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konkrete & seeds

Quote: “The constellation, the word-group, replaces the verse. Instead of syntax it is sufficient to allow two, three or more words to achieve their full effect. They seem on the surface without interrelation and sprinkled at random by careless hand, but looked at more closely, they become the center of a field of force and define a certain scope. In finding, selecting and putting down these words (the poet) creates “thought-objects” and leave the task of association to the reader, who becomes a collaborator and, in a sense, the completer of the poem.”
– Eugen Gomringer, 1951, via Kinetext, dynamic typography, p. 20-25

Happy squee. I got 2 more books in the mail:

1) konkrete poesie anthogie by eugen gomringer, (reprinted by philipp reclam‘s universal-bibliothek, 1980, from the 1950s and 1960s)

Such lovely poems. So many fresh ways with text, such as this by Heinz Gappmeyr

w ↑ e ↑ i ↑ s ↑ s

Don’t know if his poem is about winter weather or race relations; I first mistranslated with “my german” as meaning,

w &#8592 e &#8592 s &#8592 t

Also in the anthology with gomringer (ooh, lovely stuff), helmut heiBenbüttel, ernst janl (who particularly piqued too), friedrich achleitner, max bense who wrote


beautiful simplicity and suggestion of ode to the star, kingly, the river of milky way, the golden stars, the black river of night, the cycle of music of the cosmos.

Claus bremer, reinhard döhl, kurt marti, hansjörg mayer (nummy negative space), franz mon, diter rot, gerhard rühm (sweet sound transformations), konrad balder schäuffelen, andré thomkins, timm ulrichs and wolf wezel (minimal butes),

So much makes me laugh aloud in surprise and what constellations arise.

2) Incessant Seeds (Pavement press, 2005) by Sheila E. Murphy which are these continual rolling sentences, 14 syllables per line, 14 lines per page, each hooking forward to rest and each almost self contained, each line, each page. To carve out a sample, cuts the ties in either direction but here’s a taste,

Threads of reflex conversation, meanwhile clay birds are shot
From stressed-appearing trees taut with lines pointing away
Streetlamps part of the mood, part of the art acquiring
Context for itself de facto static underpinned by
Cortex that includes baked bread, say it with me, say it now…
Outcomes reverse-revere, thus we succumb to permanence
Before it has to matter, the most fun receptors quake
With what they have received, prosperity induces reading
Poverty does not, war induces bleeding, peace does not
In general the party line is lined with principles
[…]By being what we were in contexts that now seem benign
And out of synch and perfectly imaginary falls
From grace, of realismo propped up by religious voice

Love the pivots and sharp specifics, the way things are cinched inside lines and then widened more by enjambments to embrace next line. Leaves one rather breathless if going too fast. Is the book not worth reading for Outcomes reverse-revere, thus we succumb to permanence? That line alone slays me still. The cortex that includes baked bread. These sensory things that don’t even register consciously but influence, such as the scent of vanilla, or yeast, some timbre in tone that resonates way back in the brain fixing the new data to be more liked or less based on nothing in the here and now and logical.

Our brain stems are parasites that hijack higher functions and actions and the way we narrate ourselves into a context for incidentals of the built environment, imploding and projecting significances, “outcomes reverse-revere”, retroactively overwriting how it must have been all along.

All this and still basking, taking slow as I can Cometology by Stephen Brockwell. It has an incessant pulling forward line to line to poem to poem. Some feel private, a delicate sharing, like it would be uncouth to repeat. Each section is so distinct but to pick? From where I am, Compulsive in the Public Library, 6, p. 56,

The Minister of Compulsion
hold two steel ornaments ––
jetliners —   from the hood of what old car?
       flies over the pages
                  matching an image of a woman
                              to a photograph from film
flips through Kubrick, reduced to a black and white
                  removes a loose page

I am still in Among These Waters by Mary O’Donoghue from County Clare,

From the latter, p. 34, Ruckus of the flamenco dancer

Her lips are rioja colour,
a savage foliage.
Then their meanderous
ping-twang strumming
picks up, chases itself
to a frenzy, and her elbows
propel her into their smell:
drink-spill, wet patches tacked
to their shirts by stiff nipples.
Her back shawl is flock
of crows, darting, flitting
disappearing in the birl

And still in Dead Cars in Managua by Stuart Ross, Sample from p. 40 in 14. Rock and Roll

When Barry McGuire
says “Coagulatin’,”
my blood coagulates.
I tell the doctor this.
He looks at me.
and I’m mist on the mirror.

Discipline is hard when it means pausing.

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One Response

  1. busy

    –nice ruckus!


    AnonymousJuly 21, 2008 @ 10:48 am

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