Articles by: B. Lussier
Brandon Lussier's poems and translations have been published in Harvard Review, Virginia Quarterly Review, North American Review, and elsewhere. A former Fulbright Scholar and NEA fellow for literary translation, he works at Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut.

Karolyn Forché’s “The Kernel”

Karolyn Forché’s “The Kernel”

Robert Pinsky at Slate: An Interview

Robert Pinsky at Slate: An Interview

With all due respect to excellent organizations like the Academy and the Poetry Society of America, as a matter of my own eccentricities I much prefer the informal, personal, improvised forum of Slate. Robert Pinsky began his relationship with Slate.com in 1996. At the time, publicly available Internet was still a new phenomenon (Hotmail, the first web-based email service, launched […]

Tomas Tranströmer Wins Nobel Prize

Tomas Tranströmer Wins Nobel Prize

Congratulations to Tomas Tranströmer, who has received the 2011 Nobel Prize in Literature! Tranströmer’s work was introduced to American audiences by Robert Bly, whose Seventies Press published the first book-length translation of his work, Twenty Poems, in the United States in 1970 when Tranströmer was 39 years old. Our review of a much more recent volume of his work, The […]

An Interview with Benjamin Paloff

An Interview with Benjamin Paloff

It is a kind of politics that allows us to live with this reality—the fact that everything, including our bodies, eventually fails, though we know not when. Welcome to CalJoPo! Your first book of poetry, The Politics, was published early in 2011.  It is a surprising collection of intellectual but playful poems that mix earnest statements and observations about the […]

Found Poetry: Quinoa Salad in Blood

Found Poetry: Quinoa Salad in Blood

Sometimes poetry happens organically in the real world, far from the desks of poets, as in this menu from the Adams Avenue Grill in San Diego:     Reading the first line, the reader begins to drool over the prospect of a savage, carnivorous meal—only to have expectations swiftly reversed in the next line. The startling double meaning, coupled with […]

Harvard Review on Anne Carson & Catullus

Harvard Review on Anne Carson & Catullus

As we pointed out in our review of Anne Carson’s Nox, the backbone of the book is a translation of an elegy written by Roman poet Catullus in the first century BC.  Over at Harvard Review Online we found an excellent discussion of that translation by J. Kates. Among other insights, Kates points out that “in Nox, Carson turns the reader […]

Understanding Jorie Graham

Understanding Jorie Graham

An understanding of Graham’s body of work begins with the Modernists.  A deep understanding requires knowledge of the work of major twentieth century philosophers . . . . This article is intended to provide readers with a basic, accessible understanding of the context in which Jorie Graham writes.  It describes her major influences, focusing on the most prominent philosophy, theory, […]

Po-Chop: Gerard Manley Hopkins: [As Kingfishers…]

Po-Chop: Gerard Manley Hopkins: [As Kingfishers…]

“Stones ring; like each tucked string tells, each hung bell’s Bow swung finds tongue to fling out broad its name”   Lines like these, from Hopkins’ 1918 poem “[As Kingfishers Catch Fire, Dragonflies Draw Flame],” demonstrate the poet’s remarkable ability to use form (in this case, the rhythm of the English language) in tandem with content (strings being plucked, a […]

The Politics by Benjamin Paloff

The Politics by Benjamin Paloff

  The world of contemporary poetry is a little richer, and a little wiser, now that Paloff’s work is a part of it.   Benjamin Paloff’s first collection of poetry, The Politics, drinks from the same well famously tapped by the High Moderns, including T.S. Eliot, Ezra Pound, and James Joyce.  Specifically, Paloff holds to one of their primary tenets, […]

Nox by Anne Carson

Nox by Anne Carson

Although it will not provide a representative introduction to Carson’s work for those who haven’t read her before, fans will love Nox for its honesty, occasional brilliance, and physical beauty.   Anne Carson’s Nox is a high quality, full color reproduction of a scroll dozens of feet long, to which the author glued and taped all the elements that compose the […]

Chronic by D.A. Powell

Chronic by D.A. Powell

Chronic marks the first time a truly Plathian anger has entered his work   With Chronic, D.A. Powell’s fourth collection of poetry since 1998, the poet introduces a change in tone and syntax that marks a shift in his approach to his subject matter.  Whereas Tea, Lunch, and Cocktails frequently address living with AIDS and specifics of the disease, Chronic […]


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