Review: “The Digital Critic: Literary Culture Online”

I review “The Digital Critic: Literary Culture Online” at Berfrois. Fun for everyone! The Digital Critic: Literary Culture Online, Edited by Houman Barekat, Robert Barry, and David Winters, OR Books, New York and London. 203 pp.

Diary: How to Improve the Text (You Will Only Make Matters Worse)

Diary: How to Improve the Text (You Will Only Make Matters Worse)   John Cage titled his diary, “Diary: How to Improve the World (You Will Only Make Matters Worse)” (1965), suggesting a zen koan where every move in one direction is a move in another direction. Cage was not too into the game of…

Haiku on Dog Cloud Piano for Guitar and Voice

Press yes to play here the balls fall for free hear them drop and roll english orb orbit for texting eddies no to go away in pool hall heaven chalk up your cue stick break like a big bang syllabicating maybe to come back no need for quarters green felt of grass field consider the…

On Discussion

What is there to discuss-ion? “Music as discourse (jazz) doesn’t work,” John Cage said.* “If you’re going to have a discussion, have it and use words.” As both a jazz and Cage fan, I’ve often reflected on the paradox, for discourse, “running to and fro,” seems an accurate description of jazz, with or without words….

On Boredom

Today we gaze into the Abyss of Ennui. What is boredom? “Excess of sorrow laughs, excess of joy weeps”: In “The Marriage of Heaven and Hell,” Blake understood the Abyss, and sought to correct our assumptions and expectations. “The busy bee has no time for sorrow,” Blake said. But commuting home through an hour of…

On Prayer and Poetry

What is prayer? When I was a kid, I learned the Catholic prayers, and believed Sister Mary Annette, who liked to quote Shakespeare, when she said, “Words without thought never to heaven go.” King Claudius is trying to pray, looks like he is praying, to Hamlet, anyway, and so Hamlet decides to put off killing…

“jazzskin”

“jazzskin” is an old, handmade chapbook (1973, 17 pages – click on photos): The “poetry occurs” idea is a riff off John Cage, whose book “Silence” (1961) begins with “The Future of Music: Credo”: “Wherever we are,” Cage says, “what we hear is mostly noise. When we ignore it, it disturbs us. When we listen…

A Lot Ado About Nothing

I once spent a lot of time going to a lot of meetings where I took a lot of notes but also doodled a lot. Sometimes my neighbors showed an interest in my doodles, but not often. Over time I developed a disregard for the term a lot. A lot is used a lot as…

Four Short Statements on the Sentence

Entering the sentence, one feels caught in a trap, a cage, punctuation the catches and latches of entrance and exit that clamps down on our heads and tails, our arms or legs, fingers – when we let out an exclamation point, holding swelling finger up. Returning to the three persons (me, you, and the other:…