Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Rachel Loden

A note from my friend Bob Berner.

Dear Tad,

Shame on you for not telling me years ago about Rachel Loden. I "discovered" her today at Poetry Daily, and I followed that up by checking out the Wild Honey Press website, then an interview of Rachel from Jacket magazine in Feb., 2003, in which she mentions working with you. Wow. All this time and you hipped me to her stuff. Shame on you. I like her stuff
a lot, as you might expect, and wish I'd known about her earlier. So it goes. In any case, it's nice to see that stuff like hers CAN get published and it's for damn sure livelier and more fun to read than most of the stuff that gets posted on P D or Verse Daily, or in most littery mags for that matter.

So yeah, for anyone else I haven't told, Rachel Loden is very much worth checking out, and here's a link to the poem Bob saw on Poetry Dailly, "Miss October."

There's not a powerful tradition of political poetry in America, and the kinds of political poetry that can be so vivid in other cultures -- Yevtushenko, Szymborska, Neruda -- don't seem to work when translated into ours. They almost inevitably get soggy, and turn into cliche. Loden has found a distinctive approach which is the American voice we didn't know we had.

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