In Your Poem Is the Letter I Write (2012), an epistolary exchange of poems between writers, the poet, and critic, Quinn Latimer attempts to address the startling emotional and political equivalence between poems and letters. The autonomous literary forms share a distinct dialectic: that between the writer and the reader, the subject and the object, the I and the You. Both forms are charged with the urgency that comes of attempted connection through the word. Poems and letters also imply and are implicated by distance that is simultaneously emotional, physical, and geographical. How far is the distance between the I and the thou? How to bridge it? This is the landscape that letters and poems navigate, chart, and cross. Gestures in Time will serve as the launch of the project, with a reading in Jerusalem of poetic letters that Latimer and participating poets have written. After the public reading, these poems will be mailed to those they address. These writers, in turn, will respond. An anthology of intimate voices—poetic, political, critical, personal—will begin to form, and they will eventually be collected in a book.
Quinn Latimer is an American poet and critic based in Basel, Switzerland. She is the author of Rumored Animals (Dream Horse Press, 2012), which won the 2010 American Poetry Journal Book Prize, and the forthcoming Describe This Distance (Mousse Publishing, 2012). She is a regular contributor to Artforum and frieze, and her Pushcart Prize–nominated poetry has appeared in Boston Review, The Paris Review, The Last Magazine, and elsewhere. She is the editor of Paul Sietsema: Interviews on Films and Works (Sternberg Press, 2012) and co-editor of No Core: Pamela Rosenkranz (JRP-Ringier, 2012).