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Reviews: Here, Bullet by Brian Turner, and two websites for poets.
June 26, 2008
Hello Poets and Poetry Lovers

It's been a great week. Belinda Subraman interviewed me about my toolbar and we talked a little bit about my experience in Iraq in 2005. You can listen to the interview from the World Class Poetry Toolbar if you've downloaded it. Just click on the radio icon and scroll down to "Belinda Subraman Presents/Gypsy Art Show." Look for the podcast named "Allen Taylor, Iraq War Vet, Poet and Creator of World Class Poetry Toolbar."

If you haven't downloaded the toolbar and you want to listen to the podcast interview from Belinda's website, just head on over to Podomatic and you can listen to it there. The show went live last Thursday just as Hyperbole was going out.

This week I've got three reviews lined up. I've reviewed Brian Turner's book Here, Bullet. Turner is an Iraq War veteran who spent 2003 in Iraq and published his book of poems in 2005. I'll also share with you a couple of websites that you can benefit from, websites that I believe every poet should use. And now, without further ado, here goes:

Table of Contents

  1. Poetry Video Of The Week - What Every Soldier Should Know
  2. Two Websites Every Poet Should Know
  3. American Life in Poetry by Ted Kooser
  4. Book Review: Here, Bullet
  5. Poetry Article - Constructing Additional Meaning with Concrete Poetry
  6. New And Updated World Class Poetry Pages
  7. New World Class Poetry Blog Posts
  8. Poetry Book Of The Week
  9. Are You Subscribed?
  10. World Class Poetry Networking

Poetry Video Of The Week -
What Every Soldier Should Know
by Brian Turner

If you can't click the link or watch the video, you can find it here.

Two Websites Every Poet Should Know

I've been using a couple of websites quite a lot lately and I'm pretty excited about both of them. I highly recommend both of them:

Zoetrope: Zoetrope was created by movie maker Francis Ford Coppola. I like it because poets can sign up and use the service to critique each other's poems. You have to give five reviews before you can have a poem reviewed by others and it stays up for a period of 30 days to allow people the chance to review it at will. The site is attractive and useful and I highly recommend it in conjunction with your offline workshops.

Duotrope's Digest: Duotrope's Digest is the online equivalent to Poet's Market. Find markets, visit their websites, read their guidelines, and track your submissions all rolled into one. Great site! I've ditched my Excel spreadsheet.

See a fuller treatment of both sites on the World Class Poetry Blog.

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American Life in Poetry: Column 169


I remember being scared to death when, at about thirty years of age, I saw an x-ray of my skull. Seeing one's self as a skeleton, or receiving any kind of medical report, even when the news is good, can be unsettling. Suddenly, you're just another body, a clock waiting to stop. Here's a telling poem by Rick Campbell, who lives and teaches in Florida.


My heart was suspect.
Wired to an EKG,
I walked a treadmill
that measured my ebb
and flow, tracked isotopes
that ploughed my veins,
looked for a constancy
I've hardly ever found.
For a month I worried
as I climbed the stairs
to my office. The mortality
I never believed in
was here now. They
say my heart's ok,
just high cholesterol, but
I know my heart's a house
someone has broken into,
a room you come back
to and know some stranger
with bad intent has been there
and touched all that you love. You know
he can come back. It's his call,
his house now.

American Life in Poetry is made possible by The Poetry Foundation (, publisher of Poetry magazine. It is also supported by the Department of English at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Poem copyright (c) 2006 by Rick Campbell and reprinted from "Dixmont," Autumn House Press, 2008, by permission of the writer. First published in "The Florida Review," Fall, 2006. Introduction copyright (c) 2008 by The Poetry Foundation. The introduction's author, Ted Kooser, served as United States Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress from 2004-2006. We do not accept unsolicited manuscripts.

Book Review: Here, Bullet

Brian Turnerís Here, Bullet is a veritable image gallery of tactical observations. Well structured as a compilation and equally well packaged as the poetic memoir of a soldier who has been there and seen firsthand the surreal nature of 21st century warfare rather than the sound bite version from CNN, Turnerís voice is unique and credible, but that is its limit.

Read the rest of the review

New And Updated World Class Poetry Pages

This week I have two new pages and two updated pages on the website. You've been introduced to the book review of Brian Turner's book of Iraq War poems, Here, Bullet. We've also added a new guest article on concrete poetry this week. Feel free to check out both new offerings.

Updated pages include the poetry book reviews page and our articles page. Happy reading!

Poetry Book Of The Week

Really, despite my harsh criticism of Brian Turner's book, I do recommend it. Not every poem is a brilliant piece of work, but many of them are and even if they weren't I would say purchase this book and get it autographed. It's an important book, not just for poetry, but historically. Here, Bullet. Buy it.

Buy your favorite poetry books at the World Class Poetry Bookstore.

New World Class Poetry Blog Posts

This week's new blog posts include:

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Call For Submissions!

Submit your poetry articles to World Class Poetry. Use the WCP article submission form.


Allen Taylor
the poet

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