Cage Adage

J0175500If you develop an ear for sounds that are musical it is like developing an ego. You begin to refuse sounds that are not musical and that way cut yourself off from a good deal of experience.  –John Cage

Born, Again

Aaron_leighton_born_mag_coverA great new issue of Born Magazine is up on the web.  I really like Wayne Miller’s poem called "Notes on the Night Highway II" and the art and music inspired by it. 


Ferris_plock_bornHave you checked out the cool new art & poetry collaborative projects at born magazine yet?  Their winter issue is on their web site now.  The poets featured include Michele Glazer and Bob Hicok.

Definitive Music


I read once that the music we listen to between the ages 18-24 is the music we revert back to for the rest of our lives. It provides us a measure for what music should be. It defines us. Is this true for you?

For me, this music would be what we called "college radio." Is that term ever used any more? It was the 80s, and I listened to R.E.M., The Talking Heads, and the B-52s, Elvis Costello and Laurie Anderson. I do still listen to them, I must admit. And although I continue to find new tunes to groove by–The Roots, Wilco, Radiohead, and Ani DiFranco–there is something central about the music of my youth. What was the first concert you attended?

How to Stay Curious

I’ve been considering the possibility of starting a blog about all-things-poetry for many months now. It’s not that I think I have the answers. Or even the questions. I’m not looking for a soapbox. But I am interested in the blog as zocolo, as town square, a place of exchange and conversation.

I attended two grad programs in creative writing, and the thing that struck me then and now is that the conversations both in class and outside of class were sensational. I can remember sitting in the private room at the Brown Bottle (Iowa City) listening to my friends Stephanie Brown and Jeff Hamilton talking about Lester Bangs, People magazine, and the new formalists all at the same time and thinking, This is really something. Twenty years later I feel exactly the same way.

Great conversations are getting rare. In her book, turning to one another, Margaret Wheatley argues for a renaissance of the conversation. She outlines the norms that must exist for honest conversation to take place. My favorite one is, “We must stay curious about one another.”

There’s so much to talk about. Let’s begin the begin.