Issue 26 / 2005


26 / The Poets and Writers Issue

Crossing boundaries in genre and life

This issue features many writers whose work crosses the borders between literary genres: from poetry and fiction to creative nonfiction, and illustrates how the lines of division between writers may be disintegrating. The stories themselves also flirt with the idea of crossing boundaries—between life and death, between countries and cultures and languages, and between individuals.

Hilary Masters pores through his writing notebooks and constructs a chimera out of fragments of writing he finds there. Ira Berkow, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist for the New York Times, ventures into memoir to look back at several intersections between his life and that of his legally “incompetent” cousin Marvin. In “Beginning Dialogues,” poet and memoirist Toi Derricotte discovers that her mother’s death has not ended their relationship; rather, in many ways her heart is only just coming to life. Alle C. Hall’s “The Brass Ring” looks at the line between independence and marriage; Robert Wilder records his daughter’s entry into the world; and Mark O’Connor discusses how naming creates belonging. Finally, Kathleen Tarr’s essay, “We Are All Poets Here,” is all about Russian poets generally and Boris Pasternak specifically.

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