League of Independent Vietnamese Writers

The following document should be of great interest to all of us committed to freedom of expression. It is an announcement of the intention of 60 leading Vietnamese writers to found a League of Independent Vietnamese Writers. Why is this of interest? Because decision-making in the publishing world of Vietnam is largely in the hands of the powerful Vietnamese Writers Association, which is state-sponsored. Members of the association are limited in number, and each enjoys a powerful and well-paid patronage, including a car and driver. It is equivalent, I'm told, to the military positions of Major and General, depending on who you are and what seniority you have. One of the signers of the proclamation below, Hoang Hung, was imprisoned from 1978 to 1981 on the suspicion that he possessed a forbidden book of poetry by Hoang Cam.  The poetry of both Hoang Hung and Hoang Cam is also included in Black Dog, Black Night (Milkweed Editions, 2008), edited and translated by Nguyen Do and me.  I assisted in shaping the English translation of the document below.

The founders of the League are at risk in signing the petition. It is very brave of them to ask for more freedom of expression, because the last time it happened, in the mid-1950s following military victory over the French, poets and writers who made such a request were treated very harshly, including imprisonment, loss of their privileged positions in the Writers Association, and not having their work published for the next 40 years.  Hoang Cam was one of those punished, in the so-called Van Nghe incident. This is why Hoang Hung's possession of his poetry book was offensive to authorities.

I have had the pleasure of meeting several of the signers, including Nguyen Duy, Y Nhi, and of course Hoang Hung. Here is the document:

Proclamation of the Committee to Promote
the Founding of the League of Independent Vietnamese Writers

 "After 1975, the end of a hundred-year history of war, our country was in need of a substantial cultural renaissance. Unluckily, this grave and urgent rebirth did not happen as expected. On the contrary, Vietnamese culture has evolved from bad to worse, and appears to be in danger of losing the most basic humanistic values. This shortcoming threatens the survival of our nation.

Vietnamese writers must admit that they are partly responsible for this state of affairs. Among literature’s many important functions is to awaken the conscience and to raise the morale of the nation. At this great turning point of history, Vietnamese literature is not realizing its true role.

The weakness of Vietnamese literature is rooted in the indifference of its writers to their social responsibilities, their insensitivity concerning daily events, and, most importantly, their lack of independent thinking, which has also limited their creative capabilities.

In a society like ours, where basic freedoms have been severely limited, it is difficult for writers to speak clearly and forcefully about the conditions of life in society. This limitation blurs and confuses expression; ultimately, it extinguishes art entirely. The freedom to create and publish literary works is a life-or-death necessity, not only for writers as individuals but also for the health of Vietnamese literature. Without minimal rights to free expression, our literary lives will never be adequate.

Literary institutions ruled by bureaucracy and mendacity suffocate the literature they presume to support. The also suppress healthy communication between writers and their ability to offer mutual assistance, both in their private lives and their artistic production.

In response to this longstanding but urgent situation, we, the undersigned writers, resolve to organize a committee for the founding of an independent institution of Vietnamese writers, both inside and outside the country. To be called The League of Independent Vietnamese Writers, this new institution seeks to promote a true, humanistic, and democratic literature, modern and responsive to globalization. As demanded by history, we must act as pioneers in the creation of a national cultural renaissance.

Activities of The League of Independent Vietnamese Writers will focus on following:

1. To improve solidarity and assistance among writers inside and outside the country;
2. To bring forth conditions for professional amelioration, to advance and promote individual creation, and to encourage innovation in creative writing as well as literary criticism and linguistic studies;
3. To defend all legitimate materialistic and spiritual interests of its members, especially the freedom to write and publish, as well as the promotions of easy and complete access to literature by the reading public.

The League of Independent Vietnamese Writers is an organization belonging to civil society. Dedicated to professional solidarity, it is completely independent of any other organizations existing inside and outside the country.

The detailed statutes and program of the League will be set up and made public in the process of establishing of the league. Our email is: nhavandoclap@gmail.com."

