What can language open when given space? Poetry invites pause, the pause of music, of introspection, of spreading sensitivity. Maggie Nelson reports, in The Art of Cruelty, that John Cage proposed this “exceedingly difficult” advice: “The most, the best, we can do, we / believe (wanting to give evidence of / love), is to get out of the way, leave / space around whomever or whatever it is” (268). What is exceedingly difficult is necessary and important.
The 4th Convention of the Chinese/American Association for Poetry and Poetics will take place in Jinan, Shandong from November 28 to 29, 2015. This convention will be hosted by Shandong Normal University and co-sponsored by Central China Normal University, Foreign Literature Studies, Forum for World Literature Studies, Shandong Foreign Language Teaching Journal, and University of Pennsylvania. Papers are called from scholars all over the world.
John L. (Jack) Sweeney fist published his Basic English translation of Donne’s “Love Deity” in Reed Whittemore and James Jesus Angleton’s Furioso 2:1 (p. 34) in 1943. Sweeney's note on the experiment included these comments: "It should be noted that in terms of the system of Basic English its use in verse form is unorthodox. It is not a literary language . … In a certain sense the extension printed here is a sport [but] it may suggest to educationists an auxiliary device for the analysis and discussion of language in poetry. As I. A. Richards said in a different connection, 'Most people find that having versions of a passage before them opens up the task of explaining immensely. This is true even when one version of it is clearly very inferior; its presence still throws the implications on the other into relief." The poem was reprinted in Delos 1:4 (1988-89), pp. 138-40.
David Hadbawnik’s Aeneid (currently a series of hand-sewn and illustrated chap-books numbered 1 & 2; 3 and 4) is a translation-as-reduction, paradoxically allowing for selective amplification through subtle resonances generated in the space of what’s left out. The epic in general is no light reading, although these translucinations make it so without trivializing the content. Like Christopher Logue’s similarly reduced Iliads (but unlike, I would say, Ronald Johnson’s erasure of Paradise Lost or this more transductive work of conceptual needlepoint), the modernist spacing and minimalist gestures of condensation allow the poem to take advantage of an aeon of intertextuality, without getting the Laocoön end of it.