EPC-July Reading List
Reading List for July 1996

>Date:         Fri, 28 Jun 1996 17:15:08 +0200
>From: "William M. Northcutt" (William.Northcutt@UNI-BAYREUTH.DE)
>Subject:      Peter Dale Scott's Jakarta, and ...

I've had Peter Dale Scott's Coming to Jakarta for a while, but I'm just
getting to it in my stack. First impression is that it's a pretty incredible
poem, a pretty incredible book. I'd be interested to hear what any of you
think about it, old news as the book may be. Poetically, I suppose it's as
non-adventurous as poetry can get, but it's subject matter seems quite
powerful to me...

Meanwhile, I'm a bibliography addict, and I'd be interested in seeing lists
somewhat similar to the ones we did a while back, the bed-side reading
lists, maybe with a twist: perhaps we could post a list of 5-10 books that
we're either damned excited about, that we're reading at the moment, or that
we're trying desperately to get at:

My list:

Peter Dale Scott--Coming to Jakarta
Peter Nicholls--Modernisms
Alice Notley--the descent of Alette
Bob Perelman--The Trouble with Genius
David Lodge--Nice Work
Hugh MacDiarmid--Collected I
Ron Silliman--N/O
Djuna Barnes--Book of Repulsive Women (my students loved this little book)

Mostly old news (that remains news).

Also, have any of you read Timothy Bahti's Ends of the Lyric??? Worth a read?

Nuff said.

William Northcutt

Walter Benjamin: "Only a redeemed mankind receives the fullness of its past."