Hà Nội, March 3rd, 2014
On behalf of the Promotion Committee Nguyên Ngọc

The Committee to Promote

1/ Nguyên Ngọc – writer (Chief of the Committee)
2/ Phạm Xuân Nguyên – literary critic (Secretary)
3/ Bùi Chát – poet
4/ Bùi Minh Quốc – poet
5/ Bùi Ngọc Tấn – writer
6/ Chân Phương – poet, translator (USA)
7/ Châu Diên – writer, translator
8/ Cung Tích Biền – writer
8/ Dạ Ngân – writer
9/ Dư Thị Hoàn – poet
10/ Dương Thuấn – poet
11/ Dương Tường – poet, translator
12/ Đặng Tiến – literary critic and researcher (France)
13/ Đặng Văn Sinh – writer
14/ Đoàn Lê – writer
15/ Đoàn Thị Tảo – poet
16/ Đỗ Lai Thúy – literary critic and researcher
17/ Đỗ Trung Quân – poet
18/ Giáng Vân – poet
19/ Hà Sĩ Phu – writer
20/ Hoàng Dũng – linguistic researcher
21/ Hoàng Hưng – poet, translator
22/ Hoàng Minh Tường – writer
23/ Lê Hoài Nguyên – poet
24/ Lê Minh Hà – writer (Germany)
25/ Lê Phú Khải – writer
26/ Liêu Thái – poet
27/ Lưu Trọng Văn – writer
28/ Lý Đợi – poet
29/ Mai Sơn – writer, translator
30/ Mai Thái Lĩnh – philosophy and culture researcher
31/ Nam Dao – writer (Canada)
32/ Ngô Thị Kim Cúc – writer
33/ Nguyễn Bá Chung – poet (USA)
34/ Nguyễn Duy – poet
35/ Nguyễn Đức Dương – linguistic researcher
36/ Nguyễn Huệ Chi – literature researcher
37/ Nguyễn Quang Lập – writer
38/ Nguyễn Quang Thân – nhà văn
39/ Nguyễn Quốc Thái – poet
40/ Nguyễn Thị Hoàng Bắc – poet (USA)
41/ Nguyễn Thị Thanh Bình – writer (USA)
42/ Phạm Đình Trọng – writer
43/ Phạm Nguyên Trường – translator
44/ Phạm Vĩnh Cư – literature researcher, translator
45/ Phan Đắc Lữ – poet
46/ Phan Tấn Hải – writer (Hoa Kỳ)
47/ Quốc Trọng – cinema play writer
48/ Thùy Linh – writer
49/ Tiêu Dao Bảo Cự – writer
50/ Trang Hạ – writer, translator
51/ Trần Đồng Minh – literature researcher
52/ Trần Huy Quang – writer
53/ Trần Thùy Mai – writer
54/ Trịnh Hoài Giang – poet
55/ Trương Anh Thụy – writer (USA)
56/ Võ Thị Hảo – writer
57/ Vũ Biện Điền – writer (Japan)
58/ Vũ Thế Khôi – literature researcher, translator
59/ Vũ Thư Hiên – writer (France)
60/ Ý Nhi – poet

The photo above is of Hoang Hung (on the left), yours truly, and the Chinese poet Bei Dao on the occasion of Bei Dao's reading with Michael Palmer at University of San Francisco in, I believe, 2003 or 2004. Hoang Hung was on his first visit to the US. In order to make the trip, he was required by the Vietnamese government to resign his position as a journalist for the Labor News.


New Objectivists – Nouveaux Objectivistes – Nuovi oggettivisti


New Objectivists – Nouveaux Objectivistes – Nuovi oggettivisti
(Loffredo, 2014)

Papers and essays from the 2012 symposium 
+ prose pieces + poems

Table of contents (and Preface by Cristina Giorcelli) here:

[ texts by Cristina Giorcelli, Bob Perelman, Rachel Blau DuPlessis, Noura Wedell, Maria Anita Stefanelli, Luigi Magno, Geneviève Cohen-Cheminet, Benoît Auclerc, Jean-Marie Gleize, Annalisa Bertoni, Jean-Jacques Poucel, Cecilia BelloMinciacchi, Antonio Loreto, Marco Giovenale, Michele Zaffarano, Massimiliano Manganelli, Alessandro De Francesco, Giulio Marzaioli ]


Signs of life of signs / differx. 2013

(some notes from an e-mail to Tim Gaze, Sept., 2013)

Maybe (linear or nonlinear) “experimental writing” and “visual poetry” are simply first definitions of the vast living environment of works made by the worldwide community of people involved in asemic (and so pansemic) writing and in the making of abstract stuff.

And: about the words “writing” and “abstract” —maybe they’re narrow definitions of areas of signs. A suitable term could be “sign” indeed.

