Dianne Timblin’s three poems appeared recently in Fringe. (View in Firefox for best results.) Poetry editor Anna Lena Phillips asked her about the poems and her work. Despite an avowed difficulty with the either-or, she graciously agreed to complete our binary round as well. Find her responses below, and please share your own thoughts in the comments.
When you think of remnants, what’s the first poem or poet that comes to mind?
Keats is the very first who comes to mind: all those unwritten poems. And “Here lies one whose name was writ in water”—the hardest-working epitaph in poetry, at least in terms of setting up a whole body of work as a remnant!
But in terms of projects and works, Susan Howe, definitely. Her work is steeped in the residual and the fragmentary even as it’s haunted by them, and I find her book Souls of the Labadie Tract especially rewarding in that regard. Particularly the final section of the book, “Fragment of the Wedding Dress of Sarah Pierpont Edwards,” with its opening image of the actual cloth remnant, its sublime closing line—slim, vertical, elegant, and almost completely obscured—and all those exquisite, assertively wrought fragments in between. For me reading Howe raises all sorts... more »more »
The peripatetic Mountford grew up in Washington, DC, and has also lived in Ecuador and Sri Lanka; he now lives in Seattle. While in Ecuador, he spent two years as a token liberal in a think tank. His short fiction… more »