Thursday, December 16, 2010

no best of

it's the time of year when we see a whole lot of lists that tell us the year's the top movies, books, music etc. etc. etc. i enjoy reading these lists but not because i care what might or might not be the tops of anything. i enjoy reading these lists because i like to learn those things that help make a passion. i can learn also from these lists, new books, new bands, and new movies. and i do these lists too, sometimes. not this year. i'm trying to empty myself of the concepts of best and major. the same goes for the lower end of the scale. in the end i read, listen and watch what obsesses me and gives me great good pleasure. i don't care if it's the best or no. in other words, the ideas of best and worst limits the realms and ranges of the arts of life and the life of the arts, for me at least. i'm seriously considering writing a series of texts with the title 'to the minor world poets'. these would be epistles to real and imagined writers whom i lump together as 'minor' not because i believe in the word but because in the end what matters is the writing and the writer doing the writing and fuck all labels. rather the label 'minor' is a celebration of living in creation and is used as a catch-all basin for all of us who have chosen to live by the word. i say 'world poets' because i think it's time to consider ourselves as world citizens rather than arbiters of nation-states. it's almost a new year. time to make resolutions. resolutions are, again, something i refuse to do. this year i might make an exception to my home-made restriction. i resolve to practice greater non-competitiveness. i resolve to do my best to include everyone. i resolve to take it all on.


At 11:11 AM, Blogger John B-R said...

I think your idea to forget about best and worst is the best idea ever!

Seriously, life is short and "comparisons are odious." We dig what we dig and that's that, really.

But some people are really insecure ...

At 3:07 PM, Blogger Jim K. said...

best/worst is nutty for poetry

there are things that really
stun me, though. i'll go to any
'type' to get that thrill. a lot
of early works are awesome. most
don't seem to stay natural when
they do the hammer-n-tongs thing.

major/minor seems like a popularity
thing. nobody owns a nit of the
public now, so po-among-po doesn't
add up to much anyhow..

At 6:23 PM, Blogger Jim K. said...

interesting, hardly anyone ever
says "this is the best painting"

it's like that

At 11:42 PM, Blogger richard lopez said...

i recall an article years ago about the actor morgan freeman titled something like, IS MORGAN FREEMAN THE BEST AMERICAN ACTOR?

and life magazine back in the day asked if jackson pollock was THE BEST AMERICAN PAINTER. one can't get away from lists and labels. but i'm doing my what i can to avoid them.

i've always dug basil bunting's self-description, A MINOR POET, NOT CONSPICOUSLY DISHONEST. i'll stand by him.


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