Louis Esterhuizen. Wat is ‘dringende poësie’?!

Soos almal weet, het die digkuns ‘n enorme reikwydte ten opsigte van aanbod sowel as tema. En tog is dit vreemd hoe graag die denkers des poeticas probeer om deurentyd nuwe etikette en boksies vir dié veelkoppige monster genaamd “poësie” te bedink. So besin Valerie Mejer in ‘n onlangse skrywe op die Poetry Foundation oor een van die meer onlangse etikette, genaamd “urgent poetry”. Ten einde meer duidelikheid hieroor te kry, het sy ‘n aantal digters genader vir hul sienings rakende dié fenomeen.

Van die digters het soos volg reageer:

“When entering any categorization of a writer, I’m suspicious of reductionism. One of the most interesting aspects of poetry is its complexity, its resistance to simplifications. Having said that, “urgent poetry”? I suppose you could talk of urgency whenever the poem surrenders a demand for transformation, whenever the poem pushes someone to act as soon as possible. Urgent poetry is what moves us to write, what leads us to live or commit some act of life.” (Benito del Pliego)

“I know ‘urgent poetry’ one of the titles of Celaya and that it intends to associate with the poem ‘poetry is a weapon armed with the future…’ Then the Basque poet, committed to some manner of socialist ideas and the idea of art as an instrument of social change, perceived the ‘urgency’ of a poetry less influenced by styling, slow reflection, and imagery. A poetry written in exact time, for a time that he wanted to perpetuate when it already started to rot. An urgent action from the field hospital. However, for me it’s more “poetry of urgency” by Leopoldo María Panero, for example. It’s a scream, an expulsion, an excresence—between beautiful and fetid—like a short breath before returning to drowning.” (Esteban Martínez Serra)

“Urgent poetry, for me, would be the opposite of poetry: poetry requires time, “tempo,” places where the word is delayed, turns in on itself, and so produces a “poesis”: I think urgency is political, contingent, even very neoliberal: and poetry must oppose this way of thinking about society, life, the world. For me, poetry is just the opposite of urgency: it’s slow, it’s time in waiting, it’s the spirit looking at himself: it’s the Being of speech, of words, of forms. Poetry is formed like waves crashing into the cliffs: its time is the time of the ages, of geology, of, finally, death.” (Tomás Harris)

“Urgent poetry: a grotesque, violent, humiliating, indecent poetry that does with language what state and corporate bureaucracies do with money and power, that instills words with a similar, abject effect in order to devour bodies, to anonymously absorb bodies, to privatize bodies in our rotten, carcass economies. A poetry that uses extreme, urgent, grotesque, piercing language, movement and imagery as a means of responding to politics and policies that are themselves grotesque. A poetry that is concerned with pain and its infinite varieties: a poetry that lodges itself in our bodies, that embodies how we live with pain, how we survive pain; an urgent poetry that shows the body-in-pain relentlessly and furiously creating itself only to eat itself alive again and again.” (Daniel Borzutzky)

Nou ja, toe. Vir jou leesplesier volg ‘n gedig van die Chileense digter Raúl Zurita. Dié gedig is deur Valerie Mejer uitgesonder as ‘n voorbeeld van wat met poëtiese dwingendheid bedoel word.

*

from Sunday Morning

 

XXXVIII

 

Over the cliffs of the hillside: the sun

then below in the valley

the earth covered with flowers

Zurita enamored friend

takes in the sun of photosynthesis

Zurita will now never again be friend

since 7 P.M. it’s been getting dark

 

Night is the insane asylum of the plants

 

XLII

 

Enclosed with the four walls of

a bathroom: I looked up at the ceiling

and began to clean the walls and

the floor the sink   all of it

You see: Outside the sky was God

and he was sucking at my soul —believe me!

I wiped my weeping eyes

 

LVII

 

In the narrow broken bed

restless all night

like a spent candle lit again

I thought I saw Buddha many times

At my side I felt a woman’s gasp for air

but Buddha was only the pillows

and the woman is sleeping the eternal dream

 

LXIII

 

Today I dreamed that I was King

they were dressing me in black-and-white spotted pelts

Today I moo with my head about to fall

as the church bells’ mournful clanging

says that milk goes to market

 

LXXXV

 

They’ve shaved my head

they’ve dressed me in these gray wool rags

—Mom keeps on smoking

I am Joan of Arc

 

They catalog me on microfilm

 

XCII

 

The glass is transparent like water

Dread of prisms and glass

I circle the light so as not to lose myself in them

 

(c) Raúl Zurita (Uit:”Sunday Morning” from Purgatory, vertaal deur Anna Deeny.)

 

 

 

 

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2 Kommentare op “Louis Esterhuizen. Wat is ‘dringende poësie’?!”

  1. Lara :

    Interessant! Dankie, Louis. Ek hou van Harris se stelling: Poetry is formed like waves crashing into the cliffs: its time is the time of the ages, of geology, of, finally, death

  2. Melanie Grobler :

    Dankie Louis.

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