Contributors’ Notes, Vol. 28, #4

ROSS BENJAMIN is a translator of German literature and a writer living in Brooklyn, New York. His work has appeared in Bookforum, The Nation, The New York Times, and other publications. His translation of Friedrich Hölderlin’s Hyperion will be published in the spring of 2008 by Archipelago Books.

TODD BOSS is the Director of External Affairs at The Playwrights’ Center in Minneapolis. His first collection of poems, Yellowrocket, will appear in 2008 from W. W. Norton. Read more of his work at

CHARLES CROS (1842–88) was a French poet, humorist, songwriter, and inventor. He developed improved methods of telegraph technology and photography, but is best known for discovering the sound technology of the phonograph—though he lacked the funds to produce and patent it—before it was patented by Thomas Edison. He was a friend of Verlaine and Rimbaud. Cros’s poetry was largely unknown in his lifetime, and an addiction to absinthe contributed to his early death.

GABRIELLE CALVOCORESSI was born in central Connecticut. She has been the recipient of numerous awards and fellowships, including a Stegner Fellowship in Poetry, a Jones Lectureship in Poetry at Stanford University, and a Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers’ Award. Her poem “Circus Fire, 1944” received The Paris Review’s Bernard F. Conners Prize. Her first collection, The Last Time I Saw Amelia Earhart (Persea Books, 2005), won the Connecticut Book Award and was shortlisted for the Northern California Book Award. She lives in Los Angeles and teaches at California College of the Arts in San Francisco and in the Warren Wilson M.F.A. Program. Her second collection, Apocalyptic Swing, is forthcoming from Persea Books.

MICHAEL COFFEY is the author of four books of poems—Elemenopy (Sun & Moon), 87 North (Coffee House Press), CMYK (O Books), and (with Rebecca Smith) Between Two Things (Lake George Arts Project). He is the executive managing editor at Publishers Weekly. “Trespasses” is from a memoir-in-progress.

HUGH COYLE has published fiction and poetry in Boston Review, Green Mountains Review, Christopher Street, Bay Windows, and Art and Understanding. His work has been awarded a Pushcart Prize and a Heekin Award for Fiction.

JORDAN DAVIS’s first collection, Million Poems Journal, appeared in 2003 from Faux Press. Recent work appears or is forthcoming in Hanging Loose, New American Writing, Subtropics, and The Nation. He writes regularly about poetry for The Constant Critic. With Chris Edgar, he edits the bicontinental literary annual The Hat. He lives with his son and his wife, Alison Stine Davis, in New York, where he works in the financial industry.

PAUL ELUARD (1895–1952), an important French poet of the twentieth century, was one of the founders of the Surrealist movement. His books from the Surrealist period include Capitale de la douleur (“Capital of Sorrow,” 1926), La Rose publique (“The Public Rose,” 1934), and Les Yeux fertiles (“The Fertile Eyes,” 1936). After the Spanish Civil War, Éluard abandoned Surrealist experimentation and subsequently joined the Communist Party. His later collections include Poésie et vérité (“Poetry and Truth,” 1942), Dignes de vivre (“Worthy of Living,” 1944), and Tout dire (“Say Everything,” 1951).

G. S. EVANS is a writer and translator who divides his time between the United States and the Czech Republic. His fiction has appeared (in translation) in Czech literary journals such as Labyrint and Host, and his translations from Czech have been published in The Kenyon Review and New Orleans Review. He is also coeditor of the internet journal The Cafe Irreal. “The Night Before” is excerpted from his translation of Arnošt Lustig’s novel Lea from Leeuwarden.

JENNIFER GROTZ is the author of Cusp (Houghton Mifflin, 2003). Her poems, translations, and reviews have recently appeared in Ploughshares, TriQuarterly, The Southern Review, Mantis, Boston Review, and elsewhere. She teaches in the M.F.A. Program at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and serves as the Assistant Director of the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference.