The life of signs is perhaps the ‘thing’ we try to deal with. A “sign” is an entity which, in itself, does not have an actual “itself”. It absolutely conveys something else. It’s not narrow, it’s an arrow. It’s a non-”quid” referred/referring to some (other) “quid”. And so: the reference or transfer or passage may be somehow / somewhere broken. And this fact is the alpha in “a”/semic. 

[And —at the same time— any “alpha” is a “pan”: any limit is also a secondary path or crack, a way for widening the view]

The incomplete or complete rupture or fracture of a (still presumable) transitive line (of the transmission of meaning) makes us call the sign an “intransitive” one. Or a “partially transitive” one.

For example: a signal or warning, on an unknown road and land, telling us something we don’t catch at all. A flashing light. We stare at its colours, but we can’t translate them into some kind of knowledge about an actual situation we ought to react to. By the way, we’re mesmerized by its effort in telling us something (or —better— its clear effort to move an unclear cloud of meaning[s] from A to B). We miss the point; still we go on staring at some vague (say abstract) point.

Shadows show something we don’t catch; still we cannot stop watching, and we don’t.

[This is the “alpha” turning into “pan”].

We’re almost 4 thousand years far from the birth of writing, but the written signs & glyphs & traces in caves are definitely older. So much older. In “Caves of Forgotten Dreams” Werner Herzog shows us the (partially intransitive) signs of men who lived 30,000 years ago. It’s not “writing”, it’s (perhaps) carving / painting signs. Figures.

Now we try to go very far —back into the past: pitch black.

In a time where not only the human race but the very beginning of life itself had not yet appeared on our planet. Fragments/crystals of zircon (here a pic from a documentary: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eu16701JhOo) found in West-Australian rocks dating back to 4.4 billion years ago seem to reveal the presence of water on Earth in an incredibly early stage of its history: and we may consider these crystals and fragments as “signs” (of/from the ur-environment): partially transitive ones, made not by human hand, but by nature —Earth— itself. (Signs addressed to no one, to no one’s eye)


Carlo Bordini, "Gestures" / "I gesti"

BILINGUAL EDITION (English/Italian) @ Logosfere series (Zona/Quintadicopertina)
of an athology of poems by one of the most important experimental poets in Italy:
Carlo Bordini



Narrar by Maria Baranda

Here's the opening movement of Maria Baranda's Narrar, published in 2001 by Ediciones Sin Nombre of Mexico City.  This translation also appeared in eleven eleven 15, published by California College of the Arts.  The word tokonoma refers to a poem by Jose Lezama Lima, the Cuban poet who inspired the neobarroco movement in Latin American poetry.  A tokonoma is a room in a Japanese house that is designed entirely to give pleasure and a sense of calm through the beauty and balance of the objects in it.  In addition to Narrar, I have translated Baranda's 55-page poem Yegua nocturna corriendo en un prado de luz absoluta (Nightmare Running on a Meadow of Absolute Light).

To Tell
María Baranda                                                              

Her horrendous voice, not her inner sorrow

A cry
a single cry
just a cry
to the open air
a cry of porpoise or dolphin
of incandescent fish by the water
a cry of the sea that breaks and repeats
that empties
and in the time of salt
says everywhere what it says
that swells
that glows
a cry
a single cry
just a cry
of the blue inconceivable sky
that repeats
that advances
that grazes among the algae
the fetid rumor of the brackish
a providential cry in the voice of air
an unsustainable rhythm
in the throat
A cry that knots itself
in symphonic circles of joy
A terrible cry
that announces the first death
that stands on precarious feet
and dismantles shadows and grumbling
A cry that must choose
for between the walls the liquid deepens 

The wall as a cardinal point
an agonizing smile
in the punctual
of the one who is drowning
A cry disbanded
in a garden with thickets
a dream of  blue light for the birds
A cry that in itself
is the size of the sea
and lives at the center of  rapture
and with each step it yields
to the delirium of a sponge
that inflates in sweat and gives glory
to the time of silent prayers
A cry is the caiman’s vigil
the unleashed whip of an ant
the fan of  yes the same immaculate
air of an inhospitable grudge
that bends
The cry that smells of salt
a wild beast dry
in the dusky collapse
of your herd
The cry distilled from minutes
marks the world that is world forever
in an open moment where never
passes nothing and everything dissolves
hurling itself to the bottom

