The poet Jayne Cortez passed away this past December 28th
in New York City (New York Times obituary
). She started publishing her poems in the late 1960s and in the 70s began performing her poetry backed by music, first
with bassist Richard Davis, and then backed by her own band The Firespitters. Some of their tracks have found their way to YouTube: I See Chano Pozo
, If the Drum Is a Woman
, There It Is
, Maintain Control & Economic Love Song I
, Everybody Wants to Be Somebody
, Takin' the Blues Back Home
, Talk to Me (for Don Cherry)
, I've Been Searching
, You Can Be
and Endangered Species List Blues
. Just two years ago she performed solo with her son by Ornette Coleman, drummer Denardo Coleman: Find Your Own Voice
, I'm Gonna Shake
and She Got He Got
. In 1997 she was featured on University of California television network in the series Artists on the Cutting Edge
where she read poems and discussed her work. Finally, here's a brief clip
from the 1982 documentary Poetry in Motion, where she was interviewed.
posted by Kattullus
on Jan 5, 2013 -
With cities, it is as with dreams: everything imaginable can be dreamed, but even the most unexpected dream is a rebus that conceals a desire or, its reverse, a fear. Cities, like dreams, are made of desires and fears, even if the thread of their discourse is secret, their rules are absurd, their perspectives deceitful, and everything conceals something else.
December 2012 marks the 40th anniversary of Invisible Cities
-- the sublime metaphysical travelogue by author-journalist Italo Calvino
. In a series of pensive dialogues with jaded emperor Kublai Khan
, the explorer Marco Polo
describes a meandering litany of visionary and impossible places, dozens of surreal, fantastical cities
, each poetically reifying ideas vital to language, philosophy, and the human spirit. This gracefully written love letter to urban life has inspired countless tributes
, but it's just the most accessible of Calvino's fascinating literary catalogue. Look inside for a closer look at his most remarkable works, links to English translations of his magical prose, and collections of artistic interpretations from around the web -- including this treasure trove of essays, excerpts, articles, and recommended reading
. [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi
on Dec 30, 2012 -
"Almost everything I do is based on other texts anyway. Without plagiarism, there would be no literature. I'm a rewrite man."
The poet Christoper Logue has died, aged 85. Logue had a varied career, at various points serving in the British Army (and being arrested for espionage after a drunken threat to sell secrets), writing pornography under the nom de plume
Count Palmiro de Vicarion, recording George Martin
-produced, "heroically daft
" jazz recitals of the poems of Pablo Neruda (YT
) and regularly contributing to the British satirical magazine Private Eye
, where he edited Pseuds' Corner
, while finding the time to be arrested again, for civil disobedience as part of Bertrand Russell's Committee of 100
. [more inside]
posted by running order squabble fest
on Dec 4, 2011 -
One of the finest poets in English, Thom Gunn, has died.
Along with Philip Larkin
and Ted Hughes
, Gunn became famous as a young poet in England
in the 1950s as part of "The Movement," writing fine poems
in rhyme and meter. But then he fell in love with an American soldier, Mike Kitay, and followed him to San Francisco, where he crafted one of the most daringly original voices in the 20th century, handling taboo subjects like LSD, orgiastic sex, and his 50-year relationship with Kitay
with the precision of a diamond cutter. Gunn lived in my neighborhood, and was a dapper, subtle, sexy and hilariously witty man until the end. Ten years ago, when I asked him what music he was listening to he replied, "Oh, Nirvana and Social Distortion. I'm a flighty teenager that way."
posted by digaman
on Apr 28, 2004 -
was a Portuguese poet and mastermind. He created and maintained several heteronyms who each had their own distinct writings, went on to lead interesting lives, and even interacted with each other. All in the public eye.
The truth about their existence was only discovered after the death of Pessoa and the subsequent discovery of a trunk
containing writings from all of them.
posted by ODiV
on Sep 12, 2003 -