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a fisking observed

Post #311 • July 1, 2004, 8:29 AM • 54 Comments

From the verse novel The Golden Gate by Vikram Seth. (Via my mom.)

June tenth begins Jan's exhibition
In a small gallery, Marcus Ladd,
A revamped warehouse in the Mission.
It looks good, and Jan's proud and glad--
Till the art critic ofThe Clarion
Flaps to the scene in search of carrion
And glares in vulturine disgust
At her live works. He writes: I trust
Miss Hayakawa's terse aridity
(Which she no doubt deems spare and fine)
Does not mislead colleagues of mine
(Though their vulgarian stupidity
Rarely deserves such trust for long)
To judge these feeble works as strong.
This exhibition bland and themeless
--Bronzes and plasters, wood and stone--
Promiscuously strung in schemeless
Sequence strives vainly to disown
Its formalism and immaturity.

The great man's spoken. With security,
The critics, free to take their cue
From the first trump of his review,
Now slither forth their own reviewing.
These worms who, senile/trendy, hung
Their hearts on soup cans and bat dung,
Disparage Jan's exhibits, spewing
"Unsettled," "vacuous," "inbred,"
"Cold," "marrowless," "unethnic," "dead."

Comment

1.

Franklin

July 1, 2004, 3:53 PM

In honor of the occasion, let me say
That all comments must be made to rhyme today.

2.

N

July 1, 2004, 4:30 PM

An excerpt from the little known sonnet entitled 'Devil's Advocate':

So some critics like art that stinks
Can they not say what they think?
I sense here two opposing camps
The dung-lovers and the beauty-champs
But whos to say that one cannot
Be disposed to quite a lot
A love for beauty while, perhaps a bit,
Enjoy as well works made of shit?

3.

oldpro

July 1, 2004, 4:33 PM

Imposing rhyme will bring relief.
They may be bad, but they'll be brief.

4.

Franklin

July 1, 2004, 4:46 PM

Oldpro's remark proves him king of this matter:
A comment in rhyme and iambic quatrameter.

5.

N

July 1, 2004, 4:55 PM

I hope by 'brief' you do not mean
you aren't prepared to cause a scene!

6.

Franklin

July 1, 2004, 5:05 PM

Knowing Oldpro,
He's working in haste
To prepare a screed
To lay all to waste
That will nevertheless show
His poetic taste.

7.

N

July 1, 2004, 6:30 PM

I am reminded of Feneon
I may be wrong: was he not the first
To write critiques in three-line verse?

8.

Franklin

July 1, 2004, 7:16 PM

I don't know of Feneon, but if you're seeking
One, I have my own example of poetic critiquing.

9.

oldpro

July 1, 2004, 7:42 PM

OK, I'm back
at this late hour
I had to eat
and take a shower

No, not the king -
That you can tell -
just the Prince
of Doggerel

Though rhyme is nice
I warn you "N"
Don't make me draw
my poison pen

The "brief" you fear
(the legal kind)
will work in verse.
but never mind

Let's keep it free
of nasty stuff
Of Doktor B
We've had enough

(sorry! I just broke
my rule.
lost my head,
lost my cool)

Anyway,
as I was saying,
making poetry
is playing

so let's take
some awful writing
and instead
of nasty fighting

splitting hairs
over crits
giving ourselves
hissy fits

Go at this
academic sludge,
this arcane crud
this mental drudge

on wings of verse
the light fantastic
skipping o'er*
the deep and drastic

And at the end
of this long day
draw up in pride
and boldly say

Art criticism
is dead forever
done in by verse
That's just too clever

*Genuine authentic poetic term

10.

N

July 1, 2004, 9:00 PM

When it comes to fun, Im always game
(Even if my rhymes are lame)
So I dont decline to devote this day
To healing power of play!

11.

Franklin

July 1, 2004, 9:22 PM

To answer your question, dear N,
About the beauty-lover liking art that's shitty,
It's necessary, in the end,
To distinguish the beautiful from the merely pretty.

The sublime experience of looking at art
Is inspired by materials, but transcends
The coarse and merely physical part
That is shaped by historical trends.

And you can't be lofty all the time,
As is being demonstrated here.
Refreshing, can be the unrefined:
The cynical, macabre, ribald and queer.

12.

Franklin

July 1, 2004, 9:37 PM

So the looker-at-art may be the last to know
Where his aesthetic instincts will lead him to go.

(please append to last post to form sonnet)

13.

N

July 1, 2004, 9:42 PM

Sometimes Beauty is a sense
That transcends ones visual lens
I get Beautiful feelings from ugly things
So I ask this with sincerity
Could one not mine Sublimity
When one is faced with irony?

14.

Franklin

July 1, 2004, 9:54 PM

Why not, if the sublime is present?
But in my experience, it usually isn't
When the artist aspires merely to be clever -
His art's link to the sublime is severed.

15.

oldpro

July 1, 2004, 10:11 PM

What is sublime?
the artist said
I havent time
to be well read
To be sublime
I'll place, instead,
A cirtus fruit
upon my head

16.

Momoko

July 1, 2004, 10:11 PM


Art critiques
Arent techniques

Theyre excretion
Their own detoxification

17.

oldpro

July 1, 2004, 10:16 PM

"Critiques" and "techniques"'
sure, they're fine
But what went wrong
with that last line?

18.

Franklin

July 1, 2004, 10:18 PM

Sorry to be the one who nags,
But please remember to <b>close your tags</b>.

19.

N

July 1, 2004, 10:20 PM

There is a line from a song Ive heard
It reflects my feelings, word for word:
Perfect is a fault and fault lines change
Now some may say I sound deranged
Yet hear me out while I defend
The Beauty that Im thinking of
Perfect is pretty, but in the end
Its imperfections that I love.

