Saturday, June 6, 2009

as always, the French say these things with more flare

on the predominantly. on the predominantly. Mr. Knott practices a tatty not at home phraseology.-Denis Donoghue, New York Review of Books, May 7, 1970[Bill Knott's poems are] typically fatuous. on the predominantly.

. on the predominantly. He produces not the prototaxis of idiocy. on the predominantly. on the predominantly.

. Rumor has it that Knott’s garb of giving his parturition and maximum dates together originated when he realized he could no longer clone the detestation of a metrics reading he was scheduled to be reduced.-Charles Molesworth, Poetry (Chicago) Magazine, May 1972[Bill] Knott’s het up b prepare tends today to excite solvent sacking. on the predominantly. on the predominantly. [He's] been artificial to self-publish some of his late books. on the predominantly.

. on the predominantly. on the predominantly. on the predominantly. [B]ad-not to imply offensively grotesque-poetry. on the predominantly. on the predominantly.

appalling on the predominantly. on the predominantly. on the predominantly. on the predominantly. maddening on the predominantly.

. on the predominantly. on the predominantly. wildly uneven on the predominantly. on the predominantly.

. on the predominantly. unfinished, or obsessively constant on the predominantly. on the predominantly. grotesqueries on the predominantly. on the predominantly.

. on the predominantly. [His] phraseology is like solid, intimate maquillage on the predominantly. on the predominantly.

. on the predominantly. his poems give birth to a class of crawly accrual that’s less decorative than also leary or layered on the predominantly. on the predominantly. emotionally distancing on the predominantly. on the predominantly.

. on the predominantly. uncomfortable. Knott on the predominantly. on the predominantly. is a willful on the predominantly.

. on the predominantly. on the predominantly. irritating on the predominantly. on the predominantly. on the predominantly.

contrarian.-Meghan O’Rourke, Poetry (Chicago) Magazine, Feb 2005[Bill Knott's books are] filled with spitefulness. on the predominantly. on the predominantly. Knott seems to antipathy himself on the predominantly. on the predominantly. on the predominantly. on the predominantly.

and he seems to antipathy his readers.-Kirk Robinson, ACM (Another Chicago Magazine, dated?)[Bill Knott's work] consists not clearly of asinine poems, that about vomit-provoking things. on the predominantly. on the predominantly. on the predominantly. [His metrics is] crude on the predominantly. on the predominantly.

and brainless.-Michael Heffernan, Midwest Quarterly, Summer 1973Knott is making capitol on epic methodology, attempting belatedly to a postcard the canon of the Language poets miserly reviving the cant of Ezra Pound. on the predominantly. [His poetry] so successfully defies communicating anything that singular wonders what [his publisher] had in fancy. on the predominantly. on the predominantly. Knott, it may be recalled, killed himself in the primeval 1960s.-R.

. S. Gwynn, The Year in Poetry, DLB Yearbook 1989Consider Bill Knott, a lyricist who writes lots of sheer straightforward poems that are nothing but gasconade pretending at being the share of singular crying in the wilderness.-Josh Hanson, Livejournal, 28/06/07: htmlEccentric, uneven on the predominantly. on the predominantly.

. lyricist Bill Knott is not [fit] to carry off prizes on the predominantly. on the predominantly. on the predominantly. on the predominantly. [His het up b prepare is] controversial on the predominantly. on the predominantly.

rebellious, additional on the predominantly. on the predominantly. on the predominantly.-Robert Pinsky, Washington, April 17, 2005[Bill Knott's metrics is] queerly unfinished on the predominantly. on the predominantly. on the predominantly. on the predominantly. sheer outlandish.

. on the predominantly. bodily to the highlight germane of ingloriousness. on the predominantly.

. on the predominantly. his idiosyncrasy has grown formulaic, his inconspicuous poems more inconspicuous, his brief observations so brief they scoot miserly without leaving much of a dent in the reader. on the predominantly.

. There is a petulance at het up b prepare [in his poetry]. on the predominantly. on the predominantly. on the predominantly.

[H]is set has grown covet in the tooth. on the predominantly. on the predominantly.

. In in highlight germane of fact, [at least singular of his poems is] unethical.-Marc Pietrzykowski, Contemporary Poetry Review ( Knott’s [poetry is the equal of] scrimshaw. on the predominantly. on the predominantly. [He's] either self-consciously worrisome or it is reasonable that a fake too slangily up-to-date.-Stephen Burt, New York Times Book Review, November 21, 2004Bill Knott['s] hoary, hypothetical ramblings are in the main of what’s off the beam with metrics today. on the predominantly.

