And the Breath Going In and Out

Ron Padgett - "Bob Creeley Breakthrough." There's nothing so lame as a description of a joke, so listen first. Alright then. I laughed when I read this poem in a magazine (what magazine? when? oh vanishing mediators!). And I laughed again upon listening this morning. The present scene of writing dissolves by analogy into a remembered scene of heavy petting, which memory is vivid enough to induce a pounding heart and staccato voicing, which, since we've never left the scene of the poem's making, even in the memory of the poet's making out, is a poetic problem, because Robert Creeley has a stylistic lock on such linebreaks. The jocoserious plea made by the poet—"Bob! Bob, go away!"—inverts Sappho's whining apostrophes to Aphrodite and calls to mind Creeley's own nudging aside of the Cumaean sybil in Heroes. The poet's exasperated outburst is homage and exorcism at once: remembered intimacies—formal, erotic—intermingle and interfere with one another. The only way to love is blocked by the author of For Love. Though the title speaks of "breakthrough," the last word of the poem is "impossible."

Full reading on PennSound. Ron Padgett's website here. Padgett's page on Academy of American Poets website here.

[Originally posted 8 March 2006] XML feed here. • Elsewhere on Third Factory: index, ensemble, nb, links.

Wednesday -- 03 January 2007 -- permalink

The Lipstick of Noise is a product of the Third Factory • Inspired by the music blogs • And by Paul Blackburn's reel-to-reel deck. Intending to make good use of PENNSound and other sources of digital audio files of poetry • Comments welcomeXML.