Perfectbound paperback, ISBN: 978-0-9831251-6-7, 100 pgs., $15.95
This selection of interviews with the author of The Potential Of Poetry represents the poet’s poetic philosophy over a thirty-five year period, from 1977 to the present. The five interviews were first published in a variety of literary journals, in both printed and electronic formats. They were chosen to help readers understand the factors that have contributed to Greinke’s poetic style and philosophy. The written-conversational format is entertaining yet informative, and the incisive questions of the interviewers elicit perceptive replies, showing how Eric Greinke’s ideas have grown from early basic seeds into a forest of poetic and social insights. These conversations are rich with reminiscences and references to many well-known post-modern poets with whom the author has interacted at workshops and poetry readings or through correspondence or personal friendships. (i.e. Ted Berrigan, Robert Bly, Donald Hall, Allen Ginsberg) Conversation Pieces adds another dimension to the ideas of one of America’s most influential poets.
“Within the five interviews selected for publication, Eric Greinke gives the reader a glimpse of how the small press works and its history as it relates to Greinke’s involvement. His devotion and energy to the poetic community is astounding and deserves praise. What Greinke speaks about applies now and will always apply because he is a principled poet with a commitment to the community.” -Irene Koronas, Boston Area Small Press and Poetry Scene
“His survey of the small press movement clarifies it very well and, for me, was uplifting, having been a part of it. Besides the factual information that I enjoyed hearing about in this survey, there were two bells that rang in my mind and called me back to my church: conviction and integrity.” -Kirby Congdon, Small Press Review
“The thirty year span makes a comparison between the Eric Greinke in his thirties and the one later in life interesting for the continuing enthusiasm and belief in the good our small presses achieve. The underground continues to churn, thankfully. Eric Greinke’s reflections show us several reasons why.” -David Chorlton, Future Cycle Press
“Greinke speaks of the inner mystery and ambiguity of poetry. It’s really like a living, breathing spirit to him. Greinke has a broad view of both poetry and of life.” -John Berbrich, Barbaric Yawp
“Conversations Pieces offers us a rare opportunity to approach and understand a poet’s more abstract work via the poet himself. How interesting to see this sustained interest in symbols, and the intense desire to engage his readers, making them poets, and making poetry a communicative and tranformational experience. This is a fortunate gift, and helps in appreciating the dedication and artistry of Eric Greinke.” -Timothy McLafferty, Verse Wisconsin