Nothingness is reason falling
finally it’s emptiness
its bend in the road most refreshing
when the tree
is erected in delirium
in order to sing from its purgatory
its novice illusions
almost vertigo
A cry is sleepless in its dream
faded almost hoarse it stuns itself
like a crippled animal
the cry breathes sleep inside
its eyes and evokes a sacrifice
a dark joy in a spiral of weeping 
The cry moans weeps wallows
glacial polygamous decrepit
sinking into flakes and scales
into mud
the cry sleeps alone
in the hollow of useless blindfolds
its intoxicated pallor
in its cadence and fatigue
it buzzes between the glasses and the cans
the remains are still ripe
and the sweet song
of the flies to vacancy
The cry is deeply in love
and sweet together with the soft souls
Rosa in order to tell it to Rose
is a corrupt luxury
a brief heart
that detracts
The cry is the insistence
on misery is the sharp bite of hunger
under the yoke of a sugar mill
a fire burning
among dogs and rats
is a shadow that crosses
the fetid waters of wonder
and it’s the clamor of three nights
of the sickness of women, hens, and female deer
when the gods
lose their harmony and quickly
offer their shame to the twilight 

The cry is air
air that only blossoms
in the half-light of funerals
The cry is the voice of the obsequies
a wafer in the pupils
which prays “Praise be to God
without God’s silent cry
infinitely bitter and dry
and the newlywed God the round impostor
who belches who vomits who repeats
fragrant at the pit and doesn’t say
not to purify the skin
devour candles and beautify
blind beneath the definitive sun
lethargic in the accounting
of a glass beaded God summit
red-hot incredulous God
who doesn’t ask for pardon
in the omen of dead birds.”

 a cry
a single cry
just a cry
it whips in lines
and looks dissolved
between the vertices of song
(sings among the captive petals
And don’t forget me in the diaspora
sing sing deadly like an archangel
about about to shout his song)
The cry is erased
between the breasts that slander
sinks convenes seizes
becomes and is consumed
penetrates licks fits
in cartilage of fire
where it resides

The cry is just a number
a notch at the base of the wall
as meticulous
as a tokonoma
utmost swiftness of spirit
freezes the Cuban’s print
bevels the aperture in the absurd
that dominates corners of the language
that exposes itself as a maelstrom
of all the whales in the sea
is an emaciated shell
adhering to the pale shadow
that crosses our sleep
The cry
is a mixture of sperm
and civil life
in living circumstances
a sign of those black fruits
where peace putrefies
streaked by oblivion
where their error is overheard
in a Parthenon of voices
and the air unfolded fornicates
voluptuously and never knows
of the children awakening
in endless tunnels

Poems We Can Understand

Esteban Moore's blog has a new translation of my poem "Poems We Can Understand,"
from Poems in Spanish:  http://alpialdelapalabra.blogspot.com/2013/10/paul-hoover-poemas-que-podamos-entender.html?spref=fb/


more infos about “an anthology of asemic handwriting”





About the book (from Uitgeverij):
An Anthology of Asemic Handwriting is the first book-length publication to collect the work of a community of writers on the edges of illegibility. Asemic writing is a galaxy-sized style of writing, which is everywhere yet remains largely unknown. For human observers, asemic writing may appear as lightning from a storm, a crack in the sidewalk, or the tail of a comet. But despite these observations, asemic writing is not everything: it is just an essential component, a newborn supernova dropped from a calligrapher’s hand. Asemic writing is simultaneously communicating with the past and the future of writing, from the earliest undeciphered writing systems to the xenolinguistics of the stars; it follows a peregrination from the preliterate, beyond the verbal, finally ending in a postliterate condition in which visual language has superseded words. An Anthology of Asemic Handwriting is compiled and edited by Tim Gaze from Asemic magazine and Michael Jacobson from The New Post-Literate blog.

