Vox Populi

A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature

Jason Irwin: A Stillness Nearly Mineral | The poetry of Robert Gibb

A stillness which is very nearly mineral
Keeps insisting upon the essential
Loneliness with which this light is filled.

April 16, 2021 · Leave a comment

Yana Djin: The Dead Don’t Die | The Poetry of Dmitry Melnikoff

And they lie at the edge of light alone
at the place where snow never hits
Kahlo embraces Diego’s barebone
and they emanate heat.

April 3, 2021 · Leave a comment

Robert Gibb: Angels in Homestead

Pale, sentinel, their stone wings
Open behind them, they stood about
As though the afterlife meant
To impress itself upon us

December 6, 2020 · 1 Comment

Joan E. Bauer: W. Eugene Smith in Minamata, Japan 1971

Smith frames: Tomoko Uemura in Her Bath
The mother cradles Tomoko, her misshapen daughter.
Light through a dark window.
A post-modern pietà.

May 13, 2020 · 2 Comments

Jason Irwin: Landscape

See the men break through the early morning mistlike phantoms from a dream; their hat brims
pulled low, shirt sleeves rolled above elbows,
boots caked with last week’s mud.

April 16, 2020 · 2 Comments

Robert Gibb: A Paragraph for W. Eugene Smith

“The infinite mistake of Pittsburgh does not take from the fact that the set of photographs is among my finest.”

March 12, 2020 · 2 Comments

Jason Irwin: Smoke Rising

Back then to see dark clouds of smoke
rising above the housetops meant that God, in his wisdom and mercy,
was still on our side.

February 5, 2020 · Leave a comment

Michael Simms: Re-reading Christina Rossetti’s ‘In an Artist’s Studio’

The value of Rossetti’s poem lies in both the expert use of the Petrarchan sonnet, a particularly challenging form to master in English, and in the poet’s complex stance on the role of art in creating and re-enforcing images of women.

January 24, 2020 · Leave a comment

Kristofer Collins: A Poem for Michael Wurster

The only connection I felt to the mills
was to the children of a generation of flayed men
on unemployment, the storefronts boarded…

November 7, 2019 · Leave a comment

Michael Simms: Hands

Every man who works with his hands
Has seen that look. Maybe we showed up
To patch the roof, service the furnace,
Or unclog the sewer…

September 22, 2019 · 9 Comments

James Wright: Depressed by a Book of Bad Poetry, I Walk Toward an Unused Pasture and Invite the Insects to Join Me

The old grasshoppers
Are tired, they leap heavily now,
Their thighs are burdened.
I want to hear them, they have clear sounds to make.

August 30, 2019 · 5 Comments

Michael Simms: Dogsbody to the Muse

Sometimes it’s painful to watch a group of poets trying to work a room as if they were politicians. The AWP conference, as the wag put it, is comprised of 15,000 introverts pretending to be extroverts.

August 25, 2019 · 12 Comments

Robert Gibb: Enactments of Identity

Years ago the friend of a friend called me
A “Professional Irishman.” Fair enough.

March 17, 2019 · Leave a comment

Robert Gibb: Deskulling the Slag Pots

i.   You’d see them in the railyard, Coupled and waiting in line To be topped off with that cargo Tapped from the blast furnaces: Magma they’d freight nightly Along … Continue reading

September 25, 2018 · Leave a comment

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