Friday, July 01, 2016

Questioning the wise ... following ancient lore

/ Questioning the wise ... following ancient lore / Fochmarc fri gáethaib ... sechem senchusa /

Thom:
I enjoy your written phonetic speech, illustrating accents. You're talented, mate.

U2 m8, evrywon is talented at something.

If these four can fool the world - Dublin folk who are not U2 fans complain - anyone can. i like to think that if you spend enough time looking, you will discover that everyone is talented at something.

Tho the earliest 7C literary poet-bard Amergin Glúingel's Cauldron of Poesy text in the Book of Ballymote, claims that for poetry it's 'every other person' that is talented. Or rather, born with the gift of poetry.

The full quote:
Where is the root of poetry in a person; in the body or in the soul? They say it is in the soul, for the body does nothing without the soul. Others say it is in the body where the arts are learned, passed through the bodies of our ancestors. It is said this is the seat of what remains over the root of poetry; and the good knowledge in every person's ancestry comes not into everyone, but comes into every other person.
A typical professional, excluding half of us so the Reader thinks there's something outside our own human agency, beyond the fullness of our human intelligence, and that some sort of divine providence and otherworldly luck is involved. That certain professions are not wholly dependent on working hard, but that there's a certain 'it' and natural ability one either has or does not.

The usual shibboleth is that one is either born with the ability, or not. I don't know and prefer to keep out of pointless arguments.

But Ireland's fifty percent sacred-cow and general rule of thumb, tho, is still a lot higher than other non-Irish contemporary cultures in which their professional modern poets, if you believed what these various culture's poets claim, it's anywhere between only one every few years that appears with this innate ability for speaking in poetic language; right up to Kenneth Goldsmith's Uncreative Writing Poetic, in which he claims everyone is a poet and every single utterance of sound and iteration of text to ever have been written, and everything to have come out of everyone and everything, everywhere, all across planet earth, animal, mineral and vegetable, all this, everything in the world - is poetry.

That one tends to err on the side of caution and agree with. Because Kenny G is America's, if not the entire Anglophone world's - premier, most publicly visible practitioner of very intellectually challenging, complex Conceptual language poetry, that does not offer up its meaning easily, as one's own 'version' of an ancient Wisdom saying attributed to Cú Chulainn explains :

Great the calamity
in the abundance of ways and paths
across the bed of the noble streams
one in a hundred will get you across

What I love about conceptual poetry is it forces those in an audience most virulently resistant to what is easy to mistake for lazy, silly, experimental poetries that don't mean anything; to either engage and 'get' Conceptual poetry as being 'it' and something completely different and 'the other' from what you usually find enjoyable; or resist and miss out on what conceptual poetry lovers think is the best poetry in the world.

For example, being in the audience of an average upscale professional Lyric mainstream poetry reading-event, for most Concept Poetry lovers, it will be not gorj but a yawning drag, listening to unkule skwares. And the conceptualist may perceive what we love and praise, completely opposite to how we do, and experience it with no enjoyment whatsoever.

But this is getting away from what's at hand. The concept of Concept Poetry; all you need is some belief, all you need is some belief, that is all you need.

But most do refuse to engage with it and just dismiss what those that do get it, don't dismiss and do not reject. The Concept, without which conceptual poetry does not exist. Most just find it too intellectually challenging and think, 'fek it right off, 'conceptual poetry' me hole.'

Whereas if we just put a little work in, the hard work of the harder-working people of this country; then we discover ourselves getting it and going, 'woh, no way, gotta look at that, fuck me, look at it, hear it, bloody hell this is amazing 'concept' poetry, of course, ha ha psml. 'Concept poetry'!

~
this the age
being bent
out of shape
~

Concept, poetry, all we need is faith, belief, and it will live, flower, and flourish; and best of all, can be killed off without killing any of the Belief that is a spiritual one entirely within the mind of an experimental s/he poet, in the commons on the fourteenth floor of the Chicago Tribune building, for example, where those who have decided before they arrived is all pointless and tedious claptrap, are listening to Kenny G read his 'found' collection New York Times (Day).

