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a series of fragments & notes about Chance, Fate, Context & Intention by Dara Wier ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


Does it qualify as experimental if one doesn't know what one is doing when one is doing it? There have to be other ways to talk about controlled situations within laboratories in which, say, a vacuum is needed for experimental purposes, let's say.


First I heard someone say of the place where they were: there's nothing happening here, then I heard oh there is so much going on around here, then I heard there is too much happening here. I'm wondering exactly where is here since there is no where I'm understanding it is. All right then.


I wonder if sometimes a poet is sparing us from something. You know, instead of thinking, oh that poet, that poet's got nothing to say to me, maybe sometimes certain poets are sparing us some things we could barely bear, or maybe don't want to hear or see or know about. I think that's admirable and kind-hearted and possible.

And then there is a poet, or person, who seems to feel that telling the truth (the unadorned truth it can be but not always) (stating the fact) (that is) obviates responsibility for whatever the truth means to those involved. The plain fact of telling the truth over-rides any damage the truth might do. That can't be always so. Too dangerous.

Some things are not meant to be put into words; that is, they are no longer what they are once words are attached to them, as if they best and truly exist in a place without light and attaching words to them would be as creepy as attaching shadows to things in the middle of a featureless, absolute dark, a place with no light (I think of shadows inside my head when I close my eyes; I've never seen a shadow in there).

(of course moon shadows can be gorgeous and that's another story)

What I'd worked around to saying many times before is that there are some things I can say I care about, now that I think of it, now that it comes to me, and one of them is that it matters to me when I'm hearing or reading a poem to wonder: what does this poet think about poetry---what is poetry to this poet, what does this poet do with poetry---anyone of us will feel this whether we put that in words or not.

(If I get up and go read Keats' THIS LIVING HAND, I think I know what Keats thinks about poetry, for one quick instance)

And another thing is what does the poet whose poem I happen to be reading seem to think about me (not me personally, just me any stranger, invisible reading person, unnamed, unknown, reading anyone's poem anytime anyplace for any reason or no reason)

What does this poet want from me---possibly nothing at all---how involved does this poet want me to be---maybe a lot, maybe a little---in what ways does this poet want me to be actively a part of this poem---infinite ways, uncountable speculations

what does this poet want me to do with this poem

what does this poem want to do with me


In order in New Orleans from near downtown & the financial district crossing St. Charles Avenue toward Uptown, streets named:

Calliope, epic poetry & poetry as commonly held repository, epic epic

Clio, history and narrative, nostalgia and adventure

Erato, lyric poetry, love & erotics, longing & despair,

Thalia, comedy and absurdity, a stance & a defense system

Melpomene, tragedy and damage, heartbreak & mortality

Terpsichore, dance and motion

Euterpe, music, rhyme and rhythms, beats & eternal return

Polymnia, choral poetry, hymns and sacred songs

Urania, astronomy, infinity, maps, fate & the future

~~~~~~ a great aunt of mine lived on Melpomene and she did have fake frogs in her clam shell white hot garden along with fake fairies and fake birds and fake snakes and fake mushrooms and fake fish and I loved them all, they were city creatures, they were almost animated................ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

It is probably a good idea to have a muse. To have one but not tell anyone you have one. Possibly. To have a muse so as to be able to tell yourself with certainty, I am not doing this alone. I did not do this by myself.

To be able to say I don't do any of this by myself, there is my muse there all the time at my side, in my head, holding on to my heart, infusing and enlivening my soul. To be able to say we don't do this by ourselves.

We don't compose alone. Poetry itself keeps us company.

(true no matter how alone one might be, or feel, or understand one's self to be)

To have some kind of necessary partner.


why poetry, why poetry and not something else and why a muse

a beloved, someone one writes everything for, someone, please let me have a good muse, a muse who is truly on my side, please, don't let me have settled on the wrong muse........


This constitute some of the combinations, as given to me----

the streets of New Orleans serve divine inspiration is divine intervention comes Theresa of Avila says Mother Superior Made Me Do It! hearing voices receiving dictation as Yeats did and John Clare did and Christopher Smart did what are my talismans and superstitions what are the habits I can't break from where comes agency for instance

---the real underneath of it all

why any writer feels the need to share responsibility (an angel guided my hand, not me!)

rather than take it on herself.....of course shared responsibility definitely has its advantages......

literary history, antecedent, ancestors, etc........that for many would be the true muse


I asked so then what happens in a poem that happens there better than anywhere else?

Is there anything that happens in a poem that can only happen there?

Well, could be that answers itself as in anything can only happen where it happens when it happens and if it happens to happen in a place called a poem it can not have happened anywhere else, yes?

that who ever encounters it there will say that it is acting in a poem either as expected or as I expect it to act, as in

I am reading what is known as a poem now and because I am I am reading it in some ways not the same as when I am reading

say, a parking ticket, or an eviction notice, or a memo concerning my job, that what anyone might do to make a living

What can be said about a poem that can't be said about anything else? If at all.

Is there anything?

And so, of course there has to be, how could there not be, everything that is anything we call something (almost, much of the time) anything we call something is always happening, in time and in space, and is changed by what and how we call it

and what we say about it, and it is

so if I say that, that is a poem

then it is not anything else

at least not particularly in any useful way at least and especially not as it's first encountered

and so what does go on in a poem that isn't likely to go on elsewhere

turns out to be that what goes on in a poem isn't likely to go on anywhere else------and what happens in a poem is not going to happen in what is not a poem

and just about leave it at that

If I say poetry is indispensable..........

Or I say I will stand forever in front of this false door and wait there....... ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~