Friday, April 20, 2012

New Jacket2 post on TRANS writing by hastain/Tabios & jai arun ravine

New thresholds, new anatomies!

Lava on Hawai`i Island, 2010
j/j hastain begins "crepuscular," from the relational elations    of ORPHANED ALGEBRA, (with Eileen Tabios, and hereinafter referred to at treooa) with this simple problem: "The dilemma of belonging. What of that has to do with things exterior to us and what of it has to do with our own regard of exteriors and interiors?" (27)  hastain responds to Tabios's sequence of prose poems that engage orphanhood, in particular those orphans who are older, are considered too old to be adopted.  The orphan who becomes part of Tabios's family (provenance Columbia, destination California) is doing word problems in algebra.  But these problems are more complicated than the math would indicate.  Arriving at a reference to walls that "slant at 65-degree angles" the child thinks of "the man you longed to call "Dad."  He is not father, but "potential father."  What appears outside the "glass-less window" is "a lucid mountain."  The man has scarred the boy.  Their relation is not lucid.  Hence, the "answer" to the equation is "'indifference > hatred'?"  Equations do not generally end with question marks; this one offers a "resolution" in ambiguities.  Most of us consider indifference to be a thing better than hatred.  But an orphan, who needs feeling, an emotional relation, longs for it to be strong, not absent or ambiguous.  His regard meets the world's disregard in an equation whose answer is no answer.  As hastain writes in LUCIDITY DISCERNING: "The desire for a father is not a father" (30).

See the rest here

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Jacket2 commentary on Hazel Smith, Caroline Sinavaiana & diaspora

Uncertain geographies: Caroline Sinavaiana & Hazel Smith in (imagined) conversation

Part of the "Hand Upon Hand" sculpture in Centennial Park, Sydney; poem by Adam Aitken
In her marvelous, odd textbook, The Writing Experiment: Strategies for Innovative Creative Writing, Hazel Smith devotes a late chapter to “Mapping worlds, moving cities.”  Composing in a kind of sociological sublime, she writes in the subsection, “The diasporic city,” of the sub-section, “Cities rather than city,” “As the concept of the nation-state breaks down, people migrate and borders shift.  The modern western city has become a mixture of nationalities and ethnicities: this has transformed food, clothing, customs, art and language” (260).  Cutting to the chase, she ends her paragraph on “the diasporic city” with this pithy sentence: “The diasporic city is as much about displacement as about place” (261).   The neatly structured description of this city hardly masks the layers of discomfort and exuberance to which Smith refers, inviting students to write their own city-selves.   Two writers published by Tinfish Press, one of them Hazel Smith and the other Caroline Sinavaiana, explore that vein of dis-ease.  They have almost certainly never met, as their paths have covered different roads, followed different tides, but putting their work in conversation opens new possibilites for talking about poetries of diaspora.

You can find the full commentary here.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Poetry reading on Monday, April 9 at Revolution Books, Honolulu, 4:30-6 p.m.

Monday, April 9, 4:30-6pm
Poetry Readings by Hank Lazer and Susan Schultz
@ Revolution Books

Poetry with wine and cheese after a busy day at work? Join us for a special poetry reading on Monday (not Sunday) between 4:30-6PM. Our special out-of-town guest will be Hank Laser, who will be reading from his latest book of poetry, "N18." He will be joined by Susan Schultz, who will share pieces from her latest book of poetry, "Memory Cards."

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

"When was it that you stopped using the word 'home'?" Yang Lian in Auckland

My post-conference (Short Takes on Long Poems) commentary is up at Jacket2, about the Chinese poet, Yang Lian's writing about Auckland.

You can find it here.

Jack Ross, whom I met in Auckland, is also blogging for Jacket2 now, and he has a commentary on the conference here.

And he blogged on "the world's longest beach poem" here, an event that ended the symposium in a major key.