Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Working Notes :: Poetry Flocks

A poem and then some notes (propositions?) toward an essay on the status of lyric poetry by way of recent online discussions about poets moving in "advanced formation".

Tuesday Pastoral

in dense hum wiring of
black-enchased copper/
optical spun glass
meadows in

electronic twilight
hop little clicks on
beams and blinks the
crickets find their facts
in crystal window rills and

piping soothe the spiders
off from flocks until
the queen of meadows
throws her veil to the winds.

Poetry Notes

One: Conceptualism. Where concept overrides idiosyncrasy by running a script, a set of instructions. After the contract is signed with process, the poem may be permitted idiosyncratic content.

Two: Dramatic Monologue. Lyricism without fixed prosody (modern verse). John Thorpe: "lyricism would divorce interim message from communication; that is, from exploration of 2nd person as more than object, a greater force than song can sustain."

Three: Fixed and emerging conservatisms. These seem to be rhetorical stances. Modernist vs. premodern in the old formula. Some phrases stolen from Walter Pater: "to arrest every object in an eternal outline, to fix thought in a necessary formula, and the varieties of life in a classification by "kinds" or genera." (essay on Coleridge)

Four: The "New". Not a flight from, but acknowledgment that "the new" and the making of "the new" is a function of capital--energies amassed towards market. What any of us are inside of. Logo-poetics: "Flarf is sophisticated, and dedicated to serious fun." The poetics of disjunction and parataxis as the noise of the "field" created by newsprint-page "clutter" (Benjamin). Bliss or terror.

Five: Nets, webs, journals and logs. Parsing out the genealogies of technical means--what descriptive capacity for "literature" can be siphoned off from the fixation on technological development (telegraph, typewriter, letterpress, mimeo, newspaper, cinema)? Questions such as: what is truth? life? death? memory? The degree to which we redefine persistence (and what persists) by way of the technical platform--the computer screen as "faster" than either photography or cinema--registering the free-fall this can induce for other, particularly human, temporalities (memory, transience) The flaneur and the "woman-about-town".

My basic question, to be fully clarified in a longer discussion, is about interruption, the collision of discourses in a cluttered field (disjunction) as a practice which disperses continuities and affects the coalescence of memory for the individual--pulsations of fear-inducing, desire-provoking imagery/complexes--Does Art permit any relevance for the validation of experience which is not contained within this space of conflict? Or is the collaborative (or if formalized, "corporate") enunciation the only means to establish identity/continuity?

These are just notes, first steps. Any feedback/comment, and help at clarifying a direction to this will be greatly appreciated & amply returned in kind---

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