Utopian Turtletop. Monsieur Croche's BĂȘte Noire. Contact: turtletop [at] hotmail [dot] com

Friday, September 21, 2007

I've been studying poetry all of my adult life, and I don't understand it. All I know is, when I'm having an experience of poetry, when a poem is reaching me, my mind is a bowl of Rice Krispies and the poetry is the milk. Snap! Crackle! Pop! says my mind. It's not particularly articulable -- at least not by me, at least not yet. Maybe someday. Sometimes I write verses that give me the "poem experience," but I have no interest in showing them to anybody, because I have no faith that my experience of the stuff is at all transferable.

Been reading -- and loving -- Emily Dickinson and Bob Kaufman lately. As I thought tonight about posting pictures of them, it occurred to me that they're both so paradigmatic, Emily the avatar of poet-as-home-bound-recluse, Kaufman the avatar of poet-as-street-oracle; both disdaining to publish for most of their writing lives, Kaufman to the extent that many of his poems survive only because his friends wrote them down from his public recitations.

I've set two of Dickinson's poems to music. They're among my favorites of my songs.

Too late to say anything about either poet's work, and don't feel the inclination anyway, except that their stuff is the aspirin in my mental Coke. They make me fizz.

Talk about your odd couples. I liked what you've said here.
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