Monday, September 13, 2010

On the Huffington Post State of American Poetry

You'll find me cheerfully yakking at the Huffington Post (along with Annie Finch, Clayton Eshleman, & Ron Silliman) in response to some questions Anis Shivani poses about the fey nature of American Poetry. Here's a bit:

The legacy of modernism: If we mean Great, as in the lone transcendent mind, escaping body and berth, recasting history in its own image, lurching (leching!) through the centuries, marking every muliebral fragment with its initials, contemplating eugenics, lolling in Freudian privilege, then boo! hiss! I certainly hope we're betraying it.

If we're talking about the great legacy of modernist freakout--horror in the face of global warfare, the dissolution of the marriage between progress and improvement, the emperor's-new-clothes revelation that the self is an ever-shifting and incoherent cuckoo bird, masculine hysteria, cyborgery, civil rights, and all the seeds of the postmodern condition--then I cheerily submit that we're keeping that legacy alive and kicking. Even those of us who embrace the spectacle and our slip-sliding within it struggle against the instability. These may be my favorite American poets. Those who long for and reject stability simultaneously. Those who are attracted to and repulsed by those institutions that confirm, and those that deconstruct "the real."

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Have You Been to Montevidayo?

We've* started a new art/lit/crit/thrilla gorilla kinda blog: Montevidayo.

We talk about genre, gender, meat, detritus, Lady Gaga, Swedish S.K.A.M, slasher films, Peaches, GHOSTS GHOSTS GHOSTS, apocalypse, the favorite books, and etc. etc. etc. Sometimes you'll find animal-creature-hair-hats. I love it, there.

*John Beer, Kate Bernheimer, Ken Chen, Sarah Tuss Efrik, Sarah Fox, Lara Glenum, Johannes Göransson, Brent Hendricks, Josef Horacek, Dan Hoy, Lucas de Lima, Joyelle McSweeney, Megan Milks, Danielle Pafunda, James Pate, Sami Sjöberg, Julia Tidigs, John Dermot Woods

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VIDA: Women in Literary Arts

vidaweb.org.gif Ever so much is going on at VIDA: Women in Literary Arts! In the September edition, you'll find Barrie Jean Borich on our State of The Art: "Where We Bump and Grind It: On Resisting Redemption in Women's Memoir," Erin Belieu on our Deal With It "Full Disclosure: I Was a Teenage Poetry Bride," a conversation with Arielle Greenberg on For The Record: "Gynocentric Anthems, the Gurlesque, and Creative Partnerships," and don't forget to check in on that always controversial, often grim, ever galvanizing catalogue of publishing parity/disparity The Count.


In related news, check out VIDA's Alyss Dixson at The Atlantic: On Invisibility, Gender, and Publishing and Cate Marvin & Susan Steinberg on The Rumpus: VIDA: On Commotion .


October issue coming soon! (In October, durr!)

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Missed Connections by Brett!

Don't get heartbroken. The wonderful Brett Fletcher Lauer has been commissioning Craigslist Missed Connections from a wild delicious lotta poets, publishing them, and then publishing the replies at Ships That Pass.

You can read mine here:

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The Nepotist Likes Me!

Who is The Nepotist? I'm not entirely sure, but ze likes me, and I like hir!

Four poems, and a lovely introduction *blush* here at The Nepotist:

Danielle Pafunda is made of awesome. So classy and lovely is she that The Nepotist adjusts his habit of publishing up to three poems per poet just for her. These poems-- all four of them-- are each titled "The Dead Girls Speak in Unison." It's easy to think of them as a series, though I'd discourage that. Instead try this: think of each poem as the same poem, only written with different words. It's not so strange, is it? I'm convinced that I've been writing the same poem for years. We all do. It's whatever hectors and nags us. What we can't let go of or what won't let go of us. The germ of an idea, the impetus of an image, that squinting twinge of truth in a stereogram's squiggles. Yes, that's what these poems are like, those Magic Eye pictures. Only through a choreography of alternating focus and dilation can they be truly seen. I won't quote from the poems here as I usually do. Just read them. These dead girls will haunt you. As they haunt me.

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Sundry Pubs!

Recently, poems in:


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In American Poet Magazine

In April, I had the happy honor of reading with James Tate and Sabrina Orah Mark for the Academy of American Poets American Poet magazine launch. An essay of mine about the pregnant body and its lyric potentials appears in American Poet Volume 38 (as well as a few poems from my "Mommy V" series). "On Human Cylindars: The Pregnant Poet," an excerpt:

I’ve always dwelled in a body and am suspicious of those who don’t. My body is surface and interior. It isn’t along for the ride, it is the ride, and not only do I have a body, but I also am that body. It’s the stuff of science-fiction. Or poetry. While the Cartesian mind-body split governs many a lyric, there’s an abiding lineage of writers who are freaked out and rapt (wrapped!) in the body. Without them, poetry is a sorrier pursuit, and without the body, it rings a bit hollow. Consider the modernist repertoire. It tends well to the mind, but for the most part, it does a ham-fisted, half-assed job on the body. Enter Mina Loy. In Loy’s speakers, we travel the extraterrestrial terrain of genius and the “spoiled closet” of the human form, starkly aware that we can’t party in the former without waking hungover in the latter. Loy’s bodies shamelessly ferment, rebel, and hum. In the introduction to Lost Lunar Baedeker, we learn “the public’s prevailing objections: if she could dress like a lady, why couldn’t she write like one?” A lady eschews the corporeal and ignores her immanence therein. Through painting, drawing, music, and fine linens, ladies transcend their vulgar physicality, which otherwise has the nasty habit of reminding men that they too sport bodies. It isn’t ladylike to insist that all bodies are subject to lust, birth, disease, and age, but it is awfully human.




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The Dead Girls Speak in Unison on Everyday Genius

An excerpt from my new project The Dead Girls Speak in Unison at Everyday Genius. Thanks to Kate Zambreno, who guest edited and assembled some extraplanetary wonders!

Excerpt:

The Dead Girls Speak in Unison


You took us out of the freezer, unwrapped, split our sticks.

We still get eventide. We still get luminescence. We get our feet caught, sometimes, in the ropey intestine of your funny little dream. You think you’ve found the sweetest hole in which to bury your craggy face, and then out pops the rabbit.

The double bunny. Its many red eyes giving you a good scorching.

Whatev, little legs. Make with the running. Up the sheets
like a ladder, everything horizontal will beckon
your wreck.

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