Tuesday, June 7, 2011

No Small Amount of Heart

Reading Ammons. Trying to write a long poem--hoping to get deep down in it when I spend a week here this Summer as a Fishtrap Fellow. Until then, notebook tinkering.


Folklore used to be passed by word of mouth, from one generation to the next; that’s what makes it folklore, as opposed to, say, history, which is written down and stored in an archive. Stories can be true and documents can lie, of course, but there’s still a difference between them. Anyway, lately they both seem quaint, because now there’s hyperlore, which passes from one computer to the next, along a path best called hyperbolic.

Take Paul Revere’s heroic ride.

-via The New Yorker


The recession that has ravaged Spain, along with much of southern Europe, has had an especially hard impact on the young, with unemployment rates soaring to more than 40 percent for 20- to 24-year-olds, about twice the national average and the highest in the European Union. Many of them see limited hope of improvement unless they reshuffle the political deck and demand a new approach to creating jobs.

“Suddenly people are talking about politics everywhere,” said María Luz Morán, a sociologist at the Complutense University of Madrid. “You go to have coffee or you are standing in the subway and you hear conversations about politics. It’s been years since I heard anyone talking about politics.”

-via NYT


Hey poets, erase your way to 500 dollars and a trophy: Geist Erasure Poetry Contest. There need to be more trophies in poetry. For real.


-via WSJ Speakeasy (quickly becoming one of my favorite internet places)


But this is not an easy thing to do, this peering into darkness, this ruin-reading. It requires nuance, practice, and no small amount of heart. I cannot, however, endorse it enough. Given the state of our world—in which the very forces that place us in harm’s way often take advantage of the confusion brought by apocalyptic events to extend their power and in the process increase our vulnerability—becoming a ruin-reader might not be so bad a thing. It could in fact save your life.

-Junot Diaz at the Boston Review


1 comment:

Mtina said...

Luke-Your Fishtrap Fellowship sounds fantastic. It reminds me of The River Why, by David James Duncan, which I am sure you have read and remains one of my favorite books to this day. I'm sure it will be very helping in channeling the naturalist in you--Gerald Durrell's My Family and Other Animals or The Overloaded Ark (any of his really) are wonderful too. I hope I see you at Farm Party.