what poetry are you reading

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i read goethe and herrick, felt very leisured and cultured

j., Saturday, 1 March 2014 00:59 (six years ago) link

like an Englishman in 1841.

Bryan Fairy (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Saturday, 1 March 2014 01:00 (six years ago) link

xp ya Housman's great, seems underappreciated (maybe due to the conservatism of his forms?) but the books qua books hold together really well

my collages, let me show you them (bernard snowy), Saturday, 1 March 2014 21:05 (six years ago) link

Housman attracted such immoderate adulation in his day that there had to be a reaction against him for a time. Now it's safe to dust him off and put him back into his niche.

Aimless, Saturday, 1 March 2014 21:09 (six years ago) link

Aimless I forget, are you a UK poster?

my collages, let me show you them (bernard snowy), Sunday, 2 March 2014 02:15 (six years ago) link

that Shambhala Editions Cold Mountain Poems has caught my eye many times in B&N without my ever buying it... I've put so much effort into learning to appreciate european poetry these past few years, it's made me very reluctant to explore other traditions, but I'm sure it's just a matter of time

my collages, let me show you them (bernard snowy), Sunday, 2 March 2014 02:18 (six years ago) link

I post from Oregon, USA, where I've lived about 57 of my 59 years. But when you love literature and are a monoglot in English, you learn to love English lit.

Aimless, Sunday, 2 March 2014 02:53 (six years ago) link

newyear

― xyzzzz__, Friday, February 28, 2014 8:50 PM (4 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

wow

two weeks pass...

At the moment, I've been dipping into my copy of Padraic Colum's poetry, titled Poems, a late compilation that does not identify itself as a 'collected poems of'. Padraic can't be described as anything but a "minor poet", but he had a nice touch when he keeps his loftier ambitions in check. Methinks the mere existence of Yeats lifted the work of every Irish poet well above what they could have achieved without him.

Just before that I was paddling around in the poetry of Stevie Smith and in doing so I decided to remove her from my shelves and sell her off during my next selling spree. A few of her early poems have charm, but her charms are very rapidly exhausted.

Aimless, Thursday, 20 March 2014 16:12 (six years ago) link

yknow, i think i would really enjoy a history of american poetry whose driving narrative was basically repetitions of

'i am the poet of america!!!'

'no you're not fukk u'

j., Thursday, 20 March 2014 22:30 (six years ago) link

america's one true poet was t.s. eliot iirc

♛ LIL UNIT ♛ (thomp), Thursday, 20 March 2014 22:34 (six years ago) link

FITE!

Aimless, Thursday, 20 March 2014 22:43 (six years ago) link

rrrr tom you know me TOO WELL fukk u

no you know what ts eliot was the one true poet of 20th c. britannia and after that you guys have been up shit's creek, no bard to sing your songs, how does it feel

j., Thursday, 20 March 2014 23:01 (six years ago) link

i mean we got like. geoffrey hill and shit, i dunno

♛ LIL UNIT ♛ (thomp), Thursday, 20 March 2014 23:43 (six years ago) link

rereading an old Helen Vendler collection published in the late seventies. Essays on Moore, Merrill, Stevie Smith, Lowell, Stevens, and Gluck.

Bryan Fairy (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 20 March 2014 23:47 (six years ago) link

and, like, carol ann duffy

♛ LIL UNIT ♛ (thomp), Thursday, 20 March 2014 23:47 (six years ago) link

all bases covered, is what i'm saying

♛ LIL UNIT ♛ (thomp), Thursday, 20 March 2014 23:47 (six years ago) link

albion liveth still and everafter

j., Friday, 21 March 2014 00:23 (six years ago) link

but they'll be doing it in the Championship come August

fhingerbhangra (Noodle Vague), Friday, 21 March 2014 00:43 (six years ago) link

can't see how anybody cd mistake Eliot's hyper-tense class paranoia for anything other than oh shit hold on

fhingerbhangra (Noodle Vague), Friday, 21 March 2014 00:45 (six years ago) link

so yeah i really don't have the stomach for louise gluck

♛ LIL UNIT ♛ (thomp), Friday, 21 March 2014 08:17 (six years ago) link

she's a bit of a psychosexual hack tbh

Bryan Fairy (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Friday, 21 March 2014 10:48 (six years ago) link

nah that was your mother

♛ LIL UNIT ♛ (thomp), Friday, 21 March 2014 16:54 (six years ago) link

which Gluck you been reading? I dig the two most recent collections, particularly A Village Life, where she sounds like an aging writer trying to age faster(?)