RACHEL HADAS is Board of Governors Professor of English at Rutgers University (Newark Campus). Her most recent book of poems is The River of Forgetfulness (Wordtech, 2006), and a collection of essays, Classics (Wordtech, 2007), has just been released.

JOSHUA HARMON is the author of Quinnehtukqut (Starcherone, 2007), a novel. His writing appears in recent issues of Columbia, Denver Quarterly, Florida Review, Southwest Review, and other journals. He has received fellowships in fiction from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts.

THOMAS WENTWORTH HIGGINSON (1823–1911), an American reformer identified with the abolitionist movement before the American Civil War, began his career as a Unitarian minister with increasingly radical views on temperance, women’s rights, labor, and slavery. He served on the Boston Vigilance Committee to aid escaping slaves and supported the actions of John Brown both in Kansas and in his 1859 raid on the arsenal in Harpers Ferry, Virginia. During the Civil War Higginson accepted command of the first black regiment in the U.S. armed forces. After 1864 he wrote a series of works including histories, literary biographies, and a novel. It was Higginson who, in 1862, offered Emily Dickinson the initial encouragement that confirmed her vocation as a poet.

FRIEDRICH HOLDERLIN, widely regarded as one of the greatest German lyric poets, was born in 1770 in Lauffen on the Neckar, a small town in the Swabia region of southwest Germany. In addition to his poetry and Hyperion, his only novel, Hölderlin undertook a tragic drama, The Death of Empedocles, which he never completed. His career as an author was cut short by a mental breakdown that confined him to a tower in Tübingen from 1807 until his death in 1843. The profound influence of his work is detectable in that of some of the most significant figures in German literature and philosophy, including Hegel, Nietzsche, Rilke, Heidegger, and Celan.

ALDOUX HUXLEY (1894–1963) was a prolific English novelist, essayist, and satirist. His early works, including Crome Yellow (1921), Antic Hay (1923), and Point Counter Point (1928), depicted the behavior of literary and social elites in the 1920s. Later works reflected his intense preoccupation with political and philosophical issues, and later mysticism and science, as evidenced by Brave New World (1932), After Many a Summer Dies the Swan (1939), The Doors of Perception (1954), and Island (1962). Huxley died in California on November 22, 1963.

JOHN KINSELLA’s new volumes of poetry, Purgatorio: Up Close and Paradiso: Rupture will be released in September 2008 by W. W. Norton. His Disclosed Poetics: Beyond Landscape and Lyricism has just been published by Manchester University Press (through Palgrave in the United States).

JONATHAN LEVY is the author of many plays for adults and children as well as several works of scholarship and criticism. He is Distinguished Teaching Professor at the State University of New York at Stony Brook and has contributed frequently to NER.

JAMES LONGENBACH is the author most recently of the poetry collection Draft of a Letter (University of Chicago Press, 2007) and The Art of the Poetic Line, forthcoming this winter from Graywolf Press. He teaches in the Warren Wilson M.F.A. Program and at the University of Rochester, where he is the Joseph H. Gilmore Professor of English.

ARNOST LUSTIG, a survivor of Terezín, Auschwitz, and Buchenwald, is the author of seven novels and five collections of short stories published in English. He is a winner of the National Jewish Book Award and the Karel ?apek Award (the highest distinction for literary achievement given in the Czech Republic) and has won an Emmy Award for the screenplay of The Precious Legacy. His most recent novel published in the United States is Lovely Green Eyes (Arcade Press, 2002). In 2004 he was awarded an Academy Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

JEFF MOCK is the author of a chapbook, Evening Travelers (Volans Press, 1994), and a guidebook for beginning writers, You Can Write Poetry (Writer’s Digest Books, 1998). The poem in this issue is from a manuscript-in-progress, American Pantheon. His poems have appeared in The Atlantic Monthly, Crazyhorse, The Georgia Review, The Iowa Review, The North American Review, Quarterly West, The Sewanee Review, Shenandoah, The Southern Review, and elsewhere. He teaches at Southern Connecticut State University.