A retyping word for word of a full days copy of the New York Times newspaper, and seven hour live reading, again, with our mind already decided, 's/he can fuk off', because we may be emotionally ill-tuned, and tho we tried very hard to 'get it', today at least, there's been a tolerance-for-conceptual-poetry-breakdown, and, without belief, we don't buy into it.

And we start by making ourselves feel discomfort, not knowing that this is actually a choice we ourselves alone are making, and it's a decision that has nothing to do with the conceptual poetry event itself per se. And unable to help ourselves, we find we are having an episode of fairly strong and conceptually toxic ill-will in the mind.

Feeling dejected, low, and unable to resist this uncontrollable, unbidden, subconscious resistance and rupture into a negativity of spirit with its own charge and direction.

Forcing us to engage in a cerebral process of focusing these unbidden poisonous energies and funneling inward into ourselves bad thoughts, some very extreme, that are far too graphic to repeat here. And tho we know, for example, we kno, oh yes we do, that Kenny G is a lovely, lovely guy; we also are unable to resist, thinking and knowing that we,  yes, we too are a great and lovely guy.

But a great guy who is also with a great wife that we think is unbeatable, perfect, naturally, and our fabulous kids that some day too are also gonna die. And knowing thru all these facts and others, thru the totality of our attainment, possession and learning; even tho we know, we know we should be at our study writing shit to put in a book; we can't help ourself from being mentally very horrible, in our own mind, and actually very much enjoying our inane and infantile cultural thought-crimes.

Judging Kenny G, not on the quality of his concept poetry, but for 'other' unfair reasons of being just very shallow individuals, linked to, for example, a lack of professional esteem we have about ourself and what we are doing in our professional lives.

And because of it we may well choose to dismiss the conceptual poetry-event. Perhaps because we are only there because we kno it's important in some way we are seen to show support to Kenny G, because tho we don't let it get in the way, conceptual poetry events, these things, man they can be a drag for us in the overcrowded urban meat-space.

Because there may have been, for example, incidents, lets call them, maybe more than one, maybe two, or more, and we don't know if we will keep our shit together tonite.

Yeah, lets call it 'tonite', and our 'self-esteem levels' are all over the place. One small chunk of twenty seconds we are coola bewla, the next kewla boola.

Entire hour long sections are taken up with us not even realizing we are obsessing, in a very negative and unpleasant anti-intellectual and therefore anti-conceptual-poetry way; over what Ken Goldsmith is wearing. His clothes. His fek'n duds laa.

And we just can't be doing with it, and find ourselves under the sway of some way out ultra-crazee thoughts that are very unfair opinions, ways, processes deployed and used by us to judge a fellow professional poet on the contemporary Ampo commons.

But then just as we think we're gonna stop self-hating Kenny G's reading of the New York Times, we hear ourself, involuntarily heckling him, loudly, very loudly, and some perplexing and weird and distressing scene goes down and it all ends very badly.

Being very politely asked to leave, 'if that's ok with YOU!!', we are told. And after we calm down, we catch in the corner of our eye the person who ultra-politely requested in a very slow and deliberate ultra-passive aggressive tone of voice that we exit the conceptual poetry-event, exit themself.

Wow! Man, and that really throws us because we recognise, or more accurately, sense, very presciently, some dark deep inner 'self-esteem issues' of their own that they must've been battling when listening to Kenny G read for the five hours it was on when they left.

Taking with them some very negative vibes and self-actualization issues they must have had themselves been struggling with when we were also doing the exact same thing. Going thru an identical process. And with everyone knowing it was then mentally under a lot of pressure as a contemporary professional poet. More so than us. The way they left.

There's a very important idea in there that I can only sense and that has not yet eructed into primary extemporaneous aural 'sound' of conceptual poetry.

