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Step Right Up

Mary Jo Bang

The fall issue of KR is out & flying. Among the curiosities inside, you’ll find two new poems by Mary Jo Bang.

Bang’s National Book Critics Circle Award winning collection, Elegy, tilt-a-whirled into my reading life this summer. If you haven’t picked it up already, the poems in Elegy collect themselves to make an audible passage through loss. “Passage”–not inferring fair weather. These poems speak from an interior overtaken by its subject. Yet they host a reader, somehow.

Have you seen those huge funnels at the carnival where you can drop a tiger-eyed marble and watch it forever funnel in? Bang’s poems have this effect. You have her tiger eye in the marble-go-round.

Or step right into the anti-gravity machine. “V is the Diver,” one of Mary Jo Bang’s poems in the current KR, takes you up & down the world’s most vexing letter.

[Photo of Mary Jo Bang courtesy of Mark Gilliland /]