Rooms Outlast Us

A Different Notion of the Critic: some excerpts

A while ago I received the first issue of Rooms Outlast Us, a small poetry journal run by Ethan Edwards, J.E. Kielsgard, and Danika Stegeman (I worked Ethan and Danika on Phoebe over a year ago). Anyhow, I wanted to give you a quick look at their project. This first issue is very simply designed. Here’s the cover:


The issue is thirty six pages long and contains poetry by Julie Doxsee, Eric Pankey, Jack Collom & Lyn Hejinian, Matthew Savoca, and Laura Sims. The issue also has a collaborative essay titled “The Function of Criticism” by a group of Berkeley writers: Mia You, Brooke Belisle, Javier Huerta, Megan Pugh, Eleanor Johnson, Marques Redd, Liz Young, Colin Dingler, Jasper Bernes, Swati Rana, and Lyn Hejinian.

It might be hard to discuss this essay without posting it in full (you’ll have to buy the issue in order to read it, or contact the authors or editors at roomsoutlastus [at] gmail [dot] com); however, I’d like to give you a sense of the authors’ argument with some excerpts I’ve picked out. So keep in mind, I guess, that this isn’t the complete essay?

Anyhow, if this is something you’re interested in, have a go.

Summary/excerpts after the break.


Contests / 21 Comments
August 5th, 2009 / 10:12 am

New Poetry Journal – Rooms Outlast Us

Rooms Outlast Us is a new poetry journal run by a couple of people I worked with back when I edited fiction at Phoebe. Earlier today, I emailed/gchatted with one of the editors, Danika Stegeman, about it, and she said the journal is modeled after some of the smaller poetry zines that were out in the 50s, 60s, 70s, like the Evergreen Review, which was originally published by Grove Press (before the journal moved online in the 90s, I guess).

Here’s what she said officially:

Rooms Outlast Us will be a small print journal, approximately 40 pages per issue, and will include poetry and poetic criticism. Our emphasis is on showcasing writing from more established poets alongside emerging poets. We are hoping to accommodate writers working on longer works and sequences as well (so the journal will generally favor fewer poets with more pages per poet, rather than many poets with fewer pages). The first issue will be coming out in early January and the journal will be published bi-annually after that.

Rumor has it that they’ve got Matthew Savoca and Laura Sims to contribute to the first issue.

Submissions should be sent to roomsoutlastus[at]

Editors: Danika Stegeman, Ethan Edwards, and Justin Kielsgard.

Web Hype / 17 Comments
October 10th, 2008 / 9:58 pm