josh blog

Ordinary language is all right.

One could divide humanity into two classes:
those who master a metaphor, and those who hold by a formula.
Those with a bent for both are too few, they do not comprise a class.

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14 Oct '03 07:30:39 AM

I've been especially interested (for someone with, apparently, such a poor affinity for poetry) in modernist etc. poetry lately, the big Americans, Williams, Zukofsky, lately a little Creeley, eyeing my copy of the Cantos with aplomb even. This is basically the only sort of stuff I've showed any interest in in the past, but it's starting to feel meaningful and more uniformly exciting to me. The prospect of putting in real work, or of just coming back to a passage again and again to get the feel of it in my throat, day to day, is appealing. So too the typical high modernist non-form, free-form, anti-form, organic-form, whatever it is, in whichever manifestation. But in feeling my way around I've noticed that I'm especially receptive to pauses, gaps, and wide open spaces. Williams has this strange, recurring thing with two periods, which I guess could sometimes be like an ellipsis, but spaced strangely like at the end of this sentence . . Other times it's just one period, still spaced like this . I don't know what to do with this and don't know how to find out, if there's even supposed to be something I should be doing with them in the first place. But when I come to one of these forlorn (well, not forlorn, but it sounds nice) dots I pause longer, sort of focus my attention intently on - not the dot but - something, 'out there' I suppose, in the same sense that I sometimes have when trying to remember something, looking up slightly with my eyes out of focus. I'm composing myself, or momentarily trying to be aware of something, maybe. Whatever it is, it often gives me a tinge of isolation. I'm imagining planes a lot, the flat kind, like in the desert, the ground. Or just big empty spaces, but not the kind made by the horizon framing the empty sky, which comfort me. I don't know if I like these feelings, but I do regard them kind of solemnly. None of this is intentional on my part.

14 Oct '03 07:14:36 AM

Listening today I could have sworn that I was hearing a song on The Low End Theory, near the end, for the first time ever. Yet I've certainly heard the couple few songs after it over and over again, and the songs before it too. This hole alarms me a little, but I am consoled a bit at having also noticed lots of small things about the other songs on the record, which I haven't played in quite a while.

14 Oct '03 05:52:14 AM

Why does my eye feel bulgy. No.

10 Oct '03 04:17:23 AM

I intended to write here that Music for 18 Musicians makes me feel like I must micturate, but I fear that would give the wrong impression. I feel like like I must micturate.

9 Oct '03 08:42:41 AM

'These are days when no one should rely unduly on his "competence." Strength lies in improvisation. All the decisive blows are struck left-handed.'

9 Oct '03 08:35:49 AM

'Quotations in my work are like wayside robbers who leap out, armed, and relieve the idle stroller of his conviction.'

9 Oct '03 08:34:08 AM

'First principle of wooing: to make oneself sevenfold; to place oneself sevenfold about the woman who is desired.'

9 Oct '03 08:31:48 AM

'To be happy is to be able to become aware of oneself without fright.'

8 Oct '03 08:21:46 AM

'My feelings about you are now those of anger and indignation; and they enable me to tell you a lot of things straight from the shoulder, without my usual tongue tied round-aboutness.

You might as well take all your own literature and everyone else's and toss it into one of those big garbage trucks of the Sanitation Department, so long as the people with the top-cream minds and the "finer" sensibilities use those minds and sensibilities not to make themselves more humane human beings than the average person, but merely as a means of ducking responsibility toward a better understanding of their fellow men, except theoretically - which doesn't mean a God damned thing.'