And the people in the room, however many come to the shows, we know that if there is an 'incident'  of a first person singular pronoun 'we', the royal we of 'I', by appointments agreed upon beyond the fullness of our intelligence to fully understand, only intuit, sense, the sixth, spiritual component of 'conceptual' poetry agency, autonomy, independence, and the inner spiritual freedom to be who we wanna be, and to go where we wanna go.

Within.

Our minds not captured, frozen, hijacked, kidnapped, unfree and bound by the chains of modern mental-slavery to dark forces and evil minds that prey and feast upon our own. And stripped of a voice, unable to speak clearly in print, and yet still not be patrolled and told what do do within as a single sovereign human entity by the Thought Police, we are hijacked and taken over by Her hands and eye, ear and mind of Her the Love & Feet Police that measure what we are doing, not by meaning but by the regularity of beats occurring in every section and sound of whatever we are doing in the gender-neutral s/he mind,

Where the 'real' action of 'fiction' happens baby gorjaz

Communicated not by 'concepts' per se, ergo, having already used per se very pretentiously earlier, reversing the thought and taking risks in language; once we have Her appearing in some form unique to us, ta previously hidden skeletal simplicity comes and Her metrical inner cosmos the senior psychological investigators from the Thought Police will, I suspect, or rather, my paranoia is making me think, not understand and map as our 'oddness' that is really our poetry and what makes us tick unique, and bond with one another.

Conceptual poetry dances within to Her music from beyond.

Sides will be taken, our own personal shit becomes the one thing that happened at an event, or series of meat-space events of poetic and real reality, that people want to talk about. Without us taking part.

And so not being at the hard-copy five-sense meat-space space-time here and now reality-reality, we lose the paranoia. For the next twenty minutes we don't know what happened, and come to finding ourself awake and the reading still happening and knowing that it wasn't all a dream.

That G'daw, Goldie Kent neh, s/he is still there reading at the by now amazingly Conceptual poetry-event, and s/he is not even putting us to sleep anymore.

We have entered the zone, and we overhear someone in a row behind say the word 'unstable' and then 'unprofessional', and several second later Goldsmith reads those very two words. And it completely freaks us out and man we go find ourself in the community of American poetry with tenure for example, and we find it happening again, there, in a university meeting and reading room, theatrical space, and us speaking involuntary, we say something to the effect, how pretentious it all is.

But then that's it, we, with this very large body, hear the shutters come down and wake up in a shed, not knowing how we got there.

And the voice of Noo noo noo, tho we get over it, and haven't been to one since then, which is a shame. Because we could really get to love conceptual poetry if we gave it a chance. I mean, i do not actually know.

Anyway we already decided before we went, i repeat, out of professional duty as a modernist poet on the Ampo commons, who isn't prepared to 'buy into' what ours/their resistant mind-labels 'plagiarizing the New York Times''. And in the eruptions of 'fuks' and 'up yours' 'don't think so nobhed' and the madness never-ending failure that becomes us.

So usually there we are and all unexpected, not knowing, camera-lights action, out of the blue. Oh, fuck off, here we go again, we think, as some fissure, fission and involuntary sensed awareness, the sixth and highest form of evidence-detection device within, that is more akin to magic in its practical application, flips the switch within and this time taking the form of awareness, intelligence and rhetorical conceptual poetry positions split right down the middle.

A taking of sides.

And tho it is divisive, in a positive way, we know a lot of friends, and other people's friends, and their friends, one or two who have said they read the NY T book/plagiarism, and so we have an insight into 'the other'.

But this is not enough and we cannot control it, it is just one of those things. And we are so just very resistant to the recondite nuanced and incredibly intellectually confrontational poems, poetics and poetries of the Conceptual N -E -W- -L- -A -N -G -U -A - G -E- -P- -O -E -T -R -I -E -S' most ultra-contemporary post-post Modern movements, scenes and academic incubation centers where NuLangPoe's cleverest hiply practice, publish and create; that this is, I think, proof that we need to be where the newest and some of the most thrilling and real world conceptual poetry is happening on the commons and fora.

