Bernadette Mayer, Jamey Jones & Dave Brinks read at Zebulon in the Brooklyn Rail Poetry Series last Monday. I only got my recorder up close enough to the reader for the last of the three, & so the only recording that is audible is that of Dave Brinks. He read from The Caveat Onus, his superb long sequence of poems published earlier this year by Black Widow Press.
Here is what Jerry Rothenberg wrote about the poem: “The Caveat Onus, for those of us lucky enough to have watched its development, is present in its first installment as a poetry event of consequence – a cycle of poems, geared to al ife & expressed through a system of words & numbers, that could make it (I would dare to predict) one of the significant long poems of our time. Pivoting on the number 13 & never abandoning its symmetries & variations, it charts the works & days of Dave Brinks, citizen of New Orleans before & after the floods, world traveler in the ways that really count.”
My blurb for the book reads: “Interweaving I Ching hexagrammatic measures, Mayan calendar arithmetic & totem animals, and an unwobbling axis mundi as line of flight, the complex architectonics of this superb cyclical poem create a counter-world, an act of sympathetic magic, a harnessing of the destructively chaotic energies of hurricane Katrina. Begun eight months before the storm, then moving through the days & weeks that followed, and now paralleling the rebuilding of the city of New Orleans, Dave Brinks’ Caveat Onus series is a poetic and shamanic enactment, as powerful, poetically innovative, and vital in its ways as were Charles Olson’s admonitions to Gloucester in the Maximus Poems.”
And here are the two-part audio files of that reading. Enjoy!
David Brinks reading at Zebulon 12.7.09 — Part 1