Tuesday, January 30, 2007


JH: F1: GRANDUNCLES OF THE CATTLETRADE does intermix several lists. Instead of the progression of one word from line to line, I progressed from line to line an example from one category. The categories are, respectively, sharks, roller coasters, geological time, birds, poisons, U.S. Civil War battles, stringed instruments, firearms, and ducks. It may be noticed that I have used these categories before, in another series: "Sharks of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley", "The Roller Coasters of Phillis Wheatley", "The Geological Time of Aphra Behn", "The Birds of Nikolai Gogol", "The Poisons of Felicia Hemans", "The Henry Green of U.S. Civil War Battles", "Stringed Instruments of Sheila Kaye-Smith", "Firearms of Matthew Arnold", and "The Ducks of Cotton Mather". With the exception of "raven", all the examples in F1: GRANDUNCLES OF THE CATTLETRADE were previously used in these poems. The recurring category examples are depictions of the pre-existing poems ("The Ducks of Cotton Mather", etc), with the exception of Sawsharks, which may be seen as an allusion to "Sharks of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley", since there's not enough examples for a depiction (is "coincidence" another word for "allusion"? When - and is this a matter of quantity or quality -does depiction stop being allusion?). The categories and examples are accessible even if my "The Ducks of Cotton Mather" series isn't kept in mind, making the progressive words from line to line (Gettysburg, Murfreesboro, Chancellorsville, Vicksburg) synonyms within the category (in D1: GRANDUNCLES OF THE CATTLETRADE, the progressive words are unidentical and begin with the same letter). The "3a.m." throughout the poem (in the position earlier termed the "connector" - see Antic View 83, 91, and 94 for commentary on GRANDUNCLES OF THE CATTLETRADE) is, to me, where explanation becomes problematic: does "3a.m." mean "three o'clock ante meridiem"? If so, do the three in the mornings occur on the same day, etc. If the a.m. does not stand for ante meridiem, what does it stand for? The initials A and M pull in letters from words in the poem ("Arsenic" and "Arquebus", "Murfreesboro" and "Mallard" name just the words that have the initials A and M); "3a.m." occurs three times a line in this six-line poem. Should A be considered apart from the three, since there is no space between them? Does the letter M partake of the numeral three?: etcetera. David Divizio has an art series which processes GRANDUNCLES OF THE CATTLETRADE, here

Could you talk about your poem "foundation of 6 or 7 steps", please?

Fact, the Himalayas.
Schneider who is gray
out of steel chosen
in the nth hiring.

Die sick, butter grease
of farm laborer matrix, the
griffin Bianka put back
the person with the
diet Grosvenor ode.

O use liner injury,
Oil is no zoo.

Paris has thousand Frankensteins,
makes the Himalayas Schneider
which is gray of stem.

choose the nth hiring.

Those are sick
of the butter grease
of farm laborer griffin

put back O malicious Governor,
use injury liner, Oil not
Paris zoo.

thousand Frankensteins, finish
the diesel elephant.

Victory in an armchair
of low belly yaw
because the axis.

I am machete of traumatized
perfume's haft of bean hiring.

enormous end in common
stags of Seersucker. O
yaw of Virgil stein contrast:
Rich daisies, how ideal.

AHB: I noticed from 1st glance how the list items leapt out. having interest in the Civil War, those place names are particularly vivid. the poem sets up relationships that the reader hasn't likely prior experience for. a gallimaufy. you bring up the matter of depiction vs allusion. one has to consider exactly what depiction might entail. a word by itself alludes to whatever register of possibilities, but depiction seems to need context. Gettysburg incites one to think of Lee, Little Round Top, Pickett's Charge, Lincoln, etc. Kingda Ka brought for me nothing directly, tho I heard Kingdom Come in its syllables (I had to supply a context). I don't think Kingda Ka depicts Kingdom Come”, just supplies the allusive possibility. but perhaps I'm wrong. “Foundation of 6 or 7 Steps” is a “translation” of Heine. I had gotten a translation of a Heine poem by Ben Friedlander and liked it, never having read HH before. I had an urge to translate so I got a German text at Project Gutenberg. I don't have much German under my belt but I thought that with aid I might manage. but I was too impatient to proceed in such an activity so I shot the text thru Babelfish and spellcheck. if either program choked on a word, I split the word and tried again. I finally cut a few words and shifted things a bit. it really sounds like a lame process, but I see it as an act of finding. I mean, Frankenstein showed up, which I liked. to what degree can it be a translation of Heine? 7 or 8 years ago I did a flarfy (pre-flarf) translation of a few of the Duino Elegies. in this case, I substituted unlikely words for those in the translation that I used (which no doubt came from Project Gutenberg as well). my translations retain something of Rilke, which I find fascinating. the Heine, so far as I can tell, bears little resemblance to the original.


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