24 feb. 2010


*Andrés Sánchez Robayna. Clima. Barcelona: Edicions del Mall 1978. 101 pp.

I've owned this book for years but never read it--I know because the pages were uncut. I had underestimated this poet from the Canary Islands, thinking him a kind of minor epigone of Valente. I was clearly wrong about that.

The 9000 book project requires an enormous receptivity. That's probably the quality that I most strive for as a reader of poetry. Receptivity means allowing oneself to be overwhelmed by beauty without trusting too much in one's own prejudices. It's difficult because the prejudices are like a suit of armor, a protective but rather clumsy form of protection--against what? My suit of armor might be very useful in a medieval joust, but really how often am I in a medieval joust?

2 comentarios:

JforJames dijo...

I like what you've said about receptivity and the reader. We can't set aside our readerly prejudices, but awareness of how these prejudices might be refracting our reading, so to speak, may be enough to make us slip off our 'prismatic glasses', and to 'take in' the text on its own terms.

Steven Fama dijo...

Ditto with JforJames on your few sentences on receptivity. It's a key quality; it might include not only knowing one's prejudices, but actively trying to limit their filters. I try on the first read through to identify what the poet's trying to do -- what's the style or approach -- and then try to appreciate the effort regardless of whether that's how I or anyone else would want it done.

More important, I've found that for some books I have to come back to them months or years after the first reading, to give it a second or third or (insert number) whirl.

Stein's Tender Buttons took about six read-throughs before it started to get to me in a good way...

Good luck with the 9,000, and thanks for posting about the books as you go along....

And thanks for encouraging at least bi-lingualism via the Espanol in the comment box template.