Rolling Contemporary Poetry

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Because the world needs this thread.

So, to start off, what's the best new book of poetry published so far this year?

markers, Monday, 25 October 2010 17:37 (ten years ago) link

I will be following this thread keenly, but have little to contribute to it. Read a couple of new John Burnside poems that I quite liked the other day - has he got a new collection out? (f'ing lame I know - but it's all I got)

Pork Pius V (GamalielRatsey), Monday, 25 October 2010 17:51 (ten years ago) link

While we are all waiting for the contemporary poetry to arrive, ILB'ers may want to while away the time reading the many minor gems in The Hitherto Uncollected Poems of Beth Parker: A tribute.

Aimless, Monday, 25 October 2010 18:03 (ten years ago) link

^^^^^very, very otm

acoleuthic, Monday, 25 October 2010 18:04 (ten years ago) link

I mean the best new poem I've seen all year was by an ILXor (elmo argonaut) so like

acoleuthic, Monday, 25 October 2010 18:06 (ten years ago) link

I don't think a Burnside collection is due yet - one last year iirc. He is very good, isn't he? I always forget about him when I'm thinking about contemp British poetry - I take him for granted a bit, I think – feel like in the platonic issue of the LRB (alongside a diary report from Afghanistan, Tom Shippey on something Medieval, James Wood on an important writer, etc, etc) there are two knotty poems by John Burnside about taking a walk at night in the cold.

Collections I'm meaning to get hold of: Peter Porter's new Selected (always admired him – sucker for formal adeptness + urbanity + his inside/outside relationship with The Tradition – but didn't read much from the last decade), the new Muldoon (feel like I've got to, slightly resent feeling like I've got to, will probably enjoy it once I'm in).

Stuff I've seen around - liking the poems Mark Ford's been publishing recently, but his new collection isn't out till next year. Shocked to be impressed by a Nick Laird poem in the TLS. I've really seen nothing before that's made me believe he's the real thing (tbh saw him as the fag end of the Norn Ireland line, ambition cursed with a middling ear and bad eye) but this had a bit of density & weight.

Here end the dispatches from a p conventional sensibility.

portrait of velleity (woof), Tuesday, 26 October 2010 09:59 (ten years ago) link

I have high hopes for Ange Mlinko's Shoulder Season which Amazon are in the process of sending to me (along with MacNiece's Autumn Journal and Hecht's Later Poems - not sure why I didn't get round to getting hold of these last two sooner).

Stevie T, Tuesday, 26 October 2010 10:11 (ten years ago) link

Think Don Paterson's book on Shakespeare's Sonnets looks very entertaining too.

Stevie T, Tuesday, 26 October 2010 10:16 (ten years ago) link

I will be following this thread keenly, but have little to contribute to it.

this.

also link to elmo's poem lj?

O holy ruler of ILF (a hoy hoy), Tuesday, 26 October 2010 10:20 (ten years ago) link

(I think I might use this thread to remind myself of stuff as well, so:)

I should prob read that Patrick McGuinness collection, Jilted City. I've never really clicked with him in the past, and what I've seen from it hasn't made me that excited, but reviews make it sound like it'd work for me if I had a bit more patience.

portrait of velleity (woof), Tuesday, 26 October 2010 11:08 (ten years ago) link

three weeks pass...

After a long homeward talk with the man himself from a reading I have purchased Jeff Hilson's 'In The Assarts' and the damn thing is extraordinary

benylin cartel (acoleuthic), Sunday, 21 November 2010 21:17 (ten years ago) link

in the asshats

aka the pope (BIG HOOS aka the steendriver), Sunday, 21 November 2010 21:42 (ten years ago) link

gonna tell him that & say it was u

pro EVOO sucker (acoleuthic), Sunday, 21 November 2010 21:43 (ten years ago) link

in the asshats

(I am Spartacus!)

