Discover more from on poetry & being human
reading recs, quotations, tweets, etc.
Here’s what I have for you today:
What I’m reading
I had a great time reading all the responses to this tweet. Now I want to write a poem that uses all these words.
Also, I had a poem come out recently, and you can read it here:
What I’m reading:
But I didn’t really come out. I didn’t try to — it just kinda happened. I don’t care to announce who I’m into sexually. I think it’s silly. I never felt like I needed to come out.
I think a lot about how poet Dean Young once said that poems can never be performed because the act of consuming poetry is a private, prayerful matter. (I’m paraphrasing, perhaps unfairly) but the argument goes that what a poem IS relies entirely on the solo reconstruction of the experience of one reader. Therefore, a poem performed in front of other people is something else, not a poem. The mere presence of the actual poet with an audience of more than one other person, therefore, disqualifies it from poemdom.
This seems to me to explain how HE enjoys and views poetry. He and the folks in his loosely affiliated school. I have greatly enjoyed the private, prayerful experiences I have had with Dean Young poetry, but I have also sacrilegiously enjoyed performing his poems to a group of people. And those groups of people, together, communally, shape interpretations and experiences of his work that would be impossible alone. It’s not better or worse, but it’s different, the experiencing of art communally or individually.
While I am wary of people guarding the borders of artistic genre, I am less worried about delineating between what is and isn’t art. If you accept that performance poetry is indeed an artform, then what does it matter what it is called or where its boundaries are? All artists are just affixing various tools (paper, microphone, paintbrush, camera, sandwich making materials, etc…) to their noncorporeal hearts and are trying to shoot them at their audiences.
I live so much of my life in my own mind.
on poetry & being human is a reader-supported publication. To receive new posts and support my work, consider becoming a free or paid subscriber.
If you live in LA, go to The Broad. I loved it.
& please be my friend. I want more here.