Works by:
Reed Altemus, mIEKAL aND, Rosaire Appel, Francesco Aprile, Roy Arenella, Derek Beaulieu, Pat Bell, John M. Bennett, Francesca Biasetton, Volodymyr Bilyk, Tony Burhouse & Rob Glew, Nancy Burr, Riccardo Cavallo, Mauro Césari, Peter Ciccariello, Andrew Clark, Carlfriedrich Claus, Bob Cobbing, Patrick Collier, Robert Corydon, Jeff Crouch, Marilyn Dammann, Donna Maria Decreeft, Alessandro De Francesco, Monica Dengo, Mirtha Dermisache, Bill Dimichele, Christian Dotremont, Jean Dubuffet, Max Ernst, Mark Firth, Eckhard Gerdes, Mike Getsiv, Jean-Christophe Giacottino, Marco Giovenale, Meg Green, Brion Gysin, Jeff Hansen, Huái Sù, Geof Huth, Isidore Isou, Michael Jacobson, Satu Kaikkonen, Jukka-Pekka Kervinen, Rashid Koraishi, Irene Koronas, Edward Kulemin, Lê Quốc Việt & Trần Trọng Dương, Jim Leftwich, Misha Magazinnik, Matt Margo, André Masson, Nuno de Matos, Willi Melnikov, Morita Shiryu, Sheila E. Murphy, Nguyễn Đức Dũng, Nguyễn Quang Thắng, Phạm Văn Tuấn, François Poyet, Kerri Pullo, Lars Px, Marilyn R. Rosenberg, Roland Sabatier, Ekaterina Samigulina & Yuli Ilyshchanska, Alain Satié, Karen L. Schiff, Spencer Selby, Peggy Shearn, Ahmed Shibrain, Christopher Skinner, Hélène Smith, Lin Tarczynski, Morgan Taubert, Andrew Topel, Cecil Touchon, Louise Tournay, Trần Trọng Dương, Lawrence Upton, Sergio Uzal, Marc van Elburg, Nico Vassilakis, Glynda Velasco, Simon Vinkenoog, Vsevolod Vlaskine, Cornelis Vleeskens, Anthony Vodraska, Voynich Manuscript, Jim Wittenberg, Michael Yip, Logan K. Young, Yorda Yuan, Camille Zehenne, Zhāng Xù, & others

About asemic writing:



_Six Months Ain't No Sentence_ by Jim Leftwich @ differxhost "BOX"

differx and differxhost [see here and here] host right now the books 01-50 (from year 2011 to year 2013) of "Six Months Aint No Sentence", texts and works by Jim Leftwich

[+ a file by John M. Bennett, re-working on J.L.'s texts]

 All the pdf files are freely downloadable here.

(CC) Jim Leftwich, 2011-13 

announcement here too: 


Otoliths issue 29, the southern autumn issue

Otoliths issue 29, the southern autumn issue, contains a lot of new work from a lot of people:  Mark Cunningham, Susan Lewis, Aditya Bahl, Jal Nicholl, Andrew Topel, Pete Spence & Andrew Topel, Julian Jason Haladyn, Ed Baker, John Ryan, Francesco Aprile, Unconventional Press, Kyle Hemmings, Philip Byron Oakes, Marco Giovenale, Sheila E. Murphy & John M. Bennett, Jim Leftwich & John M. Bennett, Thomas M. Cassidy & John M. Bennett, John M. Bennett, John W. Sexton, Louie Crew, Sy Roth, Jack Galmitz, Anthony J. Langford, Mark Melnicove, Yoko Danno, Pam Brown, Eleanor Leonne Bennett, A. J. Huffman, John Veira, Maria Zajkowski, Camille Martin, Wayne Mason, Bobbi Lurie, Darren C. Demaree, Michael Stutz, James Mc Laughlin, Howie Good, Reed Altemus, Tammy Ho Lai-Ming, Johannes S. H. Bjerg, Vernon Frazer, Jeremy Freedman, John Pursch, dan raphael, Sheila e. Black & Caleb Puckett, Ricky Garni, Jack Collum & Mark DuCharme, Kathryn Yuen, Tim Wright, Mark Reep, Gary Barwin, Taylor Reid, harry k stammer, Marcia Arrieta, Anna Ryan-Punch, Katrinka Moore, Neil Ellman, Sally Ann McIntyre, Jeff Harrison, Joe Balaz, Boyd Spahr, Tony Beyer, Jim Davis, Chris Brown, Sam Moginie, Lakey Comess, Alberto Vitacchio, Jorge Lucio de Campos translated by Diana Magallón & Gregory Vincent St. Thomasino, Rebecca Rom-Frank, Craig Cotter, Javant Biarujia, Carla Bertola, Iain Britton, Anne Elvey, Bob Heman, Donna Fleischer, J. D. Nelson, sean burn, Spencer Selby, Charles Freeland & Rosaire Appel, Paul Dickey, Michael D Goscinski, Kathup Tsering, Miro Bilbrough, Chris Holdaway, Samuel Carey, Paul Pfleuger, Jr., Michael Brandonisio, Willie Smith, Mercedes Webb-Pullman, Bogdan Puslenghea, Andrew Pascoe, Scott Metz, Marty Hiatt, Eric Schmaltz, Sam Langer, & bruno neiva

