Tuesday, February 28, 2006
Monday, February 27, 2006
Tree vs Willow to the death
the discussion is still alive at Sinchon shinchon sinchun It is just a few posts down, if you want directions.
Sunday, February 26, 2006
As rated by the google blog grade, this blog is a 0, something most of us already knew. So “drop that 0 and get with a hero” never sounded like better advice.
Saturday, February 25, 2006
Friday, February 24, 2006
Is Spring here?
Yesterday was my last day of intensive classes. Now I only have 4 classes a week. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, from 7a – 8:30a, then the rest of the day is mine. Yesterday was a lovely day in Seoul. After having lunch with my class a friend and I walked all over Sin Chon (the one in Seoul. And, by the way, saw it spelled sinchon on a sign yesterday) drinking beer at bar after bar. By 11 my night was about over. Came home and got on the computer. Posted drunk on a few blogs. So, if you have a strange message from me on your blog, know it was sent in Drunken Joy.
Thursday, February 23, 2006
sinchon shinchon shinchun
Grapez does a nice thing, everyday there is a review of work. Takes a look at three sites and talks about the poetry. So a thanks for that. Problem is, what happens when the review makes claims for a poem that the poem does not make? In Langley’s latest poem Sinchon is misinterpreted by the reader to be Sinchun. Not a big difference right, well, Sinchun is a place in N. Korea where about 30,000 people were killed, and Sinchon is a great place to go and drink on a Friday night. Three Universities in walking distance and plenty of fun to be had. I believe the review mistakes one for the other. Puts a lot of weight on that aspect of the poem and that aspect of the poem does not exist. The thread of our short discussion is here.
The reality is this, I have seen both places spelled Sinchon. Sinchon in Seoul is often times spelled Shinchon. Just don’t know why the jump has to be made. Why the reader has to be so certain about his read. If we have to focus on Sinchon, isn’t it more interesting to not know if it is the place of the massacre or the place of lots of beer?
Feels strange talking about poetry like this. The geographic location means nothing to me. The read should take a different angle. The question, I guess, is this, now that you know more about the geography and history of Korea, do you know the poem in a more intimate way? Is it better now? Can you enter in where you could not before? Me, no, in fact, I think that this type of reading grubs up something. It introduces an element into the poem that has no business being there. It draws attention to a single word and through the attention gives it charge that did not exist before that read.
time for me to sleep
Wednesday, February 22, 2006
Truth of the matter is that although people in Asia are learning English from early on, the majority still can’t speak it. I’ve taught at Universities in three countries and most of my students could read and speak a bit. However, the English spoken was no better than the Spanish spoken by a 4th semester Spanish student in the states (that is a mouthful). Well, maybe a little better.
Tuesday, February 21, 2006
Monday, February 20, 2006
Sunday, February 19, 2006
Apolo Anton Ohno did not win the 1,000, so stop hating.
I don’t really cheer for individuals in the Olympics. I just like to see greatness. Doesn’t really matter where you come from. Team sports, on the other hand, I do cheer for the colors.
So I’m sitting around today watching AFN. Getting fat and happy. Just digging on these folks who get no attention for four years and then become superstars, and then go away again. And they tell me the Short track is coming up.
Most of you aren’t in Korea, but if you are, ask some folks, ask them about short track, and up till today, Ohno’s name would have come out. They hate him here, and bc they hate him, there is kind of a strange feeling towards Americans when he comes up.
Four years ago in the World Cup, when Korea scored against the USA, the players did a mock speed skating dance. Short track really matters. Being a Korean really matters. Things get plenty heightened. Well, today Ohno came in third. Two Koreans beat him. Against my better judgment I really wanted Ohno to win. I wanted him to win just bc this country wanted so badly for him to lose.
In the end, my life will be better bc of it. And, in losing, I was impressed with Ohno and how gracious he was. Was also impressed that Ahn invited him up on the podium, so Ohno stood with two Koreans on the top step. Maybe now we can all be friends.
Saturday, February 18, 2006
Those were the days
From Kent Johnson in Fascicle 2
After all, to publicly proclaim, as Catullus often did, that you are going to violently fuck another poet in the ass probably won't do much for your tenure or career.
