“Barnegat Light” by Ernest Hilbert

american poetry review

Tough-minded and precise, Ernest Hilbert’s lyrics, like his old mirror left out at the curb, turn an unflinching gaze on pieces of inner and outer landscapes we often push to the periphery. The poems in Caligulan fashion a stern, witty, and often poignant music out of seemingly unpromising elements courageously glimpsed, combined, or imagined. – Rachel Hadas, author of Halfway Down the Hall: New and Selected Poems and editor of The Greek Poets: Homer to the Present

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“The White House” by Claude McKay


“He managed to use traditional poetic forms as satisfying vehicles for the expression of his impatience with racism; but at the same time, McKay refused to allow social relevance to become an excuse for the production of inferior art.” –Henry Louis Gates, Jr. and Nellie Y. McKay

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“Never More Will the Wind” by H.D.


“H.D. by the end of her career became not only the most gifted woman poet of our century, but one of the most original poets—the more I read her the more I think this—in our language.” – Alicia Ostriker

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Top Five Times People Heroically Band Together to Rescue Matt Damon


The movie The Martian is coming out October 2, 2015. The movie is based on the novel The Martian by Andy Weir. During one of the first manned missions to Mars—technology is roughly what we have today, so everything feels familiar—one of the astronauts is accidentally left behind on the planet. Basically, during a fierce dust storm, it’s thought he’s dead, and the other astronauts can’t find his dead body, and the danger of continuing the search is too great. But he’s not dead, and the rest of the book describes his efforts to survive on Mars, jury-rigging his scant supplies, until the next manned trip arrives in four years. The movie stars Matt Damon as the astronaut, and it’s directed by Ridley Scott, which makes this his third science fiction film (the other two being Blade Runner and Alien). It may be a good film. But it made me notice that Matt Damon has a bad habit of getting into trouble and then having like a whole movie full of people drop everything to try to save him. I mean, jeez, can’t this guy manage to stay out of trouble? Let’s look at what we’ve got.

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“Lightning Bugs” by Kevin Durkin


Kevin Durkin attended schools in West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Germany before earning his degree in English literature from Princeton University. He has taught English in Singapore, Kitakyushu (Japan), New York City, and Washington, D.C. He also has performed in the plays of Shakespeare across America. Currently the managing editor at The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens in San Marino, he resides with his wife and two daughters in Santa Monica.

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New York Book Launch for Ernest Hilbert’s Caligulan and Quincy Lehr’s Dark Lord of the Tiki Bar!


Come out to help celebrate two new books of poetry from Measure Press, Ernest Hilbert’s Caligulan and Quincy Lehr’s Dark Lord of the Tiki Bar

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Philadelphia Book Launch Party for Ernest Hilbert’s Caligulan and Quincy Lehr’s Dark Lord of the Tiki Bar

Quincy and Ernie

Come out to help celebrate two new books of poetry from Measure Press, Ernest Hilbert’s Caligulan and Quincy Lehr’s Dark Lord of the Tiki Bar!

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“The Unsettled Motorcyclist’s Vision of his Death” by Thom Gunn


“What appeals to these two transatlantic groups of readers might be quite distant when seriously considered, but the quality in Gunn’s poetry that magnetized them both is an exquisite combination: English grace and American coarseness (for lack of finer terms in both cases). He set more poems in rough bars than probably any poet aside from Charles Bukowski, who specialized in tales from that boozy milieu.” –Ernest Hilbert

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Top Five Similarities Between Donald Trump and Kim Jong-Il


Kim Jong-Il, the Dear Leader of North Korea, passed away in 2011, but his memory lives on. He is the star of movies like Team America, World Police and the producer of films like Pulgasari, a Godzilla-like monster movie directed by and starring South Koreans whom he kidnapped expressly to make the film. In other words, he was a bold and decisive leader as well as patron of the arts. And now, he reminds us of a new American leader, Donald Trump. The two share some important traits, as described here.

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“On The Beach” by Rick Mullin

Rick Mullin

Rick Mullin is the author of four volumes of poetry, including Sonnets from the Voyage of the Beagle, and Soutine, both published by Dos Madres Press, Loveland, OH. His work has appeared in various journals, including The New Criterion, Measure, Ep;phany, and American Arts Quarterly, and in anthologies, including Irresistible Sonnets (Headmistress Press) and the forthcoming Rabbit Ears: The First Anthology of Poetry About TV (New York Quarterly Books).

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Favorite Books of Top Presidential Candidates


Last election, we brought you the favorite novels of the top presidential candidates. This election cycle is in its early days, and there are a lot of candidates. What do they like to read? Here are the favorite books (not necessarily novels) of some of the top candidates.

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“Variation on an Old Saying” by Christine Yurick


Christine Yurick’s poems have appeared in journals print and online and are forthcoming in American Arts Quarterly and 823 on High. She is the founding editor of Think Journal. She lives with her three cats, and her husband, the photographer Michael Kahn.

