Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Multimedia Measure II

"no ideas but in things!" says
William Carlos Williams

Williams the pediatrician-poet
who like Ginsberg was Paterson New Jersey
through and through and who in his
epic narrative poem Paterson wrote
The measure intervenes, to measure is all we know...
was immersed in the local idiom he encountered
in his daily life while suffused with the images
that became his poetic occasion of the moment

Nowadays our "poetic occasion of the moment"
might come in the form of a tweet
or a texting idiom reserved for post-adolescence

(or a long narrative roadtrip
made out of grade-A spam emails

Imagine receiving a text message
out of nowhere that said
in all of its concrescence

so much depends 

a red wheel

glazed with rain

beside the white

In the original
I see what Williams
wants me to see

the concrescence
could not be more

but in the text message version
that would come out of nowhere
into the nomadic nothingness
of the mobile twitcher
thumbing their nose
at the miasmic traffic

the poetry becomes more matter of fact

an advertisement for itself
(the "itself" who sent it)

essentially saying

"Nobody here but us chickens!"

And yet is it somehow more organic
(more self-consciously enlightened)
to stroll upon the sea shore
breathing in the wind spirit
of trades off the waves
(no gadgets to offer disarray)
while succumbing to lost in space
virtual installations launched
from the typecast Muse?

In Paterson, Williams writes
Jostled as are the waters approaching
the brink, his thoughts
interlace, repel and cut under,
rise rock-thwarted and turn aside
but forever strain forward -- or strike
an eddy and whirl, marked by a
leaf or curdy spume, seeming
to forget .
(always those extra spaces for
the lost period that punctuates
while straying into next concrescence)

Williams is magnifying his own thoughts
by syncing with the waterfall that pours
his imaginative source material back toward
inherited tribal speak's resistant nature

which creates a different psychosomatic flow
than the one brought on by white cap surf
and the 12.1 post-Dolby surround sound
one continually experiences when meditating
on the ocean edge of the youngest island state
with slit eyes peering into the pluperfection

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