I had the honor of conducting another interview with Brenda Hillman on December 12, 2022. The subject was her new book In A Few Minutes Before Later. It is wonderful to see a poet evolving in such a beautiful way as Brenda is, following her own “permission to be strange.” I will be facilitating a deep dive into this book between January 8 and the middle of May in our online workshops. There is room in the Thursday night session, Poetics as Cosmology. Info here.
My introduction to the interview:
Bryophytes, chlorpyrifos & the protest voices are but three images in one poem by Brenda Hillman early on in her new book In a Few Minutes Before Later published by Wesleyan University Press. The L.A. Review of Books said the new book features: “a determinedly expansive poetry that includes prose, photographs, diagrams, pedigree charts, and all sorts of typographical expressionism.” She draws on influences including Henri Bergson, Muriel Rukeyser, Fred Moten and Lorine Niedecker to create an idiosyncratic gesture that’s ecological, activist, playful and vulnerable. There is no poet like her writing today and possibly forever and she’s our Zoom guest today to talk about In a Few Minutes Before Later. Brenda, before we get into the new book, may I ask you when you gave yourself “Permission to be Strange?”