Thursday, September 11, 2008

Daniel Borzutzky will rule the world...

...or at least the area of it now known as Istanbul, which was once Constantinople.

I had mixed feelings at first. Wasn't really into the first 25% of the reading. Outside factors: big white gallery, video art full of street and fun park sounds, and the radio recording equipment that neither amplified the poet nor allowed him to speak loudly.

All this aside, it has been along time since I've heard work as good as his translations of Raul Zurita and the work he's done under the influence of that author. It's beautiful and violent and beautiful. I am almost desperate for these collections to come out. Borzutzky's will be called, "The Book of Books." I don't know what the Zurita collection will be called, but I would like to reccomend "The Book that Kicks Ass."

Ultimately, what is most appealing to me is the fact that I'm tired of pretty poetry talking about pretty things. It doesn't surprise you when it's pretty. But these poems did. Frank Stanford poems do. A good chunk of Zach Schomburg's poems do.

These moments exist in life, but aren't wholly represented in poetry: our facinations with explosions, car accidents and fighting. We understand what they take from us, but on the otherside we see what they leave us with. It is appreciation through disaster. Poetry without "prosody." Beauty being burned alive.

This is a poetry of the quick draw, it only means something after someone dies.

You can find this, and other interesting facts in Further Adventures Book 1, available now...

Here's a poem by Zurita not translated by DB:

The Desert (1) [Down below...]

Down below, the endless stones of the desert,
mountains of stones, long escarpments of
stones, infinite stones on the desert like a sea.
The sky above, the blue sky falling. The stones
cry out as they smash into the air, into the sky
that’s falling.

The desert cries out. There’s a limestone wall
with names. There’s a white wall and little
bottles with plastic flowers that cry out as they
bend in the wind.

A little further off there’s a ship. No-one would
say there can be a ship in the middle of the
desert. It’s a big, rusty ship, lying on the stones.
No-one would say it could be, but it’s there.
The same sky that falls on the stones falls on the
ship. All the stones cry out.

They cry out, the Chilean desert cries out.
No-one would say this could be, but they cry out.

1 comment:

Jonathan Barrett said...

Yeah, that's what I'm talking about: beautiful and violent and beautiful!!