Tag Archives: The Pilot House

National Poetry Month Spotlight: David Rigsbee

Of

They come like excited voices in a foreign language:
emergencies on the other side of town
drawing streaming sirens down the boulevards
waking various tots and dogs.

It’s one of the ways things fit,
yet writing it is no better
than speaking into one’s beard
as Lawrence said about breathing—
extraordinary—though no one’s disposed
to state the fact.

Several car horns—corny, weak—
simply want to get the old man
going, who was already on his way
from a fruit stall and headed
to a place I don’t know
but know of, bags hanging low
from either hand.

Q: Where is your favorite place to write?

A: In the English garden in my back yard.

Q: Do you remember the first poem you read that really blew your mind?

A: Louise Bogan, “Kept”

Q: What is the most interesting thing that has happened to you in the last 12 months?

A: I drove a rented Jeep Commander from Seattle to San Francisco and back, by way of mystic Mt. Shasta, snowy Crater Lake, the forbidding deserts of eastern Oregon, then across the majestic Palouse and the pointy, severe Cascades.

David Rigsbee is the author of 20 books and chapbooks, most recently The Red Tower:  New and Selected Poems (NewSouth Books, 2010) and The Pilot House (Black Lawrence 2011) winner of the 2009 Black River Poetry Chapbook competition.  His new book, School of the Americas, will be published by Black Lawrence next year.

A Sneak Peek at The Pilot House

The Brooklyn Rail

The Pilot House by David Rigsbee, winner of the Spring 2009 Black River Chapbook Competition, will be available for purchase in just a few weeks. In the  mean time, you can get a sneak peek. This poem, recently published in The Brooklyn Rail, will appear in the collection.

David Rigsbee on Poetry Daily

David Rigsbee’s work was recently featured on Poetry Daily. David is a former winner of the Black River Chapbook Competition and has two titles forthcoming from Black Lawrence Press. Stay tuned for news about his chapbook The Pilot House, which will be available from BLP in short order.

BLP Expands Its List

If you’ve been following the BLP blog, then you know of a few recent additions to the BLP family. In January, we announced that we’d accepted Killing the Murnion Dogs by Joe Wilkins and Instructions for Killing the Jackal by Erica Wright, two new collections of poetry due out in August and September of next year, respectively. In February, we announced that Carol Guess had become a part of our crew of poets; her collection Doll Studies: Forensics will be out in the beginning of 2012. Also in February we announced the acceptance of the novel/novel-in-stories/memoir/we don’t know what we’re calling it yet other than “rad” Pulled from the River by Jon Chopan.

There’s been lots of action since February and we are very pleased to announce that we’ve added a few more authors to the BLP family and also have new titles forthcoming from authors who have published with us in the past. Next fall we will publish Marginalia for a Natural History, a collection of poems by Keith Taylor.

We’ve also accepted two new books by Marcel Jolley, winner of the inaugural St. Lawrence Book Award and author of Neither Here Nor There. His short story collection, Priors, will come out in the spring of 2012, to be followed by his novel Milk Run in the spring of 2013. We’ve also got some new blood in our stable of fiction writers. Loving You the Way I Do, short stories by Ron Savage will be published in the summer of 2012.

We’re also very pleased to announce that our translation list is expanding as well. Daniele Pantano, author of the poetry collection The Oldest Hands In The World and the translation The Possible is Monstrous has two more translations coming out from BLP in the next few years: Oppressive Light: Selected Poems by Robert Walser (Spring, 2012) and The Complete Works of Georg Trakl (Spring, 2014). We’ve also got Dream Weed, a translation of Yvan Goll poems, by Nan Watkins coming out in July, 2012.

Those of you who are fans of T.J. Beitelman (Pilgrims: A Love Story) and David Rigsbee (winner of the Spring, 2009 Black River Chapbook Competition) will be happy to know that we have full-length collections from both poets coming out in mid-2012.

And, just so you know what you have to look forward to, BLP will release the following titles before the end of 2010: Every Bitter Thing by Hardy Jones, Perishables by Tina Egnoski, Pictures of Houses with Water Damage by Michael Hemmingson, The Consequence of Skating by Steven Gillis, Triggermoon Triggermoon by JuliaCohen, Speech Acts by Laura McCullough, and The Pilot House by David Rigsbee.

We’ve currently closed submissions until August 15th while we catch up on submissions. We’re hoping to have more good news by the end of the summer once we read all of the manuscripts in our queue. As always, thanks for reading!

-Diane Goettel
Executive Editor, Black Lawrence Press

P.S. Don’t forget that the deadline for the St. Lawrence Book Award is August 31st!

National Poetry Month Spotlight: David Rigsbee

THE PILOT HOUSE

I hear a hammer down the road
sounding the wood, and inside, my daughter
at her computer making sounds half-music,
half self-amusement.  The paper
on my breakfast table describes rockets
flying in and out of Israel, in and out of Lebanon.
It reminded me of that time I went home
with Teresa Greenberg, whose dad
owned the only Rolls in town.
The Six Day War had started.  Her father,
a squat and burnished contractor,
rose to grunt at me and immediately
resumed his place before the console TV,
where Moshe Dayan’s pirate’s patch
made the good eye the focus
of our world, a world put sorely away,
an old uniform with its service medals
waiting for the grandson who could
hold the whole thing up like a chart,
telling you what each ribbon and medal
signified.  Years after what might have
happened followed what did, an oil tanker
steams by, the tall pilot house seeming
to inspect the trees, then sending smoke
into the low clouds, before sailing on
to the mountains beyond the treetops.