 In addition, this issue features 147 Million Orphans: A haybun folio curated by Eileen R. Tabios, containing work from Eileen R. Tabios, Tom Beckett, j/j hastain, John Bloomberg-Rissman, Aileen Ibardaloza, Thomas Fink, Sheila E. Murphy, Michael Caylo-Baradi, Jean Vengua, William Allegrezza, & Patrick James Dunagan & Ava Koohbor.



EX.IT _ dal 12 al 14 aprile ad Albinea (Reggio Emilia)


EX.IT - Materiali fuori contesto

Biblioteca Comunale “Pablo Neruda” 
Albinea* (Reggio Emilia), 
12–14 aprile 2013

scrittura, video e musica 
reading, proiezioni audiovideo 
e performance sonore

in tre giornate di incontri ideati e curati da

Marco Giovenale, Mariangela Guatteri, Giulio Marzaioli, Michele Zaffarano


Rosaire Appel (usa), Marco Ariano (ita), Daniele Bellomi (ita), Charles Bernstein (usa), Pietro D’Agostino (ita), Rachel Blau DuPlessis (usa), Gherardo Bortolotti (ita), Alessandro Broggi (ita), Roberto Cavallera (ita), Riccardo Cavallo (ita), Fiammetta Cirilli (ita), Elisa Davoglio (ita), Alessandro De Francesco (ita), Florinda Fusco (ita), Marco Giovenale (ita), Jean-Marie Gleize (fra), Mariangela Guatteri (ita), Andrea Inglese (ita), Giulio Marzaioli (ita), Simona Menicocci (ita), Rosa Menkman (nl), Manuel Micaletto (ita), Bob Perelman (usa), Nathalie Quintane (fra), Andrea Raos (ita), Jennifer Scappettone (usa), Luigi Severi (ita), Ron Silliman (usa), Éric Suchère (fra), Miron Tee (pl), Fabio Teti (ita), Luca Venitucci (ita), Michele Zaffarano (ita)

* Albinea è comune decentrato rispetto alle direttrici e ai crocevia canonici del sistema culturale. Il progetto EX.IT sceglie di costituire una propria dimensione di  luogo-ambiente ancorata sulla buona qualità dei rapporti tra universo individuale e universo sociale. EX.IT è patrocinato dal Comune di Albinea che supporta l’iniziativa mettendo a disposizione lo spazio eco-sostenibile e le tecnologie della Biblioteca “Pablo Neruda” (Premio Innovazione Amica dell’Ambiente 2012. Legambiente e Confindustria), oltre al proprio ufficio stampa.

mappa ipermediale per raggiungere EX.IT e soggiornare ad Albinea: http://goo.gl/maps/gu6uD


un blog:

  • una serie di incontri e di reading che coinvolgerà diversi autori italiani e stranieri
  • una sequenza di letture e di installazioni verbovisive, con l’intervento di videoartisti e musicisti
  • un primo momento di confronto collettivo tra percorsi già in dialogo e la proposta di un panorama di riferimento per lettori e ascoltatori che potranno trovare, per la prima volta all’interno dello stesso tempo e luogo, materiali testuali e artistici non identificati (definibili: di ricerca)
Un volume antologico – edito dalla Tipografia La Colornese – con testi e immagini inediti – offrirà un percorso di lettura, visione e documentazione dei materiali ospitati dall’evento. 

