Thursday, November 30, 2006

Galatea resurrects

for the fourth time
& I

am both a reviewer & a reviewee. (Isn't that a Dylan song?)

A hard task as reviewer driven by a harder task master (mistress). First time in almost 50 years I've reviewed a book, not since I used to review detective novels for the N.Z. Listener. Had to take a hiatus from the blog to get it done, barbed emails flying at me, whipping me (love it, love it!! more, more!!!!), exhorting me to contribute to making this the largest - the stats are overwhelming. I think it's 2 million books reviewed by 1,123,457 reviewers in this issue - GR yet. Goshdarn it, that is one driven woman. Mind you, I was four months overdue in delivering said review. Mea culpa.

Being reviewed was much, much easier. & much more pleasant. Thank you Nicholas for the kind words. episodes is a book of poems that owe a lot to the people I share this electronic world with. & what I've liked about the various responses to the book is that everybody seems to have a different favourite poem. Nicholas Downing quotes from one - a ficcione which I repost below - that has grown on me considerably since I wrote it.
The Last Hurrah of the Golden Horde

The few photographs
of Genghis Khan that
are known to exist
date from the Barnum &
Bailey years & show him
standing either before
a backdrop of The Great Wall
or outside a circus tent
made up to resemble
a yurt. Invariably
he is dressed in western
clothes - derby hat, three-
piece suit, wing collar, a
pair of shiny black boots
over which are the spats
that were de rigeur
for the time. It is said
he chose to appear
like this so as to be
unrecognisable to the
Lords of the Spirit World
who would otherwise
capture his soul
through the capture of
his true image. The beard,
so important to the Han,
is bound by a leather
thong, pulling it together
in a pigtail as if to face
the queue of servitude
full on. He is a small
man, an innocuous uncle,
an unlikely claimant to
the title of Conqueror
of All Asia which was how
he was promoted. Perhaps
his appearance is why his
act never proved popular;
though historians of a
slightly later time identify
the lack of popularity as the
first stirrings of the American
xenophobia against all Asian
races. After this the programs
of B & B never mention him
again; though there is a single
photograph taken shortly
after Bailey’s takeover
of Buffalo Bill’s Wild West
Show in which, at one end of
the back row of the lined-up
Native Americans, just under
the first F of the banner
“The Former Foe – The
Present Friend”, is a stocky,
elderly, clean-shaven man
wearing a feather head-dress
that trails on the floor, looking
out into the distance, blankly,
as if there were no soul
left for the Lords
of the Spirit World to take.

hot &

bhotreed

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Watching
a crow

through
      a crack

      in the
fence.

A found searchstring hay(na)ku

He hailed a
cab &
said

Take
me to
pelican dreaming. What's

the address? I
don't know.
Try

overseas
erotica asphyxiation
sex toy shops.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

A & Q

From Martin Edmond's account of the launch of his new book, Luca Antara.
"I've tuned out momentarily during our dumb show & when I tune back in, Roger is talking about something he found on the Net, how he didn't realise I'd been living in a town in Queensland where he has relatives & visits often, which is a pity, because we could have caught up ... what on earth is he saying, I wonder, I've never lived in Queensland, I've only been there twice, once to the airport on the way back from Fiji - we didn't even get off the plane - and the other time to a National Park, a bat cave just over the NSW border? Then comes the punchline, he's been reading the Q & A I did with Mark Young as if I were Mark ... not realising I was the one asking the questions. This is quite funny although also a bit disconcerting."

Monday, November 27, 2006

Σmation


craving
craven

Sunday, November 26, 2006

No
body looked
at him once.

New from Otoliths

cover design by harry k stammer


EILEEN TABIOS' publications include 14 poetry collections, an art essay collection, a poetry essay/interview anthology, and a short story book. DREDGING FOR ATLANTIS, her 11th print poetry collection, extends a body of work unique for melding ekphrasis with a transcolonial perspective. Here, she introduces her translation of the painterly technique of scumbling to create poems from other poets' words. From other writers' texts, she also extracts sequences of the hay(na)ku, a poetic form she inaugurated on June 12, 2003 to mark the 105th Anniversary of Philippines' Independence Day from Spain.

