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Showing posts from July, 2010

hot shit from Poland!!

Adam is a mighty fine poet and translator . His translations of Grzegorz Wroblewski, A Marzipan Factory, were just published by Otoliths. He has the touch with Wroblewski's translations into English. I dig it. No doubt, if read, many more will dig it!!! Tender elliptical Kafkaesque dramatic situations spun oh so well!!! witty, charming, slender, funny, surrreal, awe-filled, animals, the quotidian reframed and reframed again and again, space age, earth age, ghosts, narrative threads, elliptical strip teasing (did i already say that), razor sharp observations of the natural human world, birds, old age, fucking, not fucking, haunting, hunting, beyond the barbarian/classical divide, ahead of the time cause it's bloody smack dab OF the time not 10, 20, 30 years behind like majority of poetry and art, and so on . . . .

Marjorie Perloff claims it is the best book of poetry she has read in years!!!!

And Grzegorz is also a painter/visual artist. Version 1, one of his paintings, is the …

refreshing report from Soundeye 2010

I have often had a discussion with non-poets and their feelings after attending an innovative event (reading or festival) and they reported a feeling of perplexity. Not because they didn't enjoy the work. Some hated poetry, or at least disliked it, but often really enjoyed the variety of work at an innovative poetry event. No . . . they were asked if they too were a poet and when the said "no, but I enjoy the work" the conversation ended and they felt outed.

It is a silly question but . . . . . . can non-poets attend innovative/experimental poetry events????

Some of these same folks have also mentioned the word "hobby." And I say no way. it is not a hobby. It is a whole way of life. POETRY is not a hobby damn it. Or maybe being a "language artist" is better than the word poet?

If poetry events become a closed club of self congratulation maybe it resembles a hobby.

or perhaps it is a religion.

We need more candour. We need more connections to the other…

Barry Schwabsky

in response to a review of Tom Raworth in which the reviewer argues that so-called difficult poetry is anti-capitalist and difficult "modernist' poetry carries more political weight than the movement/mainstream poetry in the UK with its easily summarised themes and conversational speech and so on . . ..the old language school argument . . . and of course modernism consists of more than so called high modernism . . . i don't want to choose between difficult or accessible . . . . there are many kinds of interesting art . . . nice response from Barry

either "accessible" nor "difficult" is a quality with inherent aesthetic value--that is, to state what I hope is obvious, there are good and bad "accessible" works just as there are good and bad "difficult" works (though there might be pleasures that are specific to difficult works that are unobtainable through accessible ones and vice versa). So to speak of accessibility or difficulty as…


(Turkish wedding)

born for the void
dry dolls fall
around me
there are ikons
there are ikons more
horrible than
angels mangled
in the trees

the sperm
gardens with goat’s

the groom did the gorilla

the bride pined
with money

the upchoke of sea scents

the special chimneys

what passes
for my mind
ballistic reports
as you disappeared
everything is
not too ha ha

melancholy wakings now
attack the nipples

this milk turns to fire

the prophet comes
into a virtuous lady

my hymen


here comes the wind
the blinds clacking

like stuck penguins
I’m sleeping with

a flower vender
on a moped

with a bell from hell
let's part the hood

and ride
our Hegelian brides

with the wicked smiles of those who jerk
off and off

in solid white cloudy tissues
and the ashes of Irish mermaids, yep, them

i clog along
in deer hoofs

my thursdays
into your weekends

silk hair expiring at
yr ankles with

a sea map between

yr voice cracks
like a piano you keep
moving we’re long

water boils in the clouds
of the sick

i run on beams
a baptismal dish
when i’m smiling
my jaw turns to stone
heft yr own hungry

dawn’s kingdom
maketh me

beside the rancid

swift with my

my tawny


I danced myself
a tomb

a goat two goats
stood on the rocks

my hand raised


in this Karaman

i’m beat beat

there is a sweatstorm
in my trousers

and if you find yourself
falling apart

there is a rain of mud
and a lake of salt

I’m posed and popping
like a peacock

what used to calm
rips my life to ribbons

my gut kicks
map it blind

i can’t say it’s a sickness
but a stranger slipping nooses in my den

yr old man was
a wishing machine

a toy chest
if only we hope

LATO 2010

what was the fate of the turtle gripping the talons of the eagle?
do you miss sauerkraut stew?
do you miss the bubbles of Polish beer?
before you fall asleep
chronicles spray against the white walls of
yon mind
a pensioner of the void
broccoli dust on the night sheets
to be like plums in an icebox
lazy PUG!
my family owned peaches and a dog named Lady
when you add up all the sunday
roasts I ate many a cow
what is the convenient truth?
my liver today requires a fresh bleeding
we’ve been tricked into saucey action
lately the booze has been scratching my eyelids
making tea in my underwear
something to eat to clear yr mind
something bad inside went away
can a vibration alter our ocular visions
don’t take the voices for silky gods
a kiss on yr molten eyes
the lure of mermaids
they are waiting in the ether to form
propogate only to die
and I grant you no wishes my pretty son
tell me what you wanna become
a union of mammals
a mammal republic
milk giving fiends




white cheese, tomatoes, fresh bread, orange juice with a drop of wodka


A Marzipan Factory by Grzegorz Wroblewski
Seoul Bus Poems by Jim Goar
The Story of England by Tom Beaumont James
I Too Went to the Hunt of the Deer by Lale Mulder
Small Gods by Terry Pratchett
Nausea by Sartre
Nadja by Andre Breton
Gangway 40 (expatriations):



