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Music on the mind of poetry book prize finalist Gabrielle Calvocoressi

February 27, 2010 |  8:53 am

Gabrielle Calvocoressi's poetry collection, "Apocalyptic Swing," has been nominated for a 2009 LA Times book prize. The poet spoke to Memorious, an online journal of poetry and literature, about what was on her mind: Alexander McQueen, queer culture, New York's meatpacking district before its gentrification, and the song above, by Regina Spektor.

"I’ve been listening to Regina Spektor’s “Dance Anthem of the 80’s.” I keep playing the section from 2:03 till the end, which is something I do. I find the spot in the song that has all the tension and contradiction and sometimes just explosive beauty of what I want to make. So I’ve been playing that over and over and dreaming of all of us. Listen. It gets so quiet and she’s just looking at you and the boys and girls stop for a second and then it opens and opens and we’re dancing and laughing."

-- Carolyn Kellogg