Why We Chose It
By Sergei Lobanov-Rostovsky, Associate Editor
What could be harder to write in a cynical world than an annunciation scene? Angels rarely come a-courting these days, and any archangel who shows up bearing a lily better have a good disguise. (The Virgin Mary, commentators observe, met her angel at the age of twelve. No doubt there’d be hidden camera now, and a lengthy prison term.) That’s exactly how the angels arrive in three poems by Mary Szybist in the current KR.
Continue reading to learn why KR selected Mary Szybist’s poems for the Fall 2011 issue of The Kenyon Review.
Join us at the Kenyon Review Literary Festival!
On November 4-5, 2011, The Kenyon Review will present a multi-day celebration of literature
featuring readings, workshops, panel discussions, and more.
This year’s keynote speaker will be Simon Schama, recipient of the 2011 Kenyon Review Award for Literary Achievement. Schama will deliver the Denham Sutcliffe Memorial Lecture on Saturday, November 5 at 8:00 p.m. in Rosse Hall on the Kenyon College campus.
The literary festival will also feature poetry readings by Peter Fallon and Jennifer Clarvoe, a gallery talk with Lewis Hyde,
The eighth annual Patricia Grodd Poetry Prize for Young Writers is now accepting entries! The prize, which is open to high school sophomores and juniors throughout the world, is juried by David Baker, KR’s poetry editor.
Applications accepted until Dec. 1 for the KR Fellowships
Don’t miss your chance to apply for the KR Fellowships. These two-year post-graduate positions are intended for creative writers who have already completed the MFA or PhD degree and are seeking time to develop as writers, teachers, and editors. All application materials, including letters of recommendation, must be submitted by December 1st, 2011, for full consideration. Two fellows, a poet and a prose writer, will arrive in Gambier, Ohio, in August 2012.
A KR Conversation with Weston Cutter
Managing Editor Tyler Meier interviews Weston Cutter, whose poems were published in the Fall 2011 issue of The Kenyon Review.
In Summer 1979, KR published an excerpt from Gabriel García Márquez’s short novel In Evil Hour in a translation by Gregory Rabassa. The novel, originally entitled Este pueblo de mierda, or “This Town of Shit,” was written in Paris during an early period of political exile, during which the novelist lived on money earned by returning bottles for their deposits. Strongly influenced by Hemingway, it is the novel which most directly considers the period of Columbian political oppression known as la violencia.
The Kenyon Review, Summer 1979, New Series, Vol. I, No. 3.
In Evil Hour: An Excerpt from the Novel
Translated from Spanish by Gregory Rabassa
Dr Giraldo was thinking, his chin daubed with lather, when a nauseating whiff drew him out of his memories. A flock of buzzards scattered on the opposite shore, frightened by the waves from the launch. The stench of rottenness hung over the wharf for a moment, mingling with the morning breeze, and even penetrated deep inside the houses.
“Still there, God damn it,” the mayor exclaimed on the balcony of his bedroom, watching the buzzards scatter. “Fucking cow.”
He covered his nose with a handkerchief, went into the room, and closed the balcony door. The smell persisted inside. Without taking off his hat, he hung the mirror on a nail and began the careful attempt at shaving his still rather inflamed cheek. A moment later the impresario of the circus knocked at the door.
helpless (and in my mind I still need a place to go)
Translated from Spanish by Anna Guercio
in this bed where the sea slept
and the ashes of Alexandria were kept
and the ants stored provisions through the holocaust summer
and the most despicable sorceress wrote her prescription for exterminating
in the very same bed where the maja and venus posed
where juana la loca mourned philip the handsome across seven states
where the holy spirit impregnated mary
here in the only bed trafficked by phoenicians
which served as redbeard’s map
and was the prince of ishtar’s magic carpet
in this very bed the first elephant gave birth in captivity
charlie parker played the saxophone and a woman at the same time for the
and—years before—jesus mulled his mount of olives speech
it’s where I learn that each bed is a country that doesn’t exist when you’re
not in it
Click here to read more poems by José Eugenio Sánchez.
KROnline is the online complement of The Kenyon Review. New fiction, essays, poetry, and reviews are published on a biweekly basis. Check back often to read some of the most cutting edge material you’ll find anywhere on the web. Click here to see our latest offering.
October 14, 2011 —
Jake Adam York
Writing last week’s post, I was thinking that I like readings better than the alternatives, like listening to broadcast radio. It’s not that I enjoy a bad reading better than, say, a rerun of Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me, but most readings are at least alright.
Of course, as with anyone, there are a few poets whose work bores me so completely, I’m offline within the first few minutes, and there are poets who seem a little uncomfortable reading, a little too shy, though at times on reflection, this may be appropriate for a work, and there are other times when the poet loves the work more than anyone else in the room ever will and all the air is gone; the audience is passed out on the floor.
But, again, for the most part, it seems that any reading, any format might work.
Contents Nov. 2011
Why We Chose It
KR Literary Festival
A KR Conversation
From the Archives
From the Blog
The Fall Issue,
On Newsstands Now!
by Lionel Trilling,
on John Keats,