Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Rant against the bland

Or celebrating the self, a well wrought rant.

I had a similar response to this poet. Actually my response was to the twin.

I would, on the whole, rather simply talk about the poetry that excites than the poetry that doesn't, but it's an interesting enough question and leads us back to the question of avant lyric.

Or, let Bukowski rant on it.

8 comments:

Chris said...

"Poetry progresses on the master-apprentice relationship, on finding contemporaries with whom you have rapport, as all arts do and should."

If mentoring is the process by which young artists are instilled with the idea that they and only they are the teleological standard-bearers for poetry, then I'm pretty glad I skipped out on it!

Shameless Hussy said...

But there are many ways to fashion a mentoring relationship--although I admit, I have never been directable, and not being interested in following any one path, even if it leads to...

But any discussion of such paths ultimately sounds like sour grapes doesn't it? Which is another reason to simply let this stuff gather cobwebs and give one's attention to the poetry and discussion that moves one forward.

Though yes, rage, as Michael Shaivo points out, can also move one forward.

Chris said...

Oh, yes, I don't think mentoring actually works (or has to work) like that.

There were two things going on in the review: A reaction to the poetry (and I suspect I'd have the same levels of boredom at it and frustration with it) and a cry that the system of poetry is being violated. That was the part I couldn't get behind -- that poetry is this thing that gets handed down by an elect, that it is about maintaining a particular set of standards, that works that violate these standards need to be ostracized, that through this system poetry undergoes progress, and that the concept of progress means anything at all when applied to poetry. For instance, the comparison to art by four-year-olds, and how it lacks depth -- which, ok, sure, but who says poetry needs to have depth all the time? A lack of depth is something to notice in poetry, but not necessarily something to excoriate it for. I mean, this volume had delusions of depth, maybe, but that's a different type of argument...

Etc.

Shameless Hussy said...

Yes, well, that's the strand that just ends up sounding like sour grapes...

My frustration with this poetry isn't the system that creates it as much as the way that system and receiving systems, tend to set up hierarchies with a certain kind of poetry--or one might argue, accessibility--being at the top.

Jordan said...

All I can think is, what's the story there. Who bullied that into existence.

Matt said...

I know people like to dump on the idea of progress in poetry, and I'm usually one of those people. But if dreck like Dickman's is constantly held up as good, then I'm thinking maybe some progress is in order...

Chris said...

Oh Matt, don't rile me up.

Shameless Hussy said...

Some people are very good at giving judges what they need to feel good about their choices.