Jun 30, 2006

I am loathe to get all commercial, and I can't do a link because it is a flash site, but on the Converse website you can order custom Chuck Taylors, Jack Purcells, etc. and select the color of every single part of the shoe. Down to the rubber on the soles. Having spent many hours as a youth scouring the Northeast for just the right pair of Chucks, such technology would have been seen as totally, like Star Trek. For you designy types, I can't quite explain the amazing-ness of designing your very own custom pair of Jack Purcells. I wish I could do a link. Warning, though, you will blow 2 hours and $65 bucks if you go there...
Am hoping the next couple of days to get to a sorely needed blogroll update. I wish Blogger would author a tool like the Yahoo Address Book updates that would pull URLs from the comments fields, sitemeter, etc. All you'd need to do is reprogram one of those freaking spam robots that mine the comments fields...

Jun 27, 2006

I'm having nicotine withdrawal and I can't sleep


Lamoureux nee Bergotte

"Bergotte is what I call a flute-player: one must admit that he plays very agreeably, although with a great deal of mannerism, of affectation. But when all is said, there's no more to it than that, and that is not much. Nowhere does one find in his flaccid works what one might call structure. No action--or very little--but above all no range. His books fail at the foundation, or rather they have no foundation at all. At a time like the present, when the ever-increasing complexity of life leaves one scarcely a moment for reading, when the map of Europe has undergone radical alterations and is on the eve, perhaps, of undergoing more drastic still, when so many new and threatening problems are arising on every side, you will allow me to suggest that one is entitled to ask that a writer should be something more than a clever fellow who lulls us into forgetting, amid otiose and byzantine discussions of the merits of pure form, that we may be overwhelmed at any moment by a double tide of barbarians, those from without and those from within our borders. I am aware that this is to blaspheme the sacrosanct school of what these gentlemen term 'Art for Art's sake,' but at this period of history there are tasks more urgent than the manipulation of words in a harmonious manner. I don't deny that Bergotte's manner can be quite seductive at times, but taken as a whole, it is all very precious, very thin, and altogether lacking in virility. I can now understand more easily, when I bear in mind your altogether excessive regard for Bergotte, the few lines that you showed me just now, which it would be ungracious of me not to overlook, since you yourself told me in all simplicity that they were merely a childish scribble...For every sin there is forgiveness, and especially for the sins of youth. After all, others as well as yourself have such sins on their conscience, and you are not the only one who has believed himself a poet in his idle moments. But one can see in what you showed me the unfortunate influence of Bergotte. You will not, of course, be surprised when I say that it had none of his qualities, since he is a past-master in the art--entirely superficial by the by--of handling a certain style of which, at your age, you cannot have acquired even the rudiments. But already there is the same fault, that nonsense of stringing together fine-sounding words and only afterwards troubling about what they mean. That is putting the cart before the horse. Even in Bergotte's books, all those Chinese puzzles of form, all those subtleties of a deliquescent mandarin seem to me to be quite futile. Given a few fireworks let off prettily enough by an author, and up goes the shout of masterpiece. Masterpieces are not so common as all that! Bergotte cannot place to his credit--does not carry in his baggage, if I may use the expression--a single novel that is at all lofty in its conception, one of those books which one keeps in a special corner of one's library. I cannot think of one such in the whole of his work. But that does not mean that, in his case, the work is not infinitely superior to the author. Ah! there's a man who justifies the wit who insisted that one ought never to know an author except through his books. It would be impossible to imagine an individual who corresponded less to his--more pretentious, more pompous, more ill-bred. Vulgar at times, at others talking like a book, and not even like one of his own, but like a boring book, which his, to them justice are not--such is your Bergotte. He has the most confused and convoluted mind, what our forebears called sesquipedalian, and he makes the things that he says even more unpleasing by the manner in which he says them."

M. de Norpois on the imaginary poet M. Bergotte in Vol. 2 of In Search of Lost Time, Marcel Proust.

Jun 20, 2006

Just when you thought blogging was, like, so 2003, here comes Joel Sloman to reanimate our collective cadaver.

Jun 19, 2006

Back from the Tieger/Hyman wedding. I have a poem up at Zafusy from Astrometry Organon. Work continues on putting the book together, so hopefully it will indeed be available in late 2006.

Jun 9, 2006

Commodore Silliman offers some tough love for My Spaceship.

Jun 2, 2006

I am happy to announce the release of Cy Gist Press Chapbook #2, My Spaceship. My Spaceship is an anthology of visual and ekphrastic poetry based on science-fiction images. Featuring work by:

Christopher Rizzo
Garth Graeper
Catherine Meng
Steven Roberts
Suzanne Nixon
Maureen Thorson
Michael Carr
Erica Kaufman
K. Lorraine Graham
Noah Falck
Stacy Szymaszek
Eileen Tabios
Josephh Bienvenu
Shafer Hall
William Corbett
Jill Magi
Jess Mynes
Ginger Hoffman
Tom Beckett
Scott Glassman
Jon Leon
Nathan Pritts

My Spaceship is available for trade, or for a $6 donation to Cy Gist Press. (44pp. hand-sewn, B&W illustrations)