Monday, May 24, 2010

Why Some Poetry Readings do Not Suck

usually after a poetry reading I spend time anguishing about how they all suck. I am tired of the self absorbed lunacy. The constant hipsterness, the shitty poets reading their inner most thoughts that I want to just vomit out of the my system but occasionally a poetry reading does what it is supposed to do.
About 1o years ago I went to a reading in Philadelphia Robert Creeley was reading, Ron Silliman and Jena Osman where there and Bob just filled up the room-- with poetry and himself. I have a deep affection for Mr Robert Creeley but his reading was so understated and so fine.
A few years ago I went to a reading where Jen Hofer, Pierre Joris and many others read at the now defunct 30/30 space. The reading was a tour de force and I left motivated to write poetry and read poetry and be a poet... not just a poseur.
On Saturday night Traudi an I went to another such reading. Jennifer Scappettone put together a chorus like piece based on her great book From Dame Quickly which should have been a prize winner. The reading with video and a chorus really brought something to the table that we don't often get in poetry today a message that is not hackneyed and language that is clean and bold and makes a point without any BS.
Now, Jen is a friend but she frustrates me at times she is so smart that sometimes for those of us who are stupider it is hard to keep up. But her book and this project does allot for all of us. It breaks language in a way that challenges the way the canyons of the southwest challenge us by making us do thinks differently to gain the same result.
I do not know what her plans are for this piece but I want more......

1 comment:

Steve Duncan said...

Well, having not been to a poetry reading I can't comment on whether they suck or not. But I imagine that writing invites the lazy, and formats that seem easier invite the lazier, and that could make suckiness a lot more likely.

Anyway, my dad's blog is, and mine are,, and although the last is not a blog.