Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Spencer Reece - another confessional bore

Spencer Reece, far from being a careerist poet like the sort that Snark hates so much, is one of many new names to bat about. Unlike most new names, he is not in his 30s or 20s, does not belong to the Iowa or Brooklyn or some other scene that breeds namey names but he is homosexual, gay, what-have-you. He is quite fond of James Merrill, dresses snappy and has a soft voice. He looks like Henri Cole's little brother and Cole even vouched for him as a new important voice on a feature for the Academy of American Poets. Cole even goes so far to claim that "[t]hough the thought of Spencer Reece working unratified in isolation for twenty years is troubling to me, in an increasingly homogeneous and academic poetry community, it seems a triumphant destiny for this poet." Holy shit! Is he kidding? I am afraid not though one has to wonder what Cole means by all that. I am not even sure what folks mean by "academic poetry" though last I heard, Cole is slumming it at Bennington & Smith, not to mention he has been anointed by Harold Bloom, lapped up by Helen Vendler and even given the Kingsley Tufts ($100,000!!!) for his bedazzling dollar store solipsism Middle Earth. (Agent Trochee will admit he likes most of it and was disappointed by Franz Wright getting the Pulitzer instead but that is for another day).

Anyway, Spencer Reece. Too bad he sucks eggs. After all, how many more poets do we need clanging pots about scenery, being gay in the country or in the city, the endless variations of being boring? In an interview in the New Yorker, Alice Quinn has the audicity to relate Reece's work to a quote taken from a letter by Elizabeth Bishop: "What one seems to want in art, in experiencing it, is the same thing that is necessary for its creation, a self-forgetful, perfectly useless concentration." Reece gladly takes the bait and states that he attempted to follow Bishop's resistance to her dark side but he misses the point. Whereas Bishop takes on the grandness of life & humanity by squaring the details and carrying over the transcendant, Reece flounders in the stink of his sexuality, in the tailored banality of his useless concentration, hardly forgetful of himself.

Spencer Reece! You get Agent Trochee's stamp of snark. Your trim look, your shiny black shoes, your canary voice, your George Herbert-James Merrill worshipping ass, your Mall of Americas-Minnesota backwoods ornamented poems, these we add to the altar of snark. May you and your pens run dry.

10 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

damn man, take a breather, you're going to give yourself an ulcer. so like, what do you like? or do you just grind teeth and hate. don't get me wrong, i'm stomping too.

8:51 AM, April 22, 2005  
Blogger Agent Trochee said...

for what i like, please see my profile. as for breathers and ulcers, well, i am highly trained operative specifically designed to stomach anything without the aid of a stomach and to go long periods of time without any need for breath. i thank you for your concern but i assure you that i am a professional and i can hold my own. now, unless you have something else stupid to say, i must sharpen my knife on another poet's face.

12:28 PM, April 22, 2005  
Blogger whatever3484 said...

"flounders in the stink of his sexuality" - ohmygod, I love you so much!!!!

3:49 PM, April 23, 2005  
Blogger Agent Trochee said...

dear renata, our biggest fan, thank you for your praise. we all could use a little love around here, especially me ever since i was put under house arrest for trolling around universities & coffeeshops & poetry slams for throwing eggs at participants in bad poetry. i'd invite you over but by the looks of the poetry on your blog, i don't think we would be compatible. but love at a distance is fine; it'll be like we are cousins or really close siblings.

9:09 AM, April 26, 2005  
Blogger whatever3484 said...

crap - I'll have to return the wedding dress then. I'll send you a bucket of goat blood by ups

7:22 PM, April 26, 2005  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Damn man. Did you read the book? You sound like an idiot. I notice that you do not talk about his poems at all, but choose to personally attack a man you have never met. You don't like the way he carries himself? Fine. But what the fuck is your problem. It seems ironic to me that you are raging against contemporary poetry, but you are stuck in the worst muck of any art, personal gossip and lunacy. My feeling: if you don't have something to say about the art...shut the fuck up. You sound like a bitter loser who can't write, but thinks he can and spends all his time ripping others to compensate for the thinness between his legs. Get a life.

5:24 AM, May 20, 2005  
Blogger Snark said...

Look Trochee, your first hate mail! It's a special moment. I feel all gooey inside.

3:06 PM, May 20, 2005  
Blogger Agent Trochee said...

Oh look, I told you this would bring up my first bit of hate comment/mail. For the record, my dear Anonymous, how do you know whether I have met Spencer Reece or not? Do you watch me through my curtainless windows as I read the worst of contemporary literature by the fireside light of my cozy den - did you skip the night when I read the contemptible Clerk's Tale? How are my anecdotes gossip if they are verifiable stories?

If you are to cast stones again, be sure that it is not your head you are throwing.

2:16 PM, May 30, 2005  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Funny, how you miss my point. Instead of talking about art you bitch about people. Rather than engaging in my question or even attempting to respond to it you paint some worthless image of me as a stalker and make a crack about my head. Sorry I engaged such an intellectual. Wow. I am clearly out of my league. I bow down to the biggest waste of time website I have ever found as I cannot keep up with your verbal gymnastics. I'll never be back.

3:57 PM, September 03, 2006  
Blogger Agent Trochee said...

Dear Anonymous, I'm sorry that you feel that way and that you will never be back.

Sure...there are remarks about personages though looking back I find comment upon the discussion surrounding the book in question. If I thought there was art to be discussed, I would have discussed it. As it turns out, I am uninterested in this particular kind of artlessness.

It has been a while since I have been to these pages myself, so I cannot help my amusement at your demand for me to "get a life", especially after realizing that your newest comment more than a year after the initial salvos. Hurrah to you for being patient until now.

To answer your question: Yes, I read the book.
Satisfied?

As for discussing art or shutting up - if I practice what you ask and you follow what you preach, then let this be the end of our discussion.

6:50 AM, September 21, 2006  

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