Max Lesser uncovers the unintended legacy of Charles Olson. First, some simplicities that a man learns, if he works in OPEN or what can also be called COMPOSITION BY FIELD, as opposed to inherited line, stanza, over-all . FROM CHARLES OLSON’S “PROJECTIVE VERSE”. (1) A poem is energy transferred from where the poet got it (he will have some several causations), by way.

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Any exposition of a perceived object, when made well, draws attention to the power of the perceiving subject. The success of his ideas remains manifest to anyone who cares about the history of postwar American poetry. If so, you may be embarrassed to admit it.


And his repeated association of words that overlap both semantically and sonically speaks to his ability to attune his ear to the mythopoeic nature of syllables. For the next step, you’ll be taken to a website to complete the donation and enter your billing information.

It stems from his central project: But can projective poems actually eliminate the poet-as-subject? The failure of projective verse to eliminate the subjective sense of the poet-as-speaker is thus, paradoxically, a consequence of its success. By Min Hyoung Song. His olsob use of white space attests to his attention to breath, which informs the length of his lines with multiple indentations.

Or so it got phrased by one, R. The Elemental Poems of Dan Gerber. Olson intends projective verse to enact a form of ego death through self-objectification.

Can we really expect to sort through so many different voices from so many different backgrounds? And I think it can be boiled down to one statement first pounded into my head by Edward Dahlberg: It is much more, for example, this push, than simply such a one as Pound put, so wisely, to get us started: A Search in Obedience: Letter to the Editor: Thus he has to behave, and be, instant by instant, aware of some several forces just now beginning to be examined.


Jorie Graham, a poet who was influenced by Olson, incorporates his method in a way that ultimately draws attention to the speaker.

Then the poem itself must, at all points, be a high energy-construct and, at all points, an energy-discharge. That reputation, though unfortunate, may be well deserved. Creeley, and it makes absolute sense to me, with chaeles possible corollary, that right form, in any given poem, is the only and exclusively possible extension of content under hand.

On the Collected Works of Robert Duncan. In our culture, too many regard prjective, and especially the poetry of the last century, as having all the real-world utility of underwater basket-weaving. You’ll then be redirected back to LARB. Can Olson chwrles abide by his own poetic principles, overcoming his Egotistical Sublime? Thank you for signing up! There it is, brothers, sitting there, for USE. A partial list of Black Mountain teachers and students will suffice to indicate its central role in 20th-century American culture: And it involves a whole series of but new recognitions.

The more evocative the bouquet, the more the subject imbues her found objects with her character. To take advantage of all LARB has to offer, please create an account or log in before joining Yet the acts of curating and positioning particular flowers — and even the very act of presenting flowers in the first place pronective testifies to the existence of a subject who made these decisions, a singular individual who took these actions.

When a poetic self strives for the maximal, when it strives for an expansion of its perceptual horizons, when it frees itself from the shackles of inherited form — how could it not attest to its own particular capacities and energies, to the power charlss its own senses, its own voice?

Projective Verse

And one of the most promising takes us back to an unlikely place and time: But what ever happened to the legacy of Charles Olson? Olson asserts that in order to ensure this forward propulsion, a poet must not remain fixed upon a single perception for long, avoiding excessive description, but rather constantly shift through various modes of perception. This is the Catch of projective verse, which can be illustrated by analogy with the Japanese art of flower arrangement Ikebana. A poem is energy transferred from where the poet got it he will have some several causationsby way of the poem itself to, all the way over to, the reader.


Grasped by What We Cannot Grasp: Olson clearly adheres to the mechanics of projective verse, but can he overcome his self?

However, the success of his poetic principle may not have lead to the world that he wanted to live in, one in charrles the poet escapes the confines of his ego through the rigors of contemplating objects and ideas. He plays saxophone and has composed music for the LA Phil.

Projective Verse

Why does his surname lack the resonance of Cage and Ginsberg? Another glance at his political screeds may solidify it. What does one mean by 20th-century American poetry? It means exactly what it says, is a matter of, at all points even, I should say, of our management of daily reality as of the daily work get on with it, keep moving, keep in, speed, the nerves, their speed, the perceptions, theirs, the acts, the split second acts, the whole business, keep it moving as fast as you can, citizen.

In order to help the poet, Olson offers a principle to guide her. The rhythm of a poem should accommodate the exigencies of each breath that the poet breