Friday, July 31, 2009

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Dryden's Coach (Restoration Snap)

“And so much for Mr. Dryden; whose burial was the same as his life, variety and not of a piece: the quality and mob, farce and heroics: the sublime and ridiculous mixed in a piece; great Cleopatra in a hackney coach.”

George Farquhar

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Mosses to a New Manse (Peter Culley in Portland TONIGHT)

Poet Peter Culley’s in Portland tonight, appearing in conversation with local “Eco-Baroque” artists Bruce Conkle and Marne Lucas. The event is hosted by the back room; if you haven’t been to one of their unique shindigs before, this is a good one to explore, with a special “pay for whatever you eat and drink” rate.
the back room hosts a conversation with
Mandarin House, 120 SW Ankeny, 2nd floor (the atrium space across from the Skidmore Fountain, home to “famous hand-strung noodles” and excellent food and cocktails)

Seating is limited; email thebackroompdx_at_gmail_dot_com to reserve a seat.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Monday, July 13, 2009

Doubled Whisper

“It will be seen eventually that this whole memoir, with its talk of Communes and revolutions, will be about integrity: that is, political, philosophical, social, poetic and spiritual integrity, for they are all intertwined, and all will have to incorporate a vivid sense of what our own death will mean to our ideals—how rich a story it makes.”

Douglas Oliver, Whisper ‘Louise’

Friday, July 10, 2009

Word of the Day


Ron links to news about the world shedding 6.4 languages every hour, but we’ve got “prepone.” Almost.

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Poets in Contest

What poetry needs is its own game show. A show staged like a cage match, where two prominent poets face off with their best material. It should open with a Baroque quartet, be hosted by a suave & brainy “cool professor” type with good hair, and include a slinky Vanna White who draws alphabet blocks from a velvet bag to see who goes first. The poets should sit in puffy chairs, wear vivid colors and glasses on neck chains, and look indifferent to the air time. Wait …

Monday, July 06, 2009

Distinguishing the Boroughs

Kevin Killian on Charles Bernstein, Frank O’Hara & Brion Gysin.

Friday, July 03, 2009

"Dark Brandon" on YouTube

If you haven’t spent time inside the structured intensities of Brandon Downing’s incomparable film collages, do yourself a favor this Fourth and see how much America has to be thankful for. Start with “The Ship (I)” and cruise into the sun from there.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Tangent Intro for Cynthia Sailers, Portland, 6/27/09

Some poets are sitars, others are symphonies. The sitar poets push lines out into time at varying speeds, shaping attention into pattern through flying scales and overtone clouds. The symphonic poets tend to build their effects through counterpoint and harmony, arranging diverse notes and ideas into chords. Tonight let’s recruit Cynthia Sailers for the symphony. The home tone in Cynthia’s poetry might be the rub between individuals and the groups they belong to. Her writing sounds the fraught process of what she calls “self fashioning modern languages to a private life,” working to tune the collective’s demands to the music of inner desire. The dominant note would be aggression—the group’s favorite tool—and the subdominant a saving hedonism that turns pleasure and perversion into improvised means of resistance, the tyranny of mundanity “… held under the teeth of a nourished abandon.” Please pick up a drink, put down the groupthink, and abandon yourself to the sounds of Cynthia Sailers.