Vox Populi

A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature

Rachel Hadas: Shouldering

The students’ questions pound relentlessly.
Dream father, bird of omen, oh tell me –
the lost, the hungry, the abandoned – who
will take care of them?

January 4, 2021 · 6 Comments

Sunnivie Brydum: 11 Better Ideas for a Country in Need of Social Change

Even nations with long histories of inequality and violence carry lessons for how to move toward what might be called a more perfect union.

January 3, 2021 · 2 Comments

Paul Christensen: The Muse of Memory

Nothing stirs but the wind that rattles rain gutters and pulls on the hinges of blistered shutters. A pair of boots has been left out on a patio of gray flagstones, the mud still clinging to their heels like forgotten promises.

January 3, 2021 · 5 Comments

Liz Kimbrough: Top Positive Environmental Stories from 2020

This year, species were brought back from the edge of extinction; interest in renewable energy surged; environmental monitoring technology improved; new protected areas were created; and a few Indigenous women leaders got some long-overdue credit and recognition.

January 2, 2021 · Leave a comment

Beth Peyton: Writing Prompt # 3 | Rhododendrons and Kangaroos

Pick up three objects from a shelf, or a mantel, or your kitchen counter and describe them in detail. Why did you choose them? What stories do they contain?

January 2, 2021 · 3 Comments

W.S. Merwin: To the New Year

our hopes such as they are
invisible before us
untouched and still possible

January 1, 2021 · Leave a comment

Video: 11 years living off-grid in an earthship house

Hélène Dubé and her partner Alain Neveu from Es-Cargo have lived off-grid in Quebec, Canada for 11 years in a self-built earthship style home made of recycled tires filled with earth and large south-facing windows.

January 1, 2021 · Leave a comment

Neil Shepard: That Sad Clapping

applause that crushes the way the singer comes back
into the song

December 31, 2020 · 5 Comments

Video: Ana Popovic | Blues Woman

Ana Popovic is widely regarded as one of the best blues performers in the world.

December 31, 2020 · 2 Comments

Peter Lake: On Republicanism, Before and After Trump

A good deal of recent commentary about the Republican Party conceives of it as a Trumpist rump devoid of any ideology save the acquisition and maintenance of power[….] This is nonsense.

December 30, 2020 · 1 Comment

Martina Reisz Newberry: Ode to Escrava Anastacia

Dear phantom,
I have nothing save love
for you.

December 30, 2020 · 1 Comment

Valerie Bacharach: Gratitude Journal

I was sure that I had failed my mother, unable to keep her in her home, as I had once promised.

December 29, 2020 · 6 Comments

Gerry LaFemina: Frisbee

Remember how effortlessly those guys caught it behind their backs or else by tapping it first from underneath so it paused in place and spun like a galaxy.

December 29, 2020 · 2 Comments

Andrew Bacevich: Reflections on Vietnam and Iraq

Virtually all Democrats and many in the media ascribe to Donald Trump full blame for the mess in which this country finds itself. Yet Americans would do well to temper their expectations of what supplanting Trumpism with Bidenism is likely to produce.

December 28, 2020 · 1 Comment

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