The Farrar, Straus and Giroux Poetry Blog

April 13, 2007

"The Mind Is The Most Interesting Thing To Me"

Earlier this month, I mentioned the joys of looking for connections in the set of poems selected by our poets. I think, for the careful listener, connections are there to be found in this set of readings by Henri Cole, who was, believe it or not, the poet I was most nervous about meeting in the studio. Mostly because I'm from the Midwest and am a bit nervous about my pronounciation of 'Henri,' but also because I was such a huge fan of his last book, Middle Earth, and I sometimes have a hard time keeping from gushing.

Cole has a new collection out this month, Blackbird and Wolf, and the first poem I have for you, called 'Twilight,' is from its first section. Cole is a marvelous reader, and it seems to me that he has become very comfortable speaking the words in his poems, so I don't know whether my favorite part is intentional or not--but if you listen, there is a line ("or like us at the pier") where the poem turns from focusing on the outside world to focusing on problems closer to the narrator, and Cole gives a half sigh, infusing his words to come even more fully with a sense of frustration. It's perfect. Download it here, or listen below.

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