KEITH LEE MORRIS is the author of a novel, The Greyhound God, and a story collection, The Best Seats in the House, both published by University of Nevada Press. His second novel, The Dart League King, will be published in 2009 by Tin House Books. Recent work has appeared in A Public Space, Cincinnati Review, Puerto Del Sol, and elsewhere. His story “Tired Heart,” which was published in New England Review, was selected for inclusion in New Stories from the South 2006.

D. A. POWELL’s most recent book, Cocktails (Graywolf, 2004), was a finalist for the National Book Critics’ Circle Award. He has new work in Poetry, Virginia Quarterly Review, and Jacket. Powell teaches in the English Department of University of San Francisco.

CATHERINE POZZI (1882–1934) was a French writer whose published works include the philosophical essay Peau d’âme (“The Soul’s Skin,” 1935), the autobiographical fiction Agnès (1927), and a small collection Poèmes, published after her death. She recorded her life in her diary, two volumes of which have been published as Journal, 1913–1934, and Journal de jeunesse, 1893–1906. Collections of her correspondence with Paul Valéry, Rainer Maria Rilke, and Jean Paulhan have also appeared in France.

REBECCA PURDUM is a painter who has exhibited nationally and internationally since 1985. Her paintings are in many collections, including those of the Fort Worth Art Museum and the List Visual Arts Center at MIT. In recognition of her achievement, she was awarded a Joan Mitchell Foundation grant in 2005. She lives and paints in Ripton, Vermont.

MARK RUDMAN’s Rider Quintet is now complete. He has two books of poems in progress, Identification of a Woman and Tropic Winter, sections of which were published in the London Review, TLS, Raritan, Ploughshares, and Guernica, and were featured in the first online edition of SALT, along with an interview. The Motel En Route to Life Out There: Selections from the Rider Quintet will appear in 2008. He’s also finished a Selected and New Poems: 1971–2007. His fourth book of prose, Imagination’s Exile, is also forthcoming; it includes “The Book of Samuel,” which appeared recently in NER. Rudman teaches poetry at NYU and for the Pequod Seminars and spends as much time as he can chilling with his family in New York City.

RONALD A. SHARP, a former editor of The Kenyon Review, is currently Dean of the Faculty and Professor of English at Vassar College. He is also the author or editor of six books, including Keats, Skepticism, and the Religion of Beauty (University of Georgia Press) and The Norton Book of Friendship (W. W. Norton), which he edited with Eudora Welty.

ABIGAIL ULMAN is from Melbourne, Australia, and lives in San Francisco. She is currently a Stegner Fellow in fiction in the Creative Writing Program at Stanford University. This is her first American publication.

PAUL VERLAINE (1844–96) was a well-known French poet identified as a leader of the Symbolists. His books include Poèmes saturniens (1866), Fêtes galants (1869), Romances sans paroles (1874), and Sagesse (1881). Verlaine’s tumultuous life included military service in the Franco-Prussian War and a love affair with Arthur Rimbaud, which eventually led to the end of Verlaine’s marriage and to a prison sentence, after he was convicted of shooting and wounding Rimbaud at the end of the relationship. He published his prose Confessions the year before he died.

VALERIE WOHLFELD holds an M.F.A. from Vermont College. Her 1994 collection, Thinking the World Visible, won the Yale Series of Younger Poets prize. She has just completed a novel, Amusing the Raven.

KEVIN YOUNG is the author of five books of poetry, including For the Confederate Dead, winner of the 2007 Quill Award in Poetry. He is the editor of four other collections and is currently Atticus Haygood Professor and Curator of the Danowski Poetry Library at Emory University.



In our previous issue, Vol. 28, #3, in the story by Peter LaSalle entitled “The Saga of the Irish in America,” a phrase was inadvertently dropped during the typesetting process. The sentence on p. 46, line 7, should read “Apparently, Norman had been killed in a motorboat mishap on Lake Travis outside of Austin the fall before.” We regret the error.