Jerome Rothenberg

Poems and poetics

Jerome Rothenberg & John Bloomberg-Rissman: From the pre-Face to 'Barbaric Vast & Wild' ('Poems for the Millennium, Volume 5')

[What follows is a draft of what will be part of the pre-face to Barbaric Vast & Wild, the assemblage of “outside & subterranean poetry” to be published later this year by Black Widow Press the de-facto fifth volume of Poems for the Millennium & the culmination for the moment of a project that began nearly fifty years ago with the original publication of Technicians of the Sacred.  I’m posting it now on Poems and Poetics before I head off for six or seven weeks on the road, to engage in readings & pe

Jake Marmer: Nigun poems & poetics

[Originally published in Current Musicology's recent issue on “experimental writing about music.”]




This set of poems grew out of my experiences of listening and finding myself inside nigunim(pl; singular nigun or nign), Chassidic chants — mystical, usually wordless songs used as accompaniment for rituals — weddings, prayers, candle-lightings — collective beckoning of transcendence. The nigun experience is fraught with what Amiri Baraka called, referring to blues, the “re/feeling” — proximity and shape of personal history of encounters with unfathomable.

Ed Baker: Three excerpts from 'Stone Girl E-Pic' with comment



Nakahara Chuya: Four poems newly englished

Translations from Japanese by Jerome Rothenberg & Yasuhiro Yotsumoto

[The project to translate Nakahara Chuya into English continued recently (July 2014) with a meeting in Yamaguchi, Japan, of a number of interested poets & translators – plans to be announced.  My own collaborative work with Yasuhiro Yotsumoto will hopefully continue from this point onward, for which the following poems & comments are only a beginning.  (J.R.)]

Harris Lenowitz: From Jacob Frank's 'The Words of the Lord'

At the death bed of Jacob Frank 1791
At the death bed of Jacob Frank 1791

Translation from the Polish Manuscripts by Harris Lenowitz 

NOTE. As a time of growing dislocations & deconstructions, the eighteenth-century saw changes of mind that reached into isolated corners of Europe, far removed from the strongholds of both the Enlightenment & the “natural supernaturalism” & radical mysticisms that were among  the marks of an emerging Romanticism.  The messianic Frankist movement as it affected eastern European Jews involved, like its literary & western counterparts, a shift in language & its attendant symbols that resembled the shifts emerging as well in the dominant cultures.