Distribution Automatique

Saturday, August 14

Here's a part of Rob Fitterman's
book *Metropolis*, published in

onedit {click here}

This issue includes
Jackson Mac Low (complete *125 Postcard Poems*),
Lisa Jarnot, Miles Champion, Tim Davis,
Judith Goldman and others
Rob Fitterman Poet's Sampler
Intro by Bruce Andrews

Boston Review Poet's Sampler {click here}

This past Spring, Brian Kim Stefans,
who has recently moved to Providence,
Ri, edited an edition of UBU online
that included a long work of Rob Fitterman

This Window Makes Me Feel {click here}
Flash!!!!! Summertime is sizzling in BlogLand!!!!
Ghostworld: Bollywood Noir{click here}

Essays on noir-inflected Bollywood cinema from the 1940s to the present by Gary Sullivan
From *How To Proceed In The Arts*
by Gary Sullivan (Faux Press, 2001)

from *Dream, March 6, 2001*

"John Ashbery looks at me like I'm the most pathetic excuse for a human
being- nevermind poet-on the planet. His voice is dripping with sarcasm
and contempt. "Yeah, " he says, crushing his cigarette beneath his heel, "I've
got a poem on the internet, too."

I feel this rush llke I'm gearing up for one of those "print" versus "web"
discussions, but before I can get a single word out, the great poet grabs me in
a headlock, his breath reeking of cigarette smoke and he says, "Just fucking
write the shit down, man, you've got all night. Write it down. You don't *go* to the
poem, the poem doesn't *come* to you, the poem is *always* there, and if you're
anything like the poet you no doubt imagine you are, you just *write it down*."

There's nothing I can say to that. I look around at the otherwise peaceful
scene, the families and lovers dotting the sloping hillside, and as I turn my
gaze back to meet his, John Ashbery shoves me, face first, into the soil."

Somewhat making up for his long absence from Blogworld,
David Hess (Heathens in Heat) {click here} offers an epic report
on the Boston Massacre.

And, where have you been, bonnie David?
Speaking, perhaps for the last time,
of the Boston poetry reading marathon
strangely titled the Boston Massacre
(was it we "older" poets who were to be
symbolically and, so sweetly, massacred?)
here are two links to some more of Shanna Compton's
charming photos:
Brand New Insects {click here}
and Brand New Insects {click here}
The World Says No To The Bush Agenda
rally on Sunday, August 29th
United for Peace {click here}

Friday, August 13

"There are persons who cannot make friends. Who are they?
Those who cannot be friends. It is not the want of understanding
or good-nature, of entertaining or useful qualities, that you complain
of: on the contrary, they have probably many points of attraction;
but they have one that neutralizes all these- they care nothing about
you, and are neither better nor worse for what you think of them.
They manifest no joy at your approach; and when you leave them, it
is with a feeling that they can do just as well without you. This is
not sullenness, nor indifference, nor absence of mind; but they are
intent solely on their own thoughts, and you are merely one one of the
subjects they excercise them upon. They live in a society as in a
solitude; and, however their brain works, their pulse beats neither
faster nor slower for the common elements of life. There is,
therefore, something cold and repulsive in the air that is about them
-like that of marble. In a word, they are *modern philosophers*; and
the modern philosopher is what the pedant was of old- a being who
lives in a world of his own, and has no correspondence with this. It
is not that such persons have not done you services- you acknowledge
it; it is not that they have said severe things of you- you submit to
it as a necessary evil: but it is the cool manner in which the whole
is done that annoys you- the speculating on you as if you were
nobody- the regarding you with a view to experiment *in corpore vili*--
the principle of dissection- the determination to spare no blemishes-
to cut you down to your real standard;- in short, the utter absence
of the partiality of friendship, the blind enthusiasm of affection, or the
delicacy of common decency, that whether they 'hew you as a carcase
for hounds, or carve you as a dish fit for the gods,' the operation
on your feelings and your sense of obligation is just the same; and,
whether they are demons or angels in themselves, you wish them
equally *at the devil*!"

*On Disagreeable People*
William Hazlitt
*The Monthly Magazine*
August, 1827
Seeing It Through

Geof Huth's critical, visual, aural and conceptual translation
(to be more precise, interpretation) of David Nemeth's
homophonic translation project (a la C. Bernstein and B. Mayer)
(including audblog readings of his own contribution)
right now on
dbqp Visualizing Poetics {click here}
Politics in a Froth

Maryanne Shaneen (Froth) {click here}
offers an update on the protest march planned
re: the Republican Convention
Thanks for the Memories

Some cool jazz riff poetry collages by Jonathan Mayhew
just right for a summer day on
Bemsha Swing {click here}
Keep 'Em Coming

Alex Cumberbatch's *Piece in 940 Parts*
exzentrick libretti {click here}

Thursday, August 12

Although his vision is often dark,
I still like the poems of William Bronk.
Received from *Serendipity*
*The Empty Hands*:

