Monday, January 30, 2012


JH: Your mining analogy is a description of poem series as well as style. What is the relation of poem series to recurring characters? I cannot foresee that I will again write poems in any of my series, but I can imagine writing poems that include any character in my past writings. For me, a poem series is a matter of form rather than character. I don't consider my Virginia poems, for instance, as part of a series, though Virginia has appeared in at least two of my series. "Reminiscence" includes characters that may reoccur in future poems. The Creaky Wink may also reoccur. Speaking of recent poems, here is your "Probably So", a superb poem that makes excellent use of enjambment and prose/line interaction:


throwing his bullet wounds at us,”

said George Harrison. Could

you do the same, Absolute Reader?

Turning verbs to use nouns in the picture, and the end zone falters with completion. The idea in life makes a great prop. Charity cannot exist, but new Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine period. We must discuss the efforts of those counted for more than one. And

God said, “I will provide a train station.

AHB: I guess a general come what may attitude persists. I’m writing an autobiographical book. It roams about in time, because the logic of chronology is no logic at all. So we, writers, go for what interests us, proves useful. George Harrison really did say what I quote him saying (to Peter Fonda), at least according to the story. The image struck me as dynamic. And of course I let the bubbling currency of “news” (from radio or newspaper) seep in. A sort of reverse of Jung’s picture of the unconscious influencing the conscious. I don’t know why such a line as the last one would exist, which is exactly why I like it.

Saturday, January 14, 2012


JH: Style may be likened to a characteristic manner of speaking. One often changes one's way of speaking depending on circumstance. In writing, each poem is approached differently by the only way a poem may be approached, by words (the only visual/audible, verifiable approach to a poem, I should clarify). Is it true that each and every poem is approached differently? There is speaking, and there is the speaker. How different can a speaker be?  A poet's style may be appreciably different than it was ten years ago, but is it likely to be much different from ten days ago? This ten-day difference may happen a few times over a poet's lifetime, but probably wouldn't happen every ten days over a poet's lifetime.

AHB: I suppose if you are mining  the earth for whatever ore you first find the precious. As you dig, perhaps you find greater concentration. As you continue, you find that the concentration diminishes as the lode pays out. I think writers tend to approach each poem the same, like with the repetition of this writing act, we find something different.

So speaking of which, you supplied Wryting-L with the following different sounding piece. No Greek, and kinda flaky:


The masque at the Creaky Wink, it was some affair! Me and Het Rancifer, were we the Red Death, the Yellow King? You'd think. We, venerable, inveterate to the Wink, masqued as Gravestone and Madness Creek, newcomers to the Creaky Wink. Some pair!

Monday, January 02, 2012


JH: Few of my prose poems exceed five sentences. Can I say that I don't intend to write short poems? Brevity accompanies the lyric, and although I know there are many kinds of poems, I hold poetry and the lyric as synonyms. Regardless, I don't deliberately write short poems. Is cleaving to a type of poem a definition of style?

AHB: I do not feel like I cleave to a style. I write how I can. I think about style, as an object of originality, about as much as I think of my fingerprints in the same light. Sometimes I consciously put limits and dimensions to my writing, but in all cases the writing discovers itself. It does seem like it takes a certain confidence to know that the one sentence that you have written is ‘done’. I mean, a certain momentum exists in the act of writing. And see, I have written a short reply.