Saturday, October 02, 2004

funny politcal blog: days breaks. here's a couple of picture links therefrom, GW teaching children to read and turkey asks for presidential pardon
I mentioned that I have the urge to collect. someone must've had the idea and stuck to it of collecting the entire set of moneymaking pleas from Nigeria and related places where Mr Whosis as agent for the wife of the late ex-minister of whatsis wants to extract the sum of gargantuan into offshore plentitude and my help (checked you out online and find you to be stalwart worthy human manifestation) so here's my bank account number, social security number, my basic bread recipe and the keys to my Porsche I hope all becomes better in war torn with my help and I won't spend my fee the 20% of that lump sum gargantuan all in one place. I mean collect them and note the nuanced changes, varied sad fates and the transactional flow of money hither and yon with singular political 3rd world situations. I've found, with Site Metre (since I posted a hack of one or two of these letters previously), that folks are searching on the names in said letters. like, checking out what's being said about the plaintiffs, you know, to see if the opportunity is on the up and up. forget it, I got there 1st. but anyway, I envision someone out there with a database chock full of internet pleas. just like the drawer here where is kept the bottle opener is also full of beer bottle caps.
Dear Element of Surplus,

I am Prince Intercontinental Chief Auditor Subtraction, audit department camera canker fest of Fund release Ordinary central boom boom Bank of Nigeria, lattice work. I know the letter might come to you, yours elf, each word frightening itself as Surprise, but take it like you own. Mr. VALDIRIM from Trade Station (lack of embryo)(user) executed contract (common) through Federal Misty Days Aviation here in

Nigeria, the plant. the contract worth of button throb your intention but on the process of Transferring the money to him, he dyed his family in earthquake. Patience, leaflet: disaster that occurred. recently in Georgia (user rules), his money (mop function) has to be Signed in my office. I will give order to the central bank of Nigeria (buzzing sound hereditary). final endorsement of his money means Nobody knows what is going except. I and user two of my workers, this is the man's formation:

(1) Contract Sum: US$13,500,000

(2) Contract number: FMA/CBN/FGN/3-X. 99/2000.

You will act like this fund. I will send to you the whole relevant documents. required in this transaction immediately you accept to co-operate with me, life of nouns inclusive. Send me to your:

1. private phone and fax numbers (elephant ranch sounds)

2. Name of your company to enable us to start the immediately (portion).

I have decided to give you 20% risk. I'm going on very soon, so I need to take care of My future area. investment in your century waiting your urgent God. bless you.



Yours truly

Dr Prince IDRIS BAKO, lump sum
a fun busy site, including daily drawings (pictures) and such. today's movie is a screenful of molecular busybodies, or possibly a game of Bugs, in progress. also check out related blog. and this neat photo.

Friday, October 01, 2004

kinda senseless to point out that Gary Sullivan is funny and capable of a surreal vision that doesn't seem merely weird but in fact more carefully focussed, but blogs allow one (and everyone) to pipe up, so I point to his riff on how Bush done good at the thilla in Miama.
finished Kashner's book, now reading Niedecker and the Correspondence with Zukofsky 1931-1970 by Jenny Penberthy. (Cambridge 1993). an extensive discussion of their letter writing, and a selection of her letters to him. wish the Zukofsky side were included, tho notes are perspicacious. a couple of iconoclasts, in their different ways. it's a little painful to read, as they had an affair in the 30s, and apparently she had an abortion, then later she identifies strongly with Paul. the child that might've been. I don't want to psychoanalyze too much, but you can see the way it developes. part of her interest is imbibing in Louis's (Louie, as she calls him (and lots of other things)) affection for his son. one notes that in his poems, as cool as Z's poetry can be: the warm presence of both Paul and Celia. Celia wrote to Cid Corman that LZ created Niedecker and that 90% of her work consisted of his revision. issues here and there. LN must've been lonely, or starved, for the wider world, tho happy enough in her rural circumstance. she had a Dickinsonian sort of quick wit and flippancy, and perhaps some of Emily's intensity, tho she was better adapted to the world than ED. I compare to ED cautiously, by the way. must acknowledge a sexist perplexity in both, but I don't want to lump them togetehr just cuz. ED's revolution occurred within a strict and restricted world. LN's was within different boundaries, but you see in the letters right along a courageous fight. not to say there isn't a revolution in LZ's persistence. both poets cause me to consider my own effort and dedication. reading Kashner's view of Naropa, which I acknowldge as a view, I see the wrong thing held up. not so much by Kashner, whose recollection strikes me as fairly level-eyed and questioning, but in the idea of fame that surrounds these characters. how important charisma is. it's not their fault that FAME applied itself to Ginsberg, Corso, Burroughs, Kerouac (and not hardly to LN), but the reader hadn't ought to add that to the work. and a-hole rinpoche is just a scam, empty words empty.
Ginsberg is something of a nemesis for me. not for atrocities so much as the way the AG character so completely suffuses a certain place in poetry. ook, am I able to say this, or will I drivel? well, press on. his celebrity is such a driving force, that it overwhelms much that he did. legendary, ubitquitous AG, hanging with Kerouac, with Dylan, with Waldman, with Olson, with Creeley, with Lennon. how seriously the world takes its pop stars. so much of his poetry wants to be poetry. it wants to be crazy Blake and wide spreading Whitman. and his poetry does reach those places. more often, tho, he worries it. invents it. tells it. and his iconic status puts a cheesy, flimsy force to his flabbiest poems. the original AG often gets lost in the effects of all his masters and instigators. his persona becomes the point. he'll probably always be read as beatnik hipster on the road, until such point those concepts ebb. I think we ought to let go of those romantic notions. just as we should rid ourselves of the notion of Dickinson as bluestocking gardener (a Thurber cartoon has a character say of a woman beatifically working a garden: "She has the true Emily Dickinson spirit, except sometimes she gets fed up").
I misspoke about Black Mountain, I don't think it was a scam. it was utopian vision meets heavy lifting. I think people theere managed the heavy lifting, but that lifting took some of the sheen from the utopia. Olson had the idea to collect all the best minds, etc, and invited Carl Sauer, who, perhaps a little more firmly rooted in the sensible, declined. I'm more leery of what AG was doing. again, scam's the wrong word. I do not think the commitment to education was entirely sincere.

