Monthly Archives: March 2023

‘I Am on the Side of Tears’

“All we can do now is pray.” Famous last words. Prayer is the recourse of the desperate when there’s no recourse. It’s the last croak from the isthmus of the fauces before humanity lies facedown in the mud. When you … Continue reading

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Code Snaps for Lluis

My Catalan grandson works for a company that makes flight simulator software. He’s experiencing the headaches of integrating C++ enhancements into decades-old legacy code written in Fortran. He complains of the lack of notes in the old code whereby programmers … Continue reading

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‘La Ronde Enfantine’

I savor the deep dark greeniness and people-dwarfing scale of the forest in this painting by Courbet. The syrupy light on the tree trunks is eyeball lickable. (Julia Jacobs, “He Lost a Courbet Fleeing the Nazis. His Heirs Are Getting … Continue reading

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Ann Lauterbach’s ‘Blue Door’: It’s Open

THE BLUE DOOR(Ann Lauterbach, Poetry March 2023) The obligatory cancels its strophe. Let me get a grip,and begin in this other patch where the air is. “I caught a whiff of poem on the wind straightaway, which is an exceedingly … Continue reading

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Pausing With Your Eyes

I’ve looked into what the exaggerated gaps between words or phrases in lines of verse are all about, curious whether or not they should affect my reading and, if so, how. A writer named Emilia Phillips calls them visual caesuras … Continue reading

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Deep Fake AI: Could Chat-Git-Yer-Grannie Say This?

We don’t need no edgy-cation —hum-thuh-rhumba humpit-humpithum-thuh-rhumba humpit-humpit We don’t need no thawtt cun-troll —hum-thuh-rhumba humpit-humpithum-thuh-rhumba humpit-humpit… Save the humans! (c) 2023 JMN — EthicalDative. All rights reserved

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‘You Have to Be Interested in the Playfulness of Poetry’

[Billy Collins] sat on a bench and watched some students playing Wiffle ball on a quad. “You have to be interested in the playfulness of poetry to want to keep writing it,” he said. Then, as if to shoo away … Continue reading

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‘I Discovered That the Act of Writing Is Also an Act of Drawing’

Lebanese-American painter-poet-novelist Etel Adnan (1925-2021) was interviewed by Gabriel Coxhead for the June 2018 issue of Apollo. I’m drawn to her work for how it mingles Arabic language, painting and poetry. Quoting from the interview: Perhaps most interesting, in terms … Continue reading

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Ann Lauterbach’s ‘Door’: Trouble Me, Poet

A noun or pronoun, with a participle in agreement, may be put in the ablative to define the time or circumstances of an action. This construction is called the Ablative Absolute… The Ablative Absolute is an adverbial modifier of the … Continue reading

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‘They Can Feel Almost Like Exquisite Texts to Be Read’

… Each [painting] presents so much information that you have to move in close for further contemplation and deciphering, trying to figure out how the paintings were made and which of their weird little details are accidental, which deliberate. They … Continue reading

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