And why there is such an uptick in the reception of conceptual poetry on the Ampo commons these past twenty five years and more.

Every year conceptual poetry is going more mainstream. Goldie has brought to it to a reality that is not reality but also is reality if we say it believingly ennough. If we don't stop thinking and just keep making connections from seemingly wholly unrelated phenomena.


 'A Bar and the Exit'.


As one of England's most decorated senior Conceptual poets and a very unique experimental poetry publisher, Rupert Loydel, answered the question:

What do you look for in a poetry reading?

...

So yes, anyway, returning to the point. Ireland's claim that fifty-percent claim of everyone has a natural gift with language, is right in the middle of two extremes.

And maybe it is because this is the path I chose, and so am less objective than others, who would unquestioningly dismiss this fifty percent claim as rubbish, and prefer to stick with their own cultures' statistical probabilities; that I have over the years decided to adopt and opine this as my fixed position, that most accurately answers the question: 'Ava gorrenny talent please mister?'

'50/50' is, I believe - -G -E -N -I -U -S.

Because it is the perfect mid-point percent answer to instill hope and encouragement, without the odds making it a hopeless cause.

And 50/50 does not over-encourage, end up at the Kenny G class of too-much inclusion where anything and everything, at all times can (and simultaneously can not?) be the best poem in the world, if the Ollam poetry professors of our ultra-modern professional Ampo equivalents having appraised, analyzed, asked tough questions, brought everything to the table, viewed everything thru macro and micro lenses and perspectives, contemplated, thought about, and after saying yes, yes everything and anything at all is a poem, decide it is and grade it so.

And fifty percent won't exclude all the many thousands that do not even dream of poetry because there are so few about, in a culture that tells you only one in a thousand are 'real' poets blessed, born, in most cultures, to whatever greatness is left behind by them.

The Great Contemporary Poets of 2016.

What they, the conceptual centenary Rising generation leave behind. And it's no wonder why that's the case in a 1000/1 contemporary Anglophone Ampo poetry culture. Few give ourselves, or anyone else, a living chance, because already in those cultures we/you have no chance.

And if we have to learn from a very few and ergo incredibly important ultra-modern professional poet-priests; telling us that it is not impossible we may be a poet, but the chances are it is very likely we are not and so, very sorry, it's not going to happen, and so: Thems the rules, newbs.

As you kno, this is very dispiriting for the disciples of such important high modernist druidic mage and bards looking at the odds and option of sacrificing everything and ending up being informed by the Guru after a long and expensive series of mystical consultations and motherworldly learning experiences that we are not after all, a poet.

No money back, just a whistful, 'Goodbye Janet', and life-long radio silence from Her and/or His Majesty heretoforth-everafter.

The main poetry expert/s of the most rarefied cultural Anglophone societies and poetic cultures everywhere across the earth where our shared Anglophone home community or communites' collective one and a half billion gragile sensitive peoples live breath and all scream for ice cream.

Seven-hundred and forty million born-poets in this world according to those who knew.

With 50/50 there's none of that 'sorry there can be only one and it is moi' routine that takes root in most places everywhere I have noted, but here in Dublin.

Where not only every other person is a poet, but all their friends and family too. And it really is sickening for an outsider, in a good way, because one's potential and ability can only find some outlet here, and not just in the one Guru's classes.

There are so many in Dublin alone, where very other person can do something artistic, because half of everyone of us, we are being told and so believe, are born with an innate gift for poetry.

Not everyone, but every other one, one in two, are just as able and possess the innate potential to fly to the top perch and platform for the ollamhic flight of a grade seven captain of the conceptual poetry professional - when we stick at it.

