[The following is from a remarkable essay by Jack Foley, which presents a much needed counter proposition to ideas about “influence” & its “anxieties” that have been present without sufficient opposition in a prominent wing of American criticism & literary studies. The complete essay continues at full throttle & in a meaningfully personal way to a discussion of the influence of the work of three canonical or near-canonical writers – Thomas Grey, James Joyce & Robert Duncan – on Foley’s own early work as a solid contributor to our developing
[In line with the recent publication of Poems for the Millennium, volume 5: Barbaric Vast & Wild and other new writings in English & other languages, the following readings & launches are scheduled for the coming year. I will be posting & re-posting further details on these & others as the year progresses. (J.R.)]
Participant, Poesia en Voz Alta (festival), with Charles Bernstein, Serge Pey, & others, Mexico, D.F., April 14-19, 2015.
Every work of art attests to lived experience and reminds us that another human has been here. Echoes aren’t inherently empty. The emotional encounter — the felt awareness of something other that is essentially a memory, but one emitted, as it were, by another — is crucial for our consciousness of history and a key to the good life. But it is in this way, too, that Death makes its appearance in a work of art. I’ll get to the quandary of the good life later. Inadequately, but that may be for the best. In Goya’s great painting ‘The Third of May 1808,’ we see before us a moment just before an execution.
[Ariel Resnikoff is best known at this point for his translations from the Yiddish poetry of Mikhl Likht & others, but with “Avoidances” he clearly sets out as a composer of poems in his own right & in a line as well with other poets with whom he shares a lineage or name. His Likht translations & his writings on Likht & Zukofsky have appeared several times on Poems and Poetics, & he has been resident since last September in the doctoral program at the University of Pennsylvania, where his good works continue.
POEMS FOR THE MILLENNIUM, VOLUME 5: Barbaric Vast & Wild: An Assemblage of Outside & Subterranean Poetry from Origins to Present Edited with commentaries by Jerome Rothenberg and John Bloomberg-Rissman