21 jul. 2005

What I'm trying to say is that I need the poetic speaker's voice to be self-aware. If I'm going to write something like "Many times I have pleaded with Apollo for respite from my troubles," it's going to have an ironic edge to it. I don't think anyone can manage that kind of thing "straight." Of course, there are about hundred tonalities of irony available for the task. Mock-heroic, campy, faux-naif, detached, paranoid, deadpan dry, over-eager, "teen-age sarcastic," Proustian-aristocratic, proletarian, mock-sincere. (Well, that's 11 just off the top of my head.) Since irony arises from a clash of opposing perspectives, any two perspectives can enter into productive tension.

8 comentarios:

Tony dijo...

Most such ironies bore me though. New Sincerity in da house!

Jonathan dijo...

The New Sincerity is ironic too. It has a very "staged" quaity to it. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Jordan dijo...

So, one drop of ironic blood and the whole poem is...

you see where I'm going with this.

Jonathan dijo...

___

I don't quite follow you, hypcrite lecteur, mon semblable, mon frère. Without this one drop the poem lacks that quality of self-awareness that the New Sincerity has in abundance.

Jonathan dijo...

I'ts like a homeopathic medicine or an immunization. You need just a little in order to protect yourself against the greater onslaught of "irony," or against Nick Piombino's automatic irony generator.

Tony dijo...

I think we need someone to tag and taxonomize the various types of irony so we know what we're talking about.

Though the New Sincerity seems "staged" it both is and isn't sincere. I mean, it is a "joke" movement that is more than a "ha ha" joke. Its intent is pure. We believe what we jokingly proclaim. So I guess that's irony, but it's against the wink-wink irony that we see in so many "post-avant" poems.

Laurel dijo...

Wait a minute!

I don't think you're talking about the poetry. I think you're talking about the audience.

More on this at my site...

Jonathan dijo...

I think I've drawn blood. My favorite poet, Frank O'Hara is sentimental and self-aware at the same time. The two aren't mutually exclusive. Take the poem "Hate is only one of many responses." It's straightforward and sincere, not ironic at all, yet there's still that subtle characterization of the speaker, that oh-so-slight distancing effect that makes us able to take the poem as a poem. One thing is the surprise that one COULD speak that directly in a poem. That sets up an ironic play at the level of genre.