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Mar 5, 2014
Let’s try something different. Skip this intro for now and dive right into the John Duvernoy poems that appear below. Take as much time as you want. I’m not going anywhere. . .
Here’s what. I’m not going to quote passages from what you just read in order to explicate their brilliance. I trust your hermeneutics are in working order. But I do want to share a few things you may not already know. Such as: among the seventy-plus students I’ve had the pleasure to work with during my eight-year stint at Bennington’s Graduate Writing Seminars, there were only one or two (maybe three) whom I felt inadequate to mentor—I mean, ones whom it felt presumptuous to take under my wing because they were already fully feathered, etching lazy circles in a spellbound sky.
Ones whom I’d have preferred to have met elsewhere.
Parched and stumbling across a dilapidated cabin in the deep woods. Ever feel like that? Reason enough to turn to literature, to poetry, in hopes of . . . what? Now that you’ve made your way through the sundry hollows and vistas in Duvernoy country, I ask if you got a whiff of that “new world naked.” Want to go back and cozy up again to its outré strangeness? Think Frank Stanford. Think James Dean—a brooder who kept his swagger.
John Duvernoy graduated from Bennington in the summer of 2008 and then disappeared. Cleaned up his life. Got married! But kept on writing in relative obscurity, kept his mythical frog skin wet, all the while making sporadic splashes in venues like Canteen, Octopus, Paul Revere’s Horse, Web Conjunctions. His first full-length collection is forthcoming soon from Horse Less Press. And what a debut that will be. For now, I trust your appetite has been whetted.
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March 05, 2014
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