Marginalia, Graduate Blog

daniel

Tell us a little bit about what you were doing before you came to Columbia.

Before coming to Columbia College, I spent a lot of time filling out change-of-address forms. I spent the longest segment of that time in Atlanta, where I dabbled with my own personal chef gig and began an MA program for Literature at Georgia State University. I’m from Georgia originally. In 2010 I took a hiatus from the program to serve as the Visiting Artist for the University of Georgia’s Study Abroad Art Program in Cortona, Italy. That’s where I started writing poetry. After that, everything changed. I moved to Milwaukee, where my girlfriend was from, and started researching MFA programs while I wrote my graduate thesis for GSU. In the spring of last year (2012), I went to Paris on a GSU graduate exchange and completed my MA. I would wake up in the middle of the night and get online to see if I’d gotten in any of the schools I applied to. It was like 4am and, though I hadn’t heard anything from Columbia College yet, I signed in to the Bulletin Board to see if there was any change in my application status. I was then given a prompt asking if I wanted to RSVP for the Admitted Students day, and I thought, Yes I do!

Why did you choose Columbia for your graduate study?

I would say that my decision to attend Columbia College began with a dream I had: I am riding my bicycle on the interstate and then stop for a moment on the shoulder, I don’t know why, probably to Instagram, when a large delivery truck comes peeling around the corner and hits me, sending me hurtling into the glass wall of a skyscraper. I am on my knees, glass falling out of my face. I get a glimpse of my reflection in a remaining part of the slate black window and see that when I blink my eyes, shards of glass have slit my face into what looks like diamonds. I spit, and the glass trickles out into a puddle. Imagine the sound of a room full of scissors. The next thing I know, I am walking through a shiny metallic hallway that, at some point, becomes clear to be a hallway at Columbia College Chicago.

But that just sounds crazy.

So instead I’ll say that the decision began in an ancient Italian hill town that was built by the Etruscans, whose shots were called based on the flight patterns of birds and the scrutinized entrails of sacrificed animals that were then divvied up among the priests for high fives and a potluck dinner.

Totally normal, right?

During my time as the Visiting Artist in Cortona—the Etruscan hill town—I was surrounded by artists of all genres and mediums. I had the opportunity to learn paper and bookmaking, printmaking, and even some stone carving! My experiences with non-poet artists made me realize how integral our fields were to each other, so I knew I wanted to go somewhere with a strong arts background. I later visited Chicago for Printer’s Ball while I was living in Milwaukee, and I knew then that CCC was where I needed to be.

Tell us about a project you’re working on that you’re excited about.

My friend Darin Beasley once said, if wherever you are doesn’t have something you can stick your hands in, then how are you gonna find love? For me that means you’ve got to keep busy and stay involved. Right now I’m sending out one finished manuscript, revising and ordering another one, and starting on what I think will become my thesis project—a series of poems dealing with a double murder in a pea patch just outside of my hometown in 1930. I’ve spent the summer going through old VHS home videotapes and re-appropriating some of the footage for poem-films. And what I’m super excited about is being asked to come on board as a co-curator for a new Chicago-based art cooperative and performance series called The Swell. It’s gonna be huge!

Do you want the student perspective on the Daniel Scott Parker MFA Poetry program?
Email our Ambassador at poetry.mfa@colum.edu

THAT’S ALL, FOLKS

by Daniel Scott Parker

It’s hard to believe that my year as ambassador is coming to a close. It’s been a terrifically exciting, prolific, and rewarding year, and serving as ambassador has only made …

THAT’S ALL, FOLKS

It’s hard to believe that my year as ambassador is coming to a close. It’s been a terrifically exciting, prolific, and rewarding year, and serving as ambassador has only made …

Daniel Scott Parker MFA Poetry Daniel Scott Parker, danielsparker@gmail.com
600 S. Michigan Ave. Chicago, IL 60605

PLANTAR FASCIITIS, SAY WHAT: A GUIDE TO SUMMER READING

by Daniel Scott Parker

I was once chastised (putting it mildly) for taking medical advice from a German bartender over a seemingly insouciant French doctor. I get it: bartender, doctor. Should be a no …

PLANTAR FASCIITIS, SAY WHAT: A GUIDE TO SUMMER READING

I was once chastised (putting it mildly) for taking medical advice from a German bartender over a seemingly insouciant French doctor. I get it: bartender, doctor. Should be a no …

Daniel Scott Parker MFA Poetry Daniel Scott Parker, danielsparker@gmail.com
600 S. Michigan Ave. Chicago, IL 60605

JE VOUDRAIS UN HOTDOG, S’IL VOUS PLAIT

by Daniel Scott Parker

Summer, y’all. What does a poet do when it isn’t 20 below zero with a windchill of negative 47 outside and there isn’t a waist-high stack of Writing & Rhetoric …

JE VOUDRAIS UN HOTDOG, S’IL VOUS PLAIT

Summer, y’all. What does a poet do when it isn’t 20 below zero with a windchill of negative 47 outside and there isn’t a waist-high stack of Writing & Rhetoric …

Daniel Scott Parker MFA Poetry Daniel Scott Parker, danielsparker@gmail.com
600 S. Michigan Ave. Chicago, IL 60605

TRIGGER WARNING: THERE WILL BE BLOOD

by Daniel Scott Parker

(See also: sentimentality.) In almost any beginning workshop, you’ll learn that there’s one thing that will turn a good poem sour in a jiffy: sentimentality. Well, I happen to like sentimentality. …

TRIGGER WARNING: THERE WILL BE BLOOD

(See also: sentimentality.) In almost any beginning workshop, you’ll learn that there’s one thing that will turn a good poem sour in a jiffy: sentimentality. Well, I happen to like sentimentality. …

Daniel Scott Parker MFA Poetry Daniel Scott Parker, danielsparker@gmail.com
600 S. Michigan Ave. Chicago, IL 60605

HUSHPUPPIES, PERFORMANCE ART, AND THE BACHELORETTE: ALL PART OF THE MFA EXPERIENCE

by Daniel Scott Parker

When I was thirteen, I went to a friend’s beach house for a week in May. I think there was a crawfish festival going on, because I remember live music …

HUSHPUPPIES, PERFORMANCE ART, AND THE BACHELORETTE: ALL PART OF THE MFA EXPERIENCE

When I was thirteen, I went to a friend’s beach house for a week in May. I think there was a crawfish festival going on, because I remember live music …

Daniel Scott Parker MFA Poetry Daniel Scott Parker, danielsparker@gmail.com
600 S. Michigan Ave. Chicago, IL 60605

THE SWELL {an art cooperative}

by Daniel Scott Parker

In my first blog post last September, I mentioned that I’d just started co-curating a Chicago-based reading and performance series called The Swell, which began in July. A lot has …

THE SWELL {an art cooperative}

In my first blog post last September, I mentioned that I’d just started co-curating a Chicago-based reading and performance series called The Swell, which began in July. A lot has …

Daniel Scott Parker MFA Poetry Daniel Scott Parker, danielsparker@gmail.com
600 S. Michigan Ave. Chicago, IL 60605