Vox Populi

A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature

Dawn Potter: Sonnet in Search of Poems I’ve Never Written

I’ve been meaning to write about a patch of mossy
frogs’ eggs in a vernal pool, about a single contrail
chalking a blue November sky…

February 24, 2020 · 9 Comments

Stephen Dobyns: Persephone, Etc.

Wasn’t it beneath this spot the son of Kronos
pursued his inamorata, holding out a handful
of shining seeds?

February 11, 2020 · 1 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

Arlene Weiner: November

He tears off summer’s dress,
exposes trunk and limb, threatens
worse coming. Yet he brings gifts…

November 4, 2019 · 1 Comment

David Huddle: Bliss Happens

It’s talk that charms the heart. I’ve had it in real
life–folks who conversed with me the way Armstrong
and Fitzgerald sang duets.

August 29, 2019 · 2 Comments

David Huddle: Collusion

Ignorant high school bully that he is,
our fake President tweets out a nickname
for anyone who thwarts or critiques him–
those who care about decency or ethics
or just basic intelligence.

July 30, 2019 · Leave a comment

Ellen McGrath Smith — Shaken 48: How careful was I when I took my way

Hands in my pockets, the salt on the streets,
the yellowing aura that means you are here
by my side again, waking me in dread
with no buffer or bounce. It’s been ten years.

July 10, 2019 · Leave a comment

Robinson Jeffers: Wonder and Joy

The things that one grows tired of—O, be sure They are only foolish artificial things! Can a bird ever tire of having wings? And I, so long as life and … Continue reading

April 12, 2019 · Leave a comment

Molly Fisk: Singing Canyon Sonnet

I have to say something about the blue grasses by the side of the road,  the red rock rising behind them, a lacy kind of scrub juniper,  yellow-green in afternoon … Continue reading

March 27, 2019 · Leave a comment

Doug Anderson: In These Times

The fawn was lost, it seemed to me, stumbling through the foggy field and disappearing. I went after it, not knowing why, thought I might help somehow. Wanted to hold … Continue reading

March 12, 2019 · Leave a comment

Claude McKay: If We Must Die

If we must die, let it not be like hogsHunted and penned in an inglorious spot,While round us bark the mad and hungry dogs,Making their mock at our accursèd lot.If … Continue reading

February 1, 2019 · Leave a comment

Claude McKay: America

Although she feeds me bread of bitterness, And sinks into my throat her tiger’s tooth, Stealing my breath of life, I will confess I love this cultured hell that tests … Continue reading

December 28, 2018 · 2 Comments

Christina Rossetti: From Sunset to Star Rise

Go from me, summer friends, and tarry not: I am no summer friend, but wintry cold, A silly sheep benighted from the fold, A sluggard with a thorn-choked garden plot. … Continue reading

October 5, 2018 · Leave a comment

Michael T. Young: An American Tree

A tree is never just a tree, it’s not just maple, spruce, or birch but always this tree rooted in American soil, its rot peculiar to this latitude and history, … Continue reading

July 13, 2018 · Leave a comment

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