Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Readings this week in Paris with Jen Dick, then March events in Belfort, Mulhouse and Paris!

Reading from CIRCUITS
19h30/20h onwards
COME READ WITH ME!!! Jennifer K Dick will read from her new collection of poems, CIRCUITS, as a featured guest of the brand new Paris Lit Up open mic night at Culture Rapide, 103 Rue Julien Lacroix, 75020 Paris, France. For full details see: Come read, too!!! This new reading series is alternatively hosted by Jason Mc Gimsey, Kate Noakes, and Emily Ruck-Keene. M° Belleville. 19h30 for sign ups, readings start around 8pm.

FRIDAY March 1st: PARIS, France
Jennifer K Dick plays MEDIATOR! This will be a little like feeling like a poetry TV host this Friday when I get to chat and invite responses to some thoughts I have been having of late as well when I mediate a dialogue and reading event with the awesome poets and critics ALFRED CORN and MARILYN HACKER. Here is the full AUP announcement:
Marilyn Hacker and Alfred Corn: An Evening of Poetry, Translation, and Dialogue
  01 March 2013, at 19:00 h, at AUP's Grand Salon, 31 avenue Bosquet, 75007 Paris
Hacker reading for The Wolf magazine
The Department of Creative Writing at AUP invites you to a reading by two major American poets and translators, moderated by Jennifer K. Dick. Marilyn Hacker is a poet, an essayist and a translator. Her translation of Marie Etienne's King of a Hundred Horsemen (FSG, 2008) received 2009 American PEN Award for Poetry in Translation and her own poetry has won several awards included the National Book Award for Presentation Piece and an Award in Literature for the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 2004. She is a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets, lives in Paris and is an editor for the journal Siècle 21.Alfred Corn is a poet, translator, critic and writer, whose tenth book of poems, Tables (Press53), appeared in January 2013. Fellowships for his poetry include the Guggenheim, the NEA, an Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and one from the Academy of American Poets. In 2012, he was a Visiting Fellow of Clare Hall, University of Cambridge, preparing a translation of Rilke's Duino Elegies.
This is an American University in Paris event, open to the public, and free, organized by the series run by the poet and nonfiction author Jeffrey Greene.

MARCH 7th: BELFORT, France
Performing as part of the FABRIKA VOXA 2013 night organized by Montaigne Froide/ Cold Mountain--curatrice Valerie Verhaeghe! "Rendez-vous annuel en nos murs, Fabrika est un laboratoire sonore d’expérimentation en art et en poésie, un évènement en performance réalisé par le collectif Montagne Froide/Cold-Mountain, où artistes confirmés et étudiants se croisent dans un moment unique." At Espace Multimedia Gantner, 1, rue de la Varonne 90140 Bourogne, Tél. 03 84 23 59 72 - : or for the specific event link: click HERE

17 March: MULHOUSE
La Kunsthalle and Basel have an event-packed weekend to celebrate contemporary art which will feature the next installment of the ECRIRE L'ART series with guest author JEAN-MICHEL ESPITALLIER. He will visit the show and then share some writing based in the current show. This is an all-French language event, open to the public, at 16h Sunday the 17th of March 2013 at La Kunsthalle, Upstairs on the top floor of La Fonderie, 16 rue de la fonderie, Mulhouse

19 March: PARIS
IVY Writers Paris the 19th of March with Joshua Marie Wilkinson, Dot Devota, Brandon Shimoda and Zachary Schomburg with translations into French of their works by Virginie Poitrasson, Jacques Rebotier, Paul? and Martin Richet (Richet is tbConfirmed). The reading will take place at DELAVILLE cafe, 34 blvd Bonne Nouvelle, 75010 Paris, M° Bonne Nouvelle at 19h30

Monday, February 25, 2013

Of Binaries and Avant gardes... Boston Review we thank you!

"Why do we have these labels that no one wants to wear?"--Samuel Amadon 

I admire the Boston Review's set of responses and reactions to Majorie Perloff's article Poetry on the Brink: Reinventing the Lyric which also appeared in the Prague-based review VLAK, issue 3, published in 2012, as Poetry on the Edge: Reconceptualizing Lyric (pp189-199). I also based much of my recent Tears in the Fence column in issue 56 "Of Tradition and Experiment" on Perloff's text as well--I suppose it was/is my contribution to the "Symposium" on binaries.

