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jimmy
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« Reply #75 on: February 21, 2006, 02:17:11 PM »

Woof! I'll drop him a line to remind him!

xxxjimmy
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jimmy
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« Reply #76 on: February 21, 2006, 09:20:52 PM »

From an ~anonymous source~: Footage of Matt Miller and his purrrrfect stranger!

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=5993967264118865500&q=valentine+for+perfect+strangers

xxxjimmy  :shock:
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alan
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« Reply #77 on: February 23, 2006, 06:10:39 PM »

Johannes speaks . . . of Snark and of Jimmy and of old Foetry pals.
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Alan Cordle
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« Reply #78 on: February 24, 2006, 12:47:36 PM »

Quote from: "alan"
Johannes speaks . . . of Snark and of Jimmy and of old Foetry pals.


I wrote a reply on Johannes's blog asking him to reply to Poetry Snark's characterization of LangPo as a mafia (if not my own take on them as an academic cult).

I also read some of the other posts and replies.  I'm sorry Johannes and Jimmy, but much of the talk going on there reminds me of grad school bullshit sessions where everyone's buried in piles of precious texts and can only think/speak/act/define themselves in terms of those texts.

I tend to see all LangPo like that.  All of the posturing about radicalism strikes me as entirely forced or artificial.  In my opinion, there is no credibility to such claims of radicalism.  It's just sandbox play for the upper-crust elite.

Where are the LangPo apostates?!  I never hear any LangPods criticize "The Movement".

Johannes has a post on "ugly poetry" here: http://slapkoppel.blogspot.com/2006/02/ugly-poetry.html

Granted the discussion was limited to only a couple people, but the air of it is so insular . . . there are no "others" present, no real conflict or debate.

It was generated by this blog post by Chris Vitiello: http://the_delay.blogspot.com/2006/02/things-im-done-with.html

I don't know these people, and I have no interest in trolling their (insider-only) blogs, but this is the ridiculous kind of claptrap that only radically self-absorbed "perpetual grad students" could possibly entertain.  To Johannes's benefit, he does disagree with some of the sentiments Vitiello expresses.  But when I read these things, I felt like someone ought to simply stand up and say such babble is just plain stupid.  There's too much of this kind of crap in poetry and too few people are confronting the perpetrators on it.

The problem that I'm seeing is that poets don't seem to be able to separate themselves from their academic sausage casings of indoctrination.  

Quote from: "Matt's note to poets"
Dear Poets,

Please grow up.  You are a source of shame to a potentially great art form.

Regards,
Matt


Poets are never leaving the nest, throwing off the old trappings.  And the so-called "experimental" poets tend to be the most immature and unadventurous in this sense.  They just love it to death right there in mommy's skirts.

These "brave avant-gardists" should be laughed out of existence . . . and yet they just seem to keep perpetuating themselves.

How can I feel any remorse about branding them "LangPods".

To rant a bit more . . . just look at all the blogs and e-zines that the LangPods run and participate in.  This is no outsider group.  These aren't rebels or radicals who willingly “suffer diversity” in their ranks.  And this is a big chunk of the poetic community . . . and the dominant poetic force online . . . which is where (I must agree with them) the best potential "frontier" of poetry lies.

It pisses me off to think these ambitious, adolescent, doodling twits are defining this poetic frontier . . . with hardly a whisper of disagreement from the masses of non-Pod, non-mainstream poets and poetry readers.  And any criticism from the mainstream community (and there's plenty, at least when they can extract themselves from their own navels and cocktail parties for a minute) is rendered moot due to the typical clashing of party politics.

So, it's really up to people like us (non-elite online communities) to dish up the criticism of LangPo.  And that makes it all the more disappointing when those "experimentalists" who claim to be unaffiliated with LangPo don't step up to the plate and either 1) admit they ARE actually affiliated, or 2) throw down some good criticism of LangPo.

Please, experimentalists: make with the contrary already!  Where are the fucking barbarians and heretics?  How can we ever take poetry and poeting seriously when this bullshit dominates so much of it?

Ok.  I'm done.

Yours,
Matt
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Monday Love
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« Reply #79 on: February 26, 2006, 12:26:24 PM »

Matt,

Now that I've been able to hear the comcasts--very well done, by the way--I feel I can add something here.  I'll get to the comcasts in a minute.

