‘Mozart’s Starling’: Jay Gao goes behind the poem

Jay Gao discusses the thought process behind his poem ‘Mozart’s Starling’, which appears in the spring 2022 issue of The Poetry Review.

Gao recalls ‘experimenting with a type of [form, constraint] that I have been calling a stack, inspired by the sea stacks which occur wherever coasts and oceans meet. Over time, wave erosion weakens landform at its joints and fault zones, expanding lines and cracks in the rock, pushing air into the stone, forming arches that will later collapse, until it leaves a steep vertical pillar of rock…’

To read Gao’s full text and others in the series, including contributions from Ralf Webb, Paul Muldoon, Zakia Carpenter-Hall, and many others, visit ‘Behind the Poem’.