

January 19, 2017 · 1 Comment

Emily De Ferrari: In the Belly

1. In Aliquippa The mill loomed large and after dark, nightmarishly glowing red on the river road we would take before I was five to my grandmother’s sweet, warm and yeasty … Continue reading

January 19, 2017 · 3 Comments

Gerald Fleming: To My Student Kenny, Before the Inauguration of Donald Trump

Who will speak these days, if not I, if not you?             —Muriel Rukeyser . November 9, 2016  Mr. Fleming,  I can’t believe what happened last night. I am shocked, … Continue reading

January 18, 2017 · 3 Comments

Greg Thielen: Really… There is Hope

As our country’s day of mourning approaches on January 20th and, even though each day brings more troublesome news regarding his dealings, I am not so much concerned about the … Continue reading

January 12, 2017 · Leave a comment

Noam Chomsky: Why People Love To Talk About Sports

When I’m driving, I sometimes turn on the radio and I find very often that what I’m listening to is a discussion of sports. These are telephone conversations. People call … Continue reading

January 7, 2017 · 3 Comments