“Nature is full of branches because if you want to be close to a lot of space with minimal increase…”
Nature is full of branches because if you want to be close to a lot of space with minimal increase in your own volume, your best bet is a structure that forks and sub-forks. This is how birds make wings: they send out a bone with a little quick tissue and feather roots, and from them grow rachis, and from them grow barbs, and from them grow barbules, and from them grow barbicels, between which the gaps are so small that air doesn’t bother trying to get through, and the bird has made something the shape of an airfoil without having to fill it with heavy meat. Branching is also how plants fill out their space in the air to collect sunlight and CO2, and underground to find solid nutrients. The structures of your nervous, respiratory, and circulatory systems are similarly manifold.
But the principle is deeper than life itself. It’s how rivers work: though we don’t ascribe intent, a river needs to approach every part of its basin in the sense that erosion will make it grow streams and rivulets until it does. It doesn’t even have to be water. Fluid dynamicists use the phrase viscous fingering to describe this kind of structure in their domain.
In fact, apparently in some sense it might be deeper than physics, because – assuming MLC is true – the Mandelbrot, a piece of abstract math, has some desire-less need to connect its infinite brood.”
This isn’t “poetry”. And yet it is. New definition: poetry = an indeterminable number of ways to pay attention to and fall in love with the world and all it’s truths, half-truths and lies.
BH: None. Should sounds like eating vegetables. I'm sorry— I sort of criticised your question there. But I don't like should. I'm guessing that your question has to do, in part, with poetry's diminished status in our culture. I certainly wish poetry still didn't seem so strange to people. Which is weird, given that, if people write, they're more likely to write poetry than anything else, in my experience. With that in mind, I think poetry is an every-day thing for many.
The winner of last night’s ZAP! Slam, São Paulo, as part of the FLUPP literary festival. In the third and final round, he performed a piece that consisted of two and a half minutes of silence, and a line that said something about how we are all mute in some way or another. I didn’t get a precise translation. Take note: there’s an art to holding your ground against expectation for two and a half minutes when every other piece before yours has put forward some kind of passionate exclamation. He approached the mic and backed away, toyed with us just enough so we didn’t question that it was all leading to something, and finally delivered. In conversation after the set, he called it a Kamikaze slam poem. For sure… but what a way to kill a slam, to subvert the form… #vscocam
Nicholas Bate consistently brings the good. If I had a fantasy faculty for a professional development programme for creatives, he’d be a first draft pick every time.
“I contribute in a variety of ways (if we must derive value from the idea of contributions): I have a…”
Dear poet: read the linked article immediately. Dear people who aren’t poets: please do the same. It certainly reminds me of a few too many conversations I’ve experienced. “So you’re a poet, eh?” they say with the kind of casual sneer reserved for someone who’s said they’ve just seen a unicorn…
Mr. Steidl, you scheduled this interview at 11 o’clock on a Sunday morning. Do you always work on weekends?
Yes on Saturdays and Sundays. Those are the only days in the week where I can work concentrated on concepts for books, I can do my drawings for book covers and book design. I don’t have to open my mouth, I am silent, I listen to the radio, classical music, and I do just what I want.
Do you ever take time off or is the printing process such a passion for you that you don’t need to?
I am of course not risking my health and my physical power just for printing jobs and without six and a half hours of sleep at night I am of no use the next day, but actually throughout the year I don’t need vacations or days off. I have the privilege that I spend the day doing whatever I want. That keeps you fresher. It is more a question of discipline and something that you have to learn. Since I have been working for 45 years, I have learned to be disciplined.
Hvísl - Whispers of Iceland (by schundoe)
An interactive Art Book; by Bertrand Lanthiez & Chloé Curé
This, where text = poetry. Ambient supporting audio and imagery alongside. Could be rendered as an app, but the tactility of the book, the idea of book as artefact that offers unfussy multimedia interactivity… yes.
“Often my subjects are the simplest things in the world: joy, family, the weather, houses, streets….”
- Zadie Smith— Storytelling Is A Magical, Ruthless Discipline (via TheLi.st
“English Literature A Level concentrates only on literature (the clue is in the title). The English…”
- Letter to The Sunday Times in support of A Level English Language and Literature via English & Media Centre
“so you have to live the poem with your whole mind and body. This is why performance poetry has had…”
- Why performance is the embodiment of poetry— Michael Rosen (via The Guardian)
“Whatever pain you suffer, after you have observed it, after you have imagined its shape and taste…”
- Cindy Clem— Darkly Devotions | [PANK]
Poet: Greer Dewdney @ BARPo Gallery Cafe 2014-05-02
- Want to know more about Burn After Reading? BAR Poet Greer Dewdney is interviewed by The Little Owl— Page vs Stage Poetry | The Little Owl
“This is a page-by-page interactive companion to Khaled Hosseini’s And the Mountains Echoed. Explore…”
Mmm. Something to consider for the next collection?
Poet: Tyrone Lewis @ BARPo Gallery Cafe 2014-05-02
Hm. Not so sure about the interface. Looks a bit mid-00s flat interactive multimedia environment for my tastes, though that’s perhaps unfair of me to say without having actually seen it pixel for pixel. Nonetheless, I’m interested in finding out more…
Poet: Safi Strand @ BARPo Gallery Cafe 2014-05-02
“As Johnson describes it, the spark file is “a single document where I keep all my hunches: ideas for…”
Yes. There’s a point at which tweaking your writing workflow moves away from productive adjustments and more into self-stimulating abstraction. After all, the simplest way to get writing done is take pen and paper, apply backside to seat and write. Right?
While that’s true, tools and methods can most definitely impact on your process in positive ways. It’s a bad habit of mine— constantly migrating through systems and apps— but it’s largely rewarding. Most recently, I’ve been writing in FoldingText (using pre-release v2 version of the app). As a tool, it lends itself to just about anything I do with text, whether that’s writing poems, drafting blog posts, capturing ideas for workshop plans, taking down minutes for meetings or managing projects. And because it works with plain text files, it’s infinitely portable. Although there’s no close equivalent for FoldingText for iOS, I can open the same files on my iPad or iPhone and still get writing/work done.
Sometimes it’s the simple things that make all the difference…
Will Tyas and Harriet Creelman
Poet: Amaal Said @ BARPo Gallery Cafe 2014-05-02