La Biblioteca di Albinea predisporrà inoltre, a partire proprio da questa iniziativa, il fondo librario EX.IT, dedicato ad alcune linee della recente scrittura di ricerca, italiane e non. _  



Postmodern American Poetry, 2nd Edition

My anthology Postmodern American Poetry: A Norton Anthology, 2nd edition, to be officially published in March (books in the warehouse in late January for those ordering for the classroom) just received a starred review in Publishers Weekly, see the link below. In the meantime, here's the text of the review: 
Hoover, a highly regarded West Coast poet and deep practitioner of the poetics that are the focus of this book, has greatly expanded this important anthology for its second edition. First coined by the poet Charles Olson in 1951, the term “postmodern” is defined by Hoover in his introduction as “an experimental approach to composition, as well as a worldview that sets itself apart from mainstream culture and the sentimentality and self-expressiveness of its life in writing.” That definition suggests both academic and theoretical nature of much of the poetry contained herein, as well as the many unusual formal devices often employed. But the range here is stunning, from Olson’s panoramic histories to Frank O’Hara’s chatty cityscapes to Lyn Hejinian’s bottomless autobiography. What makes this edition so welcome, for both classroom and personal use, is its inclusion of many newer poets whose careers hadn’t yet begun when the first edition was published. Now we have K. Silem Mohammad’s Internet-infused lines, Claudia Rankine’s moral collages, Christian Bok’s vowel experiments, and more, including very new writers like Ben Lerner. There’s plenty of everything—especially strong emotion—if one knows where to look. This will be an essential book for students and serious fans of poetry. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 12/24/2012


oct. 4, ksw: rachel blau duplessis

Rachel Blau DuPlessis

Thursday October 4, 8:00 pm

The People’s Co-op Books

1391 Commercial Drive

In the world as such
DNA dumplings
(with thin skin wrapped around them)
recklessly (unwittingly? uncannily?)
because of randomized events
in a politics of explosion.
How then?
Shaking with the instability
of calculations,
more in anger than in fear
one “shows one’s work.”
This is written entirely on off-cuts.
an internal translation of itself
marking shards with mackle.
It’s true the work must be redone.
This time scribbling mirror-wise,
an addition problem
with uncountable vectors.
from “Draft 111: Arte Povera”
Poet-critic Rachel Blau DuPlessis is known as a feminist critic and scholar with a special interest in modern and contemporary poetry, and as a poet and essayist. Blue Studios: Poetry and Its Cultural Work, a book of essays, was published by University of Alabama Press in 2006; in the same year, Alabama reprinted DuPlessis’s classic work The Pink Guitar: Writing as Feminist Practice. Another recent critical book by DuPlessis is Genders, Races, and Religious Cultures in Modern American Poetry, 1908-1934 (Cambridge University Press, 2001). Her books of poetry are Drafts 1-38Toll (Wesleyan University Press, 2001) and DRAFTSDrafts 39-57Pledge with Draft, Unnumbered: Précis (Salt Publishing, 2004). A poem from this book appears in Best American Poetry 2004. Torques: Drafts 58-76 appeared from Salt Publishing in October 2007 and Pitch: Drafts 77-95 is in press with Salt Publishing.


09/01/2012: For the City That Nearly Broke Me (Free Writing Workshop and Chapbook Release Event)

Author: Barbara Jane Reyes
ISBN: 9780984441532
Price: US$13.95
FREE Writing Workshop by Barbara Jane Reyes 12:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Book Reading “For the City That Nearly Broke Me” new chapbook 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm
VENUE: Bayanihan Community Center
1010 Mission St. (& 6th St.)
San Francisco, CA 94103
For more information please call (415) 553-8185
or email us at arkipelagobooks@yahoo.com
Incantatory, gritty, at times heartbreaking, and, yes, celebratory, these poems are amulets for our broken world. –R. Zamora Linmark, author of Drive-By Vigils and The Evolution of a Sigh.
Scribe of global soundscape, Reyes builds upon the heartbeat of literary and blood ancestors, feeding her “mythic thirst for home” as she journeys back to cities devastated and torn by the politics of race, history, class and sexuality, greeting her like an outsider. And still, despite the cities’ fall from grace, each gritty image, drawn on multiple languages and rhythms, is a love song, a reflection, a naming of the self. Bittersweet, powerful and precise, I adore this important book and the work of Barbara Jane Reyes. –M. Evelina Galang, author of Her Wild American Self and One Tribe.
In this fierce, feisty, anaphora-filled shakedown serenade, Reyes hard-scrambles our senses to position us firmly in poetry meant to electro-charge our attention real. This is a fine book of verse, reminiscent of Juan Felipe Herrera, yet singly Reyes. The supple lines ring endless rounds, bringing us bits of battle-singing and words wound true. Packs an amazing delivery and guarantees impact. –Allison A. Hedge Coke, author of Dog Road Woman and Rock Ghost, Willow, Deer. 
A big thank you to Arkipelago Books for organizing this event and handling book sales.