Featured Poet: Christina Cook, Hanover
Christina Cook's work has appeared or is forthcoming in a number of journals, including Prairie Schooner, Hayden's Ferry Review, Harpur Palate, Silk Road Review, The Bitter Oleander, Cerise Press, Poetry Salzburg Review, and Packingtown Review. Her published work includes translations and essays, as well as poetry. Christina holds an MFA in poetry and literary translation from the Vermont College of Fine Arts and an MA in English and American literature from the University of Cincinnati. She writes book reviews for Poets’ Quarterly and is a poetry editor at the online journal Inertia Magazine.
"Nightcrawlers" is set at the old family lake cottage where I do much of my writing, and it posits a nighttime worm hunt with my sons. Like many of my poems, the form is visually loose yet physically coheres in the same space that would be taken up by uniform lines and stanzas. First inspired by Charles Wright's long, seemingly loosely written lines, I have been working on this visual arrangement for some time, which fluctuates some with the particular needs of each poem. "Nightcrawlers" also speaks to the importance I place on musicality in my poetry. Jazz is a strong influence on my writing, and I try to structure my phrasing in terms of its rhythms and syncopation. I'm always looking for ways to bring in elements of the unexpected, which delights me in the music of John Coltrane, for example. In addition to unexpected rhythms and line breaks, I look for unexpected words, word-pairings, and elements, and for this I borrow liberally from the Tarot, Alchemy, and mythology. Although my sons and I have never gone on a nightcrawler hunt and I don't practice the Tarot, the poem speaks to a certain reality of how it feels to walk through the woods by the lake at night.
Click here to download "Nightcrawlers"
Nightcrawlers is forthcoming in Cave Wall
Don't have Adobe Acrobat Reader®? Click here to download for free!
For more information about Christina Cook: