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Currently Reading

Geof Huth‘s NTST. What a laugh out loud delight at some of these minimalist poems, pwoermds. This collected has a best of from his last 25 years. p. 17

kmowlwdgw

That does a special mind trick of being so immediately readable. Maybe we’re so used to those changeable signs and how the 3 gets swapped in for so much that it doesn’t seem distinct as it once did.

p. 20

blo(ss)om

I love words embedded in other words. That he would have seen this pair and for them to nest so well is beautiful. Such attentiveness to the letter.

p. 34

shadowl

Love the portmanteau’s unity of making the boundaries between two indistinguishable. It even calls up a time of day in 7 characters for when owl and its shadow become merged.

p.40

unneceszxzsary

itemn

That is the way we should spell unnecessary henceforth, just to underscore the point.

Nardi Reeder Champion’s Mother Ann Lee, Morning Star of the Shakers (UPNE, 1990),

Aboard a ship in 1774 Ann and her followers crossed from the poorest mill-life of Manchester, England to the new life in New York. It was an exciting 3 months for both the devout who did daily worship much of the day and for the sailors who were alternately and simultaneously condemned and urged to join them. The captain threatened to put them all in leg irons or throw them all overboard. As he said so, story goes, a plank of his ship opened up and they started taking on more water than they could bail. (p. 46-47) Told the bad news,

Mother Ann said, Captain, be of good cheer. There shall not be a hair of our heads perish. We will all arrive safe in America. I just now saw two bright angels of God standing by the mast, through whom I received this promise.

She then encouraged the seaman, and she and her companions zealously assisted at the pumps. Shortly after this, a large wave struck the ship with great violence, and the loose plank was instantly closed to its place.

[…] Ann Lee did not rely on the promise of help from two bright angels; she manned the pumps as well. Linking hard work to devout worship was a vital aspect of Shaker belief. “Put your hands to work and your hearts to God.”

rob mclennan’s Kate Street (Moira Books, 2011) (unnumbered pages)

1. a short essay on intent

the black dog barking mute behind
the kitchen window

I stagger statement stain
the pounding sun

blood vessels pump & lift the line
tween index, thumb

I was well enough to get the water
from her blackened fridge

I have a package

I am an engineer

I have a weakness for ideas surrounding black dogs, literal or Churchill’s figurative one. There’s a lovely music of sounds that’s drawing it forward. Such a pleasure of sound. There are leaps that surprise and yet somehow hang near enough by that make a kind of right-brained sense like the compression in “I stagger statement stain” or the bounds among the last few lines. The lift connecting blood and the connection of pulse to page is a lovely and fresh way to tie the two ideas.

Edwin A. Abbott’s novel Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions (1884)

The birth of a True Equilateral Triangle from Isosceles parents is the subject of rejoicing in our country for many furlongs around. After a strict examination conducted by the Sanitary and Social Board, the infant, if certified as Regular, is with solemn ceremonial admitted into the class of Equilaterals.

It goes on to say that the round class (the priesthood caste) favors such ascent to the higher class from isosceles. It prevents revolutions from fomenting to have the hopeless lower class getting one of theirs promoted now and then. It’s beautiful satire. So many lurvely lines and figures. Man was on the pulse of human psychology.

Also reading thru:
The Broadview Reader
Margaret Christakos’ Sooner
Susan Holbrook’s Joy Is So Exhausting (Coach House, 2009)
A.R. Ammons’ Selected
Camille Martin’s Sonnets (Shearsman, 2010)
rob mclennan’s 52 flowers

Currently Listening:
David O’Meara at the Atwater Library.
Sound poetry at EPC like Paul Dutton
John Cage on Silence. He says there in part (not quotes in order): nothing needs to be added to it. sound can be not talking about feelings and ideas and ideas of relationships. Sound isn’t talking, it’s acting. I’m satisfied. I don’t need sound to talk to me. Just sound is sufficient. I love sounds just as they are. I have no need for them to be more than they are. They don’t need to be psychological or to be president or to be in love with another sound. It can just be a sound. It doesn’t need to mean anything to give us deep pleasure.

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