What amazes Micheal Palmer so much about poetry is that it “goes to the heart of language.” As a kid he was first drawn to verse because it was a “door into the world of imagination and out of the world of conventional conformist behavior that was a norm of childhood in the 1950s.” After entering that world his writing has become a perfect example of how poetry “goes to the heart of language” in nearly 20 books of poetry that he has published in the past three decades.
Palmer will be reading from three of his books today at 5 p.m. in Davidson. He plans to read from “Promises of Glass,” “The Lion Bridge: Selected Poems 1972-1995” (2000) and the book he is currently working on, to be titled “A Company of Moths.”
After the publication of “Promises of Glass,” the Harvard Review acclaimed him to be “one of America’s most important poets.” “The Lion Bridge,” his best work according to Publishers Weekly, “has something to show anyone who wants to know where poetry might go next, or where its fringes have been.”
His poetry is complex and diverse, partially due to its development over the years. But when asked how his poetry has matured, Palmer replies with a chuckle, “Well, I haven’t matured over the years.” But he adds that his writing has become “more open in address to the readers and less interiorized.”
He has also opened his fields of expertise over the years. Not only has he has written radio plays and works of criticism, he has also collaborated on many dance works, as he is also a choreographer.