But here I want to react to a select few of the many other poets who are weighing in on this article--Of the texts which appear on this symposium site, there are a few which just make me EXCITED to be a writer and reader, and who seem to really be asking themselves, and thus me/you/others the "important" questions. Among those are Evie Shockley's "Loaded Terms", the smartly writen (what lovely language) "The Purposeful Lyric Life" by Sandra Lim, as well as Dan Beachy-Quick's invaluable reflective text on "The 'I' of Lyric" which starts in  "a terrain of instability—a lyric instability—in which such seeming oppositions overlap."

But three I would like to chat about a bit more in depth are below:

One of the symposium articles I admired is the pearl that is Lytton Smith's "Pages and Soundscapes" at Here, Smith explores the limits of the sound/page binary as he states "All too often we treat poems as either written or spoken". Two of my favorite quotes from his text are below--I hope will make you all want to go read his text in its entirety online. Here, Smith reminds us of the inability to disentangle in poetry sound from sense, what is seen on the page from what is heard when we read or imagine it read aloud:

"Let go of the written / spoken binary and we find a spectrum analogous to Zukofsky’s “lower limit speech / upper limit music”: at one end, the material of printed words, set in place; at the other end, the possibility of unanticipated improvisation, of audition."--Lytton Smith

"...the poem has both physical materiality and soundscape, that we’re worse off if we can’t let these interact."--Lytton Smith

A second essay I found myself laughing aloud at while reading his first paragraph's list of crazy binaries because he so rightly points out some of the silliness of all the massive number of binaries being debated in this supposed era of the post-binary is Stephen Burt's "Ways to the new" which is at: Here, Burt begins "So many binaries circulate in and around contemporary poems that I find myself running out of ibuprofen as I pursue the most useful." However, the binary he does settle on a decide to address is the concept of  "neo-modernism". :

" A neo-modernist poet makes art that tests the limits of “art,” requiring us to ask what counts as a poem, what counts as good, what we assume about art more generally, and whether we ought to reject our prior assumptions."--Stephen Burt (I include this because his definition is compact and smart and makes me also think about its validity--a definitin that is also an invitation to respond)

But in the end Burt will address those authors that fall into this category, trying to remind them that neo-modernism and looking for new newness is not in fact the only way to make edgy exciting new poems. I think this then is really a rejection of a formal nature, and of many of the poets I am personally excited about, and yet I do want to get on board with one thing that Burt reminds us all about: "Ecologists say that excitement, novelty, diversity, tend to occur at edges, but they do not always mean where water meets land; sometimes they mean where forest meets prairie or tundra, where mountains arise, even where cities end. We have all sorts of edges, all sorts of boundaries and opportunities, within the enormous territory of what poetry is,..."--Stephen Burt

Some lovely historical reflections on the many debates about binariness appear in Samuel Amadon's "Hybrid Poets Exist" at: in which Amadon writes:

"...I see American poetry as a history of conflicts that have given shape to the poetry produced by the opposing sides."--Samuel Amadon

Amadon does point out the great danger we are facing, though, when he writes: "Binaries are inevitably going to be part of a discussion of an art form that is so often subject to conflict. But when those conflicts settle into long-standing camps, binary thinking becomes unproductive."--Samuel Amadon

But I do wonder if we are all even clear on the issue of what the real polemic is--is it really, as Amadon states, "—lyric-narrative / experimental-avant-garde—"? Because this looks to me like a binary between a red apple and a video of the apple--which he seems to point out quite smartly in the penultimate paragraph of his posted essay. The nature of the two sides are not for me antonymic, are not clear opposites--for me, as for Amadon I believe as well, many "experimental" and "avant-garde" poems are narrative and lyric in their own ways, just as many lyric and narrative poems can also be experimental--that is how we end up with book jackets which read "experimental memoir" or find ourselves talking about books like Memnoir by Joan Retallack, etc. So the issue is still one of how to locate the two items we keep wanting to place on Justice's scales to weigh against each other seeking hopefully a little balance and not superiority of one over the other. As Amadon suggests, better yet-- give up on trying to locate exactly what it is we are trying to pit against each other a do a little mixing as authors and readers--as Amadon concludes: "What to do? Crossover.":

"But I think that the crossover between these influences is a far more volatile experience: a conflict on the page that can lead our next poems in—thankfully—unexpected directions."--Samuel Amadon

CONCLUDING THOUGHTS--my own two cents?
Pretty much all of the texts on the site are well worth reading--even a few that merely enrage me with their own celebration of closing-off and rejecting a large mass of what I personally love to read (for if I do not read and know and listen to those whose voices oppose my own, what kind of person am I who asks those people to read and know and listen to the work I admire and which they feel opposes them?) So, I suggest reading all of these texts not only for their ideas, but also just to see the great variety of writing styles on a question such as this.

