Spero, Woodman and Carruth

April 3rd, 2014

  • (Nancy Spero at her studio)

    More Nancy Spero here.

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    Francesca Woodman
    April 3, 1958 – January 19, 1981

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    Lucille Clifton and Hayden Carruth

    He did read the prominent poets Ben Johnson, William Yeats, and Ezra Pound, but added that “the real question is not by whom I was influenced, but how.” To Miller, Carruth’s early grounding in traditional poetic forms prepared him to “improvise” later on, much like the way jazz musicians often study classical music early in their training: “The discipline must precede the rejection of discipline.”

  • At Seventy-Five: Rereading An Old Book

    My prayers have been answered, if they were prayers. I live.
    I’m alive, and even in rather good health, I believe.
    If I’d quit smoking I might live to be a hundred.
    Truly this is astonishing, after the poverty and pain,
    The suffering. Who would have thought that petty
    Endurance could achieve so much?
    And prayers –
    Were they prayers? Always I was adamant
    In my irreligion, and had good reason to be.
    Yet prayer is not, I see in old age now,
    A matter of doctrine or discipline, but rather
    A movement of the natural human mind
    Bereft of its place among the animals, the other
    Animals. I prayed. Then on paper I wrote
    Some of the words I said, which are these poems.

    Anonymous Submission
    Hayden Carruth

    Bye Bill Knot – A Language Composed of Kisses & Leaves

    March 13th, 2014
  • Bill Knott -1940 – 2014

    that Bill passed away yesterday from complications with surgery. The inventive, subversive, and immensely influential poet was 74.

    Knott, who was an orphan, spent a year in an institution for the mentally ill in Elgin, Illinois, when he was 15; he worked with his uncle at a farm in Michigan, spent two years in the army, and wrote his first book while working as a hospital orderly. He taught for many years at Emerson College in Boston.

    Death by Bill Knott

    Going to sleep, I cross my hands on my chest.
    They will place my hands like this.
    It will look as though I am flying into myself.

  • Knotty Knotty Boy (Richard Hell on Bill Knott)


    In this time and place, where “Bread and Circuses” has
    become “Bread and Atrocities,” to say “I love you” is
    like saying the latest propaganda phrase… ‘defoliation’… ‘low yield blast’.
    If bombing children is preserving peace, then
    my fucking you is a war-crime.

  • Michael Andre

    I thought at first that someone was repeating the old joke about Saint Geraud.
    Knott faked his suicide years ago, and then had his work ascribed to “Saint Geraud.”

  • Bill Knot Art blog

    Interview I

  • Click to see large and read a poem The Lost

  • Interview Harriett (He was reading Patricia Highsmith)

    What language will be safe
    When we lie awake all night
    Saying palm words, no fingertip words
    This wound searching us for a voice
    Will become a fountain with rooms to let
    Or a language composed of kisses and leaves

    Feminlist – Nancy Cunard & Sophie Le Fraga

    March 10th, 2014
  • Photo of Nancy Cunard by Moffet

    Some of Moffat’s best portraits were of Nancy Cunard (1896-1965), a prolific English writer, editor, publisher, political activist, anarchist and poet. She was associated with the Dada and Modernist movements in Paris during the early 1920s when she and Moffat became friends and lovers. Moffat photographed her in a series of inventive poses wearing this extravagant feathered headdress.

    Nancy Cunard was born into the British upper class and devoted much of her life to fighting racism and fascism. She became a muse to some of the 20th century’s most distinguished writers and artists, including Wyndham Lewis, Aldous Huxley, Tristan Tzara, Ezra Pound and Louis Aragon, who were among her lovers, Ernest Hemingway, James Joyce, Constantin Brâncuși, Langston Hughes, Man Ray, and William Carlos Williams. MI5 documents reveal that she was involved with Indian socialist leader VK Krishna Menon. In later years, she suffered from mental illness, and her physical health deteriorated. She died at age 69, weighing only 26 kilos (57 pounds), in the Hôpital Cochin, Paris.

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  • I love a bangle stack (scroll down to see a photo of Nancy with unknown women)

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    Sophia Le Fraga homepage.

    Interview with Sophia Le Fraga

    Drumroll please Sophia Le Fraga

  • Robert Fitterman introduces Sophie


    womenthol cigarettes
    womanchego cheese
    womanila envelopes
    Charles Womanson
    Marilyn Womanson
    Womandy Moore
    Paul Newoman
    Newoman’s Own
    sediwomentary rock
    womanta ray
    praying womantis
    womanic depression
    womental disorder
    Prewomenstrual Syndrome

    -Sophia Le Fraga

    Joan Mitchell & Frank O’Hara – A Look at Their Friendship

    February 12th, 2014
  • Frank and Joan

    See more on Joan Mitchell installaion and her friendship with Frank O’Hara here (Poetry installaton)

    At last you are tired of being single
    the effort to be new does not upset you nor the effort to be other
    you are not tired of life together (Frank’s poem to Joan Mitchell)

    Click to see large 1941
    Joan Mitchel was a junior champion.

