Thursday, December 07, 2006

Guess the Poet. Win a Prize.

I know a game. It's called "guess who said these things at last night's reading." Wanna play?

The rules are simple. Read this post and then tell me in the thread who you think Poetry Snark heard read last night. First one to get it right gets, um, gets...

The poetry snark secret lame-ass-poet decoder ring!

With it, you can secretly occupy the imaginative position of someone who actually likes this shit. OK, not really. My ring actually exploded last night in a frenzied effort to translate the reading into something that resembles art. C'est la vie.

Let's play anyway, shall we? Anyone who was at the reading is asked to refrain from posting in this thread--that is, unless you once thought that you liked this writer and want to repent now before the muses smite you down. Then it's OK.

Alright then, here goes:

Clue number 1: Mystery poet needed to explain what a word in one of his/her poems meant because the poet assigned to introduce him/her didn't know how to pronounce it. It turned out to be made up.

Clue number 2: Mystery poet interrupted the reading to imitate the sound of the wind (I don't mean farting--actual imitation).

Clue number 3: Mystery poet felt compelled to explain every single "poem" he/she read with an introduction that exceeded the length of the poem.

Clue number 4: Mystery poet felt compelled to explain to the audience who Oliver North is. I'm not kidding.

Clue number 5: Mystery poet felt compelled to offer his/her philosophy of teaching. This is what mystery poet said, word for word (yes, I took notes): "There is a state between trance and logic where teachers rest."

Still baffled? Let's see if a few excerpts from the reading will help. All of these are verbatim quotes, without any alteration or exaggeration. Some of these are things said between poems, others are lines from poems. I'll let you try to figure out which are which:

"Caliban, besides being a character in Shakespeare, is also the name of my convertible."

"Coastal pine trees must wonder why it isn't enough just to be good pine trees."

"Rocks are like consciousness."

"At some point, I am going to turn the poem sideways, because that's what they did to the mountain."

"Teaching the epic is difficult for me because there is a lot of murder and violence in it. And I'm a pacifist."

"Be what orange? Be what orange?"

OK, gentle readers, who is the mystery poet?


Blogger christopher cunningham said...

ummm, every desperate, silly ass, pompus peddler of obscurity and self importance at every reading no matter how big or small everywhere?

now, let's all just be orange.

or a concious rock.

wish I'd been there. I've always wondered who Ollie North was, espec. with Gates in the DOD now.

7:42 AM, December 08, 2006  
Blogger christopher cunningham said...


damn preview button betrayed me.

7:43 AM, December 08, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't know who this is(could be any one of hundreds) - but wtf is up with these people?

My most memorable similar moment was when The Poet(you know who you are, you no-talent-ass, pretentious git) announced to the unsuspecting audience(without a trace of irony) that most of her poems were "birthed from suffering."

I'm sure she got plenty of new material from us that night.

These self-important windbags are fucking this up for everybody.

9:20 AM, December 08, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Um, I'm guessing it's either Cole Swenson or Brenda Hillman.

1:17 PM, December 08, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

turning the poem sideways? self-doubting coastal pine trees? Gotta be Brenda Hillman

keep up the snark, Snark!

4:23 PM, December 08, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The blowhard Robert Bly...

5:42 PM, December 08, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't imagine that Hillman came through town again. Didn't you just snark her? Doesn't Forrest Gander like rock hard things? Yet, yet, I'm inclined to guess that someone deserves a lump of Cole.

12:18 PM, December 09, 2006  
Blogger Snark said...

Tempted as I am to let the speculation roll on, kudos should go to the winner who guessed that, yes, this is yet another Brenda Hillman reading. She teaches on a fairly regular basis where I live--a curse to poetry but manna for snark.

3:17 PM, December 09, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

excruciating yet amusing :)

1:38 AM, December 10, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

loved this game! when do I get my lame-ass decoder ring?

8:37 AM, December 10, 2006  
Blogger Blue Hole said...

Oh for the love of Rocks! To think she's actually awarding prizes!

12:52 PM, December 10, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yep. I(and others) didn't bother with the Honickman and a few others for that very reason - which kind of sucks. Anyone would think there was a shortage of poet judges......

Alex Grant.

10:54 AM, December 11, 2006  
Blogger Peel said...

More of this game!

9:14 AM, December 17, 2006  
Blogger Snark said...

OK, I'll do this again with the next lame reading I go to. I may even expand it to include lines from books in addition to just readings.

6:42 PM, December 17, 2006  

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