is very likely that nearly every one has been very nearly certain that
something that is interesting is interesting them...
George Steiner | "Grave Jubilation: Auerbach's Mimesis remains
a monument, and a gift" | TLS 5242 | 19 September 2003 | 3-5
is more lacking in our current encounter with and understanding of great
literature than joy. The sheer wonder of the thing, the laughter even
in the creation of the tragicperhaps only Nietzsche had exact
words for itirradiate Auerbach's learning. He knows the works
of the masters to be a donation, unpredictable, at times harrowing,
but in some sense miraculous. Homer and Dante might not have
been, or might have been lost. A gravely jubilant sense of good fortune
inhabits this book. We are its debtors" (5).
Satyricon | Dir. by Federico Fellini, 1969
| 129min | VHS | IMDb link
together, sometimes separately, Encolpius, Giton, and Ascyltus wander
across the face of the Roman Empire, either participating in (often
as victims) or just observing orgies, feasts, festivals, murders, abductions,
you-name-it.... The individual elements of the film are realized with
such conscious style that all of the nonacting, as well as the scenes
of violence, or of copulations performed by persons fully clothed, have
the effect of ritual, rather than the reality of some gaudy Italian
spear-and-sandal epic, to which Fellini Satyricon
is actually related, as all movies are related, though distantly"
(from Vincent Canby's 1970 review
of the film's first US release).
Lawrence Russell's evocation of a key scene on Filmcourt:
Encolpius and Giton "wander the city, which is a warren of the
grotesque, a bizarre brothel, a merchant mall of the unconscious. A
huge head is being dragged through an alley, a nightmare from a beheading,
or an icon of the local Caesar (the megalomaniacal Trimalchio, as it
later develops). They retire to Encolpio's room, make love, but in the
morning are found by Ascylitus. Instead of fighting, they decide to
go their separate ways, split their possessions, but when asked who
he wants to be with, the faithless Gitone chooses Ascylitus. Encolpio
barely has time to dwell upon this treachery when an earthquake hits,
and the city collapses, blocks splitting from the huge dream walls,
burying citizens, animals and the collective memory."
Chris Fritton | "Conversation Overheard in the Hall of Mirrors"
and "Wolf Boy Falls in Love with the Bearded Lady" | Two of
the three attractions in Dime Sideshow via Telephone
| 8ish pm
Edward Said, 1935-2003
while it is impossible to avoid the combative, assertive early stages
in the nativist identitythey always occur: Yeats's early
poetry is not only about Ireland, but about Irishnessthere is
a good deal of promise in getting beyond them, not remaining trapped
in the emotional self-indulgence of celebrating one's identity. There
is first of all the possibility of discovering a world not constructed
of warring essences. Second, there is the possibility of a universalism
that is not limited or coercive, which believing that all people have
only one single identity isthat all Irish are only Irish, Indians
Indians, Africans Africans, and so on ad nauseam. Third, and
most important, moving beyond nativism does not mean abandoning nationality,
but it does mean thinking of local identity as not exhaustive, and therefore
not being anxious to confine oneself to one's own sphere, with its ceremonies
of belonging, its built-in chauvinism, and its limiting sense of security."
from "Yeats and Decolonization," in Culture
and Imperialism (229)
Poetry Blogs midmorning, EDT, with several updates
checks out the Drew Gardner Trio at the Pourhouse. As does Elsewhere.
reports on Barrett Watten's discussion and reading at UC Berkeley: "If
you've ever seen Watten in action in one of these discussion situations,
its fascinating: he always has an answer ready at least six words
before the end of the question, and the answer almost always changes
the question into another, more complex and elaborately contextualized
question that in turn requires the asking of several more questions
just to get to a point where the conversation is back somewhere near
where the original questioner started. And then sometimes hell
ask someone else what they think about something: good luck, someone!"
Swing takes a well-deserved breather: after forty-nine rounds, it's
Komunyakaa 14, Creeley 26, draw 9. The death of Wayan Limbak
to reflect on the Ketjak form: "In Ketjak,
& specifically in Lewistons recording of a 1966 performance,
the effects of accumulation, reiteration & collaboration are instantly
available to any ear. It was those aspects that I had in mind when I
chose to name my evolving non-narrative prose poem Ketjak."
continues to articulate an "assembly poetics": "Assembly
technicians are basically friendly data transformers at home among an
ensemble of activities....[they] are quite comfortable with cute
names and titles for things because any predictable future reaction
doesnt mean much anyway."
Monique van Genderen | Opening at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine
Arts | Show runs from September 19 - November 9, 2003
Salvatore Marano | University of Catania, Italy | "Geomantic Rationale:
On the Poetry of bpNichol" | English Dept Lecture | UMaine
Poetry Blogs noonish, EDT
As of eight
this morning, Bemsha Swing
had staged twenty-nine rounds of the "battle of the BAPs."