I, too, looked at Johannes's site and the "ugly poetry" discussion and I must say I agree completely with your characterization: "this is the ridiculous kind of claptrap that only radically self-absorbed "perpetual grad students" could possibly entertain."  

I'm also one of those bored by the whole Lang-Po nonsense, and clever praise for "ugly poetry" fits right into the whole "radically self-absorbed perpetual grad student" picture.  I guess Lang-Poe mafia is a good term, but we could just as easily say "confederacy of dunces."  Mafia implies too much threat.

First of all, any "poetry which is not poetic" or "poetry which is ugly" or "poetry which is really not poetry" talk is so dated and laughable that anyone who seriously entertains a topic like this is highly suspect.  It reflects the mind of that kid who lived down the street from us when we were young, the one who found 'beauty' in blowing up frogs with firecrackers, the unscientific brute of adolescent bad taste.  Alas, this type will always be with us, boorish, aggressive, useless, and they will tend to invade realms like poetry which thrives in a cultural ghetto without a practical existence, without necessary feedback from the greater society, for here the brute type can pretend they have some kind of intellectual avant status while carrying on as an adolescent brute.   The greater joke is when our adolescent brute "poet" writes "poems" with the words "anthrax" and "virus" and "holocaust"-- now the insufferable crudity of the fraudulent hoax is not only a poetic one, but a political one, too, but it is all finally the same: boorish stupidity prancing about in the dress of social, artistic "significance."  So yes, Matt, I see eye to eye with you here.

Both the Poetry Establishment and its Foetry/Snark combatants suffer from that ahistoricism John Crowe Ransom wished, when he wrote back in the 30s that the university, not the streets, is where poetry critics should come from, poetry critics groomed by the university to understand "the new" and replacing the poetry professors of mere history.  Now that the MFA has replaced history, now that networking has replaced truth-seeking, we have poetry professor poets of mere workshop, friendly with Random's dream of university groomed critics, all creating a little world for themselves.  It doesn't matter whether we call this little world "lang-po" or "confessional" or "ugly" or "new."   The corruption is both the worldy corruption targeted by Foetry.com and the aesthetic corruption targeted by the Snarks.  

The suddenly outed Matt (Poetry Snark) believes, like most, that 'clique' is just how poetry works (and yes, Auden picking Ashbery has been mentioned on Foetry.com) and so he and his friends are more interested in "ridiculing the tools" than exposing 'Auden picks Ashbery' operations.  But then Foetry.com has been "ridiculing the tools" all along.   Yours truly has pretty much been 'snarking' since day one.  It's a great tradition, which includes Pope and Byron and even Keats.  Foetry.com is not a court brief, after all; its goal is a serious one, but fun will be had along the way.

Poetry Snark's instincts are correct.  To snark correctly, there can be no sacred cows.  I'm going to quibble with a minor point.

If Auden cheated in a contest by picking Ashbery, the true snark doesn't say, "Well, if Auden and Ashbery cheated, I guess cheating is OK," the true snark lampoons Auden and Ashbery.   To really snark, one must snark all the way: Auden and Ashbery cheated, and so hound them for it!   Don't give them a free pass!   Poetry Snark not only wants to give Auden a free pass, he wants to give that pass out to anyone who wants it, and it seems Jorie Graham gets one too, because she "believes" she is "saving poetry" by giving prizes to her students.  Snarks never assume good motives where no evidence for them exists.  How does Poetry Snark know what Graham thinks in her heart?   No true snark should be so gratuitously naive.  Poetry Snark says Graham is "brilliant" in her comments on contemporary poetry.  Prove it!  Where are the insights?  If there is no proof, no praise should be forthcoming.  Only tools lavish praise in vague terms.   Vague praise is always tool-talk.  Down with blurb-ism!  

I make the above comments with the understanding that Poetry Snark is not pro-Jorie Graham.  I am taking his remarks somewhat out of context for the purpose of illustraton.  I just wanted to make some comments on snarking in general, and I hope he will give me pardon.

