Notes on the Poetry Selections

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December 22, 2016 by The Citron Review

Looking at our winter selections for poetry, I think of the poet John Ashbery for some reason, and how he is able to approach poems from unusual angles. I won’t pretend to understand much of his oeuvre (there are tomes of poems and art criticism), but I always note that his poems are going someplace, and I admire the language and trajectory he employs to arrive at the sublime.

I do not consider these four poems to be reminiscent of Ashbery, but I admire their vantage and feel they stand alone as wonderful poems. Rather than comment on the poems individually, I will let the poets’ work speak for itself. A few words come to mind: vivid, scarcity, form, dome, ken, and play. Sounds like the making of a good sestina.

There is something about a good poem that feels hard to replicate, even if the presentation is deceptively simple. I think humor is tough to pull off. Collaboration too. For me, narrative is difficult. Each one of these poems is distinctive; I return to them with excitement.

Thank you to Heather Lang and JR Tappenden, Lisa Hartz, Charles Cantrell, and Peter Leight for their contributions to this issue. Thank you to all Citron readers and submitters; we are grateful for your interest. Finally, thank you to the entire Citron staff for making our engine run.

Happy holidays.

Eric Steineger
Senior Poetry Editor
The Citron Review


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