Tag Archives: rhetoric

Jane Kaufman

The savory quotation that leaps from this obituary of artist Jane Kaufman (1938 – 2021) is from Holland Cotter’s review of a 2008 retrospective at the Hudson River Museum in Yonkers, N.Y. “It’s funky, funny, fussy, perverse, obsessive, riotous, accumulative, … Continue reading

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UK Sculptor: Hard Row to Hoe

It will be [a shrine], but not for art lovers. Or for anyone who is easily embarrassed. Perhaps not even for Diana’s sincerest believers, for the statue group’s emotive symbolism is undermined by its aesthetic awfulness. In style it breathes … Continue reading

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Write Infrequently, If Possible?

… Unlike many great twentieth-century writers, who saw truth in despair, Milosz’s experiences convinced him that poetry must not darken the world but illuminate it: “Poems should be written rarely and reluctantly, / under unbearable duress and only with the … Continue reading

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Slant-Wise Talk

Saying things that are graspably cockeyed is my kind of self-expression. Doing so skirts peekaboo obscurity and affectation constantly, but sometimes it feels like it’s working and those moments make me feel interesting. “Even your most serious problem,” [Stephen Dunn] … Continue reading

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Adoration of the Cat

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A hoary plot line of melodrama reduces the hero and heroine to dire straits; they’ve tried everything in their power to escape doom; the soundtrack crescendos in a minor key. “Pray,” he says. “It’s in God’s hands. Only a miracle … Continue reading

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Shows and Prose

Along comes more NYTimes torqued and taut art talk of the sort that sweeps me up. … Several gorgeous self-portraits made toward the end of his life. Their precision is astonishing… It’s clear that what most interested Ellis about ink … Continue reading

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‘A Fisherman Holds Up a Trout He Caught’

El hijo de su madre has stumbled upon an El Dorado of found poetry in the “Outdoors” fishing column of a local newspaper. Bink Grimes’s lavish rundown of the piscatory scene pulses with staccato verve, inside lingo, and riptide granularity. … Continue reading

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E Pluribus Nihil

Archaeologists of the far future sifting through America’s plastic ashes will peg the collapse of its civilization to two insidious language events: (1) When America dissolved “talking about problems” into “having conversations around issues.” (2) When America demoted “national” security … Continue reading

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Adverb Rebellion

This passage from a fellow blogger (cap doff to) caught my eye: Reality? Well it starts to mock back at your face, you get surrounded by the clouds of regret, cry on the ashes of your pretentious bliss and feel … Continue reading

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The Rock Pile

Dwight Garner’s review of a new biography of Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings* evokes a foible-wracked genius: It’s a pleasure to meet this cursing, hard-drinking, brilliant, self-destructive, car-wrecking, fun-loving, chain-smoking, alligator-hunting, moonshine-making, food-obsessed woman again on the page. The passage that hits … Continue reading

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