    During high school, Mitchell excels as an athlete and becomes a highly competitive figure skater, entering Midwestern and national championships. In 1941, Mitchell wins the Midwest Junior Pairs Title with ice-skating partner Bobby Specht, and in 1942, she places Fourth in the Junior Women’s Division of the U.S. Figure Skating Championships. A knee injury later ends her skating career. – See more here

    Trained as a pianist, he called writing “playing the typewriter.

  • Joan Mitchell and Barney Rosset Joan Mitchell Painting(Part II of Barney/Michell archive)

  • To the Habormaster – Joan’s reponse to Frank O’Hara

    To the Harbormaster (Poem by Frank O’Hara)

    I wanted to be sure to reach you;

    though my ship was on the way it got caught

    in some moorings. I am always tying up
    and then deciding to depart. In storms and
    at sunset, with the metallic coils of the tide
    around my fathomless arms, I am unable
    to understand the forms of my vanity
    or I am hard alee with my Polish rudder
    in my hand and the sun sinking. To
    you I offer my hull and the tattered cordage
    of my will. The terrible channels where
    the wind drives me against the brown lips
    of the reeds are not all behind me. Yet
    I trust the sanity of my vessel; and
    if it sinks, it may well be in answer
    to the reasoning of the eternal voices,
    the waves which have kept me from reaching you.

    R.I.P Maxine Kumin – (1925–2014)

    February 8th, 2014
  • Poetry Foundation -Maxine Kumin (1925–2014)

  • Angels from streets of gold
    benignly looked on this,
    God’s wonders to behold.
    Both sides stood by unhorsed
    while Nature ran its course.

    Read the poem “Going to Jerusalem” by Maxine Kumin (Paris Review) (see a nice photo montage)

  • From story: ” …Ms. Sexton’s suicide shook Ms. Kumin deeply. “A month after your death I wear your blue jacket,” she wrote in a poem, “How It Is.” It continues:

    The dog at the center of my life recognizes

    you’ve come to visit, he’s ecstatic.

    In the left pocket, a hole.

    In the right, a parking ticket

    delivered up last August on Bay State Road.

    In my heart, a scatter like milkweed,

    a flinging from the pods of the soul. ”

    via Lilyaradiohead

  • Maxine Kumin dies at 88

    Ms. Kumin’s style defied tidy categorization. Though her poems and essays centered on the New England countryside, she trafficked in none of the sentimental effusions of traditional pastoral poets. Her dark, ironic poem “Highway Hypothesis” made clear just what she thought of such unexamined romanticizing:

    Bucophilia, I call it —

    nostalgia over a pastoral vista —

    where for all I know the farmer

    who owns it or rents it just told his

    wife he’d kill her if she left him and

    she did and he did and now here come

    the auctioneer, the serious bidders

    and an ant-train of gawking onlookers.

    George Balanchine & Arthur Mitchell (An African American Dancer)

    January 22nd, 2014

  • George Balanchine and Arhtur Mitchell

    Mitchell shares interesting stories about Balanchine. (youtube) or whyPad de deux was so controversial (youtube)

    Arthur Mitchell is an African-American dancer and choreographer who created a training school and the first African-American classical ballet company, Dance Theatre of Harlem.
    In 1955 Mitchell made his debut as the first African American with the New York City Ballet
    Mitchell was the only African-American dancer with the NY City Ballet until 1970. Choreographer and director of the NYCB George Balanchine created the pas de deux in Agon especially for Mitchell and the white ballerina Diana Adams. Although Mitchell danced this role with white partners throughout the world, he could not perform it on commercial television in the United States before 1965, because states in the South refused to carry it.

    Arthur Mitchell

    Slim dragon-fly
    too rapid for the eye
    to cage,

    contagious gem of virtuosity
    make visible, mentality.
    Your jewels of mobility

    and veil
    a peacock-tail.

    — by Marianne Moore

  • Other related links..
    4 temperaments - Portraits of Paul Hindemith -

  • THe Unknown Balanchine.. (Balanchine’s early years)

    George Balanchine was born on January 22 [O.S. January 9] 1904.

    Amiri Baraka – (1934 – 2014)

    January 9th, 2014

  • photo via

    Amiri Baraka (LA times)

    Amiri Baraka, controversial author and activist, dies at 79

    The Guardian obit

    Baraka was the subject of a 1983 documentary, In Motion, and holds a minor place in Hollywood history. In Bulworth, Warren Beatty’s 1998 satire about a senator’s break from the political establishment, Baraka plays a homeless poet who cheers on the title character. “You got to be a spirit,” the poet tells him. “You got to sing – don’t be no ghost.”

    Amiri Baraka Homepage

    12 great quotes by Amiri Baraka (buzzfeed) .