20.

oldpro

July 1, 2004, 10:22 PM

I donl't mind it
if you nag
But what's it mean
to close a tag?

21.

Franklin

July 1, 2004, 10:25 PM

And let's save bolding
For the infrequent scolding.
Emphasis italicized
Causes less of a rise.

22.

N

July 1, 2004, 10:29 PM

Oldpro: heres one thing I didnt mention:
The Sublime, I think, is a close relation
To what you refer to as elation

23.

Momoko

July 1, 2004, 10:34 PM

Go ahead and delete the < b > if you can, Franklin.

24.

oldpro

July 1, 2004, 10:36 PM

Love imperfection -
that makes sense.
Just don't stint
on excellence.

25.

Franklin

July 1, 2004, 10:36 PM

Oldpro, using verse to explain HTML
Is too far outside my usual gig.
For this we need an expert who knows this well.
Any takers? Hovig?

26.

oldpro

July 1, 2004, 10:43 PM

Hey, Momoko, take the time;
even instructions have to rhyme.
just say "Franklin, OK with
go ahead and drop the b

27.

oldpro

July 1, 2004, 10:45 PM

Not knowing that damn HTML
ruined my last rhyme as well:

Hey, Momoko, take the time;
even instructions have to rhyme
just say "Franklin, OK with me
go ahead and close the b

28.

Franklin

July 1, 2004, 10:50 PM

To this, some old wisdom applies the most:
A little knowledge may carve up your post.

29.

N

July 1, 2004, 10:50 PM

These rhymes I have read
They make my day sunny
A lime on your head!
Thats certainly funny!

30.

Franklin

July 1, 2004, 10:55 PM

This ought to fix up
Our little mix-up.

31.

oldpro

July 1, 2004, 10:56 PM

I know something
to make your day sunnier
a lime pie in my face
would be even funnier

32.

Franklin

July 1, 2004, 10:57 PM

I wish the bard was here to see:
Oh, what fools these mortals 'b'.

33.

Franklin

July 1, 2004, 11:09 PM

Bolds for Forever have been taken care of.
While HTML tags are nothing to be scared of,
Unless you really know what you're doing,
Please adopt a policy of totally eschewing.

34.

oldpro

July 1, 2004, 11:10 PM

The bard looks down
Wanting to log in
"dammit, St. Peter
I want to be bloggin'

35.

N

July 1, 2004, 11:11 PM

Though at times your point of view
Escapes my comprehension, true
I still, Oldpro, respect you, too
And would never, not once, wish harm to you!

36.

oldpro

July 1, 2004, 11:12 PM

the poem police say nothing is worse
than using eschewing as part of a verse.

37.

oldpro

July 1, 2004, 11:17 PM

its tea time, N, so now I know why
I brought up the thought of a face full of pie.

38.

Franklin

July 1, 2004, 11:17 PM

Then for what you just wrote, the boys in blue
Will soon be coming after you too!

39.

N

July 1, 2004, 11:25 PM

On and off all day, to this site Ive been glued
So Im sad to say it its WORK Ive ESCHEWED

40.

Momoko

July 1, 2004, 11:33 PM

To < b > or not to < b >
That is the question
Even though how texts want to be
Is out of the question

41.

oldpro

July 1, 2004, 11:34 PM

Yes, Franklin, its your fault, you're the guy who
forced us all our work to eschew
so I'll eschew you, and eschew your blog too
(if you read this in public, they'll say "God bless you")

42.

Franklin

July 1, 2004, 11:38 PM

Funny, but I don't recall
Holding a gun to the heads of y'all... ;o)

43.

N

July 1, 2004, 11:55 PM

While my time on the blog for this day is done
I will leave by noting that Ive had lots of fun
(the most I could have, without any gun!)

And I wonder if Seth, with this book that he wrote,
Had rhymes in his head thatd come out when he spoke?

44.

oldpro

July 2, 2004, 1:33 AM

Looking over this week's blogs
where we fought like cats and dogs -
too much freedom makes our writing
turn to spitefulness and fighting.
We'd all sing sweetly, like the birds
if we had to rhyme their words

45.

oldpro

July 2, 2004, 1:35 AM

Sorry, i meant "our" not "their"
But either works, so I don't care.

46.

Momoko

July 2, 2004, 1:45 AM

A rhyme police says the absence of rhyme on any theme during blog time is not a crime

47.

oldpro

July 2, 2004, 2:00 AM

The rhyme police have said "No way
can Momoko get away
We'll make him write
for his crimes
MOON and JUNE
ten thousand times.

48.

Momoko

July 2, 2004, 2:03 AM

An excess use of rhyme can cause drain of brain unless trained
Drained brain cannot be contained
And Franklin shall be condemned

49.

oldpro

July 2, 2004, 2:29 AM

Oh, man, there goes
another last line
turned to prose

50.

oldpro

July 2, 2004, 2:36 AM

"Condemned", my man,
don't rightly scan
Is your braind too drained
to write "constrained"?

51.

Momoko

July 2, 2004, 3:12 AM

A female named Momoko is female
You can call me my man
I dont mind it at all
As long as I am not your man

52.

oldpro

July 2, 2004, 3:27 AM

my man momo
sounds so cool
I forgot
the PC rule

Loco Moko?
That won't do
Ms Momoko?
no good too

Mama Moko?
coma Momo?
Nah, those both
seem like no-no

Sweet momoko?
momoko san?
I guess its best
I'm not your man

53.

Momoko

July 2, 2004, 4:32 AM

Fabulous in word handling
Commanding free poem training
Sing in Japanese
to understand at ease

54.

oldpro

July 2, 2004, 5:51 AM

A haiku with a 2-line start?
this is getting more like art

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