Monday, November 17, 2003

In which names are named, sentences are perhapsy, and the evidence is anecdotal.

by Stephanie Young


Tuesday, July 22, 2003

speaking of pop and intellectualism 

It is fair to say that the new brutalism is an aesthetic that defies itself. Perhaps that is what makes it brutal? To constantly define, defy, then redefine itself is possibly the only way to reach a collective idea of a definition for it. I'm not sure about the "a chard of glass whacking off the head of a poppy" because of the fact that I think we're all trying to make something beautiful and lasting--though the act of whacking off the head of a poppy, which will eventually wilt, could be beautiful and lasting if captured perhaps in a poem or film or photograph--but the poems of this group are scattered as far as style is concerned, many different styles among us, so that someone might like one person's work and find another's unpalatable. For instance, I love Ashbery, O'Hara & Ceravolo but dislike Koch. Given, they didn't name themselves "The New York School." For instance, the other night at a party, I overheard someone say "oh, I'm a New Brutalist because I read in the series." However, this person is not, how you or I cannot be a "Language Poet." For the boys of the group, perhaps what is brutal is having spent two years at an academy for women, thus feeling somewhat left out of the central milieu. Being a poet is already positioning oneself on the "outside" but here we've created an "in-group" among outsiders. Though it is amusing to be asked "how does one become a New Brutalist?" and answer you must shave the chest of Chris Stroffolino while he is sleeping without waking him. For Stephen & Liz, this places them in an alternate context by associating them with an entirely different generation. I'm listening now to The Fall and thinking how brutal they are but not sure how related they might be to my own sense of poetics other than that they were the forbears to much of the music that influences my writing. Perhaps we should continue to define and defy, thus creating a persistent contradiction of what we actually are or might be to someone on the outside of our in-group.


Wednesday, July 16, 2003

speaking of poppies and dangerous vocabularies 

I'm wondering about the actual nature of "wonder." When someone says, "Gee, I wonder what the New Brutalism is," (excepting Youngish Diviners, who, by the very nature of their name, at least make an attempt toward some sort of gnosis) is said person truly wondering? Or, rather, is it only a quick, thoughtless reaction--a knee jerk verbal response not used as a flashlight, but as a shield when faced with the looming darkness of their own ignorance?

The New Brutalism is an aesthetic that defies perhaps even itself, but nonetheless points at something, letting us enjoy the search for what it is trying to signify.


Tuesday, July 08, 2003

Brutalist brutalized by rookie CHP officer 

The New Brutalism is being beaten with a billy club, pistol whipped, cuffed to the tail of the cruiser and dragged home after having your car impounded for expired tags. Making friendly conversation doesn't work on skinhead officers after telling them that you are a poet. Truly, my vocabulary did this to me.


Monday, July 07, 2003

A chard of glass whacking off the head of a poppy?


Saturday, June 28, 2003

The New Brutalism is Alive but What is it? 

It could very well be a lot of things to a lot of people.

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