Issue 35, Final Fringe

Tagged: poets

The Pilgrim’s Way - William Michaelian

by Trent Aitken-Smith 09.13.2010

william_michaelianWhen writing is in your blood, it is hard to define a point at which you decide to become a writer. It is something that festers and grows in the back of your mind until it is so all consuming that you pick up a pen and release the pressure. For William Michaelian—novelist, short-story writer, artist, poet and self-proclaimed nut—thirteen was the point at which he “decided” to become a writer but as he states on his website, My guess, is that the decision was made for me — at birth, or possibly even sooner.’

William grew up on a farm in Central California and later in life spent a good part of his life helping his father grow grapes, peaches, nectarines, plums, and apricots. As it turned out, he quickly discovered that farming was pretty much like writing; ‘You keep planting on the assumption that someday what you plant will bear fruit. You take your chances with the weather and various market conditions. You hang in there, year in and year out, because it’s a wonderful way of life, and because you’re so deeply in debt you can’t think straight.’

‘what is rejected seduces,

what is expected fails

what is neglected grows,

what is... more »

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Timothy Kercher on Sasquatch, translation, and cardboard Stalin cutouts

by Nellie Bellows 09.08.2010

Timothy Kercher’s three poems, The Travelling, Sasquatch, and Nose Box, appear in Fringe Issue 23.  Assistant poetry editor Nellie Bellows interviewed Tim by email.

Sasquatch seems to be a popular figure these days. Are you a believer?

I’ve always been curious, ever since doing a research report on Big Foot when I was in sixth grade. As a backpacking counselor for teenagers, I used to tell a story of how my grandfather said he was half Sasquatch—I told this story to get the kids to sleep, but some believed it.

This particular poem came after listening to a professor give a lecture on how he believes in Sasquatch and was searching for proof. The original title of this poem was “How to Catch Sight of Sasquatch for Dummies,” which I came up with before writing the poem. Maybe that title is an indication of my lack of belief. But I do want to believe. . .

Who are you currently reading?

On my bedstand: Russell Edson’s The Tormented Tree, Orhan Pamuk’s The New Life, Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass, and Tadeusz Rozewicz’s New Poems.

Of your three poems in Fringe, I admit that “Nose Box” is my favorite.  It’s raw, and I love how tactile the imagery is. Can... more »

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