Monday, July 29, 2019

199. Notes for first M talk } &.

Four phrases rearranged from “Capitol” so I might hear them together:

Magic circle of horses + one mother’s voice,
magic little river + magic funicular.

A line—“heaps of stuff being sold”—ties these phrases. Read, “Magic circle of horses [caesura] + magic funicular. / heaps of stuff being sold” and “+ one mother’s voice, [caesura] magic little river. / heaps of stuff being sold.”

Mother’s voice = magic little river. A magic funicular [a mountain train or the cable that draws a mountain train up and down the mountain] is like a river.

The poem’s formal tone is broken in the line that follows the second “heaps of stuff being sold.” Read, “the ones who seemed like dicks” and, four lines later, “dogs chilling in their roundabouts.”

“Capitol,” by Hannah Brooks-Motl, appears in issue 17 of Tupelo Quarterly. I’m perplexed by Henk Rossouw’s conclusion re. the “critique and careful hope” in the “superb ending of this poem.” Read, “magic from the bunker / or what’s coming but magic / said she”—bunkers, I suppose, are hopeful. Are “cautiously” hopeful. I sure hope to survive. I sure hope when I pop my little head out above ground there’s stuff (“heaps of”). Maybe the hope is in the phrase “said she”; the omega woman emerges, the last woman = magic: she’ll fix all this shit.

(In issue 18 of Tupelo Quarterly, by the way, is a new poem by C. S. Carrier, a scruffy brother-friend of mine from the Hartford days. He writes about stuff being gone.)

My “Notes for first M Talk” (Word For/Word issue no. 33) is a close read of Hannah Brooks-Motl’s poem “Of Sadness” from her book M (The Song Cave, 2015).

And in Word For/Word issue no. 33, a selection of Matthew Klane’s cut-up circular works. “The Other Pothole” recalls Sol LeWitt, er, rather, the cover design of MIT presses’ Incomplete Open Cubes; I’d call Klane’s piece “R to the Ople.” What do you get when you add r + ople? Hang the letter “l.” These pieces from a “summer-constructed daily practice junk mail collage” series. See issue no. 3 of ctrl + v, issue no. 56 of Fugue, and fall 2018 issue of Gasher for more (the Gasher collage stuff is the best of it, for my money).

Rosaire Appel’s Page Speaks series, made with crayon and ink on slightly yellowed paper that feature some kind of printer’s guide marks, is my favorite work in Word For/Word 33. Built around / over texts cut or grayed out, the orange and blue crayon scribbles are striking, enhanced by the black ink lines and smudges. I see staves, thought-balloons, and a snail’s shell. It’s lively.

[ Image from Page Speaks by Rosaire Appel. ]

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