Sunday, February 20, 2005

in the post

(photo by Shanna Compton)

This blogger hath received her copy of Verse: The Second Decade, a retrospective the editors "felt best exemplified the magazine's second decade." Brian Henry and Andrew Zawacki hath with generous sensibilities collected the works of over 250 poets, emerging and well-known, from more than 30 countries. 'Twill be interesting to read and consider what's included, what's absented, and what that says about the sways o the thing. Surely someones will write PhD dissertations and such expoundings and expandings soon on the development of independent mags in the 90's--Fence, Slope, Verse, 3rd bed and their kin--that hath made possible and perpetuated the thriving,arriving, hiving, yey verily living development of American lyric poetries strongly influenced by international poetries. This blogger hopes to hear yer thoughts on this O my bloggerissimo.

If you're at all or a bit or pretty much deeply interested in the 1990's development of poetry in which 'lyric meets language ' ('language' alluding to the L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E poets), then this volume is, for historical and/or artistic purposes, O my bloggerissimo, 'tis In the Deep Heart's Corps. The scope doth prove fairly large, charged, and bountiful.

Here's one from the issue by the late Kenneth Koch, which evokes for me a bit o the evolving pleasure the what it's like to wander this enormous volume:

"To the Island of Hydra"

When I sat
Wherever I sat
It was you.
At times I was standing
Also on you.
In walking
I went
From one area, or aspect,
Of your surface
To another
Without falling down
To the rocky sea below
(Oh, your violet forehead,
Your elbows of ceaseless rips!)
Humurous, and undeveloped
You then were
(Though now I hear
You go about the Aegean
Offering tour plans
To ambitious operators.)
We had a plan
That you and I mix
Our resources and come
Up with an understanding--
I was to close the door
And you to open it
Trois fois par jour, about
One hundred times--
That way I could be sure
To spend a month on you
Which is what I desired.


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