DREDGING FOR ATLANTIS is now available through Lulu for $10 plus postage.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Some grinning hellos back to Tom Beckett

I am a-
mazed
at your
perseus-
picacity.

*

One way
big head
small cock.

The other
big cock
small head.

The mix
& match
of man &

bull de-
pends on
how horny

you want
your phone
sex to be.

*

A white bull
pacified
Pasiphae
but got
lost in the
Labiarinth.

Maybe
that's where
Daedalus
got the
idea from.

Monday, November 20, 2006

s
i
d
e

t
r
a
c
k
e
d

little bush blue, come blow on my horn

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Predicted (10/31/06), Noted (11/15/06)

At 4.55 p.m. - that's computer time, different from vcr time, bedside alarm clock-radio time, microwave time, oven time (though there's only a few minutes difference between them all) - the first foray of fighter jets came screaming down the valley. Two of them, noisy, a compressed sound unlike, say a jumbo jet. This is pure killing design, to instil fear. & then a few minutes later they're back, three this time.

This is friendly, war games, boys' toys. But more than a hint of what it must be like if they had heavy on their mind.

1¼d

I know this is a town mired in the past, but that still doesn't explain why someone was riding a penny-farthing bicycle down what passes as the main shopping street here.

& it didn't look like an old bike. From my distance of about a hundred metres it seemed quite the techno tour de france article, all shiny & new.

Ah well, only one thing to say.
Oo

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

The flowers
are

     bigger
than
the bird.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Women I am not allowed to write about

I used the first poem from this series by Kirsten Kaschock in the latest issue of Otoliths. Eileen Tabios posted this comment about it. "To read this poem is to fall in love with it."

There are three more now up at Kirsten's blog Negative Wingspan. I echo Eileen's words, thrice. Plus reiterate them for the first poem.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Waking

to
doves &
other birds' wakings.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

fnederbenedr
Today the
postman brought
me a book &
a letter. Sent
two weeks apart;
but in one of
those acts
of synchronicity
that define the
universe they
arrived together. A
review copy of
Donald Rumsfeld's The
Deportment of Defense

or why I'll never
fall on my sword

in which, in his
own write, he
channels everyone from
Shakespeare — there
are more weapons of
mass destruction in
Iraq, Colin Powell, than
are dreamt of in your
philosophy — to the
Marx Brothers — we
know there are some
things we do not
know. But there are also
unknown unknowns, the
ones we don't know
we don't know. The letter
was from his publisher,
priority-paid, saying
that, because of un-
foreseen circumstances,
the book was now
withdrawn, as was
its author, & could I
return or destroy
it. Fat chance. eBay
beckons for bell,
book & candle.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

sampling

    I sit on the
parched front
porch. Around me
    the house is
falling down. Soon
my rocking chair
may fall through
    / the verandah.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Finally

I get to
play the
new
Bob Dylan
album

I finally
got to get
for my
birthday

& find the
bar band's
finally
back again

with a
spirited
chaser.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

sWitch hatting

or: Toto, I've a feeling we're still in Kansas.


or: This is what happens when
you work in an office where they
celebrate birthdays, & your birthday
just happens to fall on the day
before Halloween.

Have you ever

seen Michael Jackson & George W. Bush in the same place, at the same time?

Monday, November 06, 2006

Conspiracy Theory #5397

I find it just a little bit too coincidental that, on the day before the U.S. Senate & Congressional elections, with the Republicans trailing in the polls, Saddam Hussein receives a death sentence.

Now restored, but

my

Martin Edmond

post was oBloggereated
cornutopia

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Martin Edmond

is, for me, one of the best writers of prose around. His work is a mixture of the real, surreal & superreal, mainly personal but venturing off in long forays across the many things that he keeps in his jackdaw mind, so that a shift in subject from modern-day Amsterdam to the fifteenth-century South China Sea is seamless. My only complaint ever about his work is that sometimes when he is writing about his relationships, he seems to be intimidated by the possibility (probability?) of offending those of his family who are still alive, & this conflict shows.

