Sandra Marchetti is the author of Confluence, a debut full-length collection of poetry from Sundress Publications, and a co-author of Heart Radicals, with Les Kay, Allie Marini, and Janeen Rastall. Eating Dog Press published an illustrated letterpress edition of her essays and poetry, A Detail in the Landscape, and her first volume, The Canopy, won Midwest Writing Center’s Mississippi Valley Chapbook Contest. Sandy won Second Prize in Prick of the Spindle’s 2014 Poetry Open and her work appears in The Hollins Critic, Sugar House Review, Ecotone, Green Mountains Review, Blackbird, Southwest Review, and elsewhere. She is a Lecturer in Interdisciplinary Studies at Aurora University outside of her hometown of Chicago.
Tune into artxfm.com Thursday at 1pm EDT to hear poems from her book “Confluence” and conversation with host, Rachel Short. There’s a pretty rad review up on RUMPUS
and some introductory FAQ
Q: What was the inspiration for the book?
A: The influences for Confluence are named in the book, quite literally. If you read the epigraphs, notes, and the poems themselves, you’ll see names everywhere. An-
nie Dillard, Elizabeth Bishop, Apollinaire, Octavio Paz, Manet, Dutch painters, Hopkins, and even songwriters lend themselves to my poems. All authors have influences, and I wanted mine laid bare.
Q: Can you talk a bit about the book’s subject matter?
A: I wrote Confluence while living away from my home-
town for the first time. I was in my mid-twenties and didn’t realize how homesick I would become for the broad horizons of the Midwest and the long walks I took
along the DuPage River outside of Chicago. I also didn’t realize how isolated I would feel in Wash- ington, D.C. I wrote poems to remind myself of home, to remember that it existed. I wrote childhood memories of my first house, and roaming the parks I frequented in Illinois. I wrote about the winters, too. I also began dating my now husband long-distance while in D.C. Longing encapsulated that time period in my life, which is reflected in the work. Confluence is really about, not surprisingly, my reunion with the land and my fiancé when I moved back to Chicago.
Q: Who’s the audience you speak to in this book?
A: This book is for anyone who has a strong personal connection to a place where he or she lives or has lived. One poem reads, “Roam the ground where you are / mapped, flat and free, beneath / this sky, this new sea.” If you have lived in, or found the beauty in “flyover country,” you’ll enjoy the book. And of course love is always pretty juicy material for poems! Additionally, I use sound techniques in Conflu- ence that will appeal to those with a musical background.
Q: What sets Confluence apart from other collections of poetry on the shelf today?
A: Confluence definitely gestures toward poetry’s past—I read a lot of Dickinson, Whitman, Hopkins, and Emerson—and attempts to traverse some pretty traditional motifs: truth, beauty, symmetry, and love. However, the rhythms, akin to spoken word or even rap, explode Confluence out of the convention- al. My “universal” themes are examined in different lights, quite literally, and language. This is metrical poetry for the twenty-first century that addresses the panoramic ideas we most often want to read about.
Saturday at 1 pm, June 27th, I’ll be holding this fab workshop at Sundress Academy for the Arts at Firefly Farms | Knoxville in TN in conjunction with my publisher, Sundress Publications. Please consider signing up:https://www.facebook.com/events/1424376254548595/
Other events coming up : Dreamland will host Wasted Letters Press on July 15th with local favorite Anthony Trotter Junior and the dreamland improv chamber orchestra.
The end of July will feature student writers on the radio hour for our OUT OF SCHOOL specials
stay tuned for more details