Aimless, Sunday, 21 November 2010 21:49 (ten years ago) link

HOOS is legion

pro EVOO sucker (acoleuthic), Sunday, 21 November 2010 21:50 (ten years ago) link

also pope

pro EVOO sucker (acoleuthic), Sunday, 21 November 2010 21:50 (ten years ago) link

I read a fair bit of contemp poetry these days but I don't know how to talk about contemporary poetry & feel like a lot of the discourse around it is so very many leagues beneath it -- beneath the good stuff anyway; there is loads of lousy stuff that's pretty much exactly on the level of the discourse -- that the vocabulary to describe reading it is lacking; I don't know how to discuss Jean Valentine, for example, who strikes me as a poet of incredible & v. understated power: when people talk about "rhythms" w/r/t ametrical verse, for example, I want to say, what the fuck could you possibly mean by "rhythm"? anyway, Chelsea Minnis, she kicks ass

it's 'cadence' not 'rhythm' these days iirc

pro EVOO sucker (acoleuthic), Sunday, 21 November 2010 22:02 (ten years ago) link

yeah I'm still callin bs on that

just say what you mean, "voibe," and be done w/it

I basically completely wing it & use vocabulary I'd previously have reserved for music when discussing modern poetry I like - the problem is often whether to approach the text as a machine or as a narrative

pro EVOO sucker (acoleuthic), Sunday, 21 November 2010 22:04 (ten years ago) link

like "cadence" is a specific reference to the movement of a metrical line. no coincidence that the term is used in horseback riding; it has to do with the movement of the feet. take the feet away, there's no cadence. imo

I have reconfigured 'cadence' like the busy little modernist I am, also I am throwing 'syllabography' into the ring

pro EVOO sucker (acoleuthic), Sunday, 21 November 2010 22:06 (ten years ago) link

some say cavalier, I say visionary

pro EVOO sucker (acoleuthic), Sunday, 21 November 2010 22:06 (ten years ago) link

do ppl say cavalier

aka the pope (BIG HOOS aka the steendriver), Sunday, 21 November 2010 22:38 (ten years ago) link

posting 16-page modernist-situationist epic to ilxor.com = cavalier, let me roll w/ the defenders of king charles I, struth

pro EVOO sucker (acoleuthic), Sunday, 21 November 2010 22:40 (ten years ago) link

blowetry

puff puff post (uh oh I'm having a fantasy), Sunday, 21 November 2010 22:50 (ten years ago) link

poetrill

I wrote a poem today and while I was writing it a dude in a yellow speedo ran by towards the ocean holding flippers and I was like man I should do that instead but I kept writing

puff puff post (uh oh I'm having a fantasy), Sunday, 21 November 2010 22:55 (ten years ago) link

ur a tru bro

pro EVOO sucker (acoleuthic), Sunday, 21 November 2010 23:04 (ten years ago) link

one month passes...

Lately…

Maggot - Paul Muldoon. Read through about a month ago, didn't leave a huge impression. Liked that first combat/cancer sequence, but overall I'm feeling a bit worn out by the Muldoon music: that rhyme game again, verse always twists into the same patterns of unexpectedness. A step back from that big poem at the end of Horse Latitudes maybe? Anyway, he's interesting, always distinctive, etc etc but I don't really like his verse that much. Which reminds me

Oraclau/Oracles - By my bedside, not reading quickly. I dunno. I sort of like prozac comeback Geoffrey Hill, that odd dense/garrulous texture he hits a lot, the urgency, & I remain a sucker for his canonical sonics; but feel like I'm still sitting outside it a bit. Maybe I'll finish it tonight, report back a bit more concretely.

Waiting to start Hot White Andy by Keston Sutherland. Intrigued; said somewhere before that I wasn't wild on Antifreeze, that I'm a bit sceptical of most stuff that's Prynne-marked (Like he, his style seem a cerebral revolutionary cause, probably the only one in British poetry at the moment; the non-Prynne stuff I've seen mostly doesn't really feel the allure or power of lyric, memorable speech, any trad or popular def of poetry); but I liked the youtube of his reading, & I guess I think more interesting stuff will come from the stony ground of Cambridge poets than the damp pastures elsewhere.

