By David Blomenberg, Reviews Editor
Hello all! I hope all have been having a wonderful holiday season so far. It’s almost the end of the year, which brings many of us to thoughts of new beginnings, new resolutions, and new projects. What can be greatly inspiring to many writers is to read what other writers have found inspiring, helpful, or renews their energy toward their own work. We here at Sycamore have been enjoying some fine new books of writers on writing which I’ll be giving mention of here on Sycamore Blog throughout the next month.
One of the most recent books we’ve gotten is Passwords Primeval, a volume of 20 interviews that Monroe Community College professor Tony Leuzzi conducted with poets including the likes of Jane Hirschfield, Martin Espada, Mark Doty, Dorianne Laux, and Bin Ramke. Each interview is prefaced and includes a brief bibliography. The conversations recorded here include insights on craft, inspiration, determination, and what connects us not only to our work, but also to our world.
With some interview collections, the questions can become somewhat repetitive, but Leuzzi, while touching on discussions of tone and image and revision (which are common enough), takes advantage of opportunities for the poets to reveal unusual elements or expand to enlightening discussions on others’ works, or to speak on the influence that being married to a neuroscientist can have, or the surprising places one can go and find solace.
Passwords Primeval 20 American Poets in Their Own Words: Interviews by Tony Leuzzi
348 pp. $21.00
BOA Editions, Ltd.