Site Meter Peculiar Susceptibility: Hitch and turn

Monday, February 9, 2009

Hitch and turn

Sundays are my favorite. It's the time of my week I allow myself a kind of stillness in the space of the day to contemplate and stretch and read and cook and do whatever it is I'd like. I suppose I'm conventional in that way.

I spent some time yesterday listening to the absolutely dreamy Solitude Trilogy by Glenn Gould. I also watched The Weather Underground, which of course makes me think about poetry. (Documentaries do that to a girl - all that carefully constructed and overlapping language, palimpsestic discourse.)

I have been really struggling with how to negotiate my relationship to poetry lately. I haven't written anything that I would consider finished or polished in far too long. I've been re-reading old work with disdain (I know this isn't that strange an occurrence, but that doesn't make it any more pleasant).

On the other hand, I can feel the influence of the kind of thinking poetry engenders in most aspects of my life more keenly than I have in some time. Yesterday, I worked on a sound project for hours - recording it, considering how best to score it. What I have in mind, could, indeed, read like poetry, I think, but it's footing there isn't secure. I'm picturing something that would owe a great deal to a Benjamin J. Mansavage Klein score: a layered thing that you peel back and reveal to yourself in shifting ways each time. Another possibility would be to set it up as telescopic web text.

The difficulty that this little sound project is so clearly a component of is my tendency of late to write very little that isn't part of a kind of closed circuit. I can imagine this being quite a lovely sort of new media, multi-disciplinary sound poem, but I am making it for a very particular audience: me and one other person. I've been feeling similarly about the Charcot poems, too. I begin to suspect that they comprise an entire book that I wrote to myself...or perhaps to multiple selves (a self of circa 1995-1999, a self at a specific future point, et al). My insomnia series is definitely not for public consumption, but it's a really compelling project, nonetheless.

When I was a teenager I was adamant that essays and poetry were close kin, that there is a kind of hitch of logic or turn of mind that occurs in both, when they are successful. I find myself, more and more these days, full of hitch, full of turn, but lacking a way of wedding those steps to some kind of appropriate means of public consumption.


Abby said...

Last paragraph of this made me picture you as the poet as you spinning round and round in your living room.

Meghan Maguire Dahn said...

Oh, I do that. Believe me.

Anonymous said...

some of the best works of art ever made have been those never originally intended for public consumption. i do hope you share, my dear.