Get that impression because I've been reading Identity Parade to catch up on British poetry (my current loo book). F'k me, what a shower. Hit rate feels far worse than the old Bloodaxe New Poetry from 93 (previous thing of this sort), really meh intros to the poets and the volumes. But k.i.p., k.i.p., so of ppl I hadn't read before quite like Mark Waldron, Melanie Challenger, a few others.

portrait of velleity (woof), Thursday, 20 January 2011 16:28 (ten years ago) link

Like he, his style seem a cerebral revolutionary cause, probably the only one in British poetry at the moment

ronggggggggggggggg

vampire weekend fan (acoleuthic), Thursday, 20 January 2011 16:32 (ten years ago) link

get thee some sean bonney. lovely guy too. and then check out chris goode, jennifer cooke, o god so many others...

lol @ me pimping my irl homies

vampire weekend fan (acoleuthic), Thursday, 20 January 2011 16:33 (ten years ago) link

also jeff hilson, as said above. wau.

vampire weekend fan (acoleuthic), Thursday, 20 January 2011 16:33 (ten years ago) link

I'm a bit sceptical of most stuff that's Prynne-marked

So am I. But when it works it can be scorching. Mate of mine, Ian Heames, is progressing towards this end. When it fails, it's so many discrete images flashing by at lightning speed for no apparent end.

vampire weekend fan (acoleuthic), Thursday, 20 January 2011 16:35 (ten years ago) link

oops, double use of 'end' - also erroneous use of it at all - poetry doesn't have an end, it participates in a wider flow

:(

vampire weekend fan (acoleuthic), Thursday, 20 January 2011 16:35 (ten years ago) link

but still, Prynnian wank is egregious and barely listenable, barely fun even, so you gotta hit your marks

vampire weekend fan (acoleuthic), Thursday, 20 January 2011 16:37 (ten years ago) link

fair enough, I do tend to be a bit undiscriminating when it comes to that side of things, so call anything that's in the difficult British Poetry Revival line (Barque stuff, all that) Prynne-y. That's v lazy of me, journalistic, so yes fair enough. I'll have a look at those sorts you mention; Bonney seems alright on first glance.

God i don't know though. Touch of the perpetual manifesto writer.

portrait of velleity (woof), Thursday, 20 January 2011 17:01 (ten years ago) link

i been digging james richardson's 'by the numbers' esp the aphorisms:

137. Out walking, I think of that face I love or some scene of awful
embarrassment and stop dead in my tracks, as if I had to choose
between moving and being moved.

"crut" copy (diamonddave85), Thursday, 20 January 2011 17:58 (ten years ago) link

ne1 have any opinion on foer's 'tree of codes' ? i usually tend to enjoy palimpsest and experimental book forms (i just picked up this one in fact) but the die cutting seems and the resulting flimsy-ass-these-are-soo-gonna-tear pages seems clumsy and put me off

"crut" copy (diamonddave85), Thursday, 20 January 2011 18:06 (ten years ago) link

one month passes...

sheen's korner y/n lol

acoleuthic, Thursday, 10 March 2011 23:46 (ten years ago) link

saw louise gluck read last night.
http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_Oi3ehb2uRrc/TKsgIOPpCnI/AAAAAAAAB0I/eDk4awT-_MM/s640/gluck1.jpg

bnw, Friday, 11 March 2011 21:44 (ten years ago) link

five months pass...

i am reading a copy of mark halliday's jab, pub. 2002. it was in my amazon save-for-later list and i have no memory of what led me to place it there. i am having trouble with it, mainly because in register/idiom he is v. close to yoni wolf of why?, which means i keep hearing everything half-rapped for a line or two and then get lost when there's no rhythm to make work

viz.

if you were standing frozen in sweated confusion
at the Personal Furnishings rack
in a giant department store five days before Christmas
wearing a woolly jacket that belonged to someone long gone
and trying not to seem dangerous
under silver and scarlet decorations with no conception
of adequate reply to tremendous departures

thomp, Monday, 5 September 2011 11:37 (ten years ago) link

This, though, I like, although it is a bit ILMish I 'spose

Trumpet Player, 1963

When Jan and Dean recorded "Surf City"
there must have been one guy—

I see this trumpet player (was there even a horn section in that song?
Say there was)—

