Ken Jacobs

A space only you can build (PoemTalk #62)

Charles Alexander, "Near or Random Acts"

LISTEN TO THE SHOW

Charles Alexander joined others in Philadelphia in the early autumn of 2001 to celebrate Gil Ott, poet and maker of many important books of poems through his Singing Horse Press. Alexander, whose Chax Press owes a good deal to Ott’s work and persevering spirit, simply had to be there, notwithstanding the hassle of cross-country air travel during those early post-9/11 days. He arrived a day or two early and gave a pre-celebration reading at the Writers House, trying out some very new poems that seemed, in part, inspired by responses to the September 11 attacks.

A space only you can build (PoemTalk #62)

Charles Alexander, "Near or Random Acts"

LISTEN TO THE SHOW

Charles Alexander joined others in Philadelphia in the early autumn of 2001 to celebrate Gil Ott, poet and maker of many important books of poems through his Singing Horse Press. Alexander, whose Chax Press owes a good deal to Ott’s work and persevering spirit, simply had to be there, notwithstanding the hassle of cross-country air travel during those early post-9/11 days. He arrived a day or two early and gave a pre-celebration reading at the Writers House, trying out some very new poems that seemed, in part, inspired by responses to the September 11 attacks. He had begun a long poem in many sections to honor his daughters, and these later became the book Near or Random Acts, published by — you guessed it — Singing Horse Press.

Three essays by Ken Jacobs

The Nervous Magic Lantern

The Nervous Magic Lantern is strikingly low-tech and could have come about centuries ago. Longer than that and perhaps it did and was thought too strange and avoid­ed like sin. A lightweight propeller steadily turns, inter­rupting a beam of light. This is almost the only difference from when sunlight, coming in through a small opening into a dark space, sent an inverted image of the outside world onto cave walls. Unknowing creatures were scared out of their wits but I know this for a fact that one enter­prising fellow held his hand over the opening and, saying he had an in with Superior Forces, charged admission to see the “miracle”, inventing religion, theater and exploita­tive capitalism all in one brilliant stroke.

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