But the larger point is this: we cannot reside in the present.  We cannot be ahistorically snarky.  We have to know our history, at least somewhat.
That Snark wasn't sure who beat up who at the Deadwood in Iowa City I thought was rather typical.  Know your history, Snark!  I'm sure your Swedish avant poet friend who writes porn poetry is wonderful and far more amusing than Billy Collins, but I think I might have to see some real proof of that first.  

Who did that "Legitimate Dangers" spoof?  Was that you, Poetry Snark?  That was marvelous.

Snark's self-effacing friend Ginger was asked by Mr. Cordle to name some poetry targets in history and named only one: Ginger wants to "excise" Dr. Samuel Johnson from the canon, but I found that a very odd choice, since 1) no one reads his poetry anyway 2) Johnson is still useful as a wit--the film critc Anthony Lane, just this month in the New Yorker was aided by a Johnson quote, "Nothing odd will do long" on 'Tristram Shandy.  (Lane called TS 'an unreadable book.') and 3) America's most famous author snarked Dr. Johnson, calling him an "elephant."  But of course this attack on Sam Johnson was written before 1950, and one must always keep in mind that MFA grads today, snark or not, don't seem to care for literary history very much.  I doubt there is one MFA student anywhere who knows who called Dr. Johnson an "elephant."  Because it was done before 1950.  Before 1900, actually.

One really gets the idea that our allies the Snarks are too taken with avant tricks and have no sense of history, which is true of Po-Biz in general, so one can't blame the Snarks too much; it is simply the way things are.  But in our post-Foetry era, I'm confident this will change, for the snarks will quickly come to understand that history is not only useful when it comes to snarking, but history--as well as truth--is on their side.

Did you know, Matt, my friend from PA,  that back on Foetry V. 1 I reviewed an early, much-praised poem by John Ashbery by saying it was like Dr. Seuss--without the rhymes?  It is that silly poem about the painter who lives in a hotel by the sea.

Monday
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alan
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« Reply #80 on: February 27, 2006, 02:10:53 PM »

Quote from: "Monday Love"


Who did that "Legitimate Dangers" spoof?  Was that you, Poetry Snark?  That was marvelous.

Monday


That was a Jim Behrle/Al Cordle collaboration.  I wouldn't have thought I'd ever say that 6 months - year ago.
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jimmy
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« Reply #81 on: February 27, 2006, 05:06:53 PM »

ha ha--Al should get all the credit...he wrote the thing and added the cool music...

hey! some doofus has stolen my cat's asshole schtick! is nothing sacred??

http://www.blogger.com/profile/19045997

xxxjimmy
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alan
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« Reply #82 on: February 27, 2006, 05:40:52 PM »

Quote from: "jimmy"
ha ha--Al should get all the credit...he wrote the thing and added the cool music...

hey! some doofus has stolen my cat's asshole schtick! is nothing sacred??

http://www.blogger.com/profile/19045997

xxxjimmy


But they clearly think it's a DOG asshole.  I kind of hate to ask, but how did you find that?
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"You especially have to be hurt like hell before you can write seriously. But when you get the damned hurt, use it -- don't cheat with it.” -- Ernest Hemingway
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Alan Cordle
jimmy
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« Reply #83 on: February 27, 2006, 10:19:44 PM »

I googled "Matt Miller's boyfriend"

[rim shot]

 :shock:

xxxjimmy
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poetastin
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« Reply #84 on: February 28, 2006, 02:12:08 AM »

Quote from: "Monday Love"
One really gets the idea that our allies the Snarks are too taken with avant tricks....


I don't get that impression. Doesn't The Snark lament the state of experimental writing? Didn't he refer to LangPo as a mafia? He commends Johannes's work, which (though the J-man might run in LangPo circles, I dunno) is best considered outside the glare of your group lens. I'm not going to download the interview again, but Snark placed Johannes's stuff stylistically and thematically outside of LangPo, I thought. (LangPo as it's conceived of here...).

I admit, there's much to be ridiculed with the LangPod mindset, in general. But individually, that stuff just breaks down for me. Maybe it's because I'm just a poetry reader. But I have no problem cherry picking the good stuff and shelving it beside other, more cannonistic favorites. It's all the same: 90% of stuff I identify as crap, the rest are a pleasant surprise, no matter what schools or theories attached. You guys should look closer.
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Monday Love
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« Reply #85 on: February 28, 2006, 07:09:49 AM »

Quote from: "alan"
Quote from: "Monday Love"


Who did that "Legitimate Dangers" spoof?  Was that you, Poetry Snark?  That was marvelous.

