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Robert Bruce: American Poet
May 24, 2008 11:24 AM   Subscribe

Robert Bruce is an American Poet who eschews Lit and Poetry Journals and instead posts a poem a week to his blog, Knife Gun Pen.

May 14th's entry: The Four Foolproof Ways to Create Unimaginable Wealth in this World

via The Art of Nonconformity interview with Robert.
posted by mosessis (26 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

 
Someone needs
to tell
this guy that
line breaks
do
not
a
poem
make

Needs a yourfavouritepoetsucks tag.
posted by RokkitNite at 11:35 AM on May 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


I might have guessed that this guy wouldn't like the word 'poet.' I'm surprised he refers to his compositions as poems, even. They're more like free-prose editorials.

I also like the push to try new mediums for literature, because the whole print thing ain't working.
posted by cmoj at 11:37 AM on May 24, 2008


Here's also a guest post by him at ProBlogger: 27 Thoughts on Blogging for the Artist
posted by mosessis at 11:45 AM on May 24, 2008


This guy...Bukowski wannabe much?
posted by juv3nal at 11:49 AM on May 24, 2008


Someone needs
to tell
this guy that
line breaks
do
not
a
poem
make


Not when you do it like that. Or are you the kind of guy who thinks all poems should be in iambic pentameter and rhyme?
posted by bigmusic at 11:55 AM on May 24, 2008


And they could care less whether or not I spent the summer at Bread Loaf…

Not true. I, for one, couldn't care less.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 12:24 PM on May 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


There once was a man who wrote poems,
but not me,
because obviously this doesn't rhyme.
posted by blue_beetle at 12:31 PM on May 24, 2008


Three objects that I like and use. All three are simple, beautiful, efficient and deadly…

Sigh. Guy, honestly, nobody's going to think you're, you know, gay just because you write. Really. You don't have to overcompensate with the macho chest pounding.
posted by jokeefe at 12:44 PM on May 24, 2008


Three objects that I like and use. All three are simple, beautiful, efficient and deadly…

He actually said that?
posted by jayder at 12:46 PM on May 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


Red blue
     green
extra space means
I
am an artist.
posted by Super Hans at 12:48 PM on May 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


Not when you do it like that. Or are you the kind of guy who thinks all poems should be in iambic pentameter and rhyme?

That would have been my response had I not read some of the poems, but adding line breaks to turgid prose is indeed Bruce's schtick, so RokkitNite does have a point in this case. (Though I wouldn't want to say that Bruce's work isn't poetry, just that it isn't very good poetry.)

Also, while I know that the poetry magazine and publishing scene is often ridicuously back-patting and incestuous, it's interesting how bloody awful these web-publishing stick-it-to-the-poetry-man types tend to be. And not just poets, of course - I'm still getting over the horror of the last sci-fi epic published in daily web installments that was linked to on MetaFilter. When you do come across decent web-published stuff, it invariably comes from and author or artist who has previosly been published-published. Perhaps we need to invent a web equivalent of the filtering system that edited journals/publishing houses/art galleries/critics/&c. provide in the non-web world. One that works better than MeFi ;-)
posted by jack_mo at 12:49 PM on May 24, 2008


Not true. I, for one, couldn't care less.

Hee.
posted by jack_mo at 12:50 PM on May 24, 2008


he tells us way too much - i'm not interested in what he or any other poet knows - it's what they don't know that makes poetry
posted by pyramid termite at 3:47 PM on May 24, 2008


jack_mo's post reminds me that no one's ever done an FPP on Bill Knott, a poet who has posted his entire body of work to his blog. He writes, "ALL MY POETRY, EVERY POEM I'VE WRITTEN SINCE 1960, IS POSTED HERE FOR OPEN ACCESS, PERUSAL AND PROPAGATION: YOU HAVE MY THANKS TO PLEASE COPY/DISTRIBUTE WHATEVER YOU LIKE." I would particularly recommend his Collected Short Poems, Volumes One and Two, and Readers' Favorites: The Best Poems of Bill Knott. He's an interesting person--almost a coyote figure. He acts weird as a pink crap in interviews, and has a reputation for being "difficult," but his work is really worth a look.
posted by Powerful Religious Baby at 5:33 PM on May 24, 2008 [2 favorites]


Ow! My sensibilities!
posted by paradoxflow at 6:27 PM on May 24, 2008


Three objects that I like and use. All three are simple, beautiful, efficient and deadly…

He actually said that?


Right on the front page of his site.
posted by jokeefe at 6:40 PM on May 24, 2008


Of course, he forgot to add "penis". But I think you can take it as implied.
posted by jokeefe at 6:40 PM on May 24, 2008


For such a well-armed society, Americans do spend an awful lot of time worrying about the threat of violence. What's up with that?

I suppose it's pointless spending all that money on Mossberg and Glock if you can't fantasize about using them to take somebody out.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 11:40 PM on May 24, 2008


Needs more periods:

Robert Bruce. American. Poet.
Knife.
Pen.
Gun.

*

So I was
surfing the web
last Thursday and
this guy was blogging. . .
posted by flotson at 11:44 PM on May 24, 2008


I love the dark gray text on a black background. Combined with the almost random[1] linebreaks it makes for an amazingly annoying reading experience. No wonder he had to eschew Lit and Poetry Journals, the amount of ink required to get this effect on parper is probably prohibitive.

[1] To me at lest, feel free to ridicule my non-appreciation of poetry.
posted by ghost of a past number at 1:08 AM on May 25, 2008


Anyone else eschew eschew?
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 9:13 AM on May 25, 2008


bigmusic, there's more than one type of rhythm, and rhythm is one of the primary points of experimentation in the less moribund poetic cultures around the world. Poetry in English right now is pretty dire, not least because people think adding
line breaks
--and arbitrary punctuation--
makes it poetry.
posted by sonic meat machine at 4:47 PM on May 25, 2008


I haven't read much this guys stuff - from what seen it's meh. But to dismiss a poet because of line breaks and punctuation would be to dismiss alot of modern poets on that point. That's all I was getting at.
posted by bigmusic at 8:19 PM on May 25, 2008


Late to the game...
I8217;ve never understood some people8217;s (read: this guy8217;s) aversion from the label 8220;poet8221;. Do you write poems, or not?

Did anyone else look at his 8220;The Talking Show8221; videos? Yech.
posted by SirNovember at 1:48 AM on May 26, 2008


Ha ha, that'll teach me to try and get clever with my character codes!
posted by SirNovember at 1:49 AM on May 26, 2008


to dismiss a poet because of line breaks and punctuation would be to dismiss alot of modern poets

Well, I don't think anyone is criticizing his formal choices in and of themselves, but because they seem arbitrary and conventional. I feel the same way about other poets who use short lines in a way that sounds trite to my ear. . .
posted by flotson at 7:15 PM on May 28, 2008


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