Outside the Lines: Talking with Contemporary Gay Poets

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University of Michigan Press, 2005 - Literary Criticism - 216 pages
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"Outside the Lines explores the personal and historical forces that have shaped the work of a dozen gifted poets. The answers given to Hennessy's astute, perfectly tailored questions remind a reader how exciting poetry can be, and how writers create, through language, the world as we have never known it. These adventuresome interviews will stir anyone who cares about the making of art."
---Bernard Cooper, author of Maps to Anywhere

Editor Christopher Hennessy gathers interviews with some of the most significant figures in contemporary American poetry. While each poet is gay, these encompassing, craft-centered interviews reflect the diversity of their respective arts and serve as a testament to the impact gay poets have had and will continue to have on contemporary poetics.

The book includes twelve frank, intense interviews with some of America's best-known and loved poets, who have not only enjoyed wide critical acclaim but who have had lasting impact on both the gay tradition and the contemporary canon writ large, for example, Frank Bidart, the late Thom Gunn, and J. D. McClatchy. Some of the most honored and respected poets, still in the middle of their careers, are also included, for example, Mark Doty, Carl Phillips, and Reginald Shepherd. Each interview explores the poet's complete work to date, often illuminating the poet's technical evolution and emotional growth, probing shifts in theme, and even investigating links between verse and sexuality.

In addition to a selected bibliography of works by established poets, the book also includes a list of works by newer and emerging poets who are well on their way to becoming important voices of the new millennium.

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User Review  - rmharris - LibraryThing

Anyone interested in the life of the creative mind, or writing in general and poetry in particular, will find valuable insights and ideas on every page of these interviews. Outside the Lines has a ... Read full review

Outside the lines: talking with contemporary gay poets

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Michigan is known for its Poets on Poetry series, which collects the prose statements, interviews and poetry-related ephemera of individual contemporary poets; this anthology of frank interviews fits ... Read full review


Thorn Gunn
Frank Bidart
Alfred Corn
J D McClatchy
Mark Doty
David Trinidad
no Henri Cole
Carl Phillips
A Powell
Reginald Shepherd
Rafael Campo
Books Mentioned
Looking to the Future A Bibliography of Emerging Gay Poets

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About the author (2005)

Boston, MA.

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