“Flyte” by Dawn Abeita

A new piece by alumna Dawn Abeita (fiction, ’96) appears in the Belle Rêve Literary Journal:

The baby ran away. The baby was always running away. Like a leaf, he would skitter off down the gutter. And so she was left to leave affairs mid-stride, to dash half bent, scuttling crab-like after, trying to catch a hand. She was a mean, mean mommy, yelling in the street.

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Robert Boswell Interviews Peter Turchi

Faculty member Robert Boswell interviews faculty member Peter Turchi regarding Turchi’s newest book A Muse and a Maze for Fiction Writers Review:

Pete Turchi and I met in graduate school at the University of Arizona. We had the good luck to be in a fiction workshop led by Francine Prose, and we discovered that we had a lot in common: we both loved lousy baseball teams (well, Pete’s team won the World Series that year, but went on to embarrass themselves for decades), and we suffered cheerfully through long seasons with the same combination of pluck and denial. We both had girlfriends who were smarter and better looking than we were, and we pondered the enigma of their apparent interest in us. We both had been raised by good-hearted parents who had climbed from meager beginnings to the lowest rungs of the middle class and who were worried and baffled by our belief that we might escape the 8-to-5 schlep by investing in language and narrative.We both loved literature with a particularly desperate dedication, wishing to write novels that would express the beautiful, terrible wonder of the human treadmill. We both drank beer.

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You can also read “The Pleasures of Difficulty” from A Muse and a Maze on the Tin House blog.

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Margaree interviews Brian

UnknownRecently, poetry Alum Margaree Little (’12) interviewed poetry alum Brian Blanchfield (’99) for the MFA Program for Writers Website.

Your second book of poems, A Several World, received the 2014 James Laughlin Award from the Academy of American Poets and was longlisted for the 2014 National Book Award. But you’re currently focusing on prose, and a book of essays, Onesheets, forthcoming from Nightboat Books. Could you talk about Onesheets

So “onesheets” are single-subject essays that take no recourse in authoritative sources— I think through the topic at hand and report on what it is I know or estimate or remember or misremember about it. And about each subject I begin with some notion that there’s some hot territory in it for me, some dicey personal territory. So even if I may not quite know what that is, I trust that the process, in these 2,000-word essays, (3,000 tops), I arrive at this rather naked place and report from there. Some of them very much need a loincloth.

The subjects are all over the place—miscellany is part of the project and hopefully part of the joy of it—they’re about foot washing, Br’er Rabbit, the locus amoenus in the pastoral tradition, tumbleweed, house sitting, the Leave in billiards. But yes—I’m the single source of the essays, which feels like it connects with the oldest traditions of essaying, a kind of radical empiricism that’s not about getting it right, and that performs thinking on the spot.

 

Read the rest of the interview at the Program Website.

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Four Poems and More from Roger Reeves

roger_rFour poems, a reading, and a Q&A by new poetry faculty member Roger Reeves appear at Blackbird:

Cross Country

When I ran, it rained niggers. Early in October—
the first creases of autumn, a flag-weary sky
in which yellow birds, in flight, slip through the breast-
bone of God and tear at the coarse threads
that keep the morning knit tightly around his heart.
What was it that they sang about the light, their tongues,
the thistles they pluck from the bitter bark
of an allthorn then thrust into the breast of whatever god
or good animal requires eating, a good piercing?

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Three Poems by Sara Quinn Rivara

Three poems by alumna Sara Quinn Rivara (poetry, ’02) appear at Blackbird:

Lake Ice

The length of a first marriage: eternity, shore-fast ice
creeping onto the Lake. In such cold, when told to sing, stones

fell from my throat; when told to sit still, knees hum.
So the Lake chews the pier when told to be quiet, sand

runs in frozen ridges up the dune. It’s all done; the mouth
unfolds its origami cranes. Was I the wife who cowered

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