Michael Hettich
May 2012


Michael HettichMichael Hettich was born in New York City and grew up there and in the city's suburbs. He has also lived in upstate NY, Colorado, Vermont, north Florida, and Miami, where he currently lives with his family. His books of poetry include FLOCK AND SHADOW:New and Selected Poems (New Rivers 2005), LIKE HAPPINESS (Anhinga 2010), THE ANIMALS BEYOND US (New Rivers 2011), among others. THE MEASURED BREATHING, his most recent chapbook, won the 2011 Swan Scythe Chapbook contest. Over the years, he has won various grants and fellowships. He teaches English and Creative Writing at Miami Dade College. His website is michaelhettich.com


Statement of Poetics

My poetics is simple: I strive to write poems that sing, poems that sting and surprise, while maintaining a steady gaze on the world as it actually exists. I aspire to write poems of luminous strangeness, poems that remind us of how unfamiliar the apparently familiar truly is. I believe in the practice of writing as a way of life, and as such I try to write every day. I value all kinds of poetry, all interesting contraptions-made-of-words; I reject only those poetries that claim exclusive validity, centrality and/or access to  brilliance. I dislike the Puritan mind in its every manifestation. I believe that poetry is an essential act that every waking creature engages in, knowingly or not. But I also love poetry that understands itself as song. I love to walk all day, to lose myself in walking; walking of that kind is central to my practice as all my thought-rhythms and line-rhythms and sense of narrative come from the saunter (so to speak). And I love the leaps we make in ordinary conversation, especially when the land we are walking through is beautiful.


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