Happy Birthday, Clayton!

Clayton Eshleman turns seventy today. Many happy returns! Thinking of Jonathan Mayhew’s questionnaire & the often fascinating responses it generated, I thought it could be fun & useful to reproduce an interview Eshleman gave Hunger magazine a couple years ago: Interview: 7 Answers to a Questionnaire w/Clayton Eshleman From Hunger Volume 5, #2, Issue 11, 2003 http://www.hungermagazine.com Interviewer: J. J. Blickstein 1) What is your assessment of the current … Read more Happy Birthday, Clayton!

XUL & Souffles

Ernesto Livon-Grosman just announced that Boston College has uploaded the first two components of XULdigital . These include a digital edition of the complete journal XUL: Signo viejo y nuevo and The XUL Reader. The third component, 5 + 5, which includes five critical articles in Spanish and five in English will be completed by the end of this calendar year. The present site is fully searchable in Spanish … Read more XUL & Souffles

Back in the U.S.S.A

Back in the U.S.S.A — more as I get de-jetlagged — but my thoughts are still with the resonant NO the French referendum threw in the face of the possibility of a political (rather than economic) Europe. Fascinating late night tv roundtable debates with the whole spectrum of ideas (from Le Pen’s fascist daughter to the young postman who leads the LCR, the Revolutionary Communist League, via Daniel Cohn-Bendit, … Read more Back in the U.S.S.A

Silliman's take on Millennium 2

In his May 27 blog entry, responding to a question by Jonathan Mayhew, Ron has this comment on the intentions Jerry Rothenberg & I supposedly had when putting together volume 2 of ¨Poets for the Millennium: … The howls that went up at the publication of Poems for the Millennium, Vol. 2, really had to do with the fact that the volume was implicitly arguing for a reading of … Read more Silliman's take on Millennium 2

Allen Fisher's Place

Finally out! The complete one-volume edition of Allen Fisher’s first long poem Place arrived in the mail from Reality Street Editions (http://freespace.virgin.net/reality.street/). Witnessing the elaboration of Place during the seventies in London was a founding experience for my own poetics. Thirty years later the poem still stands as a core marker of the New British poetry. A psychotopography of South London as only Blake had managed to draw in … Read more Allen Fisher's Place

Paul Ricoeur dies at 92

Though I didn’t follow his work that closely anymore, news of his passing immediately brings to mind London days in the early seventies, reading The Rule of Metaphor and the discussions that followed with Allen Fisher. Then in the eighties, long night talks in Paris with Douglas Oliver on Ricoeur’s volumes on narrative (as Doug was reformulating his poetcis toward encompassing narrative structures — rewriting The Pearl poem as … Read more Paul Ricoeur dies at 92

Abdellatif Laâbi's Poem for Florence Aubenas

On 5 January 2005 Florence Aubenas, a French journalist, and her Iraqi guide Hussein Hanoun al-Saadi were abducted in Baghdad. They are still being detained by unknown captors, though 2 videos have surfaced on which Aubenas is seen forced to recite a prewritten text. A few days ago the Moroccan poet Abdellatif Laâbi (who himself was jailed from 1972 to 1980 in Morocco for political reasons) published the following … Read more Abdellatif Laâbi's Poem for Florence Aubenas


The desire to do a blog has been with me for some time now. The time to do so not, however. Now, with a sabbatical in front of me, that time may have arrived. We’ll see: no promises. This is an essay, literally, a try. Some of what went into the notebooks to emerge — maybe, at times, much later or never, much altered or not — will now … Read more Welcome