Tuesday, January 13, 2009

12x12 at University of Iowa Press

12x12: Conversations in 21st-Century Poetry and Poetics Edited by Christina Mengert and Joshua Marie Wilkinson

"Bringing together penetrating conversations between poets of different generations as they explore process and poetics, poetry’s influence on other art forms, and the political and social aspects of their work, 12 × 12 restores poesis to the center of poetry. Christina Mengert and Joshua Marie Wilkinson have assembled an expansive and searching view of the world through the eyes of twenty-four of our most vital and engaging poets. Punctuated by poems from each contributor, 12 × 12 brings together an unparalleled range of poets and poetries, men and women from around the world, working poets for whom the form vitally matters."--Univ of IA Press website

A few years back I was honored to receive an email from two poets I did not yet know, Christina Mengert and Joshua Marie Wilkinson. They invited me to participate in an anthology, which would include my poems but also a creative "conversation" I would arrange between myself and someone I considered a mentor. I thought of many people, but in the end selected Laura Mullen, my MFA director from CSU, and someone whose work I admired and continue to follow as it expands to explore increasingly exciting ways of using language (see my review of her most recent mindblowing book from FuturePoem Books, Murmur, in How2journal).

Laura and I entered into a back and forth email conversation about conversing on poetry. Questions, quotations and thought processes emerged, and eventually we ended up with the collaborative text where we speak to each other on the page that is now being collected into 12x12.

More exciting even than seeing the poems in this collection will be to hear what others think of this dialogue, and to read the conversations of the other poets who were invited to participate.

Contributors to 12x12

Jennifer K. Dick–Laura Mullen
Jon Woodward–Rae Armantrout
Sabrina Orah Mark–Claudia Rankine
Christian Hawkey–Tomaž Šalamun
Christian Hume–Rosmarie Waldrop
Srikanth Reddy–Mark Levine
Karen Volkman–Allen Grossman
Paul Fattaruso–Dara Wier
Mark Yakich–Mary Leader
Michelle Robinson–Paul Auster
Sawako Nakayasu–Carla Harryman
Ben Lerner–Aaron Kunin

It has been a long time coming, but Christina Mengert and Joshua Marie Wilkinson have done a fabulous job of making sure their project came off the shelf and into the light, and with one of my favorite University poetry presses in the States to boot! It is SO exciting to see the 12x12 is forthcoming in APRIL 2009--so feel free to ORDER YOUR advanced COPIES NOW, available online at University of Iowa Press (click title at top of this post to go directly to order page, or to read more anthology blurbs)!!!

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