Tuesday, December 15, 2009

On "Vision" in Make Believe

Back in September I was asked the following question in regards to my Wheelhouse Press chapbook, Make Believe: "Many moments in Make Believe are concerned with vision. These poems, among other things, explore vision in various modes, from the spectacle of cable news to the very formation of subjectivity. Do you think of your work as constructing what might be called a poetics of seeing?"

Here is a link to my response.

Thanks to Nathan Moore at readwritepoem for his interest.

"While I am saying all of this, I wonder how much any of what I’m saying is conveyed by the poem itself. The poem leads, as David Wolach points out, with its ear, but often the senses become cross-wired — confused and ruinous. I dedicated the poem to my friend Gregg Biglieri who is a master of the pun, and of what he calls “negative synaesthesia” after Zukofsky’s Bottom. Flights into nonsense — into language play — seem necessary for the brain and the senses to sync themselves. So in “Berkeley Island” “when dissolves to wind” and a lens “points and chutes” as though to conflate photography with branching. Nonsense, of which poetry obviously has a lot, is meta-political in that it refuses to reduce language use to a representation (whether for a vulgarly conceived common sense or for the sake of communication).

1 comment:

Nathan said...

Thom, thank you for the generous and fascinating response.