I see this one trumpet player with his tie askew
or maybe he's wearing a loose tropical-foliage shirt
sitting on a metal chair waiting
for the session to reach the big chorus
where Jan and Dean exult
Two girls for every boy
—and he's thinking
of his hundred nights on his buddy Marvin's hairy stainy sofa
and the way hot dogs and coffee make a mud misery
and the way one girl is far too much and besides
he hasn't had the one in fourteen months, wait,
it's fifteen now.
Surfing—what life actually lets guys ride boards
on waves? Is it all fiction? Is it a joke?
Jan and Dean and their pal Brian act like it's a fine, good joke
whereas this trumpet player thinks it's actually shit,
if anybody asked him, a tidal wave of shit.

thomp, Monday, 5 September 2011 14:58 (ten years ago) link

tho' it occurs to me that "actually" is functioning, in my head, the way chris addison or stewart lee might use it: that this switch in register is occurring largely in my head to the particular mode of comedy that isn't quite good enough to justify how bound up it all is in the self-presentation of every British male I know under thirty.

Which is probably irrelevant. I don't know. I half-like this guy. But "what life actually lets guys ride boards / on waves" almost gets to something, & that could remedy this poem, except that it falls so flatly there, is so bluntly stated, that it just kind of sits in the middle of the poem and gets in the way.

thomp, Monday, 5 September 2011 15:07 (ten years ago) link

I like Halliday a lot, especially his first book Little Star, which was embarrassed/confessional/honest in a funny way. He has a kind of casualness that may have been fresher in the world before blogs and message boards.

reggae night staple center (Eazy), Monday, 5 September 2011 18:25 (ten years ago) link

Just started reading lots of Anne Carson which has been consistently blowing me away.

Michael_Pemulis, Monday, 5 September 2011 22:50 (ten years ago) link

I like Halliday a lot, especially his first book Little Star, which was embarrassed/confessional/honest in a funny way. He has a kind of casualness that may have been fresher in the world before blogs and message boards.

There's something about his assumption of a stance of resignedness that I find weirdly offputting: that might be part of it.

Meanwhile, today the British poet laureate told us that "poetry is the original text messaging" -- also that "If you look at rapping, for example, a band like Arctic Monkeys uses lyrics in a poetic way."

thomp, Tuesday, 6 September 2011 10:43 (ten years ago) link

Has anyone read Philip Levine, the new U.S. laureate? I didn't realise they had such sharply defined terms for the job, over there.

thomp, Tuesday, 6 September 2011 10:44 (ten years ago) link

He's one of the 1928 poets (also Merwin, Ashbery, Kinnell, and more. This one and this are representative of his work. Depending on the poem, reads like bad Whitman or great Whitman. Easy reading, in terms of flow and clarity.

reggae night staple center (Eazy), Wednesday, 7 September 2011 00:03 (ten years ago) link

five months pass...

i never mentioned on this thread that i'd read lynn emanuel's noose and hook, which i thought was kind of fantastic

desperado, rough rider (thomp), Monday, 20 February 2012 22:28 (nine years ago) link

I'm planning to get the book at some point.

o. nate, Tuesday, 22 June 2021 18:04 (three months ago) link

Tbf, if it's published by a major publishing house, most poets are going to hate it. Robbins isn't for me, and that's fine.

heyy nineteen, that's john belushi (the table is the table), Wednesday, 23 June 2021 10:25 (three months ago) link

(it's still bad poetry)

heyy nineteen, that's john belushi (the table is the table), Wednesday, 23 June 2021 10:25 (three months ago) link

its p boring but i can't think its *bad poetry* and i'm not sure i get the lineated prose thing, seems less so than lots of stuff that has been called poetry for at least 50 years. the line breaks make sense to me as a metering device more than they often do in poems that i think are better or funnier or more insightful or feel stranger or

I would be interested if you could expand a bit on what you mean tbh table, i'm particularly surprised bc I'm sure I've seen you post positively about people like susan howe who i'm a big fan of and whose work is very agnostic about boundaries between poetry/prose/painting etc. I guess I'm just a bit confused because I don't suspect that you are operating from a conservative position, yet i can't see how otherwise to read this 'not-poetry' calling of poetry that is itself fairly conservative. I'm trying to imagine any analogue of this where I could go along with something being called 'not cinema' or 'not music'

plax (ico), Wednesday, 23 June 2021 12:15 (three months ago) link

ftr my interest in poetry tends to be that i'm a total philistine but I like to read things that are 'experimental' or kindof high modernist (I guess mostly in a surrealist tradition). I would make no claim that I understand even half of the stuff I read so that I often find discussions of even totally canonical things I like, like New York School, absolutely impenetrable (I read a book about ashbery once that made me doubt anything I thought I had understood about it at all!).

