S71 Contributor Interviews: Ruth Williams

IMG_3459What is it about the genre or cross-genre you write in that interests you/draws you in?

I am drawn to writing and reading poetry in part because it allows me to look intensely at the world around me and to consider with conscious attention my relation to it. This attention isn’t something our daily life cultivates, so poetry becomes a meaningful way of slowing down, looking closely. Poetry is also a genre that maintains a wonderful duality: it can be intensely personal, derived so completely from the interiors of my own mind, and yet, when I put a poem out in the world, it takes on meaning for others in ways I can’t predict.

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Tucson Success Stories: Bo McGuire

Photo: Page Adams

Bo McGuire hails from Hokes Bluff, Alabama, birthplace of John Wisdom, the Paul Revere of the South. You can find his work in Forklift, Ohio, Court Green, MiPOesias, Diagram and The Pinch.

Natasha Stagg: What are you up to lately?

Bo McGuire: Here lately, I’ve been getting by with a little help from my friends, traveling a fucked-up, glorious triangle from Tucson to Alabama to Denver to Tucson. I’ve been working on something like a novel called The Adventures of Turd and Biscuit. Turd talks to spirits through a jukebox and Biscuit is the muscle—emotionally and physically.

I tried to get a job with Dolly Parton, but I’m still waiting on her to telephone. Then I thought about getting a real job, but thought better of it. Yesterday, I wrote the first poem I’ve written since I left Tucson. It goes like this:

What I Feel About Munroe Louisiana

It is bad luck to reach for a hand across barbed wire

It is worse luck to sing your lover country songs

My daddy’s boy-nerves, he ate at them every chance not wasted

Never in my life have I written a poem about my daddy or love

of moon. I have tried. It has always been bad luck, I have been taught restraint

is best, but have learned otherwise. Let’s dress in uniform. In this photograph

we are taking, two men are dressed.  One of them does not stand at attention.

NS: Awesome! So, how long are you in Tucson?

BMcG: I live in Tucson like everywhere else—temporarily and indefinitely. I didn’t realize I had missed it until I got off the plane.

NS: What are you reading?

BMcG: The Gnostic Gospels, Gone With the Wind, and The Real Housewives of Atlanta.

NS: Suggest something to do in Tucson.

BMcG: Stick a wish into the wall at El Tiradito, the Wishing Shrine.

NS: Suggest something to read.

BMcG: Never Make the Same Mistake Twice by Nene Leakes