All posts by Kathleen Cassen Mickelson

About Kathleen Cassen Mickelson

Minnesota-based writer, dog owner, parent, photographer, coffee addict, and snow-lover, which makes her unpopular in the neighborhood around the middle of January.

Wrap This Up: The 2017 Issues

We are pleased to announce that we have assembled all of our 2017 issues of Gyroscope Review in one place.

Wrap This Up: The 2017 Issues is available now on Amazon as either a print version ($20 plus shipping; free shipping with Amazon Prime) or a Kindle version ($9.99).

We are proud of our 2017 contributing poets and hope you want to read them all again in this collection. We are pretty sure this is the best holiday gift ever.

Thank you for reading!

 

 

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Book Review: The THIRD Voice by Eric Greinke

A Gyroscope Review Review:

The THIRD VOICE: Notes on the Art of Poetic Collaboration
by Eric Greinke
Presa Press, 84 pages, $13.95
Date of Publication: November 1, 2017


If a poet has lost the joy of wordplay, I suggest that a lively collaboration may be the antidote.

-Eric Greinke

Did you ever sit at the feet of someone, say a grandparent or some other elder in your life, who shared stories of their long life/career/travels, bask in their memories, and perhaps learn from them? That was the feeling I had throughout my reading of Eric Greinke’s new book, The THIRD Voice: Notes on the Art of Poetic Collaboration.

Greinke’s poetic career reaches back to the late 1960s and early 1970s when he was, as he writes, part of  “the local poetry avant-garde in Western Michigan” (p. 11). His poetry output skipped several years when he focused instead on his social work career, then picked up again in the new millenium with the publication of  Selected Poems 1972-2005 (Presa Press, 2005). Collaborative work was, and is, an enormous part of Greinke’s poetry.

In The THIRD Voice, Greinke looks back on his collaborations with poets Harry Smith, John Elsberg, Hugh Fox, Glenna Luschei, and Alison Stone. In language that borrows from both literary theory and the social work/therapy realms, Greinke deconstructs those collaborations so readers understand how they came about, how the work grew out of his relationship with each poet, and what Greinke ultimately learned about poetry and the art of collaboration. He shares pieces that were written in those collaborations as examples of how two different voices may come together in a third, new voice. He also discusses the many ways poetic collaboration can be structured, beginning with dialogic collaboration, which is “a form where poets write whole poems independently but in specific response to each other’s poems” (p. 17). He later segues into collaborations in which poets alternate writing each line, where the process grows organically into invented forms and sequences, and exercises where one poet might write the first, last, and title lines while the other poet writes three lines to fill in the middle of the poem. He discusses haiku and tanka sequences as collaborative projects, and the invention of one-line poems in response to a title. He explores how collaboration may be influenced by gender and age differences, and relishes balancing differences with commonalities.

Greinke’s interest in collaborations was first influenced by the 1967 publication Bean Spasms (Kulchur Press), which was a collaboration between the writers Ted Berrigan and Ron Padgett, with a little help from their friend, illustrator Joe Brainard. As Greinke sees it, Bean Spasms gave permission to have fun with poetry. And perhaps this idea is one of the biggest take-aways of The THIRD Voice. Poetry can be a lot of fun, word play is truly play, and who doesn’t like to have fun playing with others?

Poetic collaboration is more than play, of course. It offers poets so many opportunities for expanding their work and for working through tough topics. Greinke’s collaboration with his friend Hugh Fox offers a beautiful example of collaborating through grief; the two of them spent a year writing poetry together while Fox was dying of cancer. One of the resulting poems, Beyond Our Control, was constructed a line at a time, Fox and Greinke each composing every other line. Greinke considers this his best collaborative work. The poem, a 2015 Pushcart Prize nominee, illustrates how two poets might turn their grief into art and blend their voices into a third voice that good collaboration makes possible.

Overall, this gentle, nostalgic look at the poetic collaborations Eric Greinke has enjoyed over his writing life offers one of the best incentives of all for poets who are considering their options: joy. Collaborate with another poet, let it evolve organically, and reclaim the joy of word play that called to you the day you first fell in love with a poem.

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HAPPY HALLOWEEN FROM GYROSCOPE REVIEW

Trick or treat! Give us something good to….read! Click on the links below to find a cauldron full of Halloween goodies.

 

 

 

Halloween Poems from the Academy of American Poets

Halloween Poems from the Poetry Foundation

It’s the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown on ABC.com (contains ads!)

 

 

Some out-of-this-world pumpkin carving from Villafane Studios

Happy Halloween, everyone! Stop back tomorrow for our latest book review.

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Welcome to Gyroscope Review Issue 17-4

We did it again! Another issue completed and it’s beautiful.

Our cover shot this time is of St. Paul, Minnesota, bathed in hazy golden light late on a September afternoon. Editor Kathleen Cassen Mickelson lives in the Twin Cities and is delighted that co-editor Constance Brewer, who lives in Wyoming, liked the idea of using this image.

More important is what’s inside: 35 poets from a host of places who share images in words, craft reactions to the world as it is right now, remember other places and people, and ponder how life has turned out. These are strong voices and our pages are nearly bursting with their force.

Intrigued? Then find your favorite version of this issue below and read on. Share us with your family, your friends, your neighbors and co-workers.

We are here for you.

To purchase a print edition of Gyroscope Review Issue 17-4 on CreateSpace, click HERE.

To read a PDF version on any digital device, or to find our back issues, click HERE.

Gyroscope Review print editions are also available on Amazon.

 

 

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