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Louise Gluck and Dana Levin: a conversation

September 13, 2009

Dana Levin recently interviewed poet Louise Gluck, from http://www.poets.org–  This article originally appeared in issue 36 of American Poet, the biannual journal of the Academy of American Poets:

Dana Levin: I wanted to start by asking about your new book, A Village Life, which is coming out this Fall. Time feels spatial in the book, as if all the book’s varied voices are speaking, events are happening, in a simultaneous temporal moment.

Louise Glück: There’s something very strange in these poems that I’ve been unable to put my finger on. It’s certainly not a willed or deliberate quality, but it has to do with that simultaneity. And it strikes me that the book has something in common with “Landscape,” a poem in Averno, in which the stages of a life are represented by individual sections, but the narrative elements and even the point of view shift from section to section—and yet what’s represented is the whole of a life. It occurred to me that A Village Life engages that horrible axiom that, at the end of your life, as you’re dying, the whole of your life floods back. That’s what the book feels like to me: the whole of a life, but not progressive, not narrative: simultaneous. And there’s no drama attendant in the idea of dying. It’s beyond the drama of the forfeit of the world; it’s just a long exhalation.

DL: What did the book teach you aesthetically?

CONTINUE READING ONLINE –>

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