Anyway its not contemporary but one of the books I've had beside my bed for some time is 'experts are puzzled' by laura riding, which I think could very easily be described as 'lineated prose'; its full of these truncated little essays in plain text without line breaks, and you could argue quite easily that its not poetry at all and I'm not even sure what riding's view was on that. Yet there seems to be something about how it evades how an essay is supposed to function, and tugs at the idea of language and argument from inside, that seems to me to be poetry. I'm not sure I need or want to have a working definition of what poetry is or isn't that I can use as a criterion, but one sense I have of what it can do is that its something that plays with language to get it to do something new or interesting, or at least make me think about the relationship between ideas and the words that express them.

Anyway my understanding from that is that anything that gets designated as poetry kindof has to be taken seriously as poetry. It doesn’t mean that its interesting or makes you feel anything or make you think anything new or interesting about language, (although it might for somebody else!) . Even then, reading something like this michael robbins guy, it wasn’t interesting at first, but then it made me think about other poets whose work I like that it shares features with (refusing a ‘poetic’ language and using ordinary language, taking a shape that doesnt quite fit an essay or a story and so kind of inconclusive), and maybe it would make me think in future more precisely about those other poets work work or how poetry to other kinds of writing (about music, or food, or history, or writing) relate. It might be cheap or lazy but just to take a piece of writing that asserts itself as poetry as poetry is always to invite some way of thinking about it that is different from how I might otherwise think about it.

plax (ico), Wednesday, 23 June 2021 12:54 (three months ago) link

Your take on the Riding book is v. appealing, will check thx

dow, Wednesday, 23 June 2021 21:12 (three months ago) link

Good discussion.

He's dead but I'm rereading Thom Gunn with great pleasure.

So who you gonna call? The martini police (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Wednesday, 23 June 2021 22:23 (three months ago) link

plax, my opinion doesn't arrive from a conservative view, I don't think.

When I read Bernadette Mayer, for instance, or someone more actively "contemporary" like Lewis Freedman, I can tell that while the poems are often composed of long, sentence-like syntactic units, that they are *meant* to be that way; that is, they were written qua poems utilizing the form of the sentence.

In Robbins' work, I'm not so sure— the line breaks seem either disinterested or obvious or both. They read, in other words, as if Robbins wrote them as sentences, then lineated them later. I guess I should admit, then, that my bit about them "not being poetry" was hyperbolic, but what I meant is that I find poetry like this to be incredibly boring— but at least Robbins isn't as boring as this absolute shithead of a human being, whose work is *about* ideology rather than arriving from it, and whose entire first book is just bland rad-left truisms like this crap.

https://t.co/Qj8BW4UOD1 pic.twitter.com/ST18bLJKFr

— Patrick (@prosepoems) June 4, 2021

heyy nineteen, that's john belushi (the table is the table), Thursday, 24 June 2021 20:44 (two months ago) link

He lives in Philadelphia, and honestly, I will punch him if I ever meet him.

heyy nineteen, that's john belushi (the table is the table), Thursday, 24 June 2021 20:45 (two months ago) link

That's a poem?

So who you gonna call? The martini police (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 24 June 2021 20:56 (two months ago) link

Supposedly.

heyy nineteen, that's john belushi (the table is the table), Thursday, 24 June 2021 21:15 (two months ago) link

One of the strains in US contemporary poetry is what might accurately be called "socialist realism," in which a usually white person writes poems that are more about showing their personal commitment to class struggle and the cause of socialism. If you don't like the poem, then that means you are an elitist snob. Trust me when I write that these people have no sense of nuance, grace, or social skill.

heyy nineteen, that's john belushi (the table is the table), Thursday, 24 June 2021 21:18 (two months ago) link

I think we may be overlooking the fact that poetry that is difficult to parse or understand is generally not popular, and the most popular poetry is generally pretty easy to read and understand because it follows rules of sentence formation and logic that are commonly assumed in prose.