>Date: Mon, 1 Jul 1996 22:43:02 +0100 >From: Kevin Killian(dbkk@SIRIUS.COM) >Subject: my stack William Northcutt, you had a good idea. Here's what I've been reading. 1. Bitter Blue by Jeremy Reed. Incidentally, thanks to all who backchannel me with info on Reed, especially Pierre Joris, Ira Lightman, Joel Lewis, Romana Huk, and Ken Edwards. 2. Portrait of a Lady by Henry James. 3. Autotoxaemia by Latif Harris. About six weeks ago Eddy Berrigan was looking for a job here in San Francisco and told me he went into this one store & the owner gave him a test, and it turned out it was the "questionnaire" Jack Spicer asked his students to fill out to apply to his 1957 "Magic" Workshop (it's printed in the back of the "Collected Books" of Spicer). Following up I went into the store and demanded to see the owner. That's how I met Latif Harris, and he gave me one of his books. Turns out he is the missing witness I've been seeking for all these years, the man who drove Jack Spicer to his last poetry reading at the Berkeley Conference (1965) and had the nerve to bundle him up in the car with the man JS hated, Lew Welch. P.S., good book! PSS, Eddy did not get the job! 4. The Green Mile, by Stephen King. One of Steve's best. 5. Abigail Child, "Scatter Matrix." Thanks to the people at Segue for sending this to me (or was it to Small Press Traffic????) 6. "Heart of the Breath," by Jim Brodey. I'm supposed to write a review of this one, and it is so long. (Quite a bargain.) 7. "The Prince, the Showgirl and Me," by Colin Clark. At age 19 Colin Clark was the 3rd assistant director on the set of the Olivier/Marilyn Monroe film "The Prince and the Showgirl." This is his diary of the period. 8. "Sunshine Muse," by Peter Plagens (1974). Out of date by lots, but an interesting art history of California during the Cold War. Who was it recommended this book to me as a good place to get more information about Jay De Feo, the San Francisco painter whose life I am dramatizing as we speak? 9. From Outlaw to Classic, by Alan Golding. I have read this book before, but I wanted to read it again to see if I have anything to add to Golding's Laws of Canon Formation. 10. Angry Women in Rock, ed. Andrea Juno, this is the first book of a new press formed by one of the editors of the defunct ReSEARCH. 11. Learned and Leaved: a Tribute to Rosalie Moore-Moore was one of the Bay Area activist poets, like Lawrence Hart, whose death a few months ago inspired a bit of discussion here on this list. These Activist people really had a program, didn't they? A program, and a destiny. Alan Golding, how do they fit in to your ideas about Canon Formation? --Kevin Killian
>Date: Mon, 1 Jul 1996 22:58:47 -0700 >From: James Brook (jbrook@IX.NETCOM.COM) >Subject: my stack, 2 New to the list, old to books, I confess to reading the following in fits, starts, and restarts (thanks to Kevin Killian for inspiring me to click Reply): Apollinaire, Lettres a Lou (one side of the correspondence--only a few of her letters survive--rich in poetry, emotion, and naughty bits) Jens August Schade, People Meet and Sweet Music Fills the Heart (a great lyrical novel by a Danish poet woefully undertranslated into English-- there's only a small book of poems from Curbstone; this novel was translated for Dell in 1969 because it served as the basis for what appears to be a cheesey Dano-Porno flick of the era: it's compared to I Am Curious) The indexing chapter in the Chicago Manual of Style (with snooze alarm) Tom Raworth, Clean & Well Lit (which includes a lovely song to dedicated to Franco Beltrametti) Henri Lefebvre, La Somme et le reste (autobiographical/philosophical/poetical reflections published in 1959) A pile of books on San Francisco and California (research for a book on what we around here call The City, a place susceptible to smug alerts) Please direct all questions about indexing elsewhere. . . . Regards from afar, James Brook
>Date: Tue, 2 Jul 1996 18:45:47 +1200 >From: Daniel Salmon (dpsalmon@IHUG.CO.NZ) >Subject: Not a stack Jumping on the reading list band wagon - these are what I'm bogged down in at present. Alastair Campbell 'Sidewinder'Never read his fiction before & i am quite enjoying it as a late night book. He is a Cook Island/New Zealand Poet/novelist. Judith Binney 'Redemption Songs' Biography of Te Kooti (bloody hard work but it pays off) J C Beaglehole 'The Life of Captain James Cook' Hugh Kenner 'The Pound Era' Conrad 'Nigger of the Narcissus' From the Other Side of the Century (Bought through poetics - at last a way to supplement limited choice auckland bookshops. Beekeeping books & Japanese history. & 2 books by Lowell Thomas 'The Sea Devil' & 'Raiders of the Deep' for a poetry project. In the Penguin 60's Classics - for the next time i am stuck in a cafe without a paer or company Henry James' 'The Lesson of the Master' For light relief in all the non-fiction i just finished Mao II -Don de Lilo & American Tabloid - James Ellroy, don't think I'll be visiting either of them again - still better than sitting through Tarantino or Oliver Stone movies. & Listening to the Iliad on talking book on long drives in the car. Daniel. Daniel Salmon
>Date: Tue, 2 Jul 1996 10:13:00 -0600 >From: "Pritchett,Pat @Silverplume" (pritchpa@SILVERPLUME.IIX.COM) >Subject: Re: my stack Patrick Pritchett here: Capital idea. My own list includes the following; which are being read in no particular order, or rather with Dr. Johnson's notion in mind of "read what you like:" 1. Descent of Alette - Alice Notley (Penguin) 2. The Human Abstract - Elizabeth Willis (Penguin) 3. The Green Lake Is Awake - Joseph Ceravolo (Coffee House). Many thanks to Joel Lewis and others who initiated discussion of Mr. C. and led me to him. He's marvelous! 4. Call Steps - Ken Irby (Station Hill). Met Ken recently here in Boulder. Very nice man. The work is pure delight. 5. Moon Palace - Paul Auster (Penguin) 6. A House White With Sorrow - Jennifer Heath (Rodent Press). Great new novel on Afghanistan. 7. The Cold of Poetry - Lyn Hejinian (Sun & Moon) 8. On The Name - Derrida (Stanford UP) 9. A History of the Arab Peoples - Albert Hourani (Belknap Harvard) 10. Skywatch - A book on clouds, storms, weather... 11. Ice Time - Re: climatology 12. The Kabbalah Unveiled - S.L. MacGregor Matthews (sic) ----------
