Commentaries - March 2012

Poetic sound work III

Obra sonora poética, Parte III

Ricardo Aleixo performing Música para modelos vivos movidos a moedas," 2010.
Ricardo Aleixo performing "Música para modelos vivos movidos a moedas," 2010. Photo by Paulo Filho.

This is Part III of a four-part essay that appears in Portuguese in Deslocamentos Críticos (Lisbon: Babel; São Paulo, Itaú Cultural, 2011) under the title "Obra Sonora Poética: 1980-2010." Read Part I here and Part II here.

Brazilian Poetic Sound Work: 1980-2010


“Barulho”’s suggestion of the physicality of poetry through both its sound and sense resonates anew in the “cross-platform” work of Ricardo Aleixo.[11] In Gullar, sound functions within Poundian melopoeia, plucking noises, rhythm, and melodies out of printed words via poetic devices including rhyme, assonance, and alliteration (even as it reaches to involve the body of the reader through the idea of breath). Aleixo’s poetry combines these devices with sonic devices in means and media beyond the realm of the printed page. His most important medium may be his own performing body and voice. Through performance, he actualizes the movement, voice, lyric self, and voice-body-sound relationship that Gullar’s poem evokes.

100 Ear Inn recordings from the early 1990s

New at PennSound

PennSound has just made available 104 recordings made at the Ear Inn in the early 1990s. These include recordings by Cabri, Child, K. Davies, A. Davies, Derksen, Dewdney, DiPalma, DuPlessis, Farrell, Fitterman, Fodaski, Foster, Fyman, Gander, Gizzi, Goldsmith, Frim, Heller, Hixon, Hoover, Inman, Kalendeck, Killian, A. Kim, Kocik, Kraut, Levy, Lewis, Lubeski, Lusk, Lyons, Mac Low, Matthews, Messerli, Myles, Neilson, O’Brien, Pearson, Price, Raworth, Regan, Rettallack, Richard, Roberson, Rosenfeld, Rower, Sala, Shaw, Sirowitz, Smith, Tillman, Toscano, Venuti, K. Waldrop, R. Waldrop, Wallace, Wheeler, C.D. Wright,  J. Williams, Ziolkowski, Zivancevic, Zurawski, and more.

Robert Coover in 2009

Robert Coover in Philadelphia on February 24, 2009

Back in 2009 I had the honor of interviewing experimental novelist Robert Coover before an audience of some 70 people and another 30 or so who were watching via webcast. I had read Coover's novels and tales over the years but this occasion culminated six weeks of intensive reading and discussion of most of his works, one after the other. What a writer! The hour-long interview has been edited down to twenty minutes and here then is that abridgment: MP3.

Find the nest where freedom had no paper works

An interview with Lionel Fogarty

Lionel Fogarty in 2008 (photo by Jodie Ranger)

To complement the current feature on 'tabis' - Aboriginal song poetry from the Pilbara, I want to revisit the first issue of Jacket, published in 1997, in which Philip Mead, poet, anthologist and then an academic at the University of Tasmania, interviewed the contemporary Australian indigenous poet, Lionel Fogarty.

Lionel Fogarty talks about growing up on a government controlled reserve in Queensland, Cherbourg Aboriginal settlement, and about the effect of Christianity and white state education on Aboriginal traditions. He also relates the death of his brother, Daniel Yock, a dancer and song man who died in a police van, after being roughed up by the Brisbane police. Lionel was engaged in fighting for justice for his brother's death in custody.

On Emily Dickinson's social life

On an evening when seven people each talked for seven minutes about some aspect of isolation, I chose to speak about a well known yet nonetheless difficult poem by Emily Dickinson.