Friday, January 05, 2007

ron silliman's post today about community hit home. since i'm a rather shy guy, which sounds odd if you've met me cuz i usually can't shut the fuck up and i'm loud to boot, community i find very important. as i've mentioned a couple of days ago, i don't believe in literary immortality, and if immortality is the fuel that drives yr engine i'd suggest you seek it without using poetry, since it is a near-oxymoron: a famous poet. fame to whom?

writing/reading are part of living, and tho i concede there are famous poets [i'd shit my pants if i ever had the opportunity to meet ed dorn, for example] i do not think that anything lasts. that is not nihilism, but the fact that it is our fight against entropy that is the matter. and entropy will eventually win. that does not mean at all that i consider the poems of dead poets dead as well. rimbaud is alive to me still to this day. so is catullus and villon and marlowe and cavafy.

guess i'm rambling here. poetry is part of life, of living, and if we're lucky we become the texts we compose when we die. for ever? no. but as long as human life is.

community, a few, or few hundred, friends in the art matters. even in my shyness, i value it greatly. i've not been to many readings since nicholas was born, only because i'm a new father and love being home with him and anna. so there is the internet, blogs and email. and i'm not shy here.

a community of isolates, and yes, most of us poets value our isolation, our alone time, we are solitary creatures by nature and habit. perhaps that is why we value language, why i love language so.

often i feel guilty for not calling, for not writing soon enough. perhaps, that is part of the condition of writing, taking it all on, humbly arrogating the tasks of our human language. if that is so, i'm in deep.


At 3:30 AM, Blogger derek said...

i live in a town of around 50,000 people. i know 2 people that are poets - one is my university supervisor, the other looks like she might give up writing to pursue feminist philosophy.

i love feeling connected with so many people, & really, this online format is not secondary to 'in person' relationships. not where writing is concerned.

yeah & i read silliman's blog all the time, but i don't get him. his blog feels like some kind of wall between him & us. not that i've ever read much of his work, so um, i don't know...

happy new year

At 8:13 AM, Blogger dfb said...

community is something that moves in millions of ways and for most poets through books

dead books by alive poets or alive books through dead poets i listen to so many people in books even if i will never meet the people in them

i'm a new dad too and i don't like many of the poets in my area by that mean i don't get along with like their personality big fucking deal i pay attention to their work i know what their publishing

with my blog i reach people in different areas it's all community

i think poets love to talk about community in a romantic manner like where meant to all like each other and go to each others reading and clap in time and respect each other

fuck that i don't like some members of my family very much i certainly don’t like some member of the poetic community

basically for all the same silly reasons in the end

personality bullshit

it’s funny i think people waste and lot of words on community because they don’t have anything else to say or it’s easy topic

community is everywhere like air good and bad but it’s very real


At 10:11 PM, Blogger richard lopez said...

derek and daniel: points taken. i value friendship, whether thru corrospondence, blogs, poems and so forth, as well as in the flesh.

i've often said that i think poets are brothers and sisters, present and in the past, but that doesn't always make for a happy family. i don't mean community, i hope, in some romantic idealization. i mean real, concrete and in the here and now.

derek, i also think writers connected thru the ether is just as valid as if you and i were sitting in some bar over beers.

daniel, i too believe community is thru books, and poems. that is why i consider rimbaud and catullus my brothers and contemporaries. not at all romantic since in the flesh i think rimbaud would've given me a lot of shit, both as a man and poet. catullus on the other hand, well, i hope we would easily share a bottle of wine.

but fuck, maybe those are just my projections. who knows. i do think as writers/readers we are all aboard the same train. our destinations might not be identical, and our accomodations unequal, but the engine is just the same.


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