Monday, February 23, 2009

Where's the funny?

Over at Mark Wallace's blog, a Michael Theune review concerning third way poetics has been reprinted (that is, posted). In the comments box, among other interesting threads, Theune & Mlinko have an exchange on humor in middle-way and elliptical poetries. I've always thought it was strange that elliptical poets aren't read as more hilarious. Susan Wheeler has such comic timing! Burt initially sites Berryman & Dickinson as two of the elliptical predecessors, and I dunno, I laugh heartily when I read those terrifying, anxious, wilds. Also always have trouble with the term "elliptical," especially as used to describe poetry by women. It suggests a trailing off, a delicate elusiveness, where I think there are much louder crashing-ups. Which is not to fall into the wretch soft/hard binary. Something to puzzle, yet.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Good Things, from AWP

I thought I would erratically post one at a time about some of the treats I brought home from AWP. Julia Cohen makes chapbooks solo & with Mathias Svalina. This one, The History of a Lake Never Drowns, she calls a "svelte little f*cker," and it is. From Dancing Girl Press (aside: lovely to finally meet publisher Kristy Bowen). Measured sylvan dismemberment, peculiar relationship to physical absence, maybe a little kin to DeLillo's The Body Artist. I think my favorite title: "There is a Naked Body up There & I Need to Touch It."


Wednesday, February 18, 2009

If you didn't know this, you must not've had a sister

and she must not have locked you, tiny boy, in the rabid poodle's cage and called you sweetums and fed you Cat Chow wrapped in Carefree bubblegum, classic bubblegum flavor. You must never have been so adorable. Here, let's bring you up to speed. Lara Glenum has a piece on Aase Berg, gurlesque, grotesque, burlesque, so forth at the jam-packed with treasures new issue of Action, Yes.

Berg’s poem radically upends the notion that women, young girls in particular, are free from sadistic compulsion and cruelty, burrowing into the heart of the dialectic between cuteness and violence. The preoccupation of pre-adolescent girls with all things cute, perhaps, speaks not to their attraction to things that mirror their own innocence but to things that mirror their own abjection and fear of further deformity; it reflects the degree to which they have already found themselves stripped of significant social agency. Cuteness, then, far from being a harmless aesthetic category, reveals a state of acute deformity.


Sunday, February 15, 2009

Krill-Coating Shampoo Poetry

Shampoo Poetry's Issue 35 is up, guest-edited by the outrageous & super smart Ronald Palmer, who was kind enough to include two of my banshees.