Rupi Kaur, for instance. No socialist message, just short affirmative poems that generally read like prose-like fragments.

o. nate, Thursday, 24 June 2021 21:23 (two months ago) link

we're talking about poetry, tho, not schlocky self-help shit that could be on a hallmark card

heyy nineteen, that's john belushi (the table is the table), Friday, 25 June 2021 17:26 (two months ago) link

That poem quoted above is way way worse than Michael Robbins, to the point that I find it really weird to bring it up in the context of Robbins's line breaks, and is from a book titled "Profit/Prophet" no less

Guayaquil (eephus!), Friday, 25 June 2021 17:55 (two months ago) link

One of the strains in US contemporary poetry is what might accurately be called "socialist realism,"

I'm sure this is right but at the same time the poet quoted above says "Some of Patrick's writing can be found in Peace, Land, and Bread, SORTES, Recenter Press Poetry Journal, Mad House Magazine, Apiary, & Bedfellows" so he's not exactly representative of what kind of work is being rewarded by the mainstream US contemporary poetry universe

Guayaquil (eephus!), Friday, 25 June 2021 17:57 (two months ago) link

Perhaps you don't understand how poetry actually operates in the world, then— almost any poetry book that sells over 250 copies is a high-selling book in contemporary US poetry. Even people whose books get published by major publishing houses don't sell much more than that. The actual "mainstream US contemporary poetry universe" consists of maybe 10 people, and many of them are (rightly) given little heed or respect. For example, no one I know gives a *shit* about Michael Robbins— he's considered an absolute joke among poets, some of whom are quite well-regarded.

This isn't meant to be a "oh whoa is me, why doesn't anyone love poetry," by the way— I'm fine with the crumbs thrown to me by the establishment, and that my last book went into a second printing. It's just that there needs to be a big adjustment as to what is considered "mainstream" in this conversation, seeing as how books that haven't sold more than 100 copies win the National Book Award for poetry *all the time.*

heyy nineteen, that's john belushi (the table is the table), Sunday, 27 June 2021 19:27 (two months ago) link

And given that Blagrave's poem has been shared and retweeted hundreds of times, and his magazine Prolit has been featured in a major daily newspaper, his reach is one that might be considered "large" for the poetry world.

heyy nineteen, that's john belushi (the table is the table), Sunday, 27 June 2021 19:30 (two months ago) link

Yeah I don't understand how poetry actually operates in the world so this is really interesting to me! I would have thought the "mainstream contemporary poetry universe" was people who were published in, like, the New Yorker or Poetry (I know those are different people or can be) and whose books came out with FSG or Graywolf (also different I know) and who, like, won the National Book Award. But looking at this longlist

https://www.nationalbook.org/2020-national-book-awards-longlist-for-poetry/

I can see that indeed close to half of the books are from presses I've NEVER heard of. (The ones I know are Wesleyan, Copper Canyon, New Directions, Graywolf to give some sense of what I'm talking about.)

I guess what I'm saying is that I don't really know what I think the poetry universe IS. I thought a lot of it was, like, the people who have jobs teaching creative writing in colleges and publishing in Tin House or whatever. Except I see that Tin House has stopped publishing which goes to show you how up to date I am.

Guayaquil (eephus!), Monday, 28 June 2021 15:42 (two months ago) link

lol that socialist realist poet reads to me as a kind of barbed irony (as in sincere but also self effacingly bald-faced)

plax (ico), Tuesday, 29 June 2021 13:09 (two months ago) link

Yeah, eephus!, it's a weird world that doesn't make a lot of sense any longer— with many writing programs relying on contingent labor, and a subcultural yet tiered market that in some ways mimics the larger literary marketplace, there's a ton of variation in terms of what gets lauded, what is accessible, and so on. For example, I have friends who have won some big awards, or been long-listed for some big awards, but none of them have books on major presses, and none of them are in academia. By the same token, I have friends who have been academics for 20+ years, but whose books never win awards and don't sell very well.

