Interview with Annie Finch

AngelSpeak welcomes Annie Finch to the Friday Interview Series!

I feel more as if I serve the poems, rather than them serving me; it’s more that I go to their world, instead of drawing them to mine.

Annie Finch is a poet, critic, editor, translator, and librettist, author or editor of numerous volumes of poetry, translation, and criticism.  Her books of poetry include EveCalendars (recently released in a new edition with 40-page free downloadable Readers’ Companion and Audio CD), the long poems The Encyclopedia of Scotland and Among the Goddesses: An Epic Libretto in Seven Dreams, and the forthcoming Spells: New and Selected Poems.  Her poetry appears in anthologies, textbooks and journals including Agni, Fulcrum, Kenyon Review, The Norton Anthology of World Poetry, Paris Review, The Penguin Book of the Sonnet, Prairie Schooner, and Yale Review. Her other works include several influential books of poetics, including The Body of Poetry: Essays on Women, Form, and the Poetic Self and the forthcoming A Poet’s Craft: A Comprehensive Guide to Making and Sharing Your Poems and A Poet’s Ear: A Handbook of Meter and Form. Her music, art, theater, and opera collaborations have shown at such venues as American Opera Projects, Carnegie Hall, Chicago Art Institute, Poets House, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.  Finch’s book of poetry Calendars was shortlisted for the Foreword Poetry Book of the Year Award and in 2009 she was awarded the Robert Fitzgerald Award. She holds degrees from Yale University, the University of Houston, and Stanford University, and currently directs the Stonecoast MFA program in creative writing at the University of Southern Maine.

I Am Woman

It’s International Women’s Day! Here at AngelSpeak I’m celebrating poets with a sampling of the women whose work I love and who have inspired and taught me so much.

Some writers I’ve learned from:

  • Jorie Graham’s poetry taught me to not shy away from my intelligence in my writing – it’s okay to be a smart woman.
  • Sharon Olds‘ poetry taught me to write with fearlessness and stark honesty about everything and anything.
  • Larissa Szporluk taught me to pay attention to something other than subject matter: the power of the sound of words.
  • Annie Finch taught me pay attention to something other than sound: the impact of rhythm on the body.

Continue reading