A Lucie Brock-Broido Eulogy on the AGNI Site

“No one knew better the stuff that we and dreams are made on than Lucie, who was one of the only people I know able to bend the space-time continuum to her will.”
Askold Melnyczuk

As most of the literary world knows by now, poet Lucie Brock-Broido, our friend and longtime contributing editor, died in Cambridge, Massachusetts, on Tuesday, March 6th. Six days later AGNI founding editor Askold Melnyczuk delivered a eulogy that you can find on our main website here. And you can see what Lucie published in AGNI here.

AGNI Monkey


Find AGNI at AWP!

The annual Association of Writers and Writing Programs Conference is this week in Tampa, Florida—will you be there? AGNI will be. Here’s where you can find us:

Throughout the conference:

Find us in the conference bookfair at table T526. We’ll have current and past issues available for sale, and would love to chat!

Thursday, March 8th

9:00-10:15am (Grand Salon B, Marriott Waterside, Second Floor): AGNI Social Media Editor Rachel Mennies will be a panelist in “Beyond Queues and Fees: Poetry Books Outside the Contest Model.”

7:30-10:30pm (Jackson’s Bistro, 601 S Harbour Island Blvd, a short walk from the convention center): Joint reading by AGNI, 32 Poems, Adroit, Denver Quarterly, and Quarterly West, featuring AGNI Poetry Editor Sumita Chakraborty, plus Hadara Bar-Nadav, Cortney Lamar Charleston, Paisley Rekdal, and Kai Carlson-Wee.

Friday, March 9th

10:00am-12:00pm (Bookfair, Orison Books table, T540): AGNI Blog Editor David Ebenbach will be signing his novel Miss Portland.

4:30pm (Tampa Convention Center, 4th Floor, Room 36): AGNI Blog Editor David Ebenbach reads as part of a 32 Poems/Rock and Sling/WordFarm/Orison Books co-reading.

Saturday, March 10th

1:30pm-2:45pm: You have two choices!

(Room 24, Tampa Convention Center, First Floor): AGNI Poetry Editor Sumita Chakraborty will be moderating and speaking on the panel “Into the Expanse: Reinventing the Contemporary Long Poem,” also featuring Robin Beth Schaer (co-organizer), Lindsay Garbutt, Marianne Boruch, and Deborah Landau.

(Room 14, Tampa Convention Center, First Floor) AGNI Social Media Editor Rachel Mennies will be a panelist in “Why [Not] Say What Happened?: On Writing Confessional Poetry.”

4:30-5:45pm (Room 15, Tampa Convention Center, First Floor) AGNI Blog Editor David Ebenbach is moderating and speaking on the panel “Balancing Act: Neutrality in the Classroom?” also featuring Ru Freeman, Edward Helfers, Holly Karapetkova, and Sarah Trembath.

By the way, as a special for AWP, we’re partnering with Ploughshares, the Harvard Review, and the New England Review to offer a special subscription deal—subscribe to four New England-based journals (including us and out partners) for one discounted price, 30% off the cover price! Check it out here!

We hope to see you in Tampa!

AGNI Monkey

McAuliffe, Smith, and Balcewicz: New Work up at AGNI!

We’ve got great work up on the main AGNI website—two poems by Caroline Chavatel, and fiction by David E. Yee and Angela Woodward. Check it all out!


AGNI SM“It happened on a Saturday night. A guy in a ski mask burst into the shop, but the owner was quick and shot him lickety-split. The robber crumpled on the front steps. The owner sat next to him and pulled him onto his lap, and the man died there, lying across Mercurio’s lap like Jesus in the Pietà.”

from the essay “Pietà: Richmond, Indiana” by Shena McAuliffe



AGNI BS“Events bent me.
I took the arrow of accuracy in my eye. ”

from the poem “Concussion Protocol” by Bruce Smith





AGNI MB“My mother’s apartment
is the size of a chessboard
she sleeps with a rook and a Gypsy.”

from the poem “Natasha Writes Back” by Marta Balcewicz




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Top Five: Our Most-Read Blog Posts of 2017

Happy New Year! As we look back on 2017, we thought we’d revisit the posts on the blog that have drawn the most readers. Check them out if you haven’t read them yet!

#5: Poetry Is Dissent
by Richard Hoffman

AGNI Hoffman
“If, as poets, we do not fear the misrepresentation of the world, if we do not guard against it, work against it when hunched over the page, then what are we doing? What is being accomplished, and whom does it serve?”


#4: Against “Unlikeable”: On the Occasion of What Happened
by Courtney Sender

“What if we decided that the ways and things that women want—an elected office, a partner, a platform to tell her own story as she sees it—were not unlikeable at all, but simply human, worthy of serious consideration in our art and our politics. What if we decided that that most fundamental desire, to tell our story, were not so unlikeable in a woman as to stir the heated debate surrounding Hillary Clinton’s very act of publishing a book.”


#3: Idling on the Highway
by Kelly Cherry


“What I am saying is that I miss the long drawl of the storyteller. Thomas Mann layered his novels with questions and answers that make us think. I just finished reading Neil Jordan’s book Shade, and though I have long loved his work, Shade, narrated by a dead woman, took my breath away: the lush sentences, the lengthy conversations, the Irish rhythms: nothing rushed, nothing left out, time to absorb every interesting, often captivating, detail. Or remember Joyce Cary: his novels are hilarious and allow us time to laugh to our hearts’ content. Funny doesn’t have to be fast.”