Sorry if any of my previous messages came off as dick-ish, btw! I find this conversation really interesting.

heyy nineteen, that's john belushi (the table is the table), Tuesday, 29 June 2021 14:58 (two months ago) link

There's also the case of someone like Liz Waldner, who won numerous awards and was considered one of the brightest poets of her generation, but who could not get hired for a full-time academic gig, so kept bouncing around visiting jobs until her health took a turn...and then, she had to run a fundraiser to keep herself alive. This is one of the finest poets of her generation!

heyy nineteen, that's john belushi (the table is the table), Tuesday, 29 June 2021 15:01 (two months ago) link

On the contrary, I think I was the one being somewhat dickish, you said "one of the strains" and I think I just hadn't grasped how multidimensional and fragmented "success" was in poetry now so I made a snarky post based on the assumption that "has never published in a magazine I've ever heard of" meant "this is a poetry nobody." (pobody?)

Guayaquil (eephus!), Tuesday, 29 June 2021 17:22 (two months ago) link

Haha, well yeah, I just wanted to make sure that my giving of additional context wasn't read as me being some know-it-all shithead.

Some of the most well-regarded poets aren't widely know until they're old or dead. Just the way it goes!

heyy nineteen, that's john belushi (the table is the table), Tuesday, 29 June 2021 18:55 (two months ago) link

i think in ireland eg the situation is somewhat different, bc of the relative size of the country and also because of how literature is seen as less elitist in general i think because of the relationship between literature and 20th c historical events etc.

that is to say 'contemporary poetry' is far from hegemonic and national and local contexts will have very different metrics of success and opportunities for support.

plax (ico), Tuesday, 29 June 2021 19:19 (two months ago) link

i'm always shocked (shocked!) at what privileged backgrounds people you meet in art/literary worlds are in the UK and while I know that this is pretty much the historical norm, it feels far more accessible and diverse in ireland but also far more knitted into people's ordinary lives so I think there's something to be said not only about success etc, but also a diversity of contexts that we care about and the kinds of non-professionalised practices/platforms that we recognise.

plax (ico), Tuesday, 29 June 2021 19:26 (two months ago) link

certainly it was totally normal for people of my grandparents generation to be able to recite poetry, often people with little literacy skills.

And i remember attending a wedding where a friend was getting married to an australian guy and his family was pretty baffled at how all the irish people kept insisting on making speeches and incorporating long passages of poetry (often written by non-professional poet friends!). I'm not saying this happens at every irish wedding but its not incredibly unusual either. the speeches thing is pretty universal though!

plax (ico), Tuesday, 29 June 2021 19:30 (two months ago) link

Oh absolutely, and I only really talk about the US because my knowledge of non-US poetry and literary communities isn't large...I know a good deal about Vancouver and Montreal, but that's still so-called North America. The only poets I know personally in the UK are white dudes, for example, which is clearly not representative...

heyy nineteen, that's john belushi (the table is the table), Tuesday, 29 June 2021 19:33 (two months ago) link

i would say the 'hottest young thing' is ak blakmore whose work, to me, is simply "i went to oxbridge and then i got a septum piercing" but thats probably more uncharitable than it needs to be

plax (ico), Tuesday, 29 June 2021 19:42 (two months ago) link

my sex

enter breakfast truck, the bluebottles
performing obsequies to marbled bacon

enter girl with manacles. enter
so damn adorable. he likes small fuckdoll.

girl who looks plaintively at porcelain
salt and pepper shakers shaped
like kittens sleeping, intertwined. enter
desolation beside a pinstripe spider-plant enter
knowing how to dress your pear-shape history
history, and after you follow, with a bucket
and a mop – or words to that effect.

enter girl who applies the cooling gel.
enter the Tate Modern to see Yayoi Kusama’s
I Am Here But Nothing which please you
cannot photograph like when
i found out there was a fetish for everything sexuality
seemed like a great leveller. enter nothing
too weird to enter, biking, amused savage
tender repetitions of toilet cubicle graffiti.

