Jonas Mekas on Penguin Anthology

A letter from Kimberley Lyons:

Dear friends,

 Please click on the link and choose video diary link in the text to watch Jonas Mekas, with help of Vyt Bakaitis, herald the excluded works from a new anthology from Penguin.

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Pierre Joris

Pierre Joris is a poet, translator, essayist & anthologist who has published more than 50 books, most recently, Meditations on the Stations of Mansur al-Hallaj (poems) from Chax Press and The University of California Book of North African Literature (volume 4 in the Poems for the Millennium series), coedited with Habib Tengour. Exile is My Trade: A Habib Tengour Reader edited & translated by Joris, and Pierre Joris: Cartographies of the In-between, essays on Joris’ work edited by Peter Cockelbergh, came out in 2012. Forthcoming are Barzakh — Poems 2000-2012 (Black Widow Press) & Breathturn Into Timestead:The Collected Later Poems of Paul Celan (FSG).

2 opinions on “Jonas Mekas on Penguin Anthology”

  1. The Mekas piece on the Dove anthology, which Dale Smith sent to me, is ok, as far as it goes, as a noticing, not a review. Mekas primarily responds to the lack of inclusion of writers from his generation, centered on the Beats, and appears not to have been following the American poetry of the past half dozen generations. He also misses what seems to me the primary negative crux of Dove’s editing: that it supports the replacement of poetry by creative writing. This is a terribly important and even apocalyptic matter that those of us who have initiated ourselves off ourselves and have not been brought into poetry via the educational system should be alarmed about. What is needed review-wise of the Dove “job” is a detailed review that among other things examines the differences between poetry and creative writing. CE

  2. As a reader of the “Comment” only, it sounds like a good point. Mind you, I have never been a huge fan of the Beats. I know, shame on me. I do grant you their place in Anthologies. That said, it seems to me that (i) Anthologies should be representative of the generations they claim to cover and (ii) most Anthologies are flawed due to the massiveness of the undertaking itself and the natural bias of the anthologist(s). Also, there is a difference between poetry and creative writing. There is similarity too and thus, no doubt, the discussion. Art is art, creativity is creativity. I paint the broad brush strokes as time has taught me the devil lies in the details. Well, she does! The latter not being a sexist remark but a realistic one. A guy I could handle.

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