Poetry books_feature-5392

Published on February 2nd, 2014


Denis Johnson is impressed with this young poet

In a rare interview, Tree of Smoke author Denis Johnson shared with Yale Literary Magazine which poets influenced him the most, and who he’s reading today.

“Dylan Thomas first of all, during my high school – in fact it was the poem “Fern Hill,” because it sounded so much like a person – and then Walt Whitman and the beat poets shortly after that. And Bob Dylan’s lyrics, and “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock,” and then, when I was a college freshman, “The Lost Pilot” by James Tate. I yearned to talk like them, I ached for it. I still read poetry all the time. Just lately it’s Eugenio Montale, and Michael Burkard, and John Clare. Often I return to Franz Wright, and W.S. Merwin. I’ve recently been impressed by the young poet Carl Adamshick, though I might be misspelling his name. James Tate still. John Logan I return to as well. I’ve been re-reading “The Salt Ecstasies” by James L. White, too. Last winter was the winter of Fernando Pesoa.”

Read the full interview here.

Very nice praise for Carl Adamshick (Johnson did spell his name correctly), the winner of the 2012 Stafford/Hall Oregon Book Award for his collection Curses and Wishes.


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