The Loneliness of the Long Distance Blogger
Things are cooking up in the poetry world lately; so many readings and publications it is hard to keep track of them all. This past weekend there were readings at Adam's Books, The Museum of the City of New York, The Bowery Poetry Club and other venues including the AWP conference that included Carla Harryman, David Shapiro, Anne Waldman, Jeff Encke and many, many others. You'll have to check elsewhere for the scoop on the AWP.
I did attend the Counterpath reading (see list below) at the Bowery Poetry Club and listened with pleasure to Anthony Hawley, Laynie Browne, Jen Hofer, Marjorie Welish, Peter Gizzi, Forest Gander and many others.
Earlier on Friday I had lunch with Anthony Hawley whose acquaintance I made last year at the reading for Gina Meyers' Tiny, issue #3 at the Poetry Project.
Anthony and I met for lunch at the Moma Snack bar. Over excellent soup and salad Anthony I swapped stories about our childhoods and other things. Anthony has a new book from Counterpath that last year published his terrific Autobiography/Oughtabiography. After Anthony left for further AWP activities close by MOMA at the Hilton I stayed to look around. I liked the Latin American show, but particularly enjoyed a piece by Rodney Graham titled Rheinmetall/Victoria 8. This film depicts a 1930's German typewriter found in a junk shop screened using an ancient projector.
has opened a new group blog
Douglas Messerli's *My Year 2005: Terrifying Times (Green Integer). Douglas Messerli has embarked on a massive memoir project that is inventive, comprehensive, funny and fascinating. By means of brief essays juxtaposed with each other disjunctively he is both tracing his own and cultural history from 2000-2010. Each year is given a theme that Douglas traces by means of reviews, autobiographical anecdotes, interviews and other sorts of short pieces. 2005 was "terrifying times." This year he told me. over lunch and coffee at recently at Molyvos, is called "Into the Gap" which is a phrase that describes the dangerous missions of counter-spies who put themselves out in the open to bring out their adversaries. This is time travel par excellence and well worth reading and collecting. From the Table of Contents: "How to Destroy your Children", "Three Hitchcock Structures", "Applause, Applause", "The Prom King", "How ROTC Saved My Llife", "How I Learned to Write Immorally", "Nine Nights in New York", "Making Things Difficult: An Interview between Charles Bernstein and Douglas Messerli", "Two Words by Julien Gracq", "Standstill", "The Hole Missing Robert Creeley", "What Have We Reaped?", "Something Wicked", "Longo's Empire", "The Imperfect Medium", "Answering the Sphinx", "The Necessary Remedy", "Living Darwinism", "Singing the Body Electric", "Borders without Borders", "Starting Over"
Literacy and Longing in L.A. by Jennifer Kaufman and Karen Mack, Delacorte Press
My review on Goodreads
bookshelves: currently-reading (edit)
review: Ever since reading Peter Moore's terrific novel Los Angeles, one of my novelistic holy grails became the search for new witty novels that take place in the silver screen behemoth. For me, Los Angeles is to New York what Paris is to London, our mirror opposite, our ambivalent companion. That grail has been more than satisfied, for the moment, by the literary team Jennifer Kaufman and Karen Mack's *Literacy and Longing in L.A.* For denizens of Goodreads this novel may well be the most sheer literary fun they've had in years, because essentially it is about them. This is a book about, for and by literary gourmands, compulsive readers and book collectors whose lives, let alone "free time" are based on the desire to read. The main character, Dora (named after--guess--Eudora Welty) has recently divorced. In blatant identification with her alcoholic mother, whose husband, Dora's father, left when the two sisters were around 8, Dora loses herself- to the reader's great joy- in an endless reading fest that she writes about in great detail. Dora's husband is a wealthy CEO who is ravishingly handsome but who admits to being "bored by Shakespeare." After a few years of tedious social events, Dora leaves him for her books, bathtub and bottle of wine. A mad affair with a bookstore clerk/playwright brings her to her senses--and more books. At the end of the tome you find a 10 page single spaced list of books mentioned in the text.