Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Ron Silliman

Dear Shelby,
We worked together in the sixties, counting votes for the betterment of the language, we were so young and we were full of hope, even though.  I watched you develop your Mustang and sent you the calculations for the new extractors.  Now I keep reading about the redness on this blog so I thought I should step forward and quote something that might make a lot of sense: there’s an awareness in the lines of Zukofsky that hum with energy and sound, like the colours in the Rimbaud sonnet and yet real, there are many ways to talk about this but here’s a quote:  ‘Scroggins refers to this as one of the “red flashes” that flare throughout the Zuk issue of Poetry Chicago. “And perhaps he wanted those few readers of Poetry who were already familiar with his poem to think that his work was “objective,” which is to say “objectively perfect” and aimed “inextricably” toward both the past and present’ The redness is glowing, the Waggas must be swimming.
Ron Silliman
Dear Ron
thanks for your letter, although I must say it's a surprise to hear from you,
especially after what happened in The Alice.

The New Sentence has become the Old Sentence
and your obsessive fascination with Zukofsky has worn thin.

Ron, the reason I fled New Mexico was to get away from the redness
you speak of. I was in shreds. My wife was calling me.

The Pink Parrot hotel is flourishing. Its reputation for violence
has ebbed away to whispered remarks. I no longer write poetry

but at least I can still compose a letter in couplets.
Perhaps it’s best if you don’t contact me again. Hearing from you

just ignites the old red wounds, and poetry is something I avoid.
Your old friend in the dead fire of the trade


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