    Madeline Gins – (1941 – 2014)

    January 9th, 2014
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    (Photo by Kikuko Usuyama)

    Madeline Gins - Jacket obit

    Madeline Gins wiki

  • Arakawagins1_01

  • Madeleine suggested I publish Poets’ Encyclopedia, and I did - Michael Andre

    The Poets’ Encyclopedia was, for Unmuzzled OX, a best-seller. It made me famous for a few minutes. Madeline Gins was all ideas all the time. Some years ago I encountered Madeleine and Arakawa in the street, and she asked me what I’d been doing. I just had a son, I said, joyfully. Madeleine said, “That’s terrible!” What do you mean? “It’ll keep you from your work,” she said. “But Madeleine,” said Arakawa, “it’s life!”

  • Previous post – Arakawa Shusaku

    Black Snowman by David Shrigley – Christmas Dance by Reiner Strasser

    December 23rd, 2013
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    Black Snowman by David Shrigley

  • On Top of the Raspberry – I am not here …. by Reiner strasser

  • (Click to see large)
    1) Cleaning for Christmas, Weihnachtsputz, 2011
    2) Christmas Dance (Greetings to Slinkachu), 12-2011..
    Reiner strasser

  • Kenneth Rexroth..(born on Dec 22) Married Blues (he loved Jazz… great stuff)

    Chet Baker born on 23 December –
    Chrystal Bells

    Previous post “Let’s get lost’” documentary ..

    Robert Bly :News of Universe (about his life)

    Happy Holidays!

    I will sleep for eternity Nelson Mandela 1918-2013 RIP

    December 5th, 2013
  • “When a man has done what he considers to be his duty to his people and his country, he can rest in peace. I believe I have made that effort and that is, therefore, why I will sleep for the eternity.” – Nelson Mandela

    Nelson Mandela 1918-2013 – RIP.

  • Jacques Derrida visits Nelson Mandela’s jail cell (youtube)

  • ~12 Mandela Quotes That Won’t Be In the Corporate Media Obituaries~ (Commondreams)

  • Zizek on Mandela

    Coetzee on Nelson Mandela (with a great photo)

    The Child is Not Dead by Ingrid Jonker

    The child is not dead
    The child lifts his fists against his mother
    Who shouts Afrika ! shouts the breath
    Of freedom and the veld
    In the locations of the cordoned heart

    The child lifts his fists against his father
    in the march of the generations
    who shouts Afrika ! shout the breath
    of righteousness and blood
    in the streets of his embattled pride

    The child is not dead not at Langa nor at Nyanga
    not at Orlando nor at Sharpeville
    nor at the police station at Philippi
    where he lies with a bullet through his brain

    The child is the dark shadow of the soldiers
    on guard with rifles Saracens and batons
    the child is present at all assemblies and law-givings
    the child peers through the windows of houses and into the hearts of mothers
    this child who just wanted to play in the sun at Nyanga is everywhere
    the child grown to a man treks through all Africa

    the child grown into a giant journeys through the whole world
    Without a pass

  • Heurtebise from Orphée + Paul Celan Reads Japanese

    November 23rd, 2013

  • Francois Perier as Heurtebise from Orphée

    French actor famed for his role as Heurtebise in Orphée, who was a friend of Jean-Paul Sartre
    Ten years later, Perier reappeared as Heurtebise in Cocteau’s valedictory ciné-poem The Testament of Orpheus (1960), in which the dark angel compares a poet to “a sleeping invalid, with neither arms nor legs, who dreams that he runs and gestures”.

    Testament of Orpheus full film (youtube)

  • Paul Celan Nov 23 1920

    Celan is an anagram of the Romanian spelling of his surname, Ancel.

    Paul Celan (1920-1970) was born in Romania to Jewish parents. His parents were deported and eventually died in the Nazi labor camps, and he was interned for eighteen months before escaping to the Red Army. He ultimately settled in Paris in 1948 to study German philology and literature. He published seven books of poetry and numerous translations during his lifetime. (via )

    He was a prolific translater.. see the list of poets he translated .. via wiki.

    Previous Post (see a video of him reciting Todesfuge.. powerful & moving)

  • Paul Celan -Nelly Sachs Correspondence

  • Paul Celan reads Corona (Youtube)

  • Celan Reads Japanese.

    Celan’s words are not containers, they are openings. I go through the opening in the gate each time I read them. The ideogram to open 開 appears in this book as well, in the crucial last line of the poem Ein Körnchen Sands {‘A Grain of Sand’}:

    und ich schweb dir voraus als ein Blatt,
    das weiß, wo die Tore sich auftun.

    and I waft before you, a leaf
    that knows where the gates will open

  • Katue Kitasono – Plastic Poems – Theory & Practice

    November 13th, 2013
  • The Camera Can Create a Lovely Poem Even from Trifling

  • Katue Kitasono - Plastic Poems on view at LACMA till December 1, 2013.


    billions of ladies with billions of tongues have billions of peacocks
    billions of ladies with billions of peacocks are calm as billions of


  • Katue
    Thing Net I

    Thing Net II

    On View a Reconsideration of Katue Kitasono (NYtimes)

  • Theory and Practice


    Jacket - 3 Poems Black Fire