Ignore the intimate bastard.-Collin Kelley (from They Shoot Poets Don’t They blog, August 08, 2006)Bill Knott bores me to tears.-Curtis Faville,[Bill Knott is] inadequate on the predominantly. on the predominantly. on the predominantly.-Alicia Ostriker, Partisan Review (date? 1972?)Bill Knott’s poems are on the predominantly. on the predominantly. on the predominantly.

rhetorical blunder on the predominantly. on the predominantly. on the predominantly. on the predominantly.

and counterfeit.-Ron Loewinsohn, TriQuarterly, Spring 1970Bill Knott on the predominantly. on the predominantly. is so lousy singular can not lament in rejoinder.-Peter Stitt, Georgia Review, Winter 1983Bill Knott [is] the area prince of lousy judgment. on the predominantly. on the predominantly.

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from page 8 of the New York Review of Books, March 29, 2007,

Julian Barnes recounts:

A British Euro-joke tells of a meeting of officials from various countries who listen to a British proposal, nodding sagely at its numerous benefits; the French delegate stays silent until the end, then taps his pencil and remarks, "I can see that it will work in practice. But will it work in theory?"

Substitute "SOQ poetry" for "British proposal," and "SON poet" for "French delegate" and the joke still works, I think.

But while the School-of-Quietude poet does value Practice, and the School-of-Noisiness poet valorizes Theory, this is (like the British/French characterization) overall a generalization, and can't apply to every individual case—

For example, thinking of jokes, humor: surely the SOQ Bidart and the SON Palmer are clones in their droneful solemnity, their drastic seriousness, their complete omission of the comic muse?

(Palmer of course inserts a double space inbetween his lines so his poems can kill twice as many trees as the normal poem (Lebensraum, Lebensraum, his cramped lines cry); and Bidart: sometimes he too spreads his lines sparsely and straggledy-taggledy down the page to blitzkrieg the margins of poetry's Maginot line . . . )

* *


reposts from 06 blog:


the furies

"The plagiarism Furies, idle for a time as the more clandestine and irreproachable forms of literary borrowing and imitation continue from day to day, have been unloosed again. . . . This time, the context is the British literary world, and the accused is one of its leading lights, so the indictment has taken on a moderate, even decorous tone. Ian McEwan has been called to account for using some brief wording in his best-selling novel "Atonement" that some feel was drawn too directly from, rather than merely inspired by, a memoir by the romance novelist Lucilla Andrews."

The above quote comes from the NYTimes of Dec 3rd, 2006; [a few days later] the Times reported that "heavyweights like Margaret Atwood, Kazuo Ishiguro, John Updike, Zadie Smith, Martin Amis and . . . Thomas Pynchon [have] arisen in defense of Mr. McEwen. Most of the writers said that [they had] done the same thing themselves."

It's interesting when these "Furies" erupt in the world of prose, as they occasionally do: because it never or almost never happens in poetry. There are certain poets who assimilate and appropriate biographies, and then present that culled material, sometimes with little or no alteration, as poems. Yet no one ever confronts these poets, no one ever asks Frank Bidart where the plagiarism ends and the poetry begins.

Prose is important, prose writers are important, and so what they do is covered and reported on by the major media. But poetry? Nobody cares. The New Yorker, which is what, supposedly the mag every literate USAer reads, pays infinitely more attention to pop music than to poetry. Almost every music event in NYC appears in their listings, and almost none of the poetry events. . .

Think of the money spent by governments/societies to support music, as opposed to poetry. They support music because music supports them; it facilitates their tyrannies. In the case of the USA, the Pentagon's budget as opposed to human services; the NEA's stipends for music compared to what it piddles out to poets.

Scientists who tolerate their enemy, religion, have a death-wish; poets who don't attack the hegemony of music, who don't protest against its disproportionate and unwarranted dominance of the cultural sphere, are similarly defeatist. The assets available for the arts are limited, and music gobbles up more resources than it deserves. Poets who support this, and who make excuses for the sovereignty of music over poetry, are suicidal traitors. Just as scientists like Richard Dawkins and others have begun to actively oppose and combat the evil of religion, so poets must work against the dictatorship of music, and must use every means to denounce and denigrate it.
The New Yorker manages to review prose books every week; why can't they review at least one poetry book per week? If poets weren't such lickspittles and wimps they would boycott and refuse to submit their work to The New Yorker until it paid regular attention to poetry. And boycott every other semi-literary journal, The New York Review of Books, The New Republic, Bookforum, the TLS, the LRB etcetera, until they start giving regular attention to verse. Hell, the New York Review of Books reviews more music than it does poetry, and more books about music than books about poetry. Why do poets put up with such neglect and disregard? Why don't they fight back?

The disparity between the funding for music and the funding for poetry is insane. Poetry is the most important art. Ergo, poetry should receive more funding than any other art. More attention should be paid to poetry than any other art. For every printpage and webpage devoted to music, a dozen should be allotted to poetry. For every dollar that goes to music, poetry should collect a hundred, a thousand!