I’m writing to you in this weather
among buckets of bumble bees

I am trying to write as if
something is happening to you

these leopard skins are not my people

I do not understand your way of turning

an animal curls up in silence
reality cannot be forced

I bought a jacket
everyone kept calling us German

the bar was Russian
the women were Russian
the music was Gypsy

we were both perceiving and it is said
perceiving is complex

the gin and tonics
were expensive but strong


And I am always trying to think about how to write. As if starting over again. So that I am using different modes all the time and seem to resist doing what I know how to do, resist using modes I may think I have gotten good at. In some visceral way, my feeling is that everything I have written is unsuccessful, and that now, today, as I write, I might find out how to do it right, in a completely different way. Of course I know I never will. Still, I have that feeling--that writing is essentially inexpressible and mysterious, and one is always trying to figure out how to do it and never quite getting there. That there is something absolutely essential to be expressed but one can’t ever quite express it. So it always feels like finding a new way to write, starting completely over again on a new tack.

Like probably all poets my writing comes out of reading, and reading may be a form of writing and vice versa. So I am reading something important to me and then at some point in reading I a…

EDA (from primitive Pianos)

EDA (Istanbul)

Adana kebab is sizzling
behind me in Sultanahmet
a man in an all-white suit
gets his shoes shinned
I’m skinned
he speaks of Kurdish and Armenian
symbols animals & patterns
Silk. Wool. Silk & wool. Crosses.
the azan prayer booms
from mosque to mosque
in surround sound
I move among the crowds
of Taksim
I run my hands
over the Galata tower
move through tunnels
move through the songs of gypsies
EDA is a foreign land
a foreign tongue say
ghosts the ghost of
an idea EDA is not
a verdict EDA moves
through 20th century
Turkish poetry
a crossing, a bridge,
pronouns are fungible
pre-rational pre-Islamic
a profanity and a purity
there is no sticky tape


I slept on the banks of Bosphorus and woke to a cold breeze. This is a city of crooked teeth.

Canan is an idea. Canan is the beloved. Canan is pronounced Ja nan. Canan is the lion’s milk the lion’s inferno.

I learnt the fo…

Mind Sores 4th or so revision


eagles search for turtles to drop and crack upon the rocks
this is a tangible instant of a pure orgasm
cracks in the hands of a moviestream
the body of a cracked door
sun crackles across this country of mosques
dirty scientists gather a genesis of light
cracked armies attack the honeycombs
how fast the summer passes with drums
peons with a rainstorm of rugs and flirts and virgin brides
cracks in the muslim masks
all the pretty boys just for the hell of it
yr cracks lay upon my pillow
the body of a cracked nation
cracked producer of royal candies
a voice in a hammock cracks the trees
a cracked lung for penitence
you were born and we kept you hungry
cracked cats lick yr name

Mind Sores 2nd draft


eagles search for turtles to drop and crack upon the rocks
this is a tangible instant of a pure orgasm
cracks in the hands of a moviestream
the body of a cracked door
sun crackles across this country of mosques
dirty scientists gather a genesis of light
cracked armies attack the honeycombs
how fast the summer passes with drums
peons with a rainstorm of rugs and flirts and virgin brides
cracks in this pegan country
yr cracks lay upon my pillow
the body of a cracked nation
cracked producer of royal candies
yr boat moves upon cracky sounds

from primitive pianos (1st draft)

Celestial Teabags
(Karaman, Turkey)

there is a sweatstorm
in my trousers
celestial teabags
wise ones
the sun whose
is neurosis
flames of
the blinds are

it is hard to keep
track of my buttons

reality is a sandwich stuck
between my knuckles

i’m in fact
a thing a thing

in this mountain town
covered women & more goat cheese

cross women slapping the cheeks
of cheeky children

down on this cracked desert earth
Rainer Maria Rilke
I’m putting in my ear-
rings a phantom paw
paws me

cat angels
everywhere around here

i’m beat beat

and so on . . .

I’ve been stabbed by the Baltic
fleet and live with the Ottoman
trading company

the weather


think like this: “May all creatures be happy and safe,
May they all have happy minds.

Whatever living things there are –
whether feeble or strong,
long or short, whether stout
or of medium size, whether quick or green,
whether big or little, whether seen or unseen

whether those living near or far away,
or those being born as well as those
only seeking to be born –
may all these beings be happy,
may they all have happy minds.

Let no being deceive another
Let none despise others
nor wish harm, in anger or with hatred,
upon another.

Just as a mother protects her only child
with her entire will and being
so let us each cultivate a boundless friendliness and love
toward all living things

Let each of us radiate limitless love
toward everything in the world:
above, below, beside, and across – unhindered
with no ill will or enmity."

Do this whether standing, walking, sitting, or lying down:
develop this attitude!: this is how to live nobly.
Let each of us not fall into useless thoughts
but be virtuous -- and be en…


fantastic new book of poetry by Grzegorz Wróblewski

Grzegorz Wróblewski's A Marzipan Factory

A Marzipan Factory is the most original and enticing book of poems I have read in years. It is Kafkaesque and yet tender, cynical and yet warm, elliptical and yet wholly immediate. GRZEGORZ WRÓBLEWSKI can take the most ordinary of phenomena and then give them the twist of a knife: to “spare” the life of a living organism—a “dry” tangerine for instance—is, from another angle, to forget it. The pleasures and terrors of sex, of age, of the fear of death, of the deceptions of our social life, have rarely been so brutally—yet wittily and charmingly—documented as they are in these short, often gnomic poems, surprisingly well rendered in Adam Zdrodowski’s translation. Grzegorz Wróblewski restores one’s faith in the power of lyric poetry to renew itself. - Marjorie Perloff