>Date: Wed, 3 Jul 1996 20:24:03 +0800 >From: Schuchat (schuchat@ARC.ARC.ORG.TW) >Subject: Re: my stack 1. CONINGSBY, Benjamin Disraeli 2. ST.PETERSBURG, CRUCIBLE OF CULTURAL REVOLUTION, Katerina Clark 3. TRANSBLUENCY, Jones/Baraka 4. IN MEMORY OF MY THEORIES, Rod Smith 5. WALT WHITMAN'S AMERICA, David S. Reynolds 6. NEGOTIATING COOPERATION: THE UNITED STATES AND CHINA 1969-1989, Robert Ross 7. CLOSE TO ME & CLOSER...(THE LANGUAGE OF HEAVEN) and DESAMERE, Alice Notley 8. MAO & MATISSE, Ed Friedman 9. PRONTO, Elmore Leonard 10. DISCOURSES OF THE VANISHING, Marilyn Ivy (modern Japanese culture, pub by U of Chicago) also, for those of you with access to libraries that would have it, I very strongly recommend Michelle Yeh's article THE "CULT OF POETRY" IN CONTEMPORARY CHINA which you can find in THE JOURNAL OF ASIAN STUDIES 55, no 1. (FEbruary 1996), an excellent account of what is going on "post-Misty school."
>Date: Thu, 4 Jul 1996 00:37:31 MDT >From: Louis Cabri (ldmcabri@ACS.UCALGARY.CA) >Subject: Re: my stack some hits of bed/floor/deskside reading over the last indefinite while - at 1pm & 4am; caffeinated, ginsenged or cigared; from usedbookstore purchases to gifts & library loans; all 100-watt bulbed; in no special order 1. Primitivism and Decadence by Yvor Winters, where I found "The Experimental School in American Poetry," a descriptive catalogue of literary devices & to me a very uncanny read - templating a poetics which seems to haunt the logos of discursive prose itself. That, next to Artifice of Absorption, is boondoggling - & recommended for formal change fetishists & their detractors. What other catalogues are out there? 2. Laura Riding's The World and Ourselves (1938). She leaves Spain in the nick of Franco's razor & writes, i guess from England, a "personal letter" circulated by meanderment to 400 people, asking how should those she singularily terms "inside people" respond to the changes in the world of "the outside"? "International affairs are too much with us, they are eating into our personal lives and labours...." The book collects 100 responses into an extraorganized format - divided into a section of responses by women and a section by men, then two further sections, "the realistic approach" and the approach "beginning from the inside." Riding provides allover narrative that further strings each leter to her own. Much of her narrative responds to the letters, and explains - wen required - her use of terms like "inside." Is this a protoypical version of the poetics survey? 3. George Bowering's early seventies poetry sequence, At War With the US, loaned from friend & returned else I'd quote some contusional lines. Chequer le livre out, taberwit! 4. Torque #4 (Spring 1996), ed. Elizabeth Fodaski. 21 E Second St #12, NYC 10003. We're talkin' propellant - at torque 4, the blade's curve is d-base .25 & the windcut jigs the meters but good, so you reach "Fifi La Labial Nana Fofana" in about four minutes. Leather bag not supplied. 5. Dick Gregory's first book, of one-liners & short para sequences, From the Back of the Bus, published & intro by... Hugh Hefner, that would be in 62. I had to pack this in a box a few days ago, but it's got some great lines & black&white photos on race matters (Little Rock figures prominantly) - who says the "groundlessness" of permanent irony can only display glibness, despair & cynicism? 6. The Cool Crazy Committed World of the Sixties: 21 Television Interviews from The Pierre Berton Show, 1966. Journalist Berton is an icon of Cdn cultural nationalism, & WASP - so he interviewsd all that is Not He, for an audience comforted by a then wellfunded public broadcaster. Apparently the last interview w/ Malcolm X. Interview with "Mrs Ian Fleming." Interview with "a single parent," "a gate crasher" (over 26 Beatles concerts), etc, & w/ Lenny Bruce, Phil Specter... only in Canada, eh? 7. A book by James Campbell on Montreal abstract painter Claude Toussignant. Professional art critic "doing the professional," and swings his hardy boy sloop into Michael Fried's dramascope, then to litcrit harbour for a poke in the weeds of what T Eagleton tried to satirize in 1986 as RLM - the Reader's Liberation Movement. Campbell until now has mostly written monographs for gallery shows of artists like Barnett Newman and Ron Martin. 8. Collected writings of another (same gen) Montreal abstract painter, Guido Molinari, who has mostly gone it alone as they say ("I am a UFO & loving it"), though at one time, in wake of a preponderant influence of Automatism on the Montreal scene, associated himself by signature with a selfdeclared NeoPlasticist manifesto. He has various phases. He painted a series blindfolded in the early 50s. 9. Derrida's The SelfPortrait and Other Ruins. Exhibition catalogue of 17-19 c. French paintings/drawings of/on blind subjects, which he curated for the Louvre, plus booklength essay. One more argument I suppose, this time perceptual, for the impossibility of pure "identity." The perceptual geometry holding together artist, canvas, mirror or subject, and viewer, is such that the artist cannot literally see, D argues, the action of painting, even, and especially, a selfportrait. There's a blindness at the "origin" of the act of drawing. 10. Essays in Felix Guattari's Molecular Revolution, an early book. Seems that in one sentence from 1966 he sums up Fredric Jameson's entire generalist's project in The Political Unconscious, and moreover in the specific context of a description of French labour history in this century: "It is the revolutionary vanguard's failure to understand the unconscious processes that emerge as socioeconomic determinisms that has left the working class defenceless in the face of capitalism's modern mechanisms of alienation" (p. 199).