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Changing The Present, Changing The Past:
A Poetics by Jerome Rothenberg "The notion that poetry although converted to books, precedes writing, precedes a literate tradition, that poetry goes back to our earliest beginnings as human beings and continues in some kind of unbroken line up to the present, in which writing is, I would take it, both a complication and another possibility...And starting from that notion, I'll sing a few songs, The original songs, in the place where these songs come from, would be sun by a single ceremonial leader in a ceremony called shaking the pumpkin"
"Antin raises the possibility that poetry derives not from song, as some of us came later to believe, but from discourse, I put that in the context of a contemporary poetry that's been involved in raising possibilities about itself. Raising possibilities about poetry itself, and therefore laying itself open to the greater possibility of transformation and self-transformation, both for poetry, that great conglomerate body, and presumably for the individuals involved in the process, both as speakers, sounders, and as listeners, though it seems to me that what's been taking place is a convergence of the poet and the audience for poetry."
"There is another of the interesting possibilities that's raised, by Blake primarily and then again and again up to the present, a second convergence, a convergence and identification of poetry and prophecy. So Blake, looking back, recognizes the prophets not only as prophets, which is a historical perspective, a fact in itself, but as mean of open and expensive senses that he can identify with the concept of the "poet" that he's developing. Blake himself, in the sense of the word "prophetic" meaning-being able to look into the future-which is perhaps a very minor notion of what prophecy is about but I think we tend to think of it in terms-Blake is being prophetic in that sense towards one of the possibilities being explored today and throughout this century, throughout the last century as well, something hidden beneath the façade of poetry as a literary enterprise, which has even been dominant in cultures that can be literary, that can deal with letters and with writing. So I'll again and again use the term possibility, possibilities, opening possibilities and opening, you know, rather than closing...like closing the possibilities, bringing it down to a single answer...because more and more I feel that the reason for my own involvement with poetics, poesis, as a process, is that, of all the processes that I know for that kind of exploration of mind, or whatever, that people talk about, the poetic engagement, the poetic process, seems most to allow, when it's really working, most to allow room for contradiction and for conflict. The poetic liberty, the poetic license, you know, which was hammered into our heads even as kids, in a kind of derogatory way... well so-&-so says that, that's a lie, that's poetic license."
full transcript: https://archive.org/details/talkingpoeticsfr0000unse/page/252/mode/2upfull
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