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Hard Stands in the Los Angeles Review of Books

From dirty snowbanks in Burns, Oregon in early 2016 to socialist-farmer uprisings in my community in the 1840s and finally to a double-wide on the Malheur Refuge last Halloween... I write about populist uprisings, socialist leanings, how the yeoman's dream has been co-opted, and I find a copy of Poetry Magazine in that double-wide. It's the same double-wide where the FBI had been living during the Bundy militia uprising at the refuge. Imagine the FBI and their tactical gear, body armor and Oakley glasses reading Danniel Schoonebeek: 

The cottonwood could stand up from the rails and dust off her own blood herself.
Resume her cold work, untangling the grasses.

If you could watch my train resume its terrible campaign for the west.

Or you can read the whole thing here


Thomas Cole: Conservative Conservationist in the NY Review of Books

We always get a Thomas Cole for our era, and now at the Met it's a Thomas Cole to take on Trump and Trumpian folk like Ryan Zinke and Scott Pruitt. But there's also an intro video narrated by Sting (yes Sting who apparently paints Hudson River School style landscapes himself and collects Cole) claiming Cole as an "economic migrant." Which is rich from the Met now that it charges $25 to anyone who is not a New Yorker (or like most economic migrants can't prove they're New Yorkers and probably don't have a spare 25 bucks). Prepare for revisionism (some of which is definitely called for; other parts feel like a reach). And also some silly paintings full of sylphs and spirits and visions of ruin... Also why Cole drives me nuts because truly he's no radical... You can read more here


Rain Like Cotton in Best American Essays

All I can say for this is yay! I am thrilled and beyond honored and even more so as this year's editor is Hilton Als whose writing I adore and who I teach every year to my students. You can find the essay here if you want to read sooner... It is about an inland sand sea, climate collapse 13,000 years ago, Nabokov's endangered butterfly, the Shakers, the strip mall, the landfill... longing. Basically it's about climate change and extinctions...  And Best American Essays will be out in fall 2018.


Sylvan Day in The Future Starts Here at the V&A Museum London

To write about the future or the present, I almost always turn to the past. Here it's Arbor Day and Earth Day, snow in April on Islingston High Street, colonization, and all the ideals we saddle trees with... One of them now is to end the War on Terror (and truthfully I don't think that's too crazy). But, this was how I wrote about plans to end desertification for the Victoria & Albert Museum's exhibition catalogue The Future Starts Here...

Click to read more ...


Rain Like Cotton in BOMB

Driving on four lane highways with intermittant stoplights past strip malls and the airport... Climate collapse 13,000 years ago, ice, floods, an inland sand sea... The Shakers with their radical ideals of shared property, transcendence and celibacy, feminism. The landfill, the airport, dreams of utopia, suburbs of utopia, dreams of flight, Nabokov's endangered butterfly, modernism. All happen here on the same stretch of land, a primordial landscape that is harbinger of what is to come and a relict of the past. As research for my book GROWING UP MODERN, I wrote a hybrid braided essay for BOMB, "Rain Like Cotton."