enter Fathers in the Clouds (’99)
enter my sex like act not gender and other songs
that make me cry my sex sometimes ballet shoes
both the stones in the pockets of my coat
and the welcoming cold river.

https://www.lrb.co.uk/the-paper/v40/n11/a.k.-blakemore/two-poems

plax (ico), Tuesday, 29 June 2021 19:44 (two months ago) link

i guess

Guayaquil (eephus!), Tuesday, 29 June 2021 19:50 (two months ago) link

lmao that is rank

imago, Tuesday, 29 June 2021 19:50 (two months ago) link

replace that with the lyrics to 'my sex' by ultravox for infinite improvement

imago, Tuesday, 29 June 2021 19:56 (two months ago) link

Yeah that isn't quite good. Most of what I know is from SPAM and Face Press and Critical Documents...so perhaps similarly situated in the Oxbridge nexus, but more students of Prynne and that kind of thing..."difficult" poetry lol

heyy nineteen, that's john belushi (the table is the table), Tuesday, 29 June 2021 19:58 (two months ago) link

i was loosely in with the Prynne crowd at the tail-end of university...there was some good stuff but it often came off as way too obscurantist and aloof for its own good

imago, Tuesday, 29 June 2021 20:00 (two months ago) link

replace that with the lyrics to 'my sex' by ultravox for infinite improvement

― imago,

my first thought when I saw the title

So who you gonna call? The martini police (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 29 June 2021 20:23 (two months ago) link

Imago, I admit that I am a huge fan of Prynne's work, but for the most part, I don't find his students' work as compelling.

heyy nineteen, that's john belushi (the table is the table), Tuesday, 29 June 2021 21:00 (two months ago) link

i feel almost bad about posting that blakemore one. i feel like the first thing i ever read by her was really good and i've never been able to remember where it was but yes that particular one is like the lyrics to a bongwater song except too full of itself and not as funny

plax (ico), Tuesday, 29 June 2021 21:32 (two months ago) link

also i can't say i've ready anything by prynne is there anything you would recommend? i read a thing about him online just now that says he is influenced by olson holderlin celan and o'hara which is quite a mix and very intriguing

plax (ico), Tuesday, 29 June 2021 21:45 (two months ago) link

Plax, his collecteds (there are three editions, with timely additions in each) are worth looking for, but the one that gets most people into him is 'The White Stones,' which was reissued by NYRB a few years ago. The book is an outlier, in some ways, as the density and hermetic wordplay of his later work is not as foregrounded, but it's a lovely book, with some absolutely devastating poems in it.

heyy nineteen, that's john belushi (the table is the table), Tuesday, 29 June 2021 22:23 (two months ago) link

lol all of white stones is on genius.com for some reason!

plax (ico), Wednesday, 30 June 2021 12:43 (two months ago) link

Ha, brilliant

heyy nineteen, that's john belushi (the table is the table), Wednesday, 30 June 2021 13:17 (two months ago) link

I bought an actual physical copy of "Walkman" last week, at a bookstore in Cincinnati. I like it.

o. nate, Tuesday, 6 July 2021 23:04 (two months ago) link

one month passes...

😬 https://www.3ammagazine.com/3am/jia-tolentino/

jaymc, Friday, 6 August 2021 20:11 (one month ago) link

I have been enjoying the twitter reaction to that incredibly bad poem today.

emil.y, Friday, 6 August 2021 20:52 (one month ago) link

I agree with the magazine's slogan: whatever that is, I'm against it.

Guayaquil (eephus!), Friday, 6 August 2021 21:22 (one month ago) link

.

No Particular Place to POLL (James Redd and the Blecchs), Friday, 6 August 2021 21:41 (one month ago) link

jesus

flopson, Saturday, 7 August 2021 05:49 (one month ago) link

, conditionally,

jmm, Saturday, 7 August 2021 12:31 (one month ago) link

lol i was wondering if that would get posted here

plax (ico), Saturday, 7 August 2021 16:54 (one month ago) link


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