Wednesday, September 22, 2010


Michael Cross just posted a text copy of one of my favorite recordings from the Bay Area Labor Day 2010 EventDavid Brazil’s wide-ranging riff on the idea of vocation that spins out from his reading of Paul. That, along with Benjamin Friedlander’s searching revision of Paul in the recent Radical Poetics and Secular Jewish Culture, has me seeing Paul’s prints on everything lately, from discussions of poetic coterie to the Spahr/Clover statement on the 95 Cent Skool, where their “double faith” in the changes a group of 12 gathered around a table could effect, seeding skool after skool, has a strong Pauline ring.

I used to think of Paul as the Brian Epstein to Jesus’s Lennon, but now he seems the sexier of the two, taking on the heavy labor of social networking and community organizing while Christ gets star billing on the icons. I suppose any movement that sees tiny grassroots communities, open in theory to anyone willing to participate, as a potential force for social change is bound to echolocate a little off Paul, but he’s sounding especially loudly right now, here in capital’s Rome, with all our clear-eyed poetic efforts to be in it but not of it.

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