Poetry! Or not?

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Thorn Hill
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Poetry! Or not?

Post by Thorn Hill » Fri Jun 14, 2019 4:15 am

"You are here - just as
I had imagined -
Imagining me." - American poet Cid Corman (1924-2004)

This was written pre-cyber days so I think the poet is referring to the reader-writer relationship (although it could easily presage cyber days as well). We meet here in this space, where we imagine one another. We never meet in a physical way.

Is this a good and an interesting poem? I would love input from others. It freaks me out (and perhaps even creeps me out) and I can't get past any saccharine considerations.

What do you think about this poem?

dan5001
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Re: Poetry! Or not?

Post by dan5001 » Fri Jun 14, 2019 6:59 am

It's an interesting interpretation. It doesn't work for me because I read a lot but never really think about the author beyond glancing at the pic on the back cover if there is one. Maybe it reflects an egotistical author's perceptions of their readers...
I think maybe it's a romantic meeting where one person sees the other waiting for them which maybe is a bit saccharine but i like it as it is neat and insightful.

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Mollbarre
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Re: Poetry! Or not?

Post by Mollbarre » Fri Jun 14, 2019 1:02 pm

What do you mean by "good and interesting"?

It's nice. Free verse. Makes you think - which IS good. You're interpreting it - also good! :)
Last edited by Mollbarre on Fri Jun 14, 2019 7:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Thorn Hill
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Re: Poetry! Or not?

Post by Thorn Hill » Fri Jun 14, 2019 3:14 pm

Heck, I am very glad for the feedback from you both! Maybe I don't really think the poem is 'good and interesting.' I don't know.

In the poem, there is this desire for some psychic energy to pass between two people (poet and reader? two persons out there in the world?). That is fine. Imagine all the people sharing all the wealth and so on.

But just imagining. That could turn us all into stone sculptures. Being there is not enough. Just my opinions! I like 'neat and insightful' from dan5001 and I like the bringing in of the idea of free verse by Mollbarre!

gitgeezer
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Re: Poetry! Or not?

Post by gitgeezer » Fri Jun 14, 2019 3:19 pm

Not bad, but too close to Rod McKuen for my taste.

Thorn Hill
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Re: Poetry! Or not?

Post by Thorn Hill » Fri Jun 14, 2019 3:23 pm

gitgeezer: I like that very much!

simonm
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Re: Poetry! Or not?

Post by simonm » Fri Jun 14, 2019 4:07 pm

Thorn Hill wrote:
Fri Jun 14, 2019 4:15 am
...
Is this a good and an interesting poem?
...
Is this an Oscar Wilde reference? ;-)

Marshall Dixon
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Re: Poetry! Or not?

Post by Marshall Dixon » Fri Jun 14, 2019 6:08 pm

Thorn Hill wrote:
Fri Jun 14, 2019 4:15 am
"You are here - just as
I had imagined -
Imagining me." - American poet Cid Corman (1924-2004)
This is almost Haiku.

Aren't the works of poets, painters, composers and artists in general, works of their imagination? Even the works of historians writing of the same subject are the product of the imagination to some degree. How is it that some historians, covering the same materials, bring their subject to life, while others to do no more than present a dull litany of dates and places?

And when reading a novel doesn't the author's descriptions cause in the reader an imaginative response? Read a book: see the movie. Any conflict in the different imaginative processes at work here?

From Marshall McLuhan's "Understanding Media" of 1964: ..."that it is the poets and painters who react instantly to a new medium..."

I don't think the printing press was invented when the following poem was penned by Francois Villon in the 15th century. Here is the first stanza to Villon's "Ballad of Muckle Meg":

"Because I love and serve a whore sans glose,
Think not therefore or knave or fool am I:
She hath in her such goods as no man knows.
For love of her, target and dirk I ply:
When clients come, I hend a pot therenigh
And get me gone for wine, without word said:
Before them water, fruit, bread, cheese, I spread.
If they pay well, I bid them “Well God aid!
Come here again, when you of lust are led,
In this the brothel where we ply our trade."

