“For me, adopting a more public voice is something concrete that I can contribute to the pushback against the incoming administration.”

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Monica Youn, who was part of the “Writers Resist” protests on Sunday, has an interview up at PBS Newshour about, among other things, what it’s like to write a poem on commission in 3 weeks… when she usually takes months or even years to complete a piece.

As ‘writers resist’ Trump, an interview with a poet in protest – Elizabeth Flock – PBS Newshour – 1/16/17

“…I’m not used to responding to particular current events — especially one so new, so raw, and so huge.

“But I felt that I’ve allowed myself to get a little too fastidious — too comfortable in my comfort zone. Don’t get me wrong — even the most navel-gazing, most abstruse artistic work has inherent political value. If we allow political exigency to supercede the difficult, the nuanced, the individualistic, then the enemies of truth have already won. But I think that poets practice certain skills that we bring to the fray — skills involving the analysis and strategic deployment of language. For me, adopting a more public voice is something concrete that I can contribute to the pushback against the incoming administration, along with phone calls, donations, protests and other more direct forms of political activism. I’ll be interested to see how my more public voice changes and educates my more personal, lyric modes of writing.”

A GUIDE TO USAGE: MINE

By Monica Youn

 

A. Pronoun

My.

Be-
longing

to me.

how should I define the limits of my concern the boundary between mine and not-mine the chime of the pronoun like a steel ring cast over what I know what I name what I claim what I own the whine of the pronoun hones its bright edges to keenness

Read rest of poem 

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