Q: Do you remember where you were and what you were doing on the day you wrote the above poem?

A: I was sitting on the terrace in our then-house overlooking the Puget Sound in Seattle. I was watching an oil ship round the bend heading for Elliott Bay, but it also looked as if it were heading, Werner Herzog-like, into the fir trees. It also happened to be during the most recent Israeli-Lebanese War, a fact which reminded me of my tenderness toward the Theresa Greenberg in the poem, whose family were riveted by the 6-Day War. Until then, real world events seemed shrunk by television. Ironically, when the war came television expanded the principles into giants.

Q: What is the last book you’ve read that made you want to grab a pen and write?

A: Derek Mahon’s Selected Poems.

Q: What is the most sublime meal you’ve ever eaten?

A: The leg of lamb, heavily salted and covered with marjoram leaves and stuffed with garlic, made by a fellow poet from my undergraduate group at Chapel Hill, a poet who years later suffered cruel visions, came a devotee of Utrantia, gave away all his possessions (including his typewriter), before disappearing into (we think) the wilds of South Carolina. I was living in Edmund Wilson’s Upstate house in the 1970s, and this poet had come to visit. He showed up with bags of groceries and copies of his only book, then proceeded to the kitchen and went to work.

David Rigsbee is the author of The Red Tower, available from NewSouth Books in September. He is the Spring, 2009 winner of the Black River Chapbook Competition with his manuscript The Pilot House, which will be published by Black Lawrence Press later this year.

The Red Tower

The Red Tower, David Rigsbee’s volume of new and selected poems will be available from NewSouth Books in September. David won the Spring, 2009 Black River Chapbook Competition with his manuscript The Pilot House, which will be published by Black Lawrence Press later this year.

Feb. 20: Four BLP Authors At The Bowery Poetry Club

Saturday, February 20th will be an all-star evening at The Bowery Poetry Club. The reading lineup includes Bruce Cohen, David Rigsbee, Marcela Sulak, and Kevin Pilkington and will be emceed by Associate Editor Angela Leroux-Lindsey.

Bruce Cohen’s book Swerve was released by Black Lawrence Press just last week. David Rigsbee, winner of the Spring, 2009 Black River Chapbook Competition, is the author of The Pilot House, which is forthcoming from BLP. Marcela Sulak’s collection Immigrant will be released later this month. And Kevin Pilkington’s The Unemployed Man Who Became a Tree will be published as part of the 2011 BLP catalogue.

The event is $4 at the door and open to the public. We hope to see you there!

David Rigsbee To Win the Sam Ragan Award

David Rigsbee, winner of the Spring, 2009 Black River Chapbook Competition, will be honored with the Sam Ragan Award for Distinguished Service to North Carolina Arts on Thursday, February 4 at St. Andrews College in Laurinburg, North Carolina.

The award honors Sam Ragan, who was North Carolina’s first Secretary of Cultural Resources. It also celebrates North Carolina as the first state in the union to create a cabinet-level position for the fine arts.

David Rigsbee is the author of seven previous full-length collections of poems.  He is also the author of four chapbooks, two works of criticism (on Carolyn Kizer and Joseph Brodsky, whom he also translated), and editor of two anthologies, the most recent of which, Invited Guest: An Anthology of Twentieth Century Southern Poetry (The University of Virginia Press in 2001) was named a notable university press book by the American Library Association.  Winner of the Pound Prize and the Vachel Lindsay Award, he has been been recipient of grants and awards from the N.E.A., the N.E.H., The Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, The Virginia Commission on the Arts, The Djerassi Foundation, and the Academy of American Poets. His work has appeared in The American Poetry Review, The Georgia Review, The Iowa Review, The New Yorker, The Iowa Review, The Ohio Review, Poetry, Prairie Schooner, The Sewanee Review, The Southern Review, and many others. His chapbook The Pilot House is forthcoming from Black Lawrence Press.

After the presentation of the award on February 4, Rigsbee will give a reading during the Fortner Writer’s Forum. The event, to be held in the Orange Main Lounge, will begin at 8 PM. It is free and open to the public.

Tonight! David Rigsbee Reads in Ohio

Rigsbee HeadshotA reminder to our friends in Ohio:

Cap City Poets will welcome David Rigsbee for an evening of poetry tonight at 7.

David Rigsbee is the winner of the Spring, 2009 Black River Chapbook Competition. His chapbook The Pilot House will be available in late 2010.

The evening of music and poetry will begin at 7:00 at the Espresso Yourself Music Cafe at 50 W Olentangy St in sweet little downtown Powell, Ohio.

Thanks to Pudding House Publications for sponsoring this event.

We hope to see you there!

November 11: David Rigsbee Reads in Ohio

Rigsbee HeadshotCap City Poets will welcome David Rigsbee for an evening of poetry at The Rattlebox on November 11.

David Rigsbee is the winner of the Spring, 2009 Black River Chapbook Competition. His chapbook The Pilot House will be available in late 2010.

The evening of music and poetry will begin at 7:00 at the Espresso Yourself Music Cafe at 50 W Olentangy St in sweet little downtown Powell, Ohio.

Thanks to Pudding House Publications for sponsoring this event.

We hope to see you there!