Friday, March 21, 2008

groundhog

If this blog has retained any regular readers, they will no doubt have noticed the paucity of any sustained discussion of – well, anything serious lately. It's just been a really snowed-under moment of the academic year, a feeling of continually treading water merely to keep up with one's responsibilities. I can barely say I'm staying abreast of the reading for my own classes (tho I have managed to make dents in Mansfield Park and Edmund Gosse's Father and Son lately, both "pleasure" reads, & the sinuously weird divagations of Walter Kaufmann's big Hegel book keep me returning to that volume, rather like the Solitaire game on my iPod keeps distracting).
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The last of this spring's thesis defenses is tomorrow afternoon – well, later today, that is. The defendant in question has opted to schedule for 1.00 pm on Good Friday, which I can only read as a severely inauspicious time-slot. One of the committee members should bring the nails, another the hammer; I'll pack the crown of thorns. (Or as Shane MacGowan says, "They're gonna crucify me / in those old cotton fields back home...")
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Bob Arnold runs Longhouse Poetry, a bookshop & poetry press in Vermont; I only have one or two of their publications, but am impressed by their attention to detail & clean design. Arnold seems to be the primary torch-bearer of the Cid Corman legacy – he has a stack of Corman titles in print, & in fact has been at the helm of a sixth series of Origin, the groundbreaking poetry journal that Corman edited for so many years, & which was so instrumental in the careers of Olson, Zukofsky, Niedecker, Bronk, & others.

So I was pleased to see The Poem of a Life receiving sustained and generous attention in the 2008 edition of Arnold's "Woodburners We Recommend" (scroll down about halfway): the money phrase this time around? – "Leon Edel caliber scholarship."

And whoever writes copy for the Strand bookshop in Manhattan has called the book "compelling" and "very readable."

4 comments:

Don Share said...
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Don Share said...

Back when I was a curator, I collected things from Longhouse - great folks and fine work! It's good to see them mentioned here.

About Edel, our mutual friend, C.R. differed with him on his deciphering of James's handwriting, as I recall!

Archambeau said...

Those of us about to shovel out from 7 inches of late-March snow regard your use of the phrase "snowed-under" with deep suspicion.

Bob

David M Lumsden said...

I've just discovered Longhouse myself and bought a batch of Clive Faust books, chapbooks, and some old issues of Origin.