And the stars they glisten, glisten,
Seeming with bright eyes to listen -
For what listen they?
-'Tis the Witching Time of Night John Keats, whose birthday is actually on Halloween, wrote the poem excerpted above based on a play from Shakespeare, but taken out of context, the line rings a little spooky—personifying the night sky as something that watches and hears the world below could be both reassuring and unsettling. Though, given that today is Halloween, I’m sure this
The last Wednesday of each month, Miss Spoken, a female-centric live lit series takes place in various locations around the city. For the month of October, the meeting took place at the Gallery Cabaret in Wicker Park. As the audience—both men and women—sipped on PBRs and shockingly turned their backs to the Cubs game on a TV in the corner, the women that shared their own stories on the evening’s theme: gossip. For reader Takelya Weathers, gossip reminded her of middle and ele
Do you ever have those awkward moments when you zone out and realize too late that you were staring at someone the whole time? Do you find yourself wanting to better articulate your thoughts during a conversation? Are you the kind of person who, after spending time out with people, needs to retreat to a quiet place alone to recharge and analyze the events of the day? It’s okay. Margo, the main character of Bonnie Jo Campbell’s national bestseller Once Upon a River, does too.
Kendra Allen When did you start writing? What made you want to be a writer? I’m not really sure [when I started writing]. I used to be in oratorical contests and things like that growing up. People used to tell me I was good at writing and I’ve always loved words. But I don’t think I really started writing, and taking it seriously, until two years ago. Hip-Hop made me want to be a writer. I always knew that it took a lot of skill to be able to bounce words off of one another
“Don’t ask permission, just ask forgiveness.” –Drake Uncomfortable subject matter usually makes for the best conversations and the best written works because if it’s uncomfortable to read or listen to, it’s usually something that needs to be said. When you come across these works, it usually involves other people, it usually paints them in a flawed light, and it usually exposes what you really think about someone.
As a reader, it may seem as if you’re intruding on
Jamie Mortara is something like magic. It comes as no surprise, then, that their first collection with YesYes Books transcends the page, holds the reader, and proves that poetry still has the power to surprise. Some Planet feels more like a handbook on coping, a guide to intimacy, or a brochure on alternate dimensions than anything else. Each poem is, in more ways than one, an experiment on interacting with reality and discovering the disconnected parts of yourself that you n
I hate to admit it, Chicago, but I didn’t do you right. You, the city notorious for your blustery moniker, influential architecture, and resistance to ketchup on hot dogs, were a place that I called my home up until quite recently. While I didn’t spend my childhood with you, I like to think I had we had our own version of “growing up” because the first time my foot hit your concrete, I was an oblivious kid with no sense of direction—geographically and figuratively. Then by th
Poet, cultural critic, essayist, sports fan, music fiend, and “relentless Ohioan,” Hanif Willis-Abdurraqib, celebrated the release of his first book of poetry, The Crown Ain’t Worth Much, Wednesday, Oct. 12, at The Silver Room in Hyde Park. It may seem out of place to include a laundry list of adjectives and qualifiers to describe someone who is releasing a book of poetry, but for Willis-Abdurraqib, it’s necessary. When published works and poems have titles like “Loving Me is
When you tell someone that you want to write for a living, a look of confusion drowns their face. Their eyes touch the ground, they say a silent prayer, they look terrified for you. The conversation usually goes like this: Person Who Doesn’t Write: What are you going to school for?
You: Creative Writing
Person Who Doesn’t Write: What are you gonna do with that? After this shot to the heart, the creative writer usually has an awkward pause of contemplation. They usually have
As Chicago starts to cool off, the city offers a trove of exciting literary events to get you inside and cozying up with fellow writers and a good book. Alongside weekly live literature events that take place in every crevice of the city, there are plenty of one-time-only events that Chicagoans don’t want to miss out on. Chicago is full of weekly off-the-beaten-path events. Events ranging from Miss Spoken which features stories told by female-identifying individuals to Paper