In the early "h's," the score stood at: Komunyakaa 10, Creeley
15, draw 4. The agon is, of course, fascinating, but even more
so is the crisp articulation of a single reader's values, unfolded poem
by poem. More well-warranted attention for the Bronze Skull chapbook
series: to Overlap's
recent notes on Bob Harrison's Chorrera,
now adds an appreciation of Stacy Szymaszek's Emptied
of All Ships. Twenty points and a postscript from Mexperimental
to Houlihan. Free Space
Comix has its cloaking device activated in the wake of an extended
and at times acrimonious discussion
of editorial practices in the small-press world. On a related
cops to Machiavellianism. Tympan
settles into Central Time. Allodox
takes in Lost in Translation ("a phenomenology
of being attracted to someone sympa from within a promise of
emotional and physical fidelity"). Laurable
reminds us that it's WCW's birthdayand kindly calls attention
to Alan Golding's interesting paper on modernist little mags, archived
at an earlier version of Third
Factory. Passages: Seamus Heaney on Never
Neutral, Alan Davies on Well-Nourished
Moon. Headshots: Jackson Mac Low on Sorter
and Barrett Watten on Limetree.
Tim Crane | Director of the Philosophy Program, School of Advanced Study,
U of London | "The Mind - Body Problem as a Dilemma" | Dept.
of Philosophy Colloquium | UMaine
Poetry Blogs midmorning EDT
makes the case for Chris Stroffolino's importance, calling him "one
of my generation's most consistently, and uniquely, fabulous poets."
Slow-loading Ron Silliman
form, genre & chance impact our lives," drawing examples
from Salam Pax, Viggo Mortenson, Mike Davis, Paul Pena, and Stan Rice.
Well-Nourished Moon is just one of the blogs to note the passing
of Johnny Cash. The omni-attentive Mosses
from an Old Manse remembers Teddy
Adorno on his centenary. Limetree
assays the "Houlibaloo." While Mainstream
Poetry presents the avantophobe with a poem. And Free
Space Comix jots her an e-mail. Meanwhile, absented from
Jim's Crush List, Laurable
unveils a Self-Portrait
in a Monkeyed-With Mirror. And among the "innovations
in American Poetry" called for over at the Monkey,
a much-needed "acclaim
chamber," a souped-up critic
with total recall, and a decoder
box for rendering interesting poetry dull (this differs from an
MFA program how?). Now take a better blog tour with SDPG.
Basquiat | Dir. by Julian Schnabel, 1996 |
Dir. of Photography Ron Fortunato | 104min | DVD | IMDb link
Maslin's NYT review:
the "film's central figure remains a cipher, the subject of a colorful
scrapbook rather than a revealing portrait.... Mr. Schnabel's screenplay
is much weaker than his visual direction, turning conversation into
a mixture of grand pronouncements and yawning chasms. The film pitches
well-chosen rock songs into its awkward lulls, but the gaps remain."
| "When Night Meets Day" | NBC | First screened on 8 May 2003
Call for Papers | National Poetry Foundation Conference on the Poetries
of the 1940s, American and International | 23-27 June 2004 | link
here for more
two of the NPF's "decade" conferencesthe 1930s (1993)
and the 1950s (1996)before helping organize the 1960s conference
in 2000, and I can vouch for the quality and intensity of the nonstop
poetry conversation to be found in Orono over the course of those four
summer days. The only thing missing in the past? Bloggers... (though
Kevin Killian, having already turned in a very dismayed fashion report
about the 1950s event, did chronicle the 1960s conference in four detailed
and delightful installments to the Poetics List: I,
Poetry Blogs early evening, EDT
comments on Bob Harrison's recent chapbook, Chorrera.
Moon takes stock of the books awaiting her attention on desks,
tables, in bags,
and by couches.
one of my favorite places to read about films, remains on apartment
renovating hiatus, but courteously suggests that I occupy myself with
a Dziga Vertov manifesto on SDPG.
(Which I do). Twenty or more comments and counting over at the
Possum Pouch, where
Dale Smith posted his "Open
Letter to Joan Houlihan" on Monday. Monkey
weighs in on the same issue here
and in a series of funny comic panels. Elsewhere
overcomes novacaine numbness to do the bloggers in different voices.
lists the ten books that brought him to poetry. And
though he's moved on since, Silliman's dwarf-fruit edition of Saturday
derided blog names that don't coincide with their author's name (i.e.
nearly all the poetry blogs save his), calling them "verbal leisure
suits" that will haunt their wearers far into the future. (This
from a man who wore suspenders without a jacket in the mid-1980s when
I first saw him read!) Other entries are happily more to the mark, including
the praise of my colleague Ben Friedlander's website for the course
he taught on the 1940s last year.
Fast Times at Ridgemont High | Dir. Amy Heckerling,
1982 | DVD | 90min | IMDb link
| Fansite link
to the resumption of classes. It's not so much that Cameron Crowe
"gets" the Southern California I grew up in (graduating high
school in Huntington Beach the year after the film was released)in
fact, I don't really "recognize" the people of Almost
Famous and Fast Times the way I do
the people in Altman's Short Cutsbut
I do find the goofy, good-natured spirit of both films irresistible.
Sean Penn's hilarious performance is undiminished after thirty years,
but it's Jennifer Jason Leigh's patient and curiously self-assured suffering
through of puffy-faced teen libido (and its consequences) that I admired
most this time around. Later: Pointing the car back onto the
Maine highway after receiving a pretty gratuitous ticket (expired inspection
sticker), what else can I think of but Spicoli's response to Mr. Hand,
more incredulity than insult: "You Dick!"
English 429 - The Vital Word | Fall
16-31 July 2003 1-15
July 2003 16-30
June 2003 1-15 June 2003