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Book Title: همان چیزی که اتّفاق می افتد و آنچه آدمی میتواند ببیند|
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 8.64 MB
v The author of the book: Russell Edson
Edition: مانِ کتاب
Date of issue: 2010
ISBN 13: 9789649082738
City - Country: No data
Read full description of the books همان چیزی که اتّفاق می افتد و آنچه آدمی میتواند ببیند:‘The head is death with hair upon it. Also it is a vehicle upon which it is itself to ride through dream and suppertime.’
The Tunnel, the selected poems of Russell Edson (1935-2014), is the most refreshing collection of ‘poetry’ that I have encountered in a long time. To call it breathtaking would invoke the right ideas but would also miss the mark by miles—reading Edson is less like losing your breath in beauty and more like being given new lungs and a new atmosphere in which to breath. It is like seeing a strange and alien world that is also unmistakably your own and registering near-nonsense as the most fit method of discussing the abstractions of reality. It would be easy to recommend Edson’s work as a sadistic amalgamation of the elliptical surrealism and playfulness found in James Tate and Charles Simic, but Edson has a voice and style distinctly his own that more categorizes him alongside these wonderful poets rather than ‘of them’¹ Edson tends to defy classification, as is pointed out in the indespensible article about him published in The Believer by Sarah Manguso. One might refer to Edson as surreal prose poetry, yet in articles he scorned the usage of those signifiers. As to surrealism, Edson says ‘why do we have to be surrealists? Brenton didn’t invent our imagination.’² Edson also disliked the term ‘prose poem’ (though I am glad to see the prose poem talked about as an accepted idea; I recall a classroom with an overturned chair as I stood shouting at several of my peers who refused to accept prose poetry as anything other than scraps of writing that were of no benefit to literature. I lost the argument.) seeing it as too artificial a term for a subject matter that truly has no defined form: ‘the prose poem has yet to yield up a method.’ This is all a circoitus rambling that should sum itself up that Edson’s poetry is something to come to on its own terms, as to attempt to classify, cage and give shape to it would miss the ghostlike quality and ethereal, haunting beauty of the tiny tales he spins in each. They are like short fables, unsettling and elusive, managing to avoid direct discussion by residing in eternal metaphor to discuss the darker underbellies of existence and humanity. Apes, for example, make a frequent appearance, often as a symbol of the wild, untamed and uncivilized impulses in all of us, such as when a wife fornicates with an ape before bashing his brains out, shoving him in an over and serving him for dinner—a pretty ribbon tied carefully around his genitals. The imagery is bizarre, but not for the sake of the weird but for the sake of understanding the abstract through its own devices. Edson’s work may seem nonsensical, bizarre and so removed from the standards of anything we have taken comfort in, yet it registers on all the proper emotional and intellectual levels as if coming in sideways and overtaking us like a mist rather than a head-on assault of logical and comprehensible teachings. The Tunnel is a wild, untamed ride through a frighteningly wasteland of the real, where nothing is as it seems. It is a ride surely not to be missed.
¹Russell Edson and Charles Simic—my personal favorite poet—were in fact good friends. Simic published a wonderful eulogy of sorts for his friends Edson and Bill Knott in the New York Review of Books, in which he says of Edson ‘The real surprise comes when we realize that what we are reading is not the work of a jokester, but of a satirist and a serious thinker.’ This does well to summarize the playfulness found in Edson. In The Tunnel there are a few poems dedicated to James Tate and Simic (as well as William Carlos Williams, Donald Hall and more). The second poem to Simic is particularly intriguing:With Sincerest Regrets
Like a monstrous snail a toilet slides into a living room on a track of wet, demanding to be loved.
It is impossible, and we tender our sincerest regrets. In the book of the heart there is no mention made of plumbing.
And though we have spent out intimacy many times with you, you belong to an unfortunate reference, which we would rather not embrace…
The toilet slides away on another track of wet… The work is humorous and dark, probing at the aspects of life that we must all accept as reality but do not discuss, the toilet working as a wonderful metaphor here. However, the real joy is in the line ‘In the book of the heart there is no mention made of plumbing, a line with all the humor, wit, cadence and near-distinctness of Simic’s writing that it made me want to flip through all his books as it seemed it must have come from him somewhere. It should also be noted that the closest resemblance to The Tunnel that I’ve read is Simic’s The World Doesn't End (which is, in fact, dedicates to Tate).
²André Breton (1896-1966), often considered a founder of surrealism, was a French writer and poet most known for his Manifestoes of Surrealism.
A Journey Through Moonlight
In sleep when an old man’s body is no longer aware of its boundaries, and lies flattened by gravity like a mere wax in its bed...It drips down to the floor and moves there like a tear down a cheek...Under the back door into the silver meadow, like a pool of sperm, frosty under the moon, as if in his first nature, boneless and absurd.
The moon lifts him into its white field, a cloud shaped like an old man, porous with stars.
He floats through high dark branches, a corpse tangled in a tree on a river.
They are in the house. They move like clouds over the floors.
They are in the bedrooms. They return from the cellar. They wander in the attic like balls of dust.
A man is sitting in the kitchen, his face in his hands. He is crying, his tears wetting through fingers.
The sheep baa and to him they gather, licking his hands for salt.
A ewe then sweetly offer herself in heat.
He turns her on her back, his face in the wool of her breast…
Killing the Ape
They were killing the ape with infinite care; not too much or it runs past dying and is born again.
Too little delivers a sick man covered with fur.
….Gently gently out of hell, the ape climbing out of the ape.
On the other side of a mirror there's an inverse world,
where the insane go sane; where bones climb out of the
earth and recede to the first slime of love.
And in the evening the sun is just rising.
Lovers cry because they are a day younger, and soon
childhood robs them of their pleasure.
In such a world there is much sadness which, of course,
There was a man who found two leaves and came indoors holding them out saying to his parents that he was a tree.
To which they said then go into the yard and do not grow in the living-room as your roots may ruin the carpet.
He said I was fooling I am not a tree and he dropped his leaves.
But his parents said look it is fall.
Read information about the authorRussell Edson was born in Connecticut in 1935 and currently resides there with his wife Frances. Edson, who jokingly has called himself "Little Mr. Prose Poem," is inarguably the foremost writer of prose poetry in America, having written exclusively in that form before it became fashionable. In a forthcoming study of the American prose poem, Michel Delville suggests that one of Edson's typical "recipes" for his prose poems involves a modern everyman who suddenly tumbles into an alternative reality in which he loses control over himself, sometimes to the point of being irremediably absorbed--both figuratively and literally--by his immediate and, most often, domestic everyday environment. . . . Constantly fusing and confusing the banal and the bizarre, Edson delights in having a seemingly innocuous situation undergo the most unlikely and uncanny metamorphoses. . . .
Reclusive by nature, Edson has still managed to publish eleven books of prose poems and one novel, The Song of Percival Peacock (available from Coffee House Press).
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