Monday, October 21, 2013

Expression as such... not synonymous with or identical to the creation of an aesthetic object.

~ I said that, and I'm sticking by it.

Pure expression -- without craft and without sensitivity toward possible auditors -- often produces a less than aesthetic result. Beyond the affective, spiritual subtleties of the creative instinct and generative process comes the question of how the written object should manifest. A poem should be as dynamic, symbolic, and aesthetic as a Van Gogh painting or a Beethoven sonata. Be hallucinatory yet also possess a certain communicable, soulful coherency. A poem should be a paradox of unconscious freedom and conscious structure. The poet should possess a certain wondering and weird attitude toward language as such. The move into aesthetic crafting should be as serious as a toothache, the object produced be as haunted as a lost house and as remarkable as a fluorescent pelican.

After the waning of the Symbolists and after the collapse of influence of New Criticism, poetry has become, in my opinion, mostly wretched -- solipsistic and boring. The poem as formal blathering.

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