Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Archives Project: STL #47.5

Title: Test of Poetry 3
Description: Test of Poetry 3
Date: 19 May 2005

Response to only one of the exhibits. Contains phrase "lap it home" punctuated by a parenthetical "yo."

okay, there’s been a considerable break I know, but let me lap it home (, yo). I did later read Sleeping with the Dictionary, which just isn't as good as Muse and Drudge.

1a. Elpenor and Odysseus in rhyming couplets—Hobbes maybe: fair enough, but I’m distracted by the implication that after death the soul leaves the body to inhabit a shade: I always thought the shade was the soul. Perhaps “this infernal shade” is a synechdoche for Hades, where the exchange takes place. B-

1b. Three lines of expressive iambic pentameter. “Death is not knowing what is not a shadow”—line shows some thoughtful variation Grade: A-

1c. a bit of Bunting: Night swallowed the sun as/the fish swallowed Jonas.” Bunting was a classicist at heart—modest but perfect language Grade: A

1d King James Bible. Stirring even to an unbeliever like me. Grade A (I Samuel)

Shorter more frequent posts coming, including wider ranging blurbery, such as follows...

So what else? Read Harriet Mullen's Muse and Drudge, for the second time (since I can't find Sleeping with the Dictionary in the stacks. Four line stanzas using lots of internal rhyme, four to a page for 80 pages: 320 stanzas and 1280 lines in all. There's no punctuation, no consistent narrative, but a unity of imagery--barely hidden picnics, kitchens, churches. I think this would be a book of difficult poetry (diffpo) to get people who resist difficult poetry.

Continuing a campaign through Guy Davenport's fiction. If I hadn't come through first the essays and then Da Vinci's Bicyle, I'd be really unimpressed by the ponderous eroticism of "Apples and Pears." I should make an inventory of good things according to Guy.

Read Moxley's Imagination Verses which I liked but am already starting to forget. She reminds me that a lot of langpo types have a groundig in 19th C literature, and therefore rhetoric: S. Howe, Friedlander, Bernstein I think. Something to pursue there.

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