Saturday, September 13, 2003

Found & Recovered:

Kenneth Patchen, Songs of Humor and Protest, City Lights Pocket Poets 1966

Jerome Rothenberg, Poems for the Game of Silence, Dial Press 1971

Simon Pettet, Selected Poems, Talisman House 1995

Fire Exit, April (No year listed-probably 1970) Features Charles Olson, Michael Palmer, Bruce Andrews, Musa Guston, Lee Harwood. Cover and drawings by Ray Kass

Steve Carll, trace a moment's closure for clues, Logodaedalus Press, 1996

George Oppen, This in Which, New Directions, 1965

Wednesday, September 10, 2003

The debate that has been raging on Skanky Possum comes down, on at least one level, to the debate between so-called complexity and her rumoured to be nicer sister clarity that has been at work in the arts for many decades. I'm amazed at poets (or critics) who are so umwilling to invest time at finding meaning beyond their own comfortable definitions of coherence and clarity (I was just thinking of Hornsby's ridiculous Radiohead review in the New Yorker a couple years back), but I'm willing to bet that they are able to accept more difficult attempts at presenting meaning (or reality) when they come from already accepted sources, such as established artists like Pollock, Rothko, etc. Or at least they pretend to.

Por ejemplo:

Well, Shakespeare, he's in the alley
With his pointed shoes and his bells,
Speaking to some French girl,
Who says she knows me well.
And I would send a message
To find out if she's talked,
But the post office has been stolen
And the mailbox is locked.
Oh, Mama, can this really be the end,
To be stuck inside of Mobile
With the Memphis blues again.

Mona tried to tell me
To stay away from the train line.
She said that all the railroad men
Just drink up your blood like wine.
An' I said, "Oh, I didn't know that,
But then again, there's only one I've met
An' he just smoked my eyelids
An' punched my cigarette."
Oh, Mama, can this really be the end,
To be stuck inside of Mobile
With the Memphis blues again.

Dylan, obviously. A songwriter who has consistently made his bones with, among his many talents, the obscuring of coherent meaning. Wanna take a stab at what it means? Go ahead, but a thousand others will disagree and he'll certainly never tell. But thye lyrics are magnificent, suggestive of so much that goes beyond just narrative or coherence. And when you add the music you just get pure bliss.

This is my long-winded way of saying that when someone preaches coherence in art, if that's what the Houlihan's of the world are preaching, they haven't been listening closely to their environment.

Bad news. After overcoming a potentially fatal addiction to online mini-golf (I cannot justify giving you the link/disease, though HE might) I've discovered on-line Scrabble.


There is mileage

a journal in form a

endless talk, blood
flow then count

on close

This speech is anemic
the worry lines of

I’ll try to get at it
from here


here, where it’s safe
like buildings with windows
that never open

the air always

Tuesday, September 09, 2003

A journal in reverse begins (ends) here.

About thinking of phosphorescence, the beauty of the Skyway, logs piled on a Wahington State beach and Devil's hole. The coincidence you should find me here and I was looking for you looking for me. Vancouver all in pastels how to be there at once and in this job now. Girl on the Amtrak heading home from tennis camp and him heading to Portland hands touch and there is no sleeper car to sneak in, to share a pet or two or three. These are numbers from Chicago, 43 54 65 are not the same ones they use in the Northeast or its dramatic cousin the Northwest. I-91, it actually ends somewhere.

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