Experimentally playing in Language, that, if we have it, find it, do the silly experimental voice exercises, and keep at it, just practise and do not give up when we fail, expect to fail, learn to turn our failures - drop by tortuous drop - into a love poetry process of repeatedly failing and being judged no good by others who think they are more switched on to the kewla boroola, then we are just getting on and doing it.

And not taking any notice of who is claiming what about who is a real poet and what is the real poem. And after keeping on keeping one, typing spontaneously whatever we are thinking, if there's poetry within is, if we keep at it, it'll be drawn out.

And someone with the good fortune to be a student in Ireland, can be taught, trained, and self-taught on our own unique contemporary versions and equivalents of the bardic curriculum of yore that taught a thousand years and forty generations of poets.

All of whom are now unread, nor understood, in the original Irish, by anyone, except a handful.

Poetry. Dán. Meaning 'poetry', 'poem', 'art', and, interestingly, 'fate'. From Tuatha Dé Danann, 'people of the goddess Art.'

Have a go. Write off the top of your head, try anything to get the words flowing, anything at all to make the sounds and words come. And if a poem pops out, keep going back till another one does. Start, keep going, fail, give up, be miserable, decide enough is enough, then start again. That's Heaney's theory. A never ending journey of departure and return.

Beckett said try, fail, give up, try again, fail better. Then start again, and just keep going until your writing fails so well and in such a singular and individual way that the constant 'failure' becomes the very one sound of a successful individual in their own unique voice. You just gotta find a way in, to get started, and then keep going.

And if we keep on keeping on, and poetry pops out, and if we enjoy doing it - and our day to day existences become hipper and life gets happier as a result over the long term of just effin doing it - we must be not only talented, but successful.

Because being successful means being happy doing the 'it' of conceptual poetry. And that happiness turning over the years to a consistent and continual murmuring presence that gets able to better express subtly and nuance of reality the longer we are drawing from it poetry and progressing in the mind on our own unique path to what stage of mental-freedom, love, happiness, and state of inner s/he being that exists solely within our own unique minds - one mind's Voice vision and personal will will make and bring to us the Victory no money can buy, only our heart and soul create.

And if not, and if we are fooling nobody but ourselves that we are 'talented', it doesn't matter. As long as we love it and it keeps us joyous, there is no 'good' 'bad' fixed 'right' or wrong way of being talented and writing well, when through that process happiness comes; but numerous ones. As many as there are people.

Talent is when one can type all day. Genius, Gregory Corso claimed, when speaking of Jack Kerouac, when the writer practices a lot. And after serious devotion and experience, writing skilfully on a singular path, in a voice recognizably one's own and no others', people think, as we hear it first, fuk me, look at that, genius!

Whilst the highest and most challenging state of expanded poetic consciousness to reach, Corso says, is what comes when the author is writing in a state of divine inspiration. What in ancient Irish poetry-terms is a well known and studied component of the twelve to fourteen year course, called 'imbhas forosnai'.

It may be only two ancient Irish words, but there are 1200 years of literary records attesting this common term that signifies and describes the apical state of poetic composition.

Year seven of the 12-14 year curriculum, the poet-training manuals all say, is when this state first starred coming into play influencing the grade six anruth -great-stream- student-poet's personal development over the final five year push to Ollamh and exiting after fourten years as a fully qualified poetry prof.

This final five to seven years push of one's writing process evolves into a constant search to hear Her sounds from beyond us.

And however we do it, create a workable working successful text producing process, realm, mental-state, and find the 'here' s/he of clear-eyed 50/50 balance, and with Cuchulainn and the gods of poetry that have our back, navigate to thru the very many 'abundance of ways and paths / across the bed of the noble streams / one in a hundred will get you across.'

That's the theory anyway.

Find this state of Her true love and you will keep on the happy half of the Fili 'poet's tongue, that Sanas Cormaic glosses, 'Fi' 'toxic in satire', and 'Li' 'splendor in praise'.

Keeping out of trouble. No gurus but the texts themselves.

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