Thursday, September 30, 2004

while psyched particularly to read the Niedecker/Zukofsky letters, I am reading When I Was Cool by Sam Kashner (Harpercollins 2004). he being the 1st student at the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetry. gossip about Ginsberg and Burroughs and Waldman and Chogyam Trungpa. I'm not keen on AG's poetry, and am ambivalent about his celebrity (he's both magical and tiresome), but it's a fun read. Kashner manages felicities in his account. I mean, I read a book about Warhol by one of his posse that was just trenchant in the afterglow of Warhol, whose magic has yet to sway me. O'Hara is credited with a snappy line: "Kerouac once told Frank O'Hara that he was ruining American poetry, Allen said, but Frank answered back, 'That's more than you ever did for it.'" JK reveals the kind of the attitude Capote had towards Kerouac himself, if the story aint apocryphal. the JK School sounds like Black Mountain. part vision, part scam. sorry, I just don't trust Chogyam Rinpoche, don't even see why I should. I naturally react against The Place To Be, as Naropa and the JK School seem to be.
2 more books from Acton library, selected (I said donated previously) by Robert Creeley: Niedecker-Zukofsky correspondence and A Test of Poetry by LZ. curious if this is a service RC provides generally, or a favour to Acton specifically. nice to have such books made available.
just discovered this site of works by Kevin Magee. I havent looked at much of it yet (his bio is in Russian!), but I am fond of his work. a very serious, working sense of Marxism displayed in his writing. philosophical and theoretical but at the same time poetical. his work is not the result of a couple of poli sci courses, but of a lengthy studied consideration. my particular interest is in the poetic, I am no judge of the political, but his use (if that's the right word) of political in his work is admirable. it suggests the sort of working commitment to language that the base core of LANGUAGE poets incorporated into their art. I mean how theory and poetry walk together. Magee effectively brings theory to work.
check out Lanny Quarles's Trash-Po A Transliterary Assemblage and 2nd batch. scans of stuff he has collected, some of it collage, some of it just is. I've always been a collector of stuff, or at least, I've had the urge. I worked for years at a wine store, thus amassed a large box full of used corks. with no vision of how to use them, just an aura of possibility hanging over them. walking or running, I'd always find some shiny object that I'd carry home. always an idea that someday I'll make use of it. the practicalities of storage have perforced the removal of a lot of this stuff from my grasp. and occasionally, too, in lucid moments, I look and realize it's a bunch of trash. which reminds me of a Bob & Ray skit. Ray plays a fellow who collects oddly-shaped vegetables. unfortunately he has no way to keep the vegetables fresh. after agonizing with the smell for a while Bob asks if Ray's collection isn't just a lot of garbage, a point Ray grudgingly concedes. but until that moment of recognition, there's a delight in finding trashy wonder.
I want to mention Columns & Catalogues (The Figures 1994) and 7 Days(The Figures), both by Peter Schjeldahl. I got 7Days strictly because The Figures offered it. I was trying to support a good press by buying its wares. I had heard of Schjeldahl as a NEW YORK POET but didn't knw his work. these 2 books collect his art writing. there's a gig, go to museums and galleries, look at stuff, and write about it. I could get myself around that idea. PS does it well. his prose is scintillant, as befits, I suppose, what's largely magazine fare. I don't know a lot of the artists he writes about, contemporary artists, but that doesn't matter. it is rollicking stuff to read. how's this, in reference to Matisse: "It is about decoration raised to a level of panic: representations slammed up to the surface with linear rhythms and color combinations registering as willfully arbitrary pattern, every detail a surprise and the ensemble a riot." hey, I'd like to see some poetry like that. I suppose the books are out of print, and I dunno where The Figures stands as a publishing entity. or maybe you read PS's piece in the Voice and decided he just got it, grrrr, wrong about Jopseph Beuys. it is not so much his opinions that attract me, given I am ignorant of many of his reference points, it is his energetic stance, both beguiled and steadfast. he even has an essay that confronts his life of former poet/current critic. the standard gripe against Flann O'Brien consists of lamenting all the great writing he didn't do while he dithered with his newspaper columns. aside from pointing to some great strange novels (if you haven't taken the tour of a particularly oddball hell with The Third Policeman, I give you my special invites), I would speak to the living intensity that exists in the writing he did, contra expectations. it pleases me to read this writing, makes me want to look at paintings, makes me want to paint some. all good energies.

