Spring 1998



Spring 1998

Table of Contents


Distance and Direction

The Good War and the Great Snafu

Watershed: An Excursion in Four Parts


B Major

Below the Gospels

Orphan of Love




Dancing with Alligators

Fin de siècle


He Plays Vinyl

Howdy Duncan

Love Is a Twelve-Bar Blues

Mesa View: Blue Sky, Pink Cloud, White Moon

More Rain

My Dream of the Empty Zoo

Retirement & Haycutters

The Corals


Your Faithful & Obedient Servant & Speculation on Those Who Have Had Affairs with Famous Poets


Exposed: The Performer Backstage


Ambiguity Isn’t What It Used to Be—Or Is It? (on Another Language: Selected Poems by Rosmarie Waldrop; Viridian by Paul Hoover; Crown of Weeds by Amy Gerstler; Through One Tear by Edward Nobles; and True North by Stephanie Strickland)

Herman Melville’s Literary Lives (on Melville and His Circle: The Last Years by William B. Dillingham; Melville: A Biography by Laurie Robertson-Lorant; and Herman Melville: A Biography, Volume 1, 1819-1851 by Hershel Parker)

Literary Culture and Its Watchdogs (on The Fateful Question of Culture by Geoffrey H. Hartman; A Feeling for Books: The Book-of-the-Month Club, Literary Taste, and Class Desire by Janice A. Radway; and Life Sentences: Literary Essays by Joseph Epstein)

on Literature Lost: Social Agendas and the Corruption of the Humanities by John M. Ellis

on Robert Penn Warren: A Biography by Joseph Blotner

The Power of Witness (on Fruits of Sorrow: Framing Our Attention to Suffering by Elizabeth V. Spelman; Vigil by Alan Shapiro; Heaven’s Coast by Mark Doty; and This Wild Darkness: The Story of My Death by Harold Brodkey)