On a recent afternoon at 71 Bond Street in downtown Brooklyn, two dozen people crammed together to attend a poetry reading at Shortwave, the new bookstore and headquarters of Soft Skull Press.
Jedediah Purdy's first book, For Common Things: Irony, Trust and Commitment in America Today, argued that America's political and social life had become tainted by ironic detachment.
So, what was is the life of a geisha really like? Not the made up fantasy of a Western mans best seller on the subject, but an authentic geisha, or artist in Japanese.
The Lives of the Muses: Nine Women and the Artists They Inspired by Francine Prose, HarperCollins (2002)
Christopher Logue is a modern rhapsode. Students of Greek antiquity will know that rhapsodes were professional performers of epic poetry. Splendidly attired, they dramatized the deeds of long-dead heroes and immortal gods, as portrayed by Homer and his like, before private audiences and at public festivals.
In a media environment where all images are apportioned to partisan arguments unreasonable and unthinkingSusan Sontags mission to resume a more considered meditation on photography is a noble one.
In the Divine Comedy, Dante encounters the ancient poets suspended in limbo, the first circle of hell: Homer the supreme poet, Horace the satirist, Ovid, and Lucan. Its a shame Dante doesnt describe Horace as a lyric poet, for the four books of the Odes are arguably his most loved and well-known poems.