Monday, February 10, 2014

Birdsong, Face It, Some Male Machine Gone Addled - Repeat, Repeat - the Damage Keeps Doing, the World Ending Then Starting, the First Word, the Last, Etc.

  • Birdsong today and then I'll keep Messiaen to myself until next time I don't.
  • Prunella sends a clarification: she didn't receive the email, a colleague did. My apologies. The story has gone national, read more here.
  • What's the point if we can't have fun? Is it meaningful to say an electron “chooses” to jump the way it does? Obviously, there’s no way to prove it. The only evidence we could have (that we can’t predict what it’s going to do), we do have. But it’s hardly decisive. Still, if one wants a consistently materialist explanation of the world—that is, if one does not wish to treat the mind as some supernatural entity imposed on the material world, but rather as simply a more complex organization of processes that are already going on, at every level of material reality—then it makes sense that something at least a little like intentionality, something at least a little like experience, something at least a little like freedom, would have to exist on every level of physical reality as well.
  • Synecdochly embedded seppuku.
  • You take the low road and I'll take the low road.
  • RIP, Stuart Hall.
  • Two Stuart Hall essays on neoliberalism.
  • UPDATE! Lots more on Hall and lots of links.
  • Maggie's weekly links.
  • feuilleton }'s weekly links.
  • The New Inquiry's Sunday readings.

  • Bleggalgazing. I don't think the Kate Bush allusion was intended (I hope I'm wrong) that has put Hounds of Love - the album, not just the song alluded to - on permanent replay today in my head. It's a good thing.
  • Bleggalgazing - over the next few days I'm going to move more blogs that haven't updated in at least two months to Moribund: if and when the owner does blog again I want to be sure to see it, something easier to notice in Moribund than in the more active blogrolls. As always, unless the owner has killed the blog itself, no one is purged.
  • Beatallica.
  • People still care. Tom Clark's latest.
  • [I] [Lied]. I'm surprised you're promoting it, said L last night at Sunday Night Pints, though I approve. Thank you, I said. I like what you sent me, said K. Thank you, I said. Are you going to point out what you're doing, L asked. Nope, I said. And that's today's Sunday Night Pints monologue, I love you, but much of what we talked about is none of your business.
  • UPDATE! [I] [Lied] dead. [I] [Lied] [Dog] lives.
  • The thousand somethings of someone.
  • RIP, Maxine Kumin.
  • More.
  • Something that stutters sincerely: In the work of Hart, Lin, and others, I will argue, this deliberate embrace of failure is worked out through an explicit departure from an allegedly exhausted aesthetic and a movement toward a renewed emphasis on emotion. This ends up looking like a testing of the grounds between, on the one hand, the sincere or expressive, and on the other, the ironic or unemotional. The form this relation takes, though, depends upon thinking about postmodernism as representative of modes of discourse which thrive on techniques like parody and pastiche, on aesthetic distance and heightened self-consciousness through a variety of methods (recycling of old forms, appropriation, collage). hough postmodern art is obviously far more complex and diverse than the above characterization acknowledges, poets like Hart and Lin seem to see postmodernist poetics as having reached its limit, and are now in a position to critique its methods through (ironically) oscillating between an embrace and rejection of such techniques.


Marianne Boruch

Birdsong, face it, some male machine   
gone addled—repeat, repeat—the damage
keeps doing, the world ending then starting,
the first word the last, etc. It's that   

etcetera. How to love. Is a wire   
just loose? Build an ear for that. Fewer, they say.   
So many fewer, by far. He's showing off   
to call her back. Or claiming the tree.   

Or a complaint—the food around here,   
the ants, the moths, the berries. She's making   
the nest, or both are. In feathers, in hair or twigs,   
in rootlets and tin foil. Shiny bits seen

from a distance, a mistake. But fate   
has reasons to dress up. Stupid   
and dazzling have a place, a place, a place   
though never. She can't sing it.