Close Listening

Delany on Close Listening, April 2014

Samuel Delany (left) and Charles Bernstein (right) in a still of the recording of Close Listening.

Editorial note: The following has been adapted from a Close Listening conversation recorded as part of “The Motion of Light: A Tribute to Samuel R. Delany,” a program hosted at the Kelly Writers House in April 2014. The conversation was transcribed by Tracie Morris. Listen to the audio program here. — Julia Bloch

 

Vulgar Beauty: Bill Berkson on Close Listening

Berkson & Bernstein, at Penn, by Thomas Devaney

Bill Berkson in conversation with Charles Bernstein on Close Listening (36:56): MP3
Berkson in conversation with Bernstein undergraduate seminar (34:49): MP3

February 10, 2014, University of Pennsylvania; recorded and edited by Bernstein.  Bill Berkson discusses unprincipled poetry, vulgar beauty,  the poetics of surface, the emergence of the New American Poetry, the trap of being too serious, and the possibilities of the unexpected.

Cia Rinne on Close Listening

Cia Rinne was born in Sweden from a Finnish family and raised in Germany. She has studied in Frankfurt/Main, Athens and Helsinki. Rinne is the author of the books zaroum, and notes for soloists, as well as being a collaborator on numerous multimedia and performance works. The program was recorded on September 30, 2014.

Close Listening, with host Charles Bernstein

Miles Champion on Close Listening

Photo by Alan Bernheimer.
Photo by Alan Bernheimer.

Miles Champion grew up in England and moved to the U.S. in his early 30s. His books include Compositional Bonbons PlacateSore Models, Three Bell Zero, and, just out from Pressed Wafer, How I Became a Painter: Trevor Winkfield in Conversation with Miles Champion. He lives in Brooklyn, NY. On this show, Miles reads his new book, How to Laugh, which is forthcoming from Adventures in Poetry.

Program One: Champiom reads How To Laugh: (24:16): MP3
Program Two: Conversation with Charles Bernstein:(28:52): MP3

Writing in situ

Close Listening with Wystan Curnow

Poet, art critic, and curator Wystan Curnow, who was named after W. H. Auden, was born in Christchurch, New Zealand, in 1939. He pursued his PhD at the University of Pennsylvania before returning to the southern hemisphere to teach at the University of Auckland, though his creative travels have included visiting professorships in New York and California. Curnow’s multigeneric poetry of spatial, cultural, and historical multiplicity can be found in such collections as Back in the USA (Black Light Press, 1989), Cancer Daybook (Vanguard Xpress, 1989), and Modern Colours (Jack Books, 2005). 

Editorial note: Poet, art critic, and curator Wystan Curnow, who was named after W. H. Auden, was born in Christchurch, New Zealand, in 1939. He pursued his PhD at the University of Pennsylvania before returning to the southern hemisphere to teach at the University of Auckland, though his creative travels have included visiting professorships in New York and California. Curnow’s multigeneric poetry of spatial, cultural, and historical multiplicity can be found in such collections as Back in the USA (Black Light Press, 1989), Cancer Daybook (Vanguard Xpress, 1989), and Modern Colours (Jack Books, 2005). This April 7, 2009, conversation with Charles Bernstein was the second of two episodes in Bernstein’s renowned radio program, Close Listening. You can listen to both programs here. This conversation was transcribed by Michael Nardone and edited by Katie L. Price. — Kenna O’Rourke 

Performance of Freedom: Tonya Foster on Close Listening

reading and conversation

Reading from Swarms of Bees in High Court (24:50): MP3
Conversation with Charles Bernstein (45:20): MP3

recorded June 18, 2013

Stanley Cavell on Close Listening

Stnaley Cavell at the Unversity of East Anglia, July 2009

Gerrit Lansing on Close Listening

photos and video by Ernesto Livon-Grosman

Program One:
Gerrit Lansing reads selections from his collected poems, The Heavenly Tree / Northern Earth (North Atlantic, 2009)
(26:40): MP3

Program Two:

(55:43): MP3
Gerrit Lansing talks with Charles Bernstein, and guest Susan Howe, at Lansing’s house in Gloucester, Mass. Lansing, a close friend of Charles Olson, discusses the wild of Gloucester, the relation of the magic (and the magical) and the occult to poetic practice, Nerval, queer politics and the poetics identity, New York in the immediate postwar period, parapsychology at Harvard in the late 1940s, Gnosticism versus neo-Platonism, Jewish mysticism, and his connections with Henry Murray, Harry Smith, Alan Watts, Aleister Crowley, Carl Jung, and John Ashbery.

Revolution with a twist

Kamau Brathwaite

Kamau Brathwaite (Photo credit: Beverly Brathwaite)

In this commentary, I will explore what I term the “iterative turn” in contemporary poetry. I take iteration to encompass a range of poetic practices, including repetition, sampling, performance, versioning, plagiarism, copying, translation, and reiterations across multiple media. I will focus here especially on how iterative poetry engages forms of political, economic, linguistic authority and their intertwinement with questions of media. The iterative turn in poetry can be understood not just as a shift in rhetorical form but also as an ethical and political response to the crisis in authority engendered by the rise of new technologies of reproduction and the increasing pace of globalization since the late 1980s. In the posts that follow, I will map out just a few of the many forms that this response takes under four broad headings: revolution, copyright, translation, and the book.

Ear turned toward the emergent

Close Listening with Myung Mi Kim

Myung Mi Kim at the Kelly Writers House. Photo by Arielle Brousse.

Editorial note: Myung Mi Kim (b. 1957) is the author of Penury (2009), Commons (2002), Dura (1999), The Bounty (1996), and Under Flag (1991). She teaches in the poetics program at SUNY–Buffalo. The following has been adapted from a Close Listening conversation recorded March 15, 2007, at Studio 111 at the University of Pennsylvania with the engineering assistance of Molly Braverman. Listen to the audio program here. Charles Bernstein hosted and produced the show, which includes questions and comments from Pauline Baniqued, Julie Charbonneir, Nicholas Mayer, Heather Gorn, Sarah Yeung, and Jonathan Liebembuk (as well as Adam Tabor and Damien Bright). The interview was transcribed by Michael Nardone. — Katie L. Price

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