Many American citizens are literally paralyzed by (bernard snowy), Friday, 21 March 2014 21:09 (six years ago) link

Ararat and The House on Marshland. The first book felt too glib.

Bryan Fairy (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Saturday, 22 March 2014 02:30 (six years ago) link

i was reading the other one that starts with a and the one with the boat on the cover

♛ LIL UNIT ♛ (thomp), Saturday, 22 March 2014 14:55 (six years ago) link

Meanwhile, apropos of the ongoing surrealism obsession mentioned on the other "what are you reading" thread, I picked up the recent (1990s) English translation of Breton's Clair de terre, which is mostly baffling, occasionally charming (as in the 'poem' listing off all of the Bretons in the Paris phonebook), and lacks a parallel French text due to copyright issues (boo!). Also bought a Gerard de Nerval selected works (not the Penguin edition, an older one, translated by Wagner--the Encyclopedia of Literary Translations into English praises his handling of the poetry, moreso than the novellas), which I am enjoying in spite of its hermetic density of allusion & personal mythology.

Many American citizens are literally paralyzed by (bernard snowy), Sunday, 23 March 2014 00:11 (six years ago) link

I should clarify: de Nerval's prose works (of which I've only tackled 'Sylvie' thus far) do not strike me as terribly obscure; but the poetry, which abounds in allusions both Classical and Medieval (thank heaven for endnotes!), seems also to take for granted a familiarity with the prose.

Many American citizens are literally paralyzed by (bernard snowy), Sunday, 23 March 2014 00:16 (six years ago) link

I haven't read De Nerval in years, but I enjoyed the copy I use to have. I think it was published by Exact Change. My favorite surrealist was Eluard, but sadly I never found a complete translation of him. I always wanted to like Lautréamont, but I never enjoyed actually reading him. Have you read Revolution of the Mind: The Life of Andre Breton by Mark Polizzotti? Breton was such a curious guy, I sort of hate him and love him.

JacobSanders, Sunday, 23 March 2014 01:19 (six years ago) link

the Polizzotti biography was recommended in the other thread; I may look into once I finish the Balakian, or if a cheap copy falls into my lap.

Maldoror is wonderful in small doses & particular moods, but the narrowness of its emotional range can get kind of suffocating. I don't know what to make of the Poesies, and I find the body of critical literature around Lautreamont somewhat maddening (possible exception: Gaston Bachelard's monograph, which I remember being decently insightful... I can't make heads or tails of Blanchot's long essay, though, & I usually dig his criticism)

Many American citizens are literally paralyzed by (bernard snowy), Sunday, 23 March 2014 03:33 (six years ago) link

Marvell. I don't know why

♛ LIL UNIT ♛ (thomp), Sunday, 23 March 2014 21:17 (six years ago) link

I recently finished Anne Carson's latest book, Red Doc>, her oblique successor to Autobiography of Red, and while I enjoyed it I found it frustratingly diffuse in comparison to the earlier book or Nox. The strongest passages in the book, which focus on the death of G/Geryon's mother, follow from the Celan-pastiche lyrics on mourning in Decreation but seem a little too loosely connected to Red Doc>'s earlier wisps of narrative. I'll probably find more in it on a second reading, though.

one way street, Monday, 24 March 2014 01:31 (six years ago) link

To be clear, I don't generally read Carson for the sake of narrative.

