Poetry’s Comfort Zone

People have been writing incipient poems while commoding for millennia. Here I sit broken hearted, etc. Más macho Hemingway wrote standing up, but he often read sitting down, on a commode, next to which he had installed a bookcase. I’ve always found this practice of ingesting literature while digesting stuff rather peculiar. Hardly universal, it’s de rigueur in the USA, where one could scan a commody poem or two in the New Yorker, New Republic or Nation, while being tucked away in a tiny room or stall of one’s own, shielded from workplace bullshit or domestic mayhem. A wise, productive use of one’s down time, uplifting and more cultured than a glory hole, it’s also a way to repudiate the very act of commoding. Vallejo, “Doubt your feces for a moment.” It’s not a problem, César, since we never believed it in the first place. Reading while commoding doesn’t just ruin the reading experience, it debases commoding.


Murat said...


What is "to commode," sitting on the toilet?



Linh Dinh said...

Hi Murat,

Yes. To avoid filthy, disgusting words, I'm using "commode" as a verb.