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.

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