"The Failure To Devise A Better World

If failure is what you mean to call it, it's the mind,
I suppose, that fails, but what a word. It fails
by succeeding. A sneaky triumph. The mind spies
upon itself and sees its subterfuge,
its feints and camouflage, its helpless flank.
It always defeats itself at tic-tac-toe.
Quite true, it doesn't win...
But the heart is hopeful..."
A sore throat and a cold today.
Not fun, but it gives me an excuse
(as if I needed it) to lose myself
in books...(and blogs and websites)
Nada Gordon concludes this lively, revealing
and thoughtful interview in Jacket (23)
with the pleasures of blogging
Tom Beckett
interviews Nada Gordon {click here}

Some poetic time travelling by
Mike Snider {click here}
Received from *Serendipity*, Berkeley, CA,
Caterpillar 8/9, with back and front covers
by Jess.

From *Man's Fulfillment in Order
and State", by Robert Duncan:

"By the time of the Second World War I
saw the reality of Hitler America was
fighting as lying in what America was
becoming. The United States would
emerge as the power in Europe and
Asia that Germany and Japan had been.
I had formed a mystical pacifism: all
national allegiances--my own order as
an American--seemed to be really
betrayals of the larger order of Man.
In time we defeated Hitler, and live now
in a world where not only does Hitler
spring anew in his homeground which
our war did nothing to transform, but
we find our own government more and
more in his place. Butchering Germans
and Japanese had not exterminated the
will to power through terror but extended it."

April--November 1968

Wednesday, August 11

Shanna Compton scoops the Massacre:
Check out these photos!

Brand New Insects {click here}
David Bromige kindly gave me copies of
his fascinating collaboration with the poet
and publisher Richard Denner. They are
*Spade* (cantos 1-33) and *The Petrarch
Project* (cantos 34-66) both from
dPress {click here}

A few have been published on
Poetic Inhalation (two quickly downloaded pdf files)
7 to 9 from *Spade* {click here}

Among the treasures received from
*Serendipity Books* (Berkeley, CA)
is the first edition of Samuel Butler's
*Notebooks*, long a favorite.

"My Books

I never make them: they grow; they come to me and
insist on being written, and on being such and such. I did not
want to write *Erewhon*, I wanted to go on painting and found
it an abominable nuisance, being dragged willy-nilly into
writing it. So with all my books- the subjects were never
of my own choosing; they pressed themselves upon me
with more force than I could resist. If I had not liked the
subjects I should have kicked , and nothing would have got
me to do them at all. As I did like the subjects and the
books came and said they were to be written, I grumbled a
little and wrote them."
Also received: Clark Coolidge's *The Rova
Improvisations* (Sun and Moon, 1994)

Like so many of Coolidge's books, if you
love contemporary innovative poetry this
book is a page turner. It seems I stopped
the habit, started in the late 60's, of often
reading Coolidge- i wanted to give other
poets a chance, so I mostly stopped reading
him since the early 90's. But this
one, once begun, is irresistable:

"Just at the last possible moment for it
time's forms quit clouding the mass"

Having inspired, for decades, nearly every
poet I know, and probably most others,
Coolidge is, without doubt, among the most important.
living abstractionists in poetry.

In the unlikely event that you don't already
know all this very well, check out his work at
The Electronic
Poetry Center {click here}

Tuesday, August 10

Inspired by Charles Bernstein's experiments list,
who in turn was inspired by Bernadette Mayer's,
David Nemeth has published a homophonic
translation chain including a number
of familiar bloggers, available as a quickly
downloaded pdf right now on
Nemski.com {click here}
Speaking of Sextus Propertius (born about
48 b.c.) Princeton University Press has
just published Vincent Katz' fine translation
of the complete elegies, with extensive
notes to the text.

Monday, August 9

This just in:

Shanna Compton (Brand New Insects)
{click here}

announces she is
editor and assoc.
publisher of Jerome Sala's new
book out soon from Softskull Press
Martin Tamny, the philosopher,
many years the chairman of the
Philosophy Department at CCNY,
likes to tease us about our excitement
about coincidences. Can't resist
mentioning that today, when I received
two books by Ray DiPalma from
*Serendipity Books*, Berkeley,
Ca (*Between the Shapes* and
*Clinches*, both published in
1970) I ran into Ray nearby
where he lives, near Columbia
U, not having seen him in a long
while. Many have been asking me,
where he's been, and I just found
out he's been having a health
problem which had him off
his feet for awhile, but he's much
better now.