one way street, Monday, 24 March 2014 01:44 (six years ago) link

i think the exact change edition of nerval had the poems translated by robert duncan from memory and they used the earlier wagner translations for the stories. and yeah, the chimera poems are pretty dense with classical/esoteric allusions (haven't read the wagner edition i have of his work yet, but it has a lot more editorial matter than the exact change). aurelia is a trip, and if you ever see a copy of his journey to the orient it's a+ 19th century orientalism

i read maldoror in snatches over lunch breaks while studying and loved it, so maybe it's best to approach it in pieces? (also have his complete works sitting here unread, so need to read poesies sometime too)

i think i prefer what i've read of the parasurrealist poets more than the actual thing, people like michaux & daumal, etc

no lime tangier, Monday, 24 March 2014 06:38 (six years ago) link

which reminds me of the very to the point and hilarious open letter daumal wrote to breton after rejecting the latter's invitation to join the surrealists which ends with daumal inviting breton to join his own group and includes this classic kiss off: "beware of eventually figuring in the study guides to literary history"

no lime tangier, Monday, 24 March 2014 06:58 (six years ago) link

Marvell's flecknoe poem is pretty good. I feel like I enjoy the prose translations provided of his Latin and Greek verse more so than I do his English verse, though, which is probably a sign that seventeenth c . verse is just not for me.

♛ LIL UNIT ♛ (thomp), Monday, 24 March 2014 20:37 (six years ago) link

bro u gotta read herrick

j., Monday, 24 March 2014 20:53 (six years ago) link

i've read herrick but idk if i've read him y'know

♛ LIL UNIT ♛ (thomp), Monday, 24 March 2014 21:19 (six years ago) link

you gotta do the hesperides all as a thing, none of this anthologized 'virgins' junk

j., Monday, 24 March 2014 21:22 (six years ago) link

man that shit sounds long though

♛ LIL UNIT ♛ (thomp), Monday, 24 March 2014 21:58 (six years ago) link

well i thought for a second he was out of print but no, there is a lovely £125 edition from OUP last year. same for the next volume with commentary.

♛ LIL UNIT ♛ (thomp), Monday, 24 March 2014 22:00 (six years ago) link

they're all super short tho, it's like a 17th c. blog

i luckily happened into a well-appointed old norton complete poetry of, for some reason he went so out of fashion that they seem to have stopped printing him, but there must be something like that kicking around your dusty old country

j., Monday, 24 March 2014 22:02 (six years ago) link

doing Stephen Dobyns' velocities: new and selected now--a lot of it doesn't resonate so much, but the occasional piece of music breaks through--

He has a job that he goes to. It could be at a bank
or a library or turning a piece of flat land
into a ditch. All day something that refuses to
show itself hovers at the corner of his eye,
like a name he is trying to remember, like
expecting a touch on the shoulder, as if someone
were about to embrace him, a woman in a blue dress
whom he has never met, would never meet again.
And it seems the purpose of each day's labor
is simply to bring this mystery to focus. He can
almost describe it, as if it were a figure at the edge
of a burning field with smoke swirling around it
like white curtains shot full of wind and light.

purposely lend impetus to my HOOS (BIG HOOS aka the steendriver), Tuesday, 25 March 2014 14:56 (six years ago) link

man that is some p egregious prose w line breaks you got there

♛ LIL UNIT ♛ (thomp), Tuesday, 25 March 2014 15:04 (six years ago) link

one good thing about the seventeeth century was, they knew where you put a line break, and knew it hard

♛ LIL UNIT ♛ (thomp), Tuesday, 25 March 2014 15:05 (six years ago) link

actually that bit includes the indentation at the start of the second line onwards that suggests this is all 'one line'

so

purposely lend impetus to my HOOS (BIG HOOS aka the steendriver), Tuesday, 25 March 2014 16:28 (six years ago) link

Prose poetry is exceedingly difficult to qualify as poetry. Very few attempts succeed. Rimbaud managed that trick better than most.

I wear the fucking pin, don't I? (Aimless), Tuesday, 25 March 2014 16:53 (six years ago) link

all poem it seems the purpose of each reader's labor is simply to bring each line into focus.

j., Tuesday, 25 March 2014 18:15 (six years ago) link

Love, love Dobyns's Cemetery Nights and "Beauty."

Prose poems: loved Killarney Clary's books; still might.

That's So (Eazy), Wednesday, 26 March 2014 00:30 (six years ago) link

Here's Beauty.

That's So (Eazy), Wednesday, 26 March 2014 00:32 (six years ago) link


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