Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Posted (and deleted) a flip one-liner about Ron's recent posts on the foundations of Olson's verse. For once, the comment fields there feature some salience: Tom Orange is curious what's prompting Ron's interest in the topic, and he and CS Perez raise the question of versification's obedience to current linguistic dogma.

This for me was the absolute stopping point with Olson: Contra Pound he makes the search for irrational meaning the most important thing in the world ("I know men for whom everything matters" b/w "The nation is nothing but poetry"), but then he backs away, or rather, just like Pound he disintegrates under the pressure. I suspect it's because he recognizes just how much of his (frantic) searching leads to dead-ends, errors, and bloviations.

I had to stop with Olson because he was just too painful. What Dahlberg hammered into his head -- one perception must lead directly etc -- was never intended to be used for a global, a totalizing, system. It was meant for journalism. Provisional dispatches, essays. Writing fact checkers might assist.

OK, stop me before I start in on Olson as Lear.

Jordan - #




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