21 nov. 2010

Cummings was the first poet I really loved when I was 11 or 12. I would buy all those paperbacks but eventually I got myself the Complete Poems. This is a poem that my little brother liked; I would have been 14 and he is seven years younger:
If you can't eat you got to

smoke and we aint got
nothing to smoke:come on kid

let's go to sleep
if you can't smoke you got to

Sing and we aint got

nothing to sing;come on kid
let's go to sleep

if you can't sing you got to
die and we aint got

Nothing to die,come on kid

let's go to sleep
if you can't die you got to

dream and we aint got
nothing to dream(come on kid

Let's go to sleep)

3 comentarios:

Joseph Hutchison dijo...

Cummings, it seems to me, is underrated. And why is he never spoken of as a member of the American avant-garde? My theory is that he had no theory except delight, and the theory-ridden avant-garde, most of them utterly lacking in humor or a sense of play (hard to be truly playful when you're main goal is to seem profound—to be taken seriously)—what would they want with Cummings, who could charm a child of seven, one of 14, one (me) at 16, etc.? Is there anyone who reads primarily for pleasure who would rather read Zukofsky than Cummings? Silly question. I know they're out there! But none, I'm sure, who were smitten by Mr. Z. at 14....

Jonathan dijo...

Here's a poem by WCW called "Breakfast":

Twenty sparrows
on

a scattered
turd

share and share
alike

What about Zukofksy's Valentine Day poems? Duchamp certainly had a sense of humor as well. The humorless, theoretical avant-garde of your imagination does not exist. I could also add Joyce, Flann O'Brien, Sorrentino... The tradition of Irish modernist humor...

I agree, though, he Cummings is underlooked.

Claire dijo...

I can't read the following poem by him enough:
Snug and Warm Inside McSorley’s