Black Lawrence Press

My Window Seat For Arlena Twigg



  • "My Window Seat For Arlena Twigg is as eccentric as its title. It is also brilliant — poem after poem of compression and a rare, quirky intensity of feeling. This book is long overdue (he has been serving our literature in other ways) from a poet who has learned his trade, his craft, and makes his own indelible music."
    —Thomas Lux
  • "James Reidel’s debut collection is a marvel — partly because of the spare, unfussy elegance of his style, but more importantly because of an oddness of perception, a searching quality that makes these wry and bittersweet poems resemble those of almost no one else. Few first books of poetry possess this degree of confidence and maturity of vision."
    —David Wojahn

James Reidel

James Reidel is a poet, translator, editor, and biographer. Over the years, Reidel has published poems in The New Yorker, The Paris Review, TriQuarterly, Verse, The New Criterion, Ploughshares, Conjunctions, DMQ Review, The Adirondack Review, and The Battersea Review. Black Lawrence Press brought out his first collection of verse, My Window Seat for Arlena Twigg, in 2006, and, more recently, his new chapbook, Jim’s Book (2013), which marks Reidel’s time as the writer-in-resident at the James Merrill House fellow in Stonington, Connecticut. James Reidel is also the author of Vanished Act: The Life and Art of Weldon Kees (University of Nebraska Press, 2003), the definitive and only biography of Kees. Reidel’s translation works includes Thomas Bernhard’s poetry cycles, In Hora Mortis and Under the Iron of the Moon, which was published as a single volume by Princeton University Press and was later selected by PEN as one of its 2007 translation prize finalists. Other translations from the German include two novels of Franz Werfel, Pale Blue Ink in a Lady’s Hand and a newly revised and expanded edition of The Forty Days of Musa Dagh (both David R. Godine, 2012), for which Reidel received an NEA translation fellowship in 2009. James Reidel is married to the potter M. Lori Reidel. They have three sons and currently reside in Cincinnati, Ohio.  

Reidel Author page