Saturday, February 19, 2005

oh hi. I took a poem by Amy Lowell called The Green Bowl, and performed (what I think are) flarf procedures on it. I proposed this to the Flarf List as an exercise, so real flarfists also done their stuff. I chose Lowell just because I wanted a text pre-20th century. I don't exactly like Lowell, she's hopeful about her poetry in ways that are both irritating and distracting (common disease, I admit). voici est la poème:

The Green Bowl

This little bowl is eating all the
fish food you can hold like a
mossy pool she had dived in
many decades past in a Spring
wood classed as a semi-natural
ancient woodland, where dogtooth
violets grow well and stay
healthy, and the number of
children who are overweight
produces abundant flowers that
contribute to class when they
get the right amount of light. Nodding
in chequered sunshine of the trees is
just the right amount of God, and the right
amount of RAM, for your new pet will soon
manifest the right amount of sand,
securing the right amount of space for
your growing business seminars. A
quiet place, still, with the sound effect
of another frog heralding the arrival of
significant new talents. Tuesday Weld, though
unseen, is effective as her slightly endless
song and murmur of never resting on the
firing pin when a cartridge is
chambered. I thought that the pain would
disappear after a while, but it hasnt. I
thought she'd get over it. 'twas winter,
Roger, when you made this in Step 3,
but the coming Spring season for
the railways will guide your eager
hand and round the edge you will fashion
green leaves of Summer callin' me home
(Baby knows I’ve been a proper chalice
made to hold the shy and little events between
three and ten seconds long in the woods). and here
they will forget their sad olive trees in order to
pleasure this circle of their setting. once more
they will dream of taking a step to
tackle the running back; they will dream
that they spit out a black substance
they hear wandering through lofty trees; and
they will dream of walking into a
bookshop and seeing their novel
displayed prominently next to the
sun smiling between the leaves.

* * * * *

honest to god, I don't know how Gary Sullivan, Kasey Mohammad et al. get such rich results. something in the way they do their searches. not even mentioning the way they use the material. I found the process labourious, tho compelling. it didn't entirely feel like my writing, tho I would have no problem claiming the above as 'mine'.I clove pretty carefully to the found texts as given, but I don't suppose the rules committee insists on this. and I found myself wanting to stay on the narrative trail, even if the narrative is fractured. I don't do a lot of exercises of this nature but find worth in them, ifonly as reminder of possibilities.

Friday, February 18, 2005

not only does Henry Gould give us roots to his art, he gives us cabbage. I find this account highly susceptible to my own travails, the sturm und drang of my artistic whatsis, and so may have to absquatulate with the tale. here in the Bramhall Bunker, I can do anything! asinaria festa!!!
had last night's conversation been about poetry, something in which I participate, I would've been just as irritated. the program of the leader was so outright, and as I say trained. the science responses were Pavlovianly predictable. theory and anti-theory, with no juice. 1st thing Beth said out the door: that was stupid. for such an oddly gracious conversation, there was no intimacy of perception. there is no reply to the faith argument, and frankly none to the science argument. both were niches without provocation. both sides were settled in suburban quiesence. theory talks to theory in serious oblivion, or something. I don't mean to be snotty, I just expect some excitement surrounding that which seems so essential.
Beth and I went to Starbucks last night to renew our lifestyle. I actually drank one of those vanilla things, on the theory that caffeine is not my friend after a certain time. I mean, I take my grownup medicine at other times but. it's not a relaxing place really. how do people get work on their laptop done there, or get kneedeep in The Times' intellectual penetration of society? the noise of drink production is uncanny, the sound system blared the mellow musical stylings that Starbucks has copyrighted, and a loud conversation ensued. I tried not to listen but impossible to avoid. religion and science. the conversation seemed like the way college intellectuals burn the midnight oil. one guy referred to the difference between the religious view of The Beginning and the scientific view as a Dissonance, and liked that 2-bit word so much that he repeated its usage. see, it's a dissonance. another guy, I realized, lead the conversation. in leaving to fetch more liquefaction (portmanteau: liquid satisfaction!!!), he left a question for the others to discuss. something schoolish about that, almost professorial. and the other 2 dutifully chugged with the question. the guy getting the drinks offered to get some for the others, which somehow struck me in this instance as a bribe. he was terrifically polite in a way that made me suspicious. at one point, Beth responded to a point that the leader made. we definitely were within their cone of non-silence. she apologized for jumping in and the lead guy graciously accepted our presence officially. I said nothing but Beth made a few points. the lead guy more and more revealed his Christian orthodoxy. to which I find no reply and nothing to discuss. faith versus proof, take your pick. I mean, I find it a lack of imagination if one can't comprise creation myths and Big Bang type definitions simultaneously. the other 2 were science guys, perhaps just off the train from Brandeis. in response to one science point, the lead guy quoted that familiar jingle, something like, I believe in Jesus Christ because the Bible tells me so. I suppose Tom Aquinas might make a similar claim, finally, but he puts it in more buff terms. anyway, the guy was very polite but very definite. he even followed us out the door to finish a point he needed to make. Beth thought he was a Mormon, which is likely. he clearly was trained, he was very well dressed and pleasing, like a salesman. the impression I got was that any of us were just hunks of meat that the guy had to 'prepare'. missionary work.