Isn't the fact that such a diversity in critical discourse exists--and that this diversity does not enrage and is readable to readers and writers of all kinds of poetry--a sign that the diverse poetries of poetry should also be "allowed" or "accorded" the same readership and respect? Because, for me, I find the main binary in poetry comes from a sense of readerships which are either closed to certain formal inventiveness or to a certain exploration of the "legitimized" traditions--as in, our risk is that we are not reading what is perceived as coming from what is perceived as another side, and that we then also do not know, dialogue about or respect at times the work of the wide variety of authors out there. 

The binary, however, is an illusion. For whoever resides today on the "powerful" readership side, oft called "mainstream", is in a position which is constantly shifting too. The line of the between is always in motion and is defined by the perception of the one reading, writing, publishing, etc. After all, the authors and poets I know are not asking themselves permission to write--they keep doing it because writing is like breathing for them, it is a prerequisite for living. And if nothing else this entire debate reminds us of one fabulous thing--POETRY IS MOST CERTAINLY NOT DEAD.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

THEIR next big things: Lisa Pasold, Travis Cebula, Rachel Blau DuPlessis, Sarah Lariviere and Lars Palm!

It is just TOO fun to discover all the different ways authors are thinking about their works as part of the NEXT BIG THING projects spidering over cyberspace. Mine originated when I was tagged by Marthe Reed and after last week's post of my own The Next Big Thing for CIRCUITS (see it at: I tagged Lisa Pasold, Travis Cebula, Lars Palm, Rachel DuPlessis and Sarah Lariviere--here are the links to THEIR next BIG things!!!! ENJOY!

For American author TRAVIS CEBULA's discussion of his recent collection from Blazevox books ITHACA check out his new blog HIEROPHANT which he says will thematically address questions (thus it should be an unending and exciting blogging project!) and his post--TRAVIS CEBULA'S NEXT BIG THING at: FYI--as Travis explains in his post--his photo is what was used for this BEAUTIFUL book cover, too (see image). Some people are just too talented for words!

To read LISA PASOLD--Canadian author of a novel and 3 collections of poetry--discussing her newest project underway, UP TO THE KNEE, see LISA PASOLD'S NEXT BIG THING at:

For Swedish author LARS PALM's NEXT BIG THING see his blog posting on his blog Mischievoice at: where he talks about MEANS. This looks like an exciting book collection for poets and music lovers alike--read his blog for more on that! He also has a variety of books available, including a fairly recent one with Corrupt Press.

RAHEL BLAU DUPLESSIS's NEXT BIG THING is graciously posted on Jenn McCreary's exciting blog at: I dig Rachel's photo where she looks like she is just chatting with us, telling us all about the next installment (can't wait to get my hands on it!) in her DRAFTS project--Surge: Drafts 96-114 (forthcoming this spring from SALT publishing!)

SARAH LARIVIERE--American author and also publisher of the forthcoming Color Treasury 003--discusses her novel for young adults called enticingly THE BAD KID (anyone know--was Sarah the bad kid? Inquiring minds want to know!) Read her reflections on this book project at: and keep your eye on her logs for  photography, poetry work and other publications as well.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Mulhouse Carnival 2013...

Le 16 février 2013: Mulhouse got hopping tonight as marching bands and a variety of parade floats wound round its circuitous streets and then into the Place de la Réunion. Here are a few pics from the evening:

The traditional masks--with glow in the dark smiles

Cat got YOUR tongue? This float is all about the Klapperstein!

One of the many marching bands from tonight

The giant puppets head into the crowd

Mulhouse's Hôtel de Ville

Guy pops out of cake tossing confetti into crowd and brandishing the Mulhouse flag
This image is from a float side-panel, advertising the 1972 carnival

This guy is on the backside of a float

Cool glow-in the dark drumsticks which glowed brighter when they struck these young drummer's drums

A quiet stand where people grab a snack and say hey. The flags on either side are for Mulhouse

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

THE NEXT BIG THING! from Jennifer K Dick

I was tagged by the awesome author Marthe Reed to take part in The Next Big Thing, a series of self-interviews with writers who have new books from small presses--each writer tagged then tags another set of 5 writers (see my 5 at the end of this post), until we have tagged ALL the new authors in the world—or the blogging-tagging is a sort of pursuit of new books and a way for all of us to discover authors we may not have already known! To Read Marthe's The Next Big Thing, go to: NOUS-ZOT

FYI--The questions below are the same for everyone, but evidently the answers vary.

