The Blog

After Death, Music: Tightening the Slackened Strings of the Lyre—Rusty Morrison's AFTER URGENCY

Virginia Konchan

The landscape of Rusty Morrison's newest poetry collection, After Urgency, is one rid not only of music but the hope of its return.

From “Verdancies of repetition”:

Struck again and again, destiny might never chime.

Toss consonants against the vowels for luck of true correspondence.

Rhyme-fellows remain distinct even at a distance, like two wings frame
the jay’s flight.

Harbor the hidden accentual in the beautiful repose after vowelling.

From the archive: How to Write a Love Poem, by J. Rodney Karr

TIR staff

You must not deny the body:
Her lips flowered
Around a beautiful word, her breasts
Gliding under a blue silk dress like moons
Through atmospheres of the equinox,
The slight shadow of her thigh
Caressing a September-red poppy as if water;

Because there you will notice within
Her eye's hazel mire, a color caught
Between those blacks and jades
Of desire, a color you will hear
Like one who watches the meadow rue bud
Open during the April evening
And claims to have heard a voice;

And when you have listened to that voice,
When you have walked for hours
Through the umbers and reds
Of sycamore forests, through the first veil
Of snow over the clover field, walked
Above the frozen lake for hours, months,
Alone, until Spring, listening to that voice


Vanessa Blakeslee

In this enthralling debut collection, winner of the 2011 Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction, E. J. Levy delves into the well-trod territory of modern love, in all its indecisiveness and heartbreak. Levy’s fiction and essays have received numerous honors such as the Pushcart Prize and Nelson Algren Award, as well as the Lambda Literary Award for her anthology, Tasting Life Twice: Literary Lesbian Fiction by New American Writers. Her memoir, Amazons: A Love Story, was recently published by University of Missouri Press. Love, In Theory showcases some of her best fiction, as the stories collected here first appeared in the Paris Review, the Missouri Review, and the Gettysburg Review, to name a few.       

"The Global Soul" at the 2013 Jaipur Literature Festival

Anika Gupta

The Global Soul and the Search for Home

As a twenty-year old in Italy, I once spoke four languages in the space of an hour. It began when an Englishwoman asked me where the bathroom was, in Spanish. I answered her in the same language, but as we walked to the bathroom we discovered that we had another language in common, which was English. Then, the woman in charge of the hotel where we were staying gave me further instructions, this time in Italian. When we wandered out, a Pakistani-Italian stallkeeper started chatting me up in Hindi in the Piazza Bra.

“Where are you from?” he asked.

Our 2014 Pushcart Nominees (and why!)

TIR staff

Anne Babson, "Ariadne Explains Why She's Mixed Up with a Boy like Theseus" (poem, Fall 2012)

What I love about this is the giving of voice and agency to the supposed victim of Theseus's unfaithfulness, at least according to the usual myth, and what a strong, sexy voice! Also, the fact that she becomes the (bull) rider at the end. I read this aloud to my undergraduate class when we were talking about adaptations, and I could see them all sit up in their seats, their eyes opening wide. —R. Valentino, TIR Editor

Ayşe Papatya Bucak, "Iconography" (fiction, Fall 2012)


Subscribe to The Blog