Saturday, October 27, 2012
Dissonance (if you are interested)
I am not sure if I purchased this or if it was sent as a review copy. Something tells me it was the latter, though I never reviewed it. I remember being excited to discover that Rosmarie had written and essay on Charles Olson that I had never sen before.
In fact, there is a bookmark inside marking that very essay. It's not really a bookmark. It's an index card-sized broadside with a poem on one side and an image on the other. The image is an abstraction made of four figures running lengthwise like a river across the center of the page. The two figures to one side are copper-colored, the two on the other black. The two figures closest to the extremities have a floral quality, while the two occupying the center are circles.
On the flip side, printed in blue ink, is a poem entitled, Backbergia Militaris. It goes like this:
when the Borgias set out to do
in ever their closest
loved ones, with bullets
or Broadway shows, the deck
was stacked – this grayish
columnar head knows better
the terminal, dome-like cephalium
of orange-brown bristles
at the thought of anything less
than total self-destruct, controls
one half by blowing off limbs
in random cow fields
the little papery flower
contains a spoonful of curds
dried-up mother's milk
in a field of blasted spines
The poem is unsigned, but I am pretty sure that Jonathan Skinner wrote it, given our friendship and his longstanding preoccupation with all things cactical.
from Dissonance (if you are interested)
from Charles Olson: Process and Relationship
Nobody, not even Olson, can write entirely without analogies and metaphors. But he can and does put the accent on relation by contiguity, which allows him to combine the most insisten concern with particular experience, as Creeley notes, and an infinite context. For as the ability to experience is potentially unending, as there are always further perceptions, The Maximus Poems point toward a total inclusiveness that we have found perhaps in some novels and epics but rarely in a sequence of poems.