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“Men Loved Wholly Beyond Wisdom” by Louise Bogan


“Beyond the Bogan poems is a woman, intense, proud, strong-willed…Her poems can be read and reread: they keep yielding new meanings, as all good poetry should.” — Theodore Roethke

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“Dockery and Son” by Philip Larkin


“Larkin wrote in clipped, lucid stanzas, about the failures and remorse of age, about stunted lives and spoiled desires.” — J.D. McClatchy

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“There Will Come Soft Rains” by Sara Teasdale


“Teasdale’s enduring legacy will be her genius for the song, for the pure lyric in which words seem to have fallen in place without art or effort.” –Louis Untermeyer

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Top Five Recent Movies about Artificial Intelligence (AI)


We seem to be experiencing a moment with artificial intelligence (AI). Recently, a whole raft of films have come out exploring this concept, ​examining the line between what is human and what remains “artificial” intelligence. Here at E-Verse, we have previously proven that if you give a computer a brain, it will try to kill you. More recently, it’s looking like if you give a computer a brain, you’ll want to sex it up. Let’s take a look.

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“Unidentified Flying Object” by Robert Hayden


“Hayden was a remembrancer, a poet of faith and superb execution, and one of the best teachers by example one can find in the poetry of the twentieth century, or in any age.” – Michael S. Harper

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Recent Publications and Radio Appearances by Ernest Hilbert

Dark Horse Poem

Here’s a brief post to advertise some things I’ve been doing lately. What better time to do a roundup than in the very doldrums of summer? Stay cool, if you can, and enjoy.

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“Doctor Coyote When He Had a Problem” by Gary Snyder


Gary Snyder is the author of sixteen collections of poetry and prose. Since 1970 he has lived in the watershed of the South Yuba River in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize in 1975 and a finalist for the National Book Award in 1992, he has been awarded the Bollingen Poetry Prize and the Robert Kirsch Lifetime Achievement Award.

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“Pedestrian at Best” by Courtney Barnett


“I like to try to play with a lot of alliteration and see how many syllables I can squeeze into a sentence,” Barnett says. “I write and rewrite just for my own amusement so I can layer up songs.”

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“Casus Belli” by R.S. Gwynn


“Gwynn juxtaposes styles and subjects not customarily seen together—mythic and modish images phrased in language alternatively sublime and debased—but told with such force of imagination and assured musicality that the resulting poems seem not idiosyncratic but inevitable.” – Dana Gioia

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Top Five 50 Shades of Grey Parodies

fifty shades

Parodies guaranteed to be better than the original. Beware, NSFW for any of these!

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“Party-Time! Excellent!” by Quincy R. Lehr


Quincy R. Lehr’s most recent books are Heimat (2014) and The Dark Lord of the Tiki Bar (2015). He lives in Brooklyn, where he is the associate editor of The Raintown Review, teaches history, and plans to one day own your goddamn skull.

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“The Last Page” by David M. Katz

Great Gatsby

David M. Katz is the author of three books of poems: Stanzas on Oz, Poems 2011-2014 (Dos Madres Press), Claims of Home, Poems 1984- 2010 (Dos Madres Press), and The Warrior in the Forest (House of Keys Press). His poems have appeared in Poetry, The New Criterion, The Paris Review, PN Review, The Raintown Review, Alabama Literary Review, and Southwest Review. He lives in New York City, where he works as a financial journalist.

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“The Room” by Jeff Holt


Jeff Holt’s first book The Harvest is available through White Violet Press. He works as a Licensed Professional Counselor, serves as the assistant editor for the Raintown Review, and lives in Plano, Texas.

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“The Young Ones” by Elizabeth Jennings

Jennings, Elizabeth

“It is the business of poetry to restore thought to its dignity as a harmonious process, and so make it memorable, and that is what Elizabeth Jennings achieves.”– Peter Levi

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“Fleshly Answers” by Rachel Hadas


Rachel Hadas has been the recipient of a Guggenheim Foundation fellowship, two Ingram Merrill Foundation grants, the O.B. Hardison Award from the Folger Shakespeare Library, and an Award in Literature from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters. She was a Director’s Fellow at the Center for Scholars & Writers with the New York Public Library. She has taught at Columbia, Princeton, and Rutgers, and at the Sewanee Writers’ Conference.

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Nirvana’s “Heart Shaped Box” Performed by Father John Misty


“Fresh from releasing his latest critically lauded album I Love You, Honeybear, Father John Misty (or Josh Tillman if you are feeling familiar) has decided to cover Nirvana’s classic ‘Heart-Shaped Box’ from their In Utero album for Valentine’s Day. Rejecting the original’s cathartic vitriolic volume in favour of a more restrained and coiled rendition, Tillman’s explores the folkish elements of Cobain’s music perhaps giving a clue as to what avenues Cobain would have explored had he survived fame. Worth a listen.” – Overblown.com

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“Meridian” by Ernest Hilbert


“Ernest Hilbert’s poems are beautifully made in their diction. The intelligence is clear.” – Donald Hall

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“It’s Not the Heat So Much as the Humidity” by James Tate


“A poet of mad wit and stunning anecdote.” –Julian Moynahan

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