Thursday, February 16, 2012

Aimless Reading: The R's, Part 17.2 (Lisa Robertson)

The Men
Robertson, Lisa
The Men

Purchased at Talking Leaves...Books.

Looks like I didn't finish this one, as there's a bookmark stuck between pages 36-37. O, well.

I am remembering more of the time I brought Lisa to Buffalo. I remember driving her to see the grain elevators in South Buffalo. I remember her being really impressed. I remember exchanging humorous anecdotes about Stephen Rodefer. I remember her telling me about working as a re-forester in the great northwest and about owning a small feminist bookstore for in Vancouver.

The grain elevators really stick out in my mind, though.

You have to drive past them on the 190 and then turn around and drive up a side road in the opposite direction in order to get a good look. Just before you enter the Old First Ward, you cross a steel beamed bridge over the Buffalo river. We stopped in the middle of bridge and looked over the railings to the place where the river flows between two sets of silos, giant hunks of rounded concrete adorned with rusted iron skeletons descending from the very peak down to the level of the water, where the elevators once dumped the grain into barges heading down the Erie Canal for New York.

I have taken dozens of writers to that very spot, but I feel like perhaps the first time I did this was with Lisa Robertson.

from The Men

I'm making a record of the men as I know them, their hours and their currencies and their simple sex. I'll be their glamorous thing and then I won't. Their coats are casual, they are entirely casual in their stance and I paste my record up.

When a man rides with a demon, when he transmits and snags, when a man feels his psyche work all over america in its humble way, when he has no obligation, when he marches on, when a man marches on, when he has hideous knowledge and he marches with it in the burnt grass, when men believed so many things, when a man's name is sewn in the label of my coat, when the men's cocks face out to sea, lovely

And I thank them.

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