Intimate and compelling interviews by Rachel Zucker with poets and other artists. Become a Patron & support our growing podcast! www.patreon.com/commonplacepodcast
Episode 115: Moheb Soliman
Poet and interdisciplinary artist Moheb Soliman sits down with V Conaty at AWP in Seattle to talk about his debut collection HOMES, regionalism as a creative and critical practice, the poetics of the watershed, the “third coasts” of the Great Lakes and the Gulf of Mexico, having a non-extractive relationship to place, immigrant, indigenous, and settler narratives of the Great Lakes region, timelessness vs. timeliness, and memory.
114: Live & Embodied: Hope Mohr, Alyssa Harad & Rachel Zucker
Host Rachel Zucker talks with choreographer Hope Mohr about her dance Horizon Stanzas (inspired by Alice Notley's feminist epic The Descent of Alette), the live arts, performance and distributed leadership, and with writer Alyssa Harad about Mohr, Notley, performance, power, feminism and much more.
113: Nana Kwame Adje-Brenyah (KTCO w/ Mike Sakesegawa #143)
After a brief Commonplace update, Rachel shares episode 143 of Keep the Channel Open with host Mike Sakasagawa and guest Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah.
Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah is a writer based in the Bronx, NY. In his debut novel, Chain-Gang All-Stars, Nana presents us with a dystopian future America where convicted prisoners fight each other to the death in a televised bloodsport. The book is both a blistering critique of the US carceral system and an insistence on the inalienable humanity of every person. In our conversation, Nana and I talked about what satire and dystopia open up for him as a writer, why it’s important to him to implicate both the reader and himself in his work, and how he thinks about prison abolition. Then in the second segment, we talked about the seductive nature of success as an artist in a capitalist society.
Episode 112: Gabrielle Octavia Rucker with V Conaty
Poet and teaching artist Gabrielle Octavia Rucker sits down with Commonplace producer V Conaty in Rachel's home in Washington Heights. They discuss Gabrielle's debut collection Dereliction, published last year by The Song Cave. The conversation wanders to being a self-taught writer, growing up, working odd jobs and then working for oneself, gnostic gospels, memes, the role of poetry in society, the end of capitalism, whether humanity should survive beyond our lifetimes, reanimating dodos, the politics of representation, and selling writing.
Episode 111: The Confessional Episode
The second of five episodes featuring the lectures that became Rachel Zucker’s newest book, The Poetics of Wrongness. This episode contains audio of “What We Talk About When We Talk About the Confessional and What We Should Be Talking About,” presented at the University of Arizona Poetry Center (Tucson) on January 28, 2016. It also includes a new introduction by Rachel and a conversation recorded in April, 2023 with the founder and host of the Keep the Channel Open podcast, Mike Sakasegawa.
Episode 110: The Poetics of Wrongness
Rachel Zucker releases the first of her five lectures written for the Bagley Wright Lecture Series. This episode “The Poetics of Wrongness,” is the title lecture of her new book, now out from Wave. Within the framework of feminism, motherhood, and politics, the lecture challenges long-held rules and perceptions of what poetry and art can be or should be, offering up new modes of generating a personal aesthetic, poetry, and discourse. This episode includes audio of the lecture given at Seattle Arts and Lectures on November 29, 2016 as well as a conversation recorded in April, 2023 with her son Moses Goren about the lecture.
Many thanks to Seattle Arts and Lectures, The Bagley Wright Poetry Lecture Series and the BWLS Podcast, Ellen Welcker, Heidi Broadhead, Charlie Wright and everyone at Wave Books.
Commonplace has no institutional or corporate affiliation and is made possible by you, our listeners! Support Commonplace by joining the Commonplace Book Club: https://www.patreon.com/commonplacepodcast
Don’t know how I got here but was refreshing to hear poems.
Just listened to ep 76 and it was so lovely and much needed!
Keep the vulnerability coming!
at one point in episode 89 (with david naimon), you asked about whether you were allowed to talk about tinder on commonplace, and what david said not only answers your question but basically sums up what i feel in general when listening to commonplace: "you've established a mode of being in your show that is a similar mode of being in your poetry and your prose, where life is moving between those sectors... people are drawn to your show because of this; you already have an audience with a built-in expectation for this, both your readers and your listeners."
All this to say that: just as in a poet's life one's living is one's work, so too does this listener come to your show as a space of vulnerability and sincerity and healing. I love it. Never shy away from going to the places you think no one is interested in. Because those are the very places poetry, and your podcast, is for.
(as a side note, i've just recently finished museum of accidents and am nearly done with the pedestrians, and i love your work. (the latter felt like a novel thru poems). can't wait to read the bad wife handbook next :) )
Thank you thank you thank you and keep up the great work!!!!!