Carl Spitzweg, Der Arme Poet [The Poor Poet], (1839)

Back Draft is an ongoing interview series exploring the revision process in poetry. Conducted by Ben Purkert, each interview provides a window into how a poem takes shape.


Carl Phillips: “Proof by Morning” / “Is It True All Legends Once Were Rumors”

Victoria Chang: “Obit” / “Obit”

Heather Christle: “Untitled” / “The Spider”

Cynthia Cruz: “Hollywood” / “Nature Mort”

Cedar Sigo: “Man Sitting with Yellow Flowers” / “Man Drowning with Flowers”

Catherine Barnett: “En Route” / “En Route”

Natasha Trethewey: “Pentimento” / “Repentance”

Edward Hirsch: “How Memory Works” / “Stranger by Night”

Martin Espada: “The Bard Shakes the Snow From the Trees” / “The Bard Shakes the Snow From the Trees”

John Murillo: “Mercy, Mercy Me” / “Mercy, Mercy Me”