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Poets of Franklin County

Poets of Franklin County:

Friday, August 28, 2015

Anyone who has walked much in the New England woods has come upon the remnants of stone walls wending through the trees, delineating former fields and pastures. After studying such walls on walks near his Hinsdale, home, poet Dennis Pollock became curious about the men who had built them. A psychotherapist for his entire career before embarking upon a second one in home repair and renovation, Pollock is clearly uncomfortable using the word “men,” though we decide to put feminism aside for the moment and agree that, in the 1700s and 1800s, it would most likely have been men who built stone walls. “What were … 0

Poets of Franklin County: Lisa Burke's visual poetry

Friday, August 21, 2015

As a person who has written poems and made collages since I was a teenager or younger, I’ve always wondered whether there is such a thing as a visual poem. And if there is, wouldn’t it be a collage? So many poets work in collage — Mark Strand, John Ashbery, Carol Potter and … 0

Poets of Franklin County: Word choice matters

Friday, July 17, 2015

What do poetry and the language of government have in common? More than you might think, according to State Representative Ellen Story of Amherst. Story is a Democratic state legislator in the Massachusetts House of Representatives, representing the 3rd Hampshire District, which is composed of the towns of Amherst, Pelham and Precinct 1 … 0

Poets of Franklin County: 'It's my job to imagine'

Friday, March 28, 2014

Almost 16 years ago, two young men convinced a third to leave the bar where they’d all been drinking and get into a truck with them. They then drove him out to a remote spot on the high … 0

‘The Fence’ by Lesléa Newman

Friday, March 28, 2014

THE FENCE (that night) I held him all night long He was heavy as a broken heart Tears fell from his unblinking eyes He was dead weight yet he kept breathing He was heavy as a broken heart … 0

The ‘laughing goddess’

Friday, March 14, 2014

A grown woman encourages some neighborhood children, including her niece and nephew, to sneak out of their homes after bedtime, dress as “gypsies” and run with her through woods and across fields into town to catch a glimpse … 0

The Poets of Franklin County: Lynette Baker Varnon

Friday, February 28, 2014

Because she has two young children and a full-time job as a high school English teacher, Lynette Baker Varnon often writes at night. Not surprisingly, her poems often take place at night, too. Varnon’s poem, “I Rub Her … 0

‘Funny, sadness’

Friday, February 21, 2014

When Lisa Limont was a kid growing up near the sea in Scituate, she and her four siblings played ball on their big lawn or horsed around with their dad, who Limont described as “a really fun guy.” … 0

'Funny, Sadness," a poem by Lisa Limont

Friday, February 21, 2014

Funny, Sadness Funny, sadness was always there and therefore unremarkable. In those years we laughed and sang as we walked to the brook: There’s a hole in the bucket, there’s a hole in the bottom of the sea. Remember when you could walk? We played with your removable … 0

Poets of Franklin County: Heath poet John Palmer

Friday, February 14, 2014

“I don’t know if ‘hero’ is the right word but I’ve always just loved Cézanne,” Heath poet John Palmer said, when asked how he came to write his poem, “Houses by Cézanne.” The poem appears in Palmer’s full-length … 0

John Palmer poem: “Houses by Cézanne”

Friday, February 14, 2014

‘Houses by Cézanne’ By John Palmer of Heath The road swings south of the dusty houses, slopes past outcropped mules to the sculpted fruit of orchards by the coast, to flowers whose essence rides like gold-green oil in cruets, to the sea. Nobody built these houses. They came … 0

What is it to exist?

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

About a year ago, one of Greenfield poet and musician Daniel Hales’ friends asked if he’d be interested in setting poems from Lewis Carroll’s classic Alice books to music for a performance she was working on. Hales was … 0

Carol Purington’s dreaming room

Monday, December 30, 2013

Is poetry fiction or nonfiction? Many people assume that poetry is autobiographical, and that a poem’s narrator is the poet. Colrain poet Carol Purington, who poses this question in the foreword of her new collection of tanka, a … 1

The poet’s poet

Thursday, August 8, 2013

OK, quick, name three important contemporary Romanian poets. Or two Spanish ones. Can you name one Italian? “It’s generally said that nothing sells worse than poetry in this country than poetry in translation,” poet and publisher Ed Foster, who runs Talisman House, Publishers in Greenfield, says with a … 0

Poets of Franklin County: ‘Clear mental space’

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Poet Jody Cothey, who writes under the name Pamela Stewart, has run Tregelly’s Fiber Farm in Hawley with her husband Ed Cothey for 18 years. The farm, which Stewart describes as “winding down now,” at one time produced beautiful natural-dyed wools and yarns. “I used to have six … 0