Photo: cover of Jackie Warren-Moore’s collection of poems “Where I Come From”
W. H. Auden famously wrote “poetry makes nothing happen” in his elegy for William Butler Yeats and poets have argued about the assertion ever since. Last night, hearing poet Jackie Warren-Moore read from her new book “Where I Come From” at the Artrage Gallery in Syracuse, New York—the poet reciting to a standing room only crowd of one hundred plus listeners, people who came out on a damp upstate night, who brought entire families, well, I saw how wrong Auden was. Poetry when read aloud by Warren-Moore commands attention, shakes loose the garments of habit, opens the brain, and “lifts” even while her poems are sharp, unsentimental, and hot. I felt lucky to be in that room. Poems were happening. Later I joked to a stranger (for it was that kind of reading—people had bumped along the ceilings of their skulls and then they were bumping into one another, loosened with affections) I joked that Jackie Warren-Moore had given everyone a chiropractic adjustment for the soul.
Jackie Warren-Moore’s reading will be available shortly on the “Talk About Poetry” podcast series which you can visit at iTunes. Or find it at Nine Mile Magazine. You can buy Warren-Moore’s new collection here.