10 may. 2005

Rarely have I had the experience of picking up a book, by someone I had never heard of before (a rare event in and of itself), and knowing, just from the way THE PAGES SMELLED, that I was in the presence of true poetic greatness. This olfactory perception is, in these exceptional cases, 100% accurate, and makes the actual reading of the book somewhat otiose. A book that smells so complexly *American,* of lavender and uncured tobacco leaves, subtly modulated with baking soda, owl excrement, india ink, vanilla, parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme, ammonia, and the sweat of Tibetan monks, could not possibly fail to please the other senses as well. All of this, needless to say, while maintaining a complete artistic independence from the world of NATURE to which these rigorous aromas only SEEM to refer. It could be safely said that no other American poet of recent years, with the possible exception of myself of course, has such a highly developed poetic NOSE. Not even I have gone so far in the direction of olfactory "literalism." The anthologies of the future will have to find a way to preserve this "redolence" in a medium that, up until know, has privileged retrograde notions of "resonance" and visual "acuity."

5 comentarios:

Emily Lloyd dijo...

Too funny. Taylor's book is worth reading, though. [grin]

Jonathan dijo...

___

Of course it is worth reading, but how good does it smell? I'm sure my unmalicious parody of Ron's plug for it will not dissuade anyone. In fact the parody [this is a joke folks] is directed more generally at the rhetoric of many a Silliman post--not at his substantive recommendations.

Taylor Brady dijo...

It smells like horse glue and ammonia. Tastes like skittles, though...

Taylor

Emily Lloyd dijo...

Oh, Jonathan--of course I got the joke. Was just sayin'.

michael dijo...

in fact the only reason i write is to make the pages smell a certain way.

readers who come to my poems looking for something else will invariably be disappointed.

m.