Posts by: Zara Raab

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These Molten Flowers: on Lola Ridge, radical poet and activist

In a news clip from 1927, Lola Ridge stands alone in the middle of a street as thousands of people demonstrate against the execution of Sacco and Vanzetti. The crowds…

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The Poetics of Gender Resistance

The passion for setting people right is in itself an afflictive disease. Distaste which takes no credit to itself is best. These concluding lines from Marianne Moore’s “Snakes, Mongooses, Snake-Charmers,…

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Antic Panoply: The New Arcana

In The Art of Recklessness, Dean Young brings New York School surrealism into new relief. He talks of a poetry that contains the kind of stage-spanning acrobatic leaps you might…

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Anti-Social Behavior: the Novel

Asked in a 1995 interview about his fascination with Milton, Martin Amis described the loss of innocence in Paradise Lost as “the basic tragic story of our culture.” Milton, Amis…

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Birds, Not (John) Cages: on Dean Young’s Art of Recklessness

In his 170-page paean to reckless impulse, Dean Young spurns consistency, “over-thinking,” and all emphasis on craft, procedures, and technique. He casts out discipline and hard work, perfection and conventional…