Friday, February 17, 2006
watching the Olympics on AFN. Love the shorts on the athletes. “He/She doesn’t care about your rules, she/he just wants to beat you.” We have so many rebels on the USA Winter Olympics team. People doing things their own way, except when the judges or the stopwatch are involved. Oh, almost forgot, in the thing in which we are supposed to care, the competition, these rebels do need to follow rules. But rest assured, once they get off the course, they are bad ass again. Just fucking ski down the hill real fast, ok? I don’t care about anything else, and neither do you, so wear your spandex and glitter and bring a gold home to mamma.
I’ve entered about 10 contests and find I don’t have the energy to enter more. I wish I was the judge then I could pick my own work. What would Foetry do? (WWFD).
Cold as shit here. just staying inside the best I can. need summer. Remember the second winter in Boulder was tough. Seems to be the same thing here. first winter was a nice change, this one is just mean.
If you could see a photo of any of my body parts, which part would you choose?
Tuesday, February 14, 2006
The new The Slipshod Swingers album,
Woes & Hail Mary's
Mine is in the mail.
I just got signed up for fantasy baseball. I was invited back even after i busted up all the furniture and pissed on the rug. The Champ returns with a whole new crew. Poets be war e. This is going to happen again.
Monday, February 13, 2006
Click on the above link. type in the name of a song/singer/band and they come up with a list of similar music and off you go, listening to your own radio station.
I typed in Skip James and am listening to Frank Stokes. This station is a new favorite.
Sunday, February 12, 2006
Google: not what is, but how the money wants it
New issue of fascicle. Great big issue. have only begun. This is the second magazine in the past few days to publish a translation issue (fascicle also has other work, but there is a large section of Chinese poetry. I am thankful to both of these magazines for taking on such an important and difficult project). Was reading some of the pieces and CHEN DONGDONG'S RECITATIVE BEFORE THE ARIA in particular. If I had put my name on this poem and sent it to a magazine, or to fascicle for that matter, would it have been accepted? I’d hope not. This poem might be great in Mandarin (?) but here, in English, it gets away with things I could not, nor would I want to get away with.
Until the bow whacks the rubber bumper on the far shore.
The whole boat quivers. He's quick on the kick-start.
*bow whacks* is lazy. Rubber bumper (say that out loud.). the whole boat quivers* instead of just part of it.
I wonder if we have expectations of Chinese poetry. Feel that because of language and distance we allow what we would not allow from poets in English. I am sure there is greatness going on in that vast country, and I want it, but I suspect that this is not it.
Thursday, February 09, 2006
Dig on the new site!
Tuesday, February 07, 2006
Korean poetry in translation
There is a new Typo out. The Swedish Invasion. Played a bit with it this morning. Admiring yes. Will spend more time later. There will be things to steal. On another Typo front, I got an acceptance for #8. Two poems this time. There is excitement, but I have a fever, the fever makes me a bit crazy. Why is it always, least when there is no vomit and I can sit in my home, kind of fun?
Snow today in Seoul.
I mentioned the other day on this blog how a woman in my class works for a publisher. They published a book of love poems translated to Korean. Mary Oliver. Etc etc. (that is the taste.) Fine by me. Thing is, How do they find the good poets in English (I gave her the bed side guide)? How do I find the good poets who write in Korean? There is enough English going around; lots and lots of Bi-lingual folks (Us military, English teachers, westerners who speak English marry a Korean Woman (usually western man and Korean woman), and their kids can speak both). So where is the work in translation? What is happening in Korean poetry? How should I go about finding out? I ask and I ask, and I doubt an answer will come from this blog, but I want to know who the poets are now. I am tired of translations about the Japanese and rivers and mountains.
When I was in Thailand, same thing. I worked at Bangkok University and went to the English Dept and Thai dept. and asked about poets in translation, I didn’t get any tips. I want tips.
I ask my students who major in English literature who they read. Some Plath, but mostly stuff from much earlier. And who do you read in korean? The ancients, in school, but nothing really new. There is a connection that is not being met.
If I spoke Korean I could do some translation, but I don’t, and I don’t want to spend the next 10 years learning. I don’t plan on being here that long. It comes down to this, I want someone to do for Korean poetry what Typo (the group of translators for the issue) did for Swedish work.
There must be Korean Depts. in predominantly English speaking universities who are up to it.
Wednesday, February 01, 2006
A list of those not remembered with as much gusto as some would like them to be remembered and others remembered but little and what about those not remembered at all