Thursday, December 6, 2012

This Is You

Hey, I think I finished my second manuscript. In this context, "I think" means that there are enough pages of poetry for a book, but that aforementioned pages aren't yet good enough. Ya dig?


These “massive open online courses” (MOOCs) have exploded on the American educational scene. The Washington Post dubbed them “elite education for the masses,” with universities like Harvard, Stanford, and Princeton offering free classes. Coursera, the for-profit company that offered Filreis’s poetry class among many others, is less than a year old and counts more than 1.7 million as students. Many of the courses offer certificates of completion, so while a degree from these schools may still cost upward of $100,000, you can theoretically—and that’s a big “theoretically”—get the education for nothing.

--Elliot Holt at The Poetry Foundation


This is you. You want to own something that means something to you. The pleasure of an original thing is that, like anything you truly love, it attaches itself to the original part of you and builds it like a muscle, makes you feel more like you. It also connects you to someone else, the artist—but you don't have to tend that relationship, it's just there, simple, pure. You never have to meet the artist if you don't want to, but if you want to, you can ask the artist all about this thing you now have, and you will find that the artist also wants to hear what you see in it, and eventually you will both agree that neither of you really penetrates what the thing fully is, which is maybe why both of you love it so much. Let's say you have a couple more criteria: Maybe you would prefer art by someone local, someone who does not have a leg up in the 1 percent game of the international art world. And: You do not have money to burn.

-Jen Graves at The Stranger


The people who fret over the Future of the Book talk about the loss of the tactile, of the physical act of holding the book. Me, the only thing I worry about is no longer having used books.

-Michelle Dean at The Rumpus


Marjorie Perloff’s essay “Poetry on the Brink” in the May/June 2012 issue rekindled conversation about innovation and canonization in contemporary poetry. To continue and extend the discussion, we cast a wide net and invited 18 poets to address the following question: what is the most significant, troubling, relevant, recalcitrant, misunderstood, or egregious set of opposing terms in discussions about poetics today, and, by extension, what are the limits of binary thinking about poetry? Their responses range from whimsy to diatribe, with meditation, appraisal, tangent, touchstone, anecdote, drollery, confection, wit, and argument in between.

-Opposing Terms: A Symposium on the Poetic Limits of Binary Thinking at Boston Review (featuring Ange Mlinko, Samuel Amadon, Matthew Zapruder, Annie Finch, Noah Eli Gordon, and many other excellent voices).


Music for a rainy Thursday here in the American Northwest.


Liz said...

Excited for book two, whenever that may be!

Luke Johnson said...

Thanks, Liz! Hopefully it'll see the light one of these days.