THE NEXT BIG THING  for Jennifer K Dick?

What is/was the working title of the book?
The book was always called CIRCUITS. From the get-go, this title felt for me a little electric, about neurons firing and all those connections we have yet ti locate or which get dislocated in our minds and memories just as they do in circuitous language.
Where did the idea come from for the book?
The idea for the book came during a dry spell of writing when I got into reading pop sci books. I admired George Johnson’s In the Palace’s ofMemory and could not get over the cool weirdness of his chapter titles. Then I started playing around with the language of his popular science, intermingling it with that of memories and recollections, and the two fused, confused each other more and more and slowly over a period of literally years these poems emerged, re-emerged, were rewritten and thought about and felt and then began to be sent out and then there was the book, and then versions of it. In fact, this book--Circuits--is likely the product of one of the longest revision processes I have ever undertaken. Some of these poems were drafted in 2003 and still this past year--even months--as my publisher and I went over the proofs I added more changes and polished out jagged edges.
What genre does your book fall under?
What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?
Creepy thought, really. There would be a lot of actors as the poems are about relationships in a way, or paths of relations. I think sometimes an actor could be fused into another. I think I would love it if some were filmed with blaring angry heavy guitar and drums—melted to urban sounds of train screeches or combustion. Others would need to be in silence.
I would like Valérie Mréjen to film some, and perhaps Sophie Calle others. Some feel like Tulle and others like rock trash. Anyway, I would need each section to be a short. Perhaps some character-actors would reappear, like a Lynch scientist type played ideally by a young Jeff Goldblum, the Goldblum we remember from his role as Watson in the Race for the Double Helix. Other scientist types could be played by Michael Emerson (he could even maintain lots of his quirks from his character Harold Finch on “Person of Interest”). There is certainly a female who comes in and out of a few poems and who could repeat in scenes—someone overthin, fragile, would be ideal for that role—or, better yet would be to have 2-3 women play that one role, echoing and overlapping the same scenes, lines, gestures, expressions—to imitate the way I like these poems to go no where, get trapped in the theories of their own selves, their own recollections. So perhaps overlapping a varying set of disguises, as in versions of Tilda Swinton (like she looks in “We need to talk about Kevin”) and a glasses-sporting and a far less typically cowgirl American girl next door version of TriciaHelfer with a brunette version of Sarah Michelle Geller with a mousy someone who is dark haired and perhaps just post-teen to mix in with the the others—an Anne Hathaway with that excellent short cut? Younger women would also need to be cast to play these same characters at a different moment in time. Ideal would be actors we have never seen but who are good on screen.
What about some of the other males? I’d need a bully, someone who looks a bit beat up or gruff like the guy staring in the new Arrow perhaps—but not as stiff or muscly as Stephen Amell. Someone more “real” than your average Hollywood male. Also, Denzel Washington would be a great addition for some of the male roles—the voice and movements of the advisor in certain poems, directive, reflective, someone with a great reading voice.
Other random wild extras would certainly be appreciated as walk-ons, and figures—an Emily Dickinsion perhaps played by Isabelle Huppert (with an edge of that look she had in la pianiste) would be great, and I would like a Wallace Stevens, a Danielle Collobert played by a red-haired Mary McCormack and other authors who are named or whose lines are remangled to appear and be present in the scenes.

Actually, thinking about a filmed scene of one of these poems is pretty fascinating—how odd or how normative they could be depending on who directs, films and imagines them.
What is the one sentence synopsis of your book?
Circuits are the library of entanglements we carry inside our heads/bodies
How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?
So long and in so many layers I could not really say!
Who or what inspired you to write this book?
Life, years of failed romantic connections, a fascination for trying to figure out how things tick and thus find solutions to problems that in the end are metaphysical or beyond the puzzle solving me. Language and my interest in unstitching meaning, restitching it to sound. Density of exploration. And of course George Johnson’s book In the Palaces of Memory (Knopf 1991, Vintage paperback, 1992).
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
I personally put a lot of effort into what happens visually on these pages—how the text sits and moves. I hope that will be of interest to those interested in form. 
Also--I think that the book will be interesting to those people who like popular science books on memory and neurology. The mazes of these poems are in no way as elaborate or exciting, of course, as the mazes of our own minds. 
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
Corrupt Press who published my chapbook called Betwixt is publishing CIRCUITS this month—so check Corrupt Press' website (also run by its Founder and Editor in Chief, Dylan Harris) for updates! The only issue is they are not yet represented on Amazon as they are a fairy young press figuring their way into the world—so please help it exist and get read--as in, if the reading of CIRCUITS sounds like it interests you, please order a copy off the Corrupt website and perhaps even order one for a friend! I will be in Paris mediating an encounter between poets Marilyn Hacker and Alfred Corn at the University of Paris on March 1st and there will be copies on sale at that event if you want to pick one up in person while listening to two other poets talk about their exciting new works! For now--THANK YOU for your interest in Circuits and to Marthe Reed for her invite to participate in The Next Big Thing!
My tagged writers for next Wednesday are:  (and click on their names to visit their blogs!)

