The Constant Critic

Timely poetry reviews

Warning: count(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable in /home/consta60/public_html/wp-content/themes/jevelin/page-blog.php on line 65

Silk Poems

Jen Bervin

Silk Poems, in its small, delicate package, is monumental in scope, in its place as one part of Jen Bervin’s larger research project and also in its wide-ranging suggestiveness. The material book itself has a shiny gray cover, garment-like and silken to the touch, imprinted…

L’Heure Bleue, or the Judy Poems

Elisa Gabbert

Neat encapsulation of a book’s central concept or conceit serves every genre well save poetry. The very idea of asking of a book of poetry “What’s it about?” is suspect. Though we can always answer that question in greater or lesser detail, it seems that…

Violet Energy Ingots

Hoa Nguyen

Opening transcendent portals outside of culture and time through which the divine might speak, the oracle of antiquity was called upon for advice on urgent matters ranging from the public sphere of politics, war, crime, and duty to the private realm of personal concerns. Delivering…


Nisha Ramayya

“Tantra is marked by its difficulty,” Nisha Ramayya states in the opening “Notes on Tantra” section of Correspondences, a twenty-six page pamphlet of poetry, micro-essays, notes, and images. The principle structure of the book follows tantra’s ritual structure: divided into ten sections, with two additional…

Trouble the Water

Derrick Austin

I’m fascinated by the adjective inhuman. Applied to non-human subjects, it is redundant; applied to human ones, it is false by definition. It’s the tautology of how a thing is never more or less than itself that guarantees the falsehood. Nothing that is human can…


Peter Gizzi

The poems in Peter Gizzi’s most recent book, Archeophonics, operate as an homage to sounds as in the title poem that celebrates echoes, repetitions, and other poems, “the archive in the mouth”: I’m saying this and it’s saying me That’s how it works, seesaw like…

The Most Foreign Country

Alejandra Pizarnik

In early 2017 Ugly Duckling Presse will release for the first time in English Alejandra Pizarnik’s debut collection, The Most Foreign Country, translated by Yvette Siegert. First published in 1955 when Pizarnik was 19, she was later to renounce the book, which remained all but…

A Small Story About the Sky

Alberto Ríos

I cannot remember now where I first heard it or from whom, but as a dismissal of poets and poetry it made an impression: a poet is someone who sees a bird outside their window and makes a big goddamned deal out of it. The…

Some Worlds for Dr. Vogt

Matvei Yankelevich

Like the astronomer, Dr. Steven Vogt, who, from the spectrometer on the Keck Observatory in Hawaii searches for extrasolar planets, in Matvei Yankelevich’s latest collection the poet becomes a seeker—the occupation of both proving on-going, probing, inconclusive, revelatory. Some Worlds for Dr. Vogt also suggests…