And 5 centuries later:

"You are here - just as
I had imagined -
Imagining me."

Thorn Hill
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Re: Poetry! Or not?

Post by Thorn Hill » Fri Jun 14, 2019 7:51 pm

Yikes, the conversation continues....and now...to Marshall I say, it is the old matter of form vs. content, perhaps. The poem you cite from Villon is surely reflexive in one sense, but one sense only, in my view. The poet reflects on the nature of poetry. A common theme across the ages. Is he making it interesting or not (subjective response needed there, ditto for Corman). When and where does content enter? I want to think also of the reflexive nature of language itself, the little Chinese boxes our ideas vanish (almost) into, or Putin dolls, if you wish. This is pure reflexivity, in my opinion.The nature of the human beast. I don't know if someone like Magritte or Escher is the artist that should come first to mind in this matter. Borges, etc. and etc. Anyway, reflexivity even out there in the real world where thought is not captured in any way is where the real interest is to be found, always in my opinion. And now I am warmed up but must not go too far. I don't think I like this call for dialogue in Cid Corman's poem! It is really gnawing at me and I am not satisfied. Corman was into haiku and I am reading about haiku now, and in old medieval Japan, there were haiku contests, meaning one big goal would be to ....make it fresh and yes....interesting. Corman's poem is elemental, pre-interesting. I think he is already setting the terms of the dialogue, even before the meeting takes place. Except that here I am imagining him. Well, I don't like him! Better stop. I think we have things to work on in the world and the imagination can help....I can't believe I will send this....(simonn- I like your Oscar Wilde comment- nothing I have said could rise to what he might have to say!

gitgeezer
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Re: Poetry! Or not?

Post by gitgeezer » Fri Jun 14, 2019 8:38 pm

"You are here - just as 
I had imagined - 
Imagining me." 

I've rewritten the poem, a little more prosaically:

"I imagined you would be here,
and you imagined I would come,
so here we are."

Thorn Hill
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Re: Poetry! Or not?

Post by Thorn Hill » Fri Jun 14, 2019 9:04 pm

gitgeezer, again, spot on. I like it. There is the interiorization issue at work. Well, I will take a break. I'm glad to stir up a bit of a reaction to this poem! I knew I might go too far with this poem; I feel these matters deeply enough and I get a bit over-excited. To Marshall, yes, of course, you have it right with the idea that the poem is about itself. I imagine that idea of the poem being about itself can go in an infinite no. of directions. I suppose that has to do with the reflexive nature of the mind?

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Mollbarre
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Re: Poetry! Or not?

Post by Mollbarre » Fri Jun 14, 2019 11:01 pm

gitgeezer wrote:
Fri Jun 14, 2019 8:38 pm
"You are here - just as 
I had imagined - 
Imagining me." 

I've rewritten the poem, a little more prosaically:

"I imagined you would be here,
and you imagined I would come,
so here we are."
Except that's not how I would have rewritten it! :lol:
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Amy Gaudia
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Re: Poetry! Or not?

Post by Amy Gaudia » Sat Jun 15, 2019 5:16 am

I think it’s a Zen thing...
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Rognvald
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Re: Poetry! Or not?

Post by Rognvald » Sat Jun 15, 2019 1:19 pm

Corman: Pseudo Zen hipster who appealed to the unwashed masses. Go to Lucien Stryk, Gary Snyder and W.S. Merwin for the real deal. Playing again . . . Rognvald P.S. The "poem" cited earlier should be written in a bathroom stall. . . or better yet, a Porti-Potty.
"And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music." Friedrich Nietzsche, Thus Spake Zarathustra

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Mark Clifton-Gaultier
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Re: Poetry! Or not?

Post by Mark Clifton-Gaultier » Sat Jun 15, 2019 2:19 pm

Rognvald wrote:P.S. The "poem" cited earlier should be written in a bathroom stall. . . or better yet, a Porti-Potty.
Uncanny - I was honestly on the point of asking, "Where's Rognvald when we need him?"

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