Tuesday, February 05, 2013

Speaking at the William Faulkner Conference in Nice, 7-8 Feb 2013

Faulkner in Paris, 1925. Photo by W.C. Odiorne
Come hear others and myself this week in NICE (in the South of France : talking about a Southern N American author--Faulkner!) I will be speaking at 16h30 the afternoon of the 8th. See the entire programme below--it looks amazing!

Université de Nice Sophia Antipolis, Laboratoire LIRCES
Avec le soutien du laboratoire Suds d’Amériques (UVSQ)
7 et 8 février 2013
Salle du conseil, Campus Carlone, Faculté des Lettres

Programme :
Jeudi 7 février
14h00 : Discours d’ouverture
M. le Doyen de l’UFR LASH : M. Alain Tassel
M. le Directeur du centre LIRCES : M. Marc Marti
M. le proviseur du Lycée Massena : M. Henri-Laurent Brusa
Mme la directrice du département d’Études anglophones, UNS : Mme Beatrix Pernelle
Mme la présidente de la fondation Faulkner : Mme Nicole Moulinoux (Université Rennes II)

Session 1 : Teaching Faulkner
Modérateur : Michel Bandry (Université Paul Valéry—Montpellier 3)
15h00 : Ineke Bockting (Institut Catholique de Paris), “Teaching the Unteachable: Faulkner’s The Sound and the Fury”
15h30 : Frédérique Spill (Université Jules Verne-Amiens), “‘Like fire in dry grass’: Lire et enseigner Faulkner un demi siècle après sa mort. L’exemple de ‘Dry September’ (1931)”
16h00 : Pause
16h15 : Martine Spina Anton (Lycée Masséna, Nice), “Entre Continuité et Rupture : Comment introduire le monde ‘kaléidoscopique’ de W. Faulkner à de jeunes Français”
16h45 : Hana Ulmanova (Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic), “Teaching Faulkner in Czech Cultural Context”
17h15 : Lara Delage-Toriel (Université de Strasbourg), “Sanctuary in Strasbourg”

20h00 : Dîner en ville

Vendredi 8 février
Session 2 : Faulkner as Teacher/Faulkner as Student
Modératrice : Ineke Bockting (Institut Catholique de Paris)
9h30 : Gérald Préher (Institut Catholique de Lille), “Writing Under Influence: Joan Williams’s The Morning and the Evening as a Faulknerian Novel”
10h00 : Suzanne Bray (Institut Catholique de Lille), “Studying the Masters: Influences from Classic Detective Fiction on Faulkner’s Knight’s Gambit”
10h30 : Pause
11h00 : Jacques Pothier (Université de Versailles-Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines), “Myriad Names Echoing in an Empty Hall: Faulkner, between Gongorism and Modern Complexity”
11h30 : Pavlína Antošová (Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic), “The Essays by William Faulkner and William Styron: The Topic of the Interracial Communication”


Session 3 : Faulkner in Perspective
Modérateurs: Marie Liénard-Yeterian et Gérald Préher
14h00 : Nicole Moulinoux (Université Rennes II/Fondation Faulkner), “The Gift of Time, le Temps devant soi: Faulkner en 2013”
14h30 : Jean Jamin (École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales), “Littérature et ethnographie : Le cas de William Faulkner”
15h00 : Françoise Buisson (Université de Pau et des Pays de l’Adour), “‘Au nom du passé, du sang et du sol’ : Miette (1995) de Pierre Bergounioux et l’expérience faulknérienne de la durée”
15h30 : Pause
16h00 : Beatrix Pernelle (Université de Nice Sophia Antipolis), “Faulkner’s Southern Whale”
16h30: Jennifer K. Dick (Université de Haute Alsace), “Writing Faulkner Back: Reading as a Method for/towards Creative Writing”
17h00 : Hélène Gaillard (Université de Nice Sophia Antipolis), “ Transpictoriality in Light in August: William Faulkner’s Expressionism”
20h00 : Dîner de clôture

Contacts :
Marie Liénard-Yeterian (
Gérald Préher (