October 6, 2010 4:09 PM   Subscribe

Raymond Queneau's 100,000,000,000,000 Poems online (annotated, with both French & English text)
posted by juv3nal (16 comments total) 21 users marked this as a favorite
posted by OmieWise at 4:14 PM on October 6, 2010 [3 favorites]

I kid, I kid. This is a great find. I had never seen the book.
posted by OmieWise at 4:15 PM on October 6, 2010

I've never been able to put my finger on what it is I love best about the Oulipians, but this totally exemplifies it. There's an obvious delight in manipulating the sound and sense of the written word, but it never comes off (to me, anyway) as overly clever or self-indulgent. It's just...adorably nerdy, somehow, if that makes sense.
posted by AkzidenzGrotesk at 4:18 PM on October 6, 2010

Maybe a bit of info? Because the first three poems I read sucked, so I'm not going to bother with the other 99,999,999,999,997. I tried their home page but it doesn't load and says only, "Ooops." So what is this?
posted by cjorgensen at 4:24 PM on October 6, 2010

So what is this?
posted by juv3nal at 4:31 PM on October 6, 2010

Oh freddled gruntbuggly,
Thy micturations are to me
As plurdled gabbleblotchits
On a lurgid bee
That mordiously hath bitled out
Its earted jurtles
Into a rancid festering [drowned out by moaning and screaming]
Now the jurpling slayjid agrocrustles
Are slurping hagrilly up the axlegrurts
And living glupules frart and slipulate
Like jowling meated liverslime
Groop, I implore thee, my foonting turlingdromes
And hooptiously drangle me
With crinkly bindlewurdles,
Or else I shall rend thee in the gobberwarts with my blurglecruncheon
See if I don't.
posted by Sukiari at 4:36 PM on October 6, 2010 [5 favorites]

This is great! I checked out the Gallimard edition from my university library and oohed and ahhed over it a few years go. The book itself is a beautiful thing in its own right.

It's a pity that my French is so awful.
posted by cobra libre at 4:51 PM on October 6, 2010

My post on the OuLiPo from 6 years ago.

I think there was a site up before that had the sonnets, but it no longer exists. Anyway, for anyone interested I highly recommend the Oulipo Compendium, which has all of his sonnets written out, complete with cutting lines (so you can mix and match) - along with lots and lots of deliciously fun prose.
posted by hopeless romantique at 5:41 PM on October 6, 2010

That's quite a lot. One might indeed say that it were greater than nine thousand poems.
posted by Solon and Thanks at 5:52 PM on October 6, 2010

It's no "Ode to a Small Lump of Green Putty I Found in My Armpit One Midsummer Morning."
posted by swift at 6:37 PM on October 6, 2010

So, this is what, the fourth worst poetry in the universe?
posted by vidur at 7:28 PM on October 6, 2010

I like things that are made to be recombined. See also Possible Lessnesses.
posted by carsonb at 9:35 PM on October 6, 2010

So, this is what, the fourth worst poetry in the universe?

Don't read a lot of poetry, do you?
posted by Wolof at 10:20 PM on October 6, 2010

"Slibberty bibbet!" I said to myself,
"It's time to be glonching the zipe."
So I loaded my gloncher with hither and yon,
And went to the butcher's for cripe.

The butcher he droozed, with a wink and a flug
At my plans for the zipe to be glithered;
But he packed me a titcurl of cripe and fresh insta
And threw in a yowmunt, well-blithered.

I searched for the zipe upon quildry and plintock,
Across the vast Zibbelshime Stretch;
Under a number of businessmen's stugs,
But nary a zipe did I catch.

As evening approached, all bliskow with druve
I knew I'd be zipeless that day;
So I got out my yowmunt, I got out my cripe
And I glonchered myself, anyway!

(must be read aloud for full effect)
posted by slappy_pinchbottom at 10:34 PM on October 6, 2010

Surrealist tag please.
Although Queneau officially left the Group in 1929 this was more for political reasons rather than artistic and more specifically anti Andre Breton (who was his brother in law).
He was a keen amateur mathematician and Pataphysicist.
Here is some more about Oulipo. It should be noted that Oulipo members are still considered members after their deaths, although dead members are excused from group meetings.
posted by adamvasco at 12:38 AM on October 7, 2010

Oh, I just saw the title of the post in my recent activity. It makes my opening joke much less witty. :(
posted by OmieWise at 6:19 AM on October 7, 2010

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