'Upstream: Selected Essays' by Mary Oliver

When Oliver closely observes the natural world, and thus enacts her maxim that “Attention is the beginning of devotion,” she deftly engages the reader with her detailed worldview… read more

‘Felicity’ by Mary Oliver

Over her past few collections, Mary Oliver has moved away from the sweeping depictions of nature and fascination with religion that permeated her early and mid-career books. In her most recent work published by Penguin Press, she has focused on short poems about over-coming depression, rediscovering love, and celebrating joy as well as gratitude. In… read more

‘Blue Horses’ by Mary Oliver

Continuing an artistic renaissance that began with A Thousand Mornings, Mary Oliver’s latest poetry collection, Blue Horses, finds her exploring a new home and rediscovering love…. read more

L. Lamar Wilson: Sacrilegion

“It is my hope that my work forces us to face our fears of HIV/AIDS. Life has brought me intimately close to facing my own, and I hope Sacrilegion gives readers their own sublime experience in the mirror.” Sylvia Plath once remarked, “I think writers are the most narcissistic people. Well, I mustn’t say this, I like… read more

'Swan' by Mary Oliver

Anyway, whatever it is, don’t be afraid of its plenty. Joy is not meant to be a crumb. (From “Don’t Hesitate” page 42.) Oh, I like this book. She touches me. She allows me to touch her. There’s a feeling of exchange here. I end up feeling as though I know Mary Oliver. I want… read more

The Year in Queer Poetry

2010 was a great year for LGBT poetry, bringing us some exciting new voices, books, and trends. As the year comes to an end, here are some of the highlights: This fall seminal poet Mary Oliver, whom The Weekly Standard has described as “among the finest poets the English language has ever produced,” published Swan:… read more

'By Nightfall' by Michael Cunningham

In her poem “The Book,” Mary Oliver writes, of lilies in a neighbor’s yard: You could not help but see that to be beautiful is also to be simple and brief; is to rise up and be glorious, and then vanish. I thought of these lines while reading Michael Cunningham’s new book, By Nightfall, a… read more

Delany and Schulman "most underrated"

Samuel R. Delany (pictured left), Rigoberto Gonzalez, Achy Obejas, and Sarah Shulman are among PWxyz’s 60 most underrated writers in America. The piece began as a response to HuffPo’s 15 Most Overrated Writers list written by Anis Shivani the week of August 9th. Shivani’s list included more than a few scathing remarks of some LGBT… read more

Five Poets Who Changed My Life

MARY OLIVER Tell me, what is it you will do/with your one wild and precious life? —”The Summer Day” So closes Mary Oliver’s poem “The Summer Day.” Every time I read those words I still feel as though I cannot breathe. These questions…I’m plagued daily, monthly, yearly, with questions like these, how can I possibly… read more