The Blaney Lecture: Paisley Rekdal

“With regard to war, I can’t help being suspicious of the very reasons we turn to poetry at all,” reads Paisley Rekdal from “Beyond Empathy, Beyond the Archive: Notes on Poetic Representation” for the 2022 Blaney Lecture, an annual lecture on contemporary poetry and poetics created by the Academy of American Poets. “Is our desire one of representation, political change, or emotional catharsis? And is that political change meant to happen on the page, or off it?”