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Lilt: a theory of melody

A melody has to catch the ear. A lilt is an up and down movement that has to be asymmetrical or surprising in some way. It can go up, and ...

Thursday, August 6, 2015

91. The Lichtenberg Figures

Ben Lerner (Copper Canyon, 2004). I'm glad I re-read this one. I remember how much this struck me; reading a few poems the prodigious talent is evident, in a mode similar to what a lot of people were doing post-flarf, with humorous non-sequiturs, but better than that. Reading too many of the poems all together the brilliance dissipates a bit, as you see how easy it is for him to write like this. But still...

I blogged about my original impression of the book. I crushed an anonymous commentator who wanted to shit on the book. This person had the audacity to call me a dick when he was the one who used the asinine expression "kiddie-pool deep."

1 comment:

Thomas said...

"... of my early work, a critic has said: It was open, so I let myself in." That's exactly how I felt reading Lerner for the first time. Him and Tost and Greenstreet are what I think of when I think contemporary American poetry. I agree that there are hints of flarf. I like to call it "anti-palinurian". I've also thought I detected the influence of Patchen once in Lerner. But that's probably a Borgesian precursor.