#2: On Running a Democracy Without Reading
by Kelly Cherry

“Why do I think his lack of interest in reading is crucial? Not only because books inform us, though I am glad they do. Not only because books entertain us, though I am glad they do. Not only because books remind us of the beauty and power of writing, though I am glad they do. Books also teach us how to be human. They finely and delicately and forcefully demonstrate for us thoughts we have never thought or only barely thought. They teach us compassion and the need for it, illustrating the excitement of observation, the heartbreak and perpetual grief that occurs in every life, the gorgeous peace of serenity, the exhilaration of discovery. Yes, these experiences happen in people’s lives, and some people manage them and some don’t; but books instruct us in the details, the particularities of events, and thereby strengthen our understanding of love and loss, of being one and multiple, of feeling. They ready us for life and allow us to think on it.”


and…our most-read post of the year:

#1: Things Ayurvedic Doctors Have Told Me
by Shahnaz Habib

“When pessimism becomes the new optimism, you stop expecting life to treat you like a server you will be tipping heavily at the end of the meal. Instead of asking ‘why me?,’ you start asking ‘why not me?’ You feel the softness of the ground underneath; you notice that the river of melancholy is always flowing nearby.”

Thanks, everyone, for a great year of conversation, and we’ll see you in 2018!

AGNI Monkey

Chavatel, Yee, & Woodward: New Work Up on AGNI!

We’ve got great work up on the main AGNI website—two poems by Caroline Chavatel, and fiction by David E. Yee and Angela Woodward. Check it all out!


AGNI CC“Show me the wreck,
the body.”


from the Caroline Chavatel Poem “Hartford Circus Fire (Post-Elegy for Light)”



AGNI DY“My father only really taught me two things in life. The first was how to take money off people who had it to spend.”

from the short story “Catch & Release: An Apology” by David E. Yee





AGNI AW.jpg“The most reassuring forms of animal locomotion belong to the symmetrically four-legged. Dogs, horses, and sheep hit the ground with each hoof or paw in a prescribed rhythm, either in pairs front back or the opposed corners. Their gaits can be classified ambling, loping, cantering and so on, a nomenclature related to the pattern of foot fall and the height and force of impact, resulting in speed or slowness, hurry or relaxed moving around the earth. When this kind of four-legged animal comes to a stop, its feet stand planted like a desk or a dresser.”

from the “Prose Suite, from Declarations and Observations,” fiction by Angela Woodward


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October 24th: AGNI Reading!

Tuesday, October 24, 2017, at 7:00 p.m.
Boston Playwrights’ Theatre, 949 Commonwealth Ave, Boston (Green Line B, Pleasant St.)

AGNI is celebrating its EIGHTY-SIXTH issue with readings by:

Liza Ward: Author of the novel Outside Valentine.
Qais Akbar Omar: Author of the memoir A Fort of Nine Towers, published in more than twenty languages.
Perri Klass: Winner of five O. Henry Awards and author, most recently, of the novel The Mercy Rule.
Richard D’Abate: Author of the poetry collection To Keep the House from Falling In.

Plus there’ll be a performance of words-to-music by singer-songwriter Nuda Veritas. Our release party follows.

The fall issue features stories by Patrick Dacey, Julianna Baggott, Liza Ward, and Perri Klass; poems by Maggie Smith, Anzhelina Polonskaya, William Archila, and 2016 Pulitzer Prize winner Peter Balakian; essays by Jung Hae Chae, Ann Tashi Slater, and Donald Quist; a portfolio by Sarajevo artist-architect Mensur Demir; and more.

This event is free and open to the public, and wheelchair accessible. For accessibility concerns or other info, please contact Senior Editor William Pierce at agni@bu.edu or (617) 353-7135. It’d be great to see you there!

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Lorca, Arvio, Malcangio, and Thomson: New Work Up on AGNI!

We’ve got great work up on the main AGNI website—two Federico Garcia Lorca poems translated by Sarah Arvio, fiction by Tori Malcangio, and poetry by Jeffrey Thomson. Check it all out!


AFNI FGLAGNI SA“Spike of blue wheat
and white poppy

My soul
one delirious


from the Federico Garcia Lorca Poem “[The Mown Field],” translated by Sarah Arvio


AGNI TM“Studies say we’re living in a bright-light deprived society. Luckily, that and exercise are available in quick-dissolving tablets or easy-to-swallow capsules. Hunters and gatherers, they had it easy: sunlight by default, running a marathon for a meal, a free-range, paleo diet maintained on a single income and with negligible forethought. There was no blue light syndrome or carpal tunnel or boys dependent on prescriptions.”

from the short story “Catch & Release: An Apology” by Tori Malcangio



“first there is the matter
of your gargantuan patriotism
brandishing the stars and bars

of its own obstinate self-regard
to explore before the ekphrasis
of the pickup and the shotgun”

from the poem “The Country Western Poem” by Jeffrey Thomson


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