Saturday, June 10, 2006

frogments from the frag pool

Gary Barwin & derek beaulieu have created a fun little book here. There are so many variations on Basho's frog jumping into the pond, each more inventive than the last. Here the linguistic play has more resonance: even if one has no idea who Basho is (is that possible?), or hasn't read the haiku (I doubt it, still), the poems echo one another within the book itself. The combination of concrete and word play is also effective--a great way to introduce students to visual poetry and haiku and playfulness.

One of the things I liked about Mark Truscott's book was the sense of weight, a sense of whole, an idea thoroughly chewed through. Though Barwin & beaulieu seem more interested in surface play, and are content to splash around a shallow pond, they do so with gusto, and achieve a satisfying read.

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