Friday, February 15, 2008

Corey's Post-Mainstream

One could, if one cared to, construct a map of 2008 poetry aesthetics. Approaches to poem-making these days are nearly as varied as are those who make poems. There are, however, fields of interest. Examples: Simon DeDeo has defined an anarchist poetics. Visual poet, David-Baptiste Chirot, labels himself an Anarkeyologist. Joshua Clover (a/k/a Jane Dark), in an interview, forwarded a possible totality poetics. John Latta has developed an engaging centrist aesthetic which uses its own lingo--note, for instance, the contractions in his poems and prose--and easily accommodates whatever is blinking in his brainbox at that time. Tight forms. Loose forms. Accessible. Impenetrable--without special knowledge. A formalist's poem can be as easy or as difficult to grasp as a non-formalist's poem. ~ But read Corey's post, and do not skip or zip over the quote from a Ron Silliman post/ inserted near the essay's conclusion. The word "secret" in that quote reminded me of Andrew Shields' translation of an essay by Durs Grünbein which was printed in the January 2007 issue of Poetry: "The Poem and Its Secret"--an essay that awards reading and rereading. Here is one sentence: "For me, what makes up the constituency of poetry's secret is twofold: a mix of love of this world with curiosity about metaphysics." Most of my poems are rooted in silence, and I see I wrote in the white space beneath this translation: 01/26/07 If you cannot understand my silences, you cannot understand my words. - In recent months my aesthetic has become poem-centered rather than centered in a preconceived aesthetic. Therefore, I prefer to "engage with a poem on its own terms"-- see Katy Evans-Bush's response to the first set of 10 Questions at Nic Sebastian's Very Like a Whale. - Anyone for/ leaping off the margin's edge? Given that we live in a world riddled with the incessant intersectings of seeming happenstance, one could see forms of poetry aesthetics based on chance as being the dominant forms, but I wouldn't guarantee it. Rho00033

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