When he is writing about himself alone, sans hangups, he is brilliant. Check out his Diptych, just posted to White City, the blog he uses for pieces that don't fit – his words – at his other two blogs, Luca Antara & dérives. Exceptional stuff.

& his new book, Luca Antara, from East Street publications, is due to be launched in Sydney a fortnight from yesterday. Do yourself a favour. Buy it. Details are at that last link.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

poets in need


http://www.poetsinneed.org/

If anyone wants to add this button to their sidebar, clicking on the image above will give the blogger photo url to use as the image source. The sidebar button links to the poets in need site.

Friday, November 03, 2006

it's raining

Pour Prévert – some autumn leaves

              l                         t
l
  e               l
                            o
          u
                                r
       f            e                          s
                     s

            i
     s
 

        e              m                  e





(just wanted to see what it looked like against this background)

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Rebeka reminds me



today's




el dia




de los muertos

Just play it Koel, boy, Real Koel!

The koel is a member of the cuckoo species that flies south from New Guinea starting around August to spend time on the Northern & Eastern coasts, breed, deposit – like all self-respecting cuckoos – its eggs in another bird's nest, repeat those activities a couple of months later, & then fly back north around April.

Its presence in Australia cannot be missed. It's not a visibly striking bird, in fact barely visible at all even though it is only slightly smaller than a crow. Tends to stay in the trees, blends in quite well. The male is a glossy black tinged with blue & green, the female mottled brown & black.

What makes it distinctive is its call. My bird book describes it as monotonous endlessly repeated "koo-eel". It's sort of like a slide (or swanee) whistle, with the koo rising in a glissando to the eel at the end. But when it's looking for a mate, don't think "put a cork in it" (though you pray for that to happen), think "corkscrew", for its call rises in a feverish accelerating crescendo. & to make it worse, it's nocturnal as well as diurnal.

Cockatoos are irritating, crows are annoying, but they tend to fly away. The koel is maddening. Not only won't it shut up - if there's one around, you'll hear it every couple of minutes – but it just won't move. Go to bed at midnight, it's outside your window; five hours later it's there to wake you up. Don't they ever sleep?

& when it's time to look for a mate, which is now, its f.a.c. intensifies. Which is why I've really got the shits with it. Finished my bedtime reading – Ian Rankin's new Inspector Rebus novel for those of you who want to know such things – put out the light. & up starts the faccing koel that seems to like the tree a few metres from my window. A few of its spiralling cries & then an answer from across the park, from what I lovingly think of as owltown.

The reply from the bird outside my window? FEVERISH ACCELERATING CRESCENDO!!!!!! The call & response continued for some time, with me muttering as accompaniment "Well, your potential mate's there. Why not fly off to get up close & personal."

No way! Not only is the koel a monotonous nocturnal diurnal feverish accelerating crescendo endlessly repeating glissandoing slide whistle, it's also a fucking chauvinist pig that expects the ladies to come to it, & gets more pissed off & more noisier & more n.d.f.a.c.e.r.g.s.w. (also known as a swanee whistle) when they don't.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Today the
postman brought
me some
freshly layed
aubergines.

Issue three of Otoliths

has just gone live at http://the-otolith.blogspot.com.

Like the previous two issues, there is a diverse mix of people & styles. Issue three contains work by Ray Craig, Jordan Stempleman, Jeff Harrison, Andrew Topel, Corey Mesler, John M. Bennett, Reed Altemus, Lars Palm, Jesse Crockett, rob mclennan, Pat Nolan, Jenna Cardinale, Rochelle Ratner, Ian Finch, Paul Siegell, Thomas Fink & Tom Beckett, Ayşegül Tözeren, Glenn Bach, T. Walden, Tom Hibbard, Raymond Farr, Aki Salmela, Jill Jones, Nico Vassilakis, Kirsten Kaschock, Martin Edmond, Eileen Tabios, Sheila Murphy, Rebeka Lembo, Jonathan Hayes, Jenny Allan, Geof Huth, Kevin Opstedal, Adam Fieled, Derek Motion, Caleb Puckett, Scott Hartwich, harry k stammer & Serkan Işın, & has a cover by Michael Rothenberg.

Enjoy!