Friday, December 15, 2006

as applies to the end of term feeling...

from The Character, Beacon Press, Boston 1999
Jena Osman
In waking up she decides that blowing on the wrist does not help a person. Then turns off the clock. Whatever the time might seem to be she realizes that she is in it because of exhaustion cross-barring the sound of somone reading to him or herself.
Finally had the pleasure of hearing Jena Osman last week out in Bryn Mawr at a Barnes & Noble of all places...(see Silliman for a detailed account of that). This is one smart book. Osman situates herself within the poem in a completely new way (at least to this reader). The structural, authorial, and thematic investigations have the cool exactness of a laboratory, and a kind of inventiveness that is conceptual, and utterly unique it seems to me. It puts me in mind of Joan Retallack for sure, and Leslie Scalapino, but there is something else here, a startling combination of things, and a very intense sense of a poet tackling the responsibility of utterance and the creation of yet more text in a time of overflowing utterance and physical text...formidable. And humble: a quality not found in abundance these days.

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