From *Between The Shapes*:

*In the heart's tent
Not looking for something to do
But looking to do it right"

from *Clinches*

"Tired of sentiment
we read "the Ancient Mariner"
and rehearse the illuminations
we'll later forget"
By the way, a new long
poem by Ray is out right now on
Verse {click here}


Among some other
books received today
from *Serendipity:

Jordon Davis
*A Little Gold Book*

"Encouragement. The precipice of history
Awaits! Rigor shouts "Feel!"
But it is a suede of yourself."
George-Therese Dickenson


the Pacific Ocean
cars on Grant St.
bus stop at Castro
a woman with henna hair descends the steps
and moves to the park

saxophone notes rise on air"
(new links)
for August 9, 2004

Ivy Is Here {click here}

harry k. stammer {click here}


mark young's series magritte {click here}

hey davey! {click here}

Textual Conjectures {click here}

Bad With Titles {click here}

tributary {click here}

Cosmopoetica {click here}

She Just Wanted To Blend In {click here}

Blood of the White Words {click here}

Destinesia {click here}

Blindheit: clarity is overrated {click here}

Phaneronoemikon {click here}

Hanging LIke A Ragdoll {click here}

In The Works {click here}

Nonlinear Poetry {click here}

Verse {click here}

exzentrick libretti {click here}

[Joe London] {click here}

Lisablog {click here}

Really Bad Movies {click here}

Postmodern Collage Poetry {click here}

Unprotected Texts {click here}

Every form of magic has been satisfactorily explained-
except friendship.

Sunday, August 8

Another translation of Propertius,
by WG Shepherd (Penguin, 1985)
renders the passage below quite

"I can bring together parted lovers;
I can open your mistress' sluggish doors;
I can physic another's recent wounds-
The medicine in my words is no slight thing.

Cynthia has always taught me what each should seek
And what beware: Love has done *something* for me.
Beware of opposing your mistress when she's cross;
Of lofty speeches; of staying silent long;
If she asks for something, don't refuse and frown;

Don't let kind words descend on you in vain.
When she's contemned, she arrives in a rage.
When hurt, she'll not forget her righteous threats.
The more you're humble, surrendered to love,
The oftener you'll enjoy your good achieved.

The man whose heart shall never be whole and free,
He can continue blest in just one girl."
Here's Vincent Katz' version:

"I can rejoin separated lovers,
I know how to open a woman's slow doors.
I can cure any recent pain,
not light is the medicine in my words.
Cynthia always taught me which things to pursue
and which to avoid: Love has a certain effect.

Beware of fighting and making her unhappy,
don't boast too much nor be too long silent.
If she has asked for something, don't make a face.
Never let kind words leave her unanswered.
She gets irritated when disrespected,
makes unjust threats in her rage.

The more you are humble, love's subject,
the more you will reap a good harvest.
He will remain happy with one girl
who will never be free, never thoughtless."
Hard to take a train to Union Square
and not take a turn in the Strand bookshop,
if you have a little time, which we did.
Found two books, one by Karl Shapiro,
a first edition of his *Trial of a Poet*,
hardback, Reynal & Hitchcock,
1947, $10. Couldn't resist after
reading these lines:

"We waged a war within a war,
A cause within a cause;
The glory of it was withheld
In keeping with the laws
Whereby the public need not know
The pitfalls of the status quo.

Love was the reason for the blood
The black men of our land
Were seen to walk with pure white girls
Lauging and hand in hand.
This most unreasonable state
No feeling White would tolerate."

Shapiro's sharp anti-war irony, reminscent for
me of A.E. Housman's *A Shropshire Lad*
can be further seen in the following passage
from the same work:

""Doctor, doctor, a little of your love
And a little of your skill,
I can no longer sight my gun,
No longer can I kill.'

"Soldier, soldier, I cannot find the cause
And I will not set you free,
But take this pill and go your way
To your own company."

"Chaplain, chaplain, a little of your love
And a little of your grace,
I can no longer think my thoughts
Nor bear the demon's face."

"My son, my son, I cannot find the cause
And I will not set your free,
But take this book and go your way
To your own company."

I also bought another translation
(my third) of The Poems of
Sextus Propertius. Riding back
home from visiting our friends
Elaine Equi and Jerome Sala
I read:

"Lovers that part I can unite again,
And open doors when suitors knock in vain;
And cure another's fresh-contracted smart
With words that hold a potent healing art.
I know how lovers should and should not woo:
This Cynthia taught me: Love did something too.
Don't be contentious when your girl's annoyed:
Don't use bold speech, nor silence unalloyed.
Refuse her nothing: give without a frown:
Let no kind word fall unregarded down.
If when she comes she's chafing at some slight,
And bent on scolding to assert her right,
You must be meek, and bow as love requires,
So may the outcome answer your desires.
None can live happy with one girl but he
Who's never whole of heart and fancy-free."

(translation by A. E. Watts,
Centaur Press, 1961)

In 1995, Sun and Moon published
Vincent Katz's translation of
Propertius, that he titled *Charm*

My other edition, a Penguin book,
seems to have eluded me at the moment,
Cynthia style.