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Gary Sullivan (who said he was deblogging himself!!!) is ignoring "passive aggressive koans"!!!!! who are you when you turn on the tv...?
I ditched Laura Carter's blog quickly because it sure looked like it was gonzo as in eradicated. and of course, I wanted to wield the power of link removal here in the Bramhall Bunker. maybe her disappearance was just 'a Blogger thing', as she hasn't referred to the disappearance now that she is non-disappeared. anyway, hers is a good blog, a student blog in a vigourous, positive sense. that is, she IS a student, but more importantly she is curious and dedicated as a student should be. she judiciously takes all that MFA stuff (I wonder what the MF stands for?) head on. which maybe I couldnt do. the MA I am working on is an independent study, which suits my own, uhh, idiom, as Launcelot would say. Laura's thinking out loud is lively and useful, and I would think something to balance against the formalities of her studies. blogs are whatever they are, that's for darn tootin', but they can be useful, interesting process. unless I just run out of time, I probably could keep this going ad whatever. so don't worry upon that score.

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

okay so she aint really left us: L Carter is back. but I understand the issues of blogging, is it pointless, narcissistic, liable to be something something, etc. and yet, onward with divagation.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Jeff Harrison sent an installment to our collaboration (is it almost 3 years old now?) yestreen that looked pretty damn different from what we've done before. moreso, I could not 'make' how he came to 'it'. and I was really excited to do my reply even so. I take such tentative steps of exploration, at least form wise I am gingerly in new thinking. and yet an urge to do so, scramble out of the bunker. which I think I did with my installment to the monster. I think we all face the idea that we 'know' how to write. and we do. yet we also have to unmask that claim, unpack it, turn it over and shake. we must that is if we don't want to repeat ourselves or let boredom call our shots. it's a constant rumble, but constant play. I'm saying nothing brilliant here, just had a strong dose of recognition here. you can play along too!

Sunday, February 13, 2005

poet flight team

the rewards are many:

poets who land on familiar planets. they've been trained, lots to say, messages in real time.

poets harvesting poems, aliens along for the ride. you look at usefulness and see a possible conjunction. poem is a glass of water, except it is made of words, and you can't see thru.

the aliens that drive poets to distraction: a carload of teenagers on a dark country road are impeded in their merriment by a flying saucer. and they have few words to exclaim. this is a troubling indication of existing class systems, educational boundaries and breeding, plus the natural story from hinterlands.

peace becometh rest. and the rest of that supplies poems, like bears in a wilderness situation, your rational undoing. how strange the childish patience to tell the words exactly.

poets listen to grass, viable until done.

what about the real stars of the show? in someone's roomy apartment, everyone crammed in to hear poems read, declaimed and agitated. a bottle of beer finally. suddenly in the shadows, that's a real alien.

what can we do about the lack of audience? poems are not feasible machines. when you ask, you have started breaking things. things are everywhere,finally, and each thing needs words. are these your words?

meanwhile, don't forget!

the coast is where excitement, boon to travelers in the rites of dark night. the aliens aren't just eager, they know the poems by heart!
interesting interview with Ron Silliman, tho more for what it neglects to say. the interviewer would like to be interviewed himself. Tom Beckett's interviews are effective because they are dialogic, with his curiosity and poetic interest leading his questions, rather than staged excitement. I'd like to know more about Ron's method. he uses notebooks to collect material, but I don't glean what that material is particularly nor what the collation process is. and I don't care a lot that Ron has a special pen. maybe I'd have a special pen too if I didn't keep losing the damn things. long, long ago, the family was at Lake Chocorua in New Hampshire, a crystal clear lake. so clear that I could see 30-40 feet out from shore a fountain pen in the water. the water was shallow, and I could walk out and fetch the pen, a cheapie Shaeffer, but the thing worked. I could incite that pen to be a magical instrument, or a symbol of my writing mission. I guess I don't need that mythology. it was just a pen, and in fact, as much as I love fountain pens, they are messy and they often bleed thru papers. anyway, Ron has written how his books take so long to create. I'd like more nuts and bolts about what he does with his purposeful notebooks, how he gathers raw material (so to speak) to create the works he creates. those Paris Review interviews of yore were neat in taking up such questions, and showing manuscript samples. of course the magical compound often turns out to be pretty routine, at least in some sense. a lot of writing is just typing, or scribbling, or whatever: handing the keys to the driver.

ghost pattern Posted by Hello

reflective Posted by Hello