Thursday, April 13, 2006

hi out there

It's been a way busy week. Lots of reading, lots of thinking, lots of teaching – not much writing, for whatever that's worth.
Everyone should go visit the really big sale at the University of California Press. I just got a big box from them, with poetry by Juliana Spahr, Martha Ronk, Srinkanth Reddy, Frank O'Hara, etc., and lots of other cool stuff I don't really have space for. And the packing peanuts in the box are actually edible – spray them with salt and they'd probably be as good as rice cakes.

One of the items: Pierre Joris's edition of Paul Celan: Selections; a really handy compilation, unfortunate only in its lack of German texts. The list of translators is telling: Pierre himself, Norma Cole, Cid Corman, Robert Kelly, Joachim Neugroschel, Jerome Rothenberg, Rosmarie Waldrop. Who's missing? Most notably, Michael Hamburger and John Felstiner. Two "schools" of Celan translators evident, I think.
Picking away at Antonia Fraser's Faith and Treason: The Story of the Gunpowder Plot. Not the first account of the plot I'd read, but the first that takes an emphatically sympathetic Catholic stance.
Working towards a more positive personal presentation: less knee-jerk cynicism, more thoughtfulness. Finding a spot on the spectrum closer to the Ithaca Josh C than to the Berkeley Josh C. Brighten the corner where you are.

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