Monday


That was a Jim Behrle/Al Cordle collaboration.  I wouldn't have thought I'd ever say that 6 months - year ago.


Excellent!!!

That warms my heart.   More of that stuff, please.
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Monday Love
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« Reply #86 on: February 28, 2006, 07:30:33 AM »

Quote from: "poetastin"
Quote from: "Monday Love"
One really gets the idea that our allies the Snarks are too taken with avant tricks....


I don't get that impression. Doesn't The Snark lament the state of experimental writing? Didn't he refer to LangPo as a mafia? He commends Johannes's work, which (though the J-man might run in LangPo circles, I dunno) is best considered outside the glare of your group lens. I'm not going to download the interview again, but Snark placed Johannes's stuff stylistically and thematically outside of LangPo, I thought. (LangPo as it's conceived of here...).

I admit, there's much to be ridiculed with the LangPod mindset, in general. But individually, that stuff just breaks down for me. Maybe it's because I'm just a poetry reader. But I have no problem cherry picking the good stuff and shelving it beside other, more cannonistic favorites. It's all the same: 90% of stuff I identify as crap, the rest are a pleasant surprise, no matter what schools or theories attached. You guys should look closer.


Tastin,

You're quite right.   Frankly, Lang-po holds no interest for me whatsoever.  I don't read it.  I hardly know it exists--except that I hear the term mentioned a lot.  I think this is probably true for many of us.  

I was misunderstood then when I was discussing Snark, because when I say "avant" I'm really not even thinking of lang-po, necessarily.  "Avant" to me equals "ahistorical, usually crap, very rarely good."  I agree with you; to say 'this school is good and this school is bad' doesn't really help that much, although these generalizations are always going to be made.  If I ever read  a 'lang-po' poem I like, I will quickly point out that it is not really a 'lang-po' poem.   (I know myself and I will do this.) The reader always wins.  The customer is always right.

Monday
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Monday Love
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« Reply #87 on: February 28, 2006, 07:49:45 AM »

Here's the quotation I mentioned re: Dr. Samuel Johnson.  I gurantee no MFA student will have read it, especially no student of Jorie Graham's, since it was written a long, long, long, time ago!!

I do not condone the passage; it is rather mean.   Snarky, in fact.  But I only reproduce it to prove that Dr. Johnson is not universally loved.

"What is Poetry?--Poetry!  that Proteus-like idea, with as many appelations as the nine-titled Corcyra! [lang-po, neo-formalist, confessional, jorie-graham-babysitter]  Give me, I demanded of a scholar some time ago, give me a definition of poetry?  "Tres-volontiers,"--and he proceeded to his library, brought me a Dr. Johnson, and overwhelmed me with a definition.  Shade of the immortal Shakespeare!  I imagined to myself the scowl of your spiritual eye upon the profanity of that scurrilous Ursa Major.  Think of poetry, dear reader--. think of poetry, and then think of--Dr. Samuel Johnson!  Think of all that is airy and fairy-like, and then of all that is hideous and unwieldy; think of his huge bulk, the Elephant! and then--and then think of the Tempest--the Midsummer Night's Dream--Prospero--Oberon--and Titania!"

The "professional" atmosphere of the Workshop would not tolerate the above.  It would likely offend in some manner.  I should not be surprised, then, for much is simply forbidden within the polite confines of the MFA laboratory.  The above is too snarky for a professional school of poets.  And anyway, some student would inevitably speak up: "But what is wrong with the bulky?  Think of Falstaff!   Think of Dr. Harold Bloom!!"
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jimmy
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« Reply #88 on: February 28, 2006, 12:57:55 PM »

You don't actually believe anyone gives a crap about this anymore, do you, Kev?

xxxjimmy
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Monday Love
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« Reply #89 on: March 01, 2006, 05:23:33 PM »

Quote from: "jimmy"
You don't actually believe anyone gives a crap about this anymore, do you, Kev?

xxxjimmy


Jimmy wants to know what's the frequency, Kev?
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