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Dan O’Brien

28 October 2013 | Email This Post Email This Post | Print This Post Print This Post

The playwright and poet Dan O’Brien discusses his latest collection of poems, War Reporter (Hanging Loose, 2013), based on conversations with Pulitzer Prize winning photo journalist Paul Watson, with Joseph Planta.


War Reporter by Dan O’Brien (Hanging Loose, 2013).

Click to buy this book from Amazon.ca: War Reporter


Text of introduction by Joseph Planta:

I am Planta: On the Line, in Vancouver, at TheCommentary.ca.

The American playwright and poet Dan O’Brien joins me now. He recently published a collection of poems entitled War Reporter. It is described as a book-length sequence of poems, and they are derived from the conversations and correspondence Mr. O’Brien had with Paul Watson, who received the Pulitzer Prize for photography in 1993. The image of a dead American being dragged through the streets of Mogadishu was captured by Watson. In the pieces in this book, you see the understanding O’Brien seeks from Watson, the wisdom they learn together, and the tragic, horrific and traumatic damage people suffer because of war. It’s an interesting collaboration had by the Messer’s O’Brien and Watson, and I’ll ask Dan how that came about, and what was happening in his own life that inspired his reaching out to Watson. We’ll also discuss the poems that appear in this book, as well as the play, The Body of an American, which is about Paul Watson, and which received the Edward M. Kennedy Prize for drama, the opera that Watson also inspired, that recently premiered at Stanford. The book is published in North America by Hanging Loose Press, and CB Editions in Britain. The website for more is www.danobrien.org. Please welcome to the Planta: On the Line program, in Los Angeles this day, Dan O’Brien; Mr. O’Brien, good morning.

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