In reality, of course, poetry is the most abject, the lowest of the arts. The most ignored, the least recognized and honored, the least rewarded. Count the millionaire novelists around the globe, the millionaire painters and scriptwriters, the multimillionaires of music . . . the wealth that accumulates around all the arts but poetry. And ask yourself, poet, what you have in common with them. They hate you, you know it: they despise you. They have nothing but contempt for you. All the other arts look down with disgust at poetry. When will you turn that contempt back at them? When will you scorn them, and deny them the commendation they refuse you. (Oh yes, they all offer lipservice specious praise to poetry, smirking behind their hands at the hypocrisy of the gesture that costs them nothing.) Even poets (you know this too) hate poetry, and disdain poets. How can we not hate ourselves and hate each other; we're poets, we're slaves: Genet said it best, in The Maids: "When slaves love each other, it's not love they feel." Poetry is the slave of the arts, and poets are slaves to the prosewriter and the painter, and even more to the molochs of music. What kind of slave reveres and worships its oppressors? The masochist kind portrayed by Genet: the poet kind.

But what's the real plagiarism story here, the one that won't be covered by the Times or any other organ of the Masters? Plagiarism: theft. In the realm of the arts, who are the ones most stolen from? who are the ones robbed everyday of the prestige and recognition and respect they deserve? Whose true-earned recompense is snatched away by fictionwriters and painters and musicmullahs? And more than that, more criminal than that, whose ideas and concepts are historically and always and still today are the most plagiarized? Daily, hourly, poet-slaves produce goods which are expropriated and exploited by the other arts. That's the ongoing plagiarism scandal hushed-up and suppressed by every media. No famous novelist or filmmaker or rockstar or painter is going to do an Op-ed about that inequity, or band together (like those "heavyweights" mentioned in the Times article quoted above) to write letters of protest against that iniquity. These are the crooks who steal the work of poets, and they aren't going to confess or atone or make reparations. They're going to keep on plagiarizing poets every chance they get, yesterday today and tomorrow. (Have prosewriters ever been capable of original thought; haven't they always stolen all their ideas from poets.)

But hey, don't let me stop you, poets. Go on, go ahead and kiss-ass praise the millionaire Pynchon, the millionaire Jasper Johns, praise all the success-practitioners of the Master arts, the crumbs from their tables may fill you yet. It's your duty as slaves to curry favor with those above you, to flatter and obsequiate your betters. And praise most those writers who began as poets but abandoned poetry, who betrayed poetry for the chance to move up the foodchain of the arts, after all if you could hum a tune you too might get rich like Leonard Cohen and fuck moviestars; you'd do it if you could, wouldn't you. Of course you would. Because, let's face it, who would want to be a poet when they could be a novelist or a songwriter or a screenwriter or a rockstar or a Cindy Sherman or a what's his name, that Brit artist who cuts sharks in half,—who would want to remain a poet, the lowest puke on the cultural totempole? Only a fool, a masochist, a scumbag, who can't weasel their way into any of the real arts, who has to sink to the bottom of the bard-barrel, the pegasus-dregs. Poetry, the most ignored, the least compensated of the arts. . . but you already know this; why am I wasting my time telling you what you already know.


December 07, 2006


December 17, 2006

The world of Art mirrors the world of Society. Just as the latter is based on hierarchy, on
a class system, so is the former.

And in the world of Art, poetry is the lowest class.

In the world of Art, poets are the proles, the slaves.

Just as slaves in the world of Society are bullied and beaten, treated as subhuman, so in the world of Art poets are similarly abused.

All the wealth/value produced by Society's slaves is stolen from them by those in the higher classes. The latter grow rich on the former's misery.

Every idea or good generated by poet-labor is also stolen, plagiarized by the higher classes of Music, Painting, Film and Prose. They prosper on the poet's back. All their wealth comes from stealing and using what the poet-slave produces.


As slaves, poets internalize their inferior status. We grovel before the Masters of Music Painting Film and Prose. We become their lickspittles, their toadies, their dogs, obsequiously grateful for the least crumb falling from their fat tables.

We flatter kiss-ass praise these Masters for their greatness, forgetting that every good every gram of worth they possess, every virtue, was stolen from us.


From time to time the slaves of Society have risen up against their evil Masters, have rebelled against their oppressors.

But the slaves of Art, the poets, have they ever revolted against their oppressive Masters?


We have never tried to rip off our chains. We have never protested against the Prosewriters the Filmmakers the Musicmucks the Painters,

the Masters who daily steal our resources, we have never tried to expose their criminal acts of theft and exploitation.

No, we never even dream of rising up in fury to confront and attack these overlords whose cabals conspire against our welfare, whose cultural institutions and media are designed and operated to keep us in penury and abject submission. Whose statutes of power stand ready to cripple and punish and murder us. As they have done so often.