Jan 28, 2007

More shameless self-promo: this was Brenda Iijima's introduction for the Segue Series I read at a couple of weeks ago. Brenda has known me and my work for a long time; I thought I'd post her excellent (of course I am somewhat biased) introduction here so folks who were not at the reading can see it. I am going to start carrying this around with me on a little card, so when people ask me, "So, like, what kind of poetry do you write," I can answer with something besides, "I don't answer that question.":

"Tucked in the folds of numerous fugitive, finely construed, delicately manifested chapbooks of Mark’s are soulful immediacies emitted in a syntactic stream of synestetic particulars. The largess of dreams is shattered and shattered again into pressurized miniatures of detail where desiccation and nostalgia meet. Pressures and stresses are psychic. Swirling and careening between planetary cycles, somewheres hover. Mark’s lyric is crowded with the delicate filaments of ghosts, monsters, spirits, mythology, stuff of existence, banal trinkets, detritus and the numina inhabiting the objectified world of these visionary subjects. Planetary cycles and desire pull these details into focus, suture the traces, suspend animation—there is a tug between the ethereal and the terrestrial. This is a revenant’s teleology, a kind of doctrine that tells us phenomena are guided not only by mechanical forces but that they also move toward certain goals of self realization—there are vibes. Each utterance of Mark's is a divining voice. Where is water, where are the gods, what is war, and love’s necessities? Each calibration is a tension aligning beauty and the psyche. This, from his poem Spica.

“A matter of elephantine

significance lumbers

through the flax, its huge

knees, tedious effluvium:

the egg-timer of the sky

ripostes: purple flashes

in the middle places,

invigored motes goad

the flapping field:

the rocks are alive

Do you hear me?

the rocks are alive.”

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