THE SAME is at Gnoetry Daily

Carl Andre, Equivalent VIII (1966)

Carl Andre, Equivalent VIII (1966)

You can read my current poetic project, The Same, currently being published serially at Gnoetry Daily. I might be pulling five or six of them soon so I can send them out for publication in print journals, but for now they’re all available to read, even the ones I’m not going to include in the final edit.

The poems are all written using the Gnoetry 0.2 program. There is currently a pool of 19 source texts, of which I more or less arbitrarily select three for each poem. The source texts are mostly from the mid-19th century through the early 20th century, and focus on islands, continental philosophy, religion and scientific discovery. The form I have chosen is three eight-line stanzas in blank verse. As a further constraint, I have barred all personal and personal possessive pronouns to the best of my ability. The titles are taken from each poem’s first two words, which are “the ______.”

As each poem develops, stanza by stanza, several themes arise from the beginning object (“the ______”) and are explored semantically and/or aurally and brought into relationship with each other. Syntax is broken or twisted to suit the building of these relationships, with the hope to creating an impression or understanding that rises above – while dwelling within – the words and ideas.

Currently the project is being influenced by Jean Baudrillard’s The Transparency of Evil, whose themes and perceptions seem to be eerily in line with my own. What is meant by “the same” in this project is meant to be multiple, but I think it is something that is wrong, perhaps the “profound indifference” of contemporary consumer culture; and possibly a solution, already present, ubiquitous, secret. Are these poems definitions? The opposite? What is the opposite of a definition, and would the imposition of anti-definitions be a meaningful act? These are the questions I’m working through right now.

In any case, enjoy the poems!

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