Wednesday, September 29, 2004

this list of Jonathan Mayhew is the sort of thing I enjoyed seeing in Paris Review interviews. it lets one see the texture of the sensibility (if that phrase isn't too lame). we all have to select what 'good' writing we will read, plus there's all this 'bad' writing that we read, even for instruction or guilty pleasure. one of the 1st poets that I thought I liked, I was quite resistant to poetry in high school, was Norman effing Mailer. because I 'got' his poems. maybe if O'Hara were available to me then I'd've gone that way but there it is. I've been cogitating my reading base a bit lately, mayhap I'll produce a similar list. the Fu Manchu books of Saxe Rohmer are my not so secret pleasure, just to let you know.

ps. thanks to JM for 'tribute'.
hey! Rockets & Sentries sits at 600 posts. that's 600 fucking poems written over the course of 13 1/2 months. and it was just to write as daily as possible in that blog box with something half in mind.
I don't know much about the MacArthur Foundation awards, but I'm glad to've won. I want to thank everyone who voted for me. I think awarding money not based on need is a really refreshing new take on the old idea of charity.
helpfully adding a title, to wit: Scrum.
hence the goofy, playful, touching music of Albert Ayler. I mean, if I were a kid again, I could make that music too!!!
concerning these scans: doing book art on a water-damaged book. just doodling with the process. the scans aren't that interesting, I admit, shrunk too much, can hardly see the words. more interesting to hold the book. I'm not 'going anywhere' with this, just started doing it. anyway, that's how I work. that's how I read, too. not in a puzzling way, I usually end of agitated or disappointed when I puzzle work, but a sudden leap way. an experience long ago reading Dickinson. I was perhaps exhilarated from just having run in a summer downpour whoosh. the poem about two butterflies coalesced as I read. sometimes I read Dickinson and labour with her syntax, because it wants to be parsed but doesn't make it easy. in this instance, I experienced something of a visionary event, and I say this cautiously. I was in a state of keen reception to the poem's workings. I guess I can't easily get 'there' by the mountain path, struggling step by step, instead rely more on leaps. I will probably gather more pleasure from O'Hara or Berrigan than from Zukofsky, tho I respect LZ a lot and do indeed 'like' his work. when I seem to be slamming other people's critical articulations, I am more defending (for myself) my own sense and sensibility concerning poetry. what I like about John Bennett's mag, Lost and Found Times, is the playfulness of the experiments by all contributors. these recent scans are of some stuff I did just fartin' around. I post them with a feeling, look what showed up. art (of all genres) that does that, surprises me with its appearance (either my work or that of real artists), speaks the pleasure and point of art for me.

and then Posted by Hello

great work Posted by Hello

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

sometimes I have a whereas in my throat that causes me to waver. Henry Gould doesn't. the part of LANGUAGE poetry, and langpo, and all such like that that I can't handle well is the talk that overlays the poetry. late in Thoreau's life he got caught up in sending specimens to Louis Agassiz, so that he was straying from observation into taxonomy. not that taxonomy is bad: it is descriptive. it can be useful. but it is also systematic in a way that can formalize differences, to the point of IMPEDENCE. it's good to know the Latin name of that black and blue butterfly there, but possession of that name does not create a full understanding of that butterfly. sometimes poetry is poetry because it just fucking is. the LANGPO debate has quanatified zilch. and I don't care if Bob's your uncle.

book peas 3 Posted by Hello

book peace 2 Posted by Hello

book piece 1 Posted by Hello

Monday, September 27, 2004

John Bennett posted a piece to Wryting by Jim Leftwich concerning JB's work. it is a phenomenal piece for its critical acumen. Leftwich is an astonishing writer himself, an astonishing artist, and comes to JB's work with a technical appreciation as well as an artistic one. JB and JL have done a ton of collaborations together, as well as with others. they surely are simpatico. in this piece, JL really gets into the machinery. I wish I could post the thing here, it's so useful. the piece opens possibilities for me in JB's work (I'm not the best reader around, so any help is gladly accepted). the piece also inspires me to try something different in my own work. these two go on the list of writers who ought to be studied now. I'm not saying I haven't resistance to this work. I think I feel overly stupid, not confident in my critical ability. which leaves me at times not doing justice to work because it confuses or otherwise rattles me. I had this problem 30 plus years ago, when I 1st met the work of Pound, Dickinson, Stein, Zukofsky, Grenier, Olson and, I'm afraid, all too many others, who sent me into dismay. yet I came to grips with many of these writers. Bennett and Leftwich seem to inhabit a universe that, for all its wonders, doesn't get a lot of notice. god knows why. read them, read Sheila Murphy, read Peter Ganick, read Ivan Argülles, read the folks published by Bennett in his Lost and Found Times. there's a lot of energy out there.

Sunday, September 26, 2004

my father's memory seemed endless, once, now it is a sieve and going. it seemed like he had the history of both Cambridge and Provincetown in hand, in mind, for he grew up in both places and seemingly remembered everything. but. and yeah living with that change is hard. I remember stories, of his meeting famous people. I have hardly any such, but my father, ordinary as he is, has a few. my father went to see Gene Krupa's band soon after Krupa left Benny Goodman's band. a band member being indisposed (hmmm), Krupa borrowed a player from Glenn Miller's band. my father's up front listening to the band when who but Miller himself comes along to check out the band, and chat with my father. I think maybe Goodman (who played at my father's college graduation (Tufts 35)) also showed up. the time meeting a Robert Benchley feeling under the presumably bourbon-coloured weather on the ferry to Martha's vineyard. the funeral of a friend of my father's father found my father sitting next to and being consoled by Faye Wray. my favourite is when my father's flight was delayed for some important lardy pants. said lardy pants turned out to be Tip O'Neill (not the 19th century ballplayer but el speaker de casa). who sat next to my father and engaged him in talk about North Cambridge, where both grew up. all politics is local, as Tip is famous for saying. Beth and I remind my father of these stories, and he says oh yes, but cannot offer anything more. my father asks where the dining room is, where his bedroom is. even, once, my name. and the hurting resides in his recognition of the loss. and it's funny that his stories now are my stories.
I wish this blog were as funny and odd as Lisablog.

to wit:

Mushroom Forest is my 1st try at rubbing mushroom prints. since they were light-coloured prints, the soors faint, I 1st sprayed with hairspray to fix the spoors, then rubbed with graphite pencil. the image looks better in hand, but I admit I went too far with the thing. Imp Print is a better rendering. I've had trouble getting decent prints because my cat regards mushroom caps spread out on paper as a clear instigation, so he's taken to knocking them off when I'm elsewise engaged. there are 2 shroom prints on the floor thanks to this terrorist's vision and energy. Book Art is simply 2 pages of a used book I have. Geof Huth recently presented a Wallace Stevens poem that he (Geof) had doodled and taken notes on. the previous owner of my book performed a lot of doodles. one story in the book, almost every phrase was underlined, but not as if the reader were getting something from the book, just underlining as the teacher spoke.

imp print Posted by Hello

mushroom forest Posted by Hello

book art Posted by Hello
Barrett Watten's troisième installment to his Weekly Reader presents a meaty chew concerning Zukofsky. worth reading. a description of the contumelious contretemps that arose between Watten and Duncan at the Zukofsky memorial. the intensity seems to rise from concerns other than literature and poetry, something timely rather than timeless. peek at the comments on Silliman's post of 9/21 (and of course you notice that the comments are hardly on Silliman's post), and see that it's a busy onramp to something off. well, you also see that comments boxes, like listservs, are not the best place for dialectics. anyway, Watten's piece puts another light on Zukofsky, the one who reappeared last week. he mentions in passing the sexual innuendo early in A, which I have been noticing. Zukofsky's writing is not, as I would say, picturesque. the careful evocations of sound and sense (that is, meaning) are not sensual in that way. the dance is mental in a way both cunning and lovely. some great photos of Z around. I like the one on Silliman's blog, that sharp edged profile and nifty hat. I don't know enough about the US in the 1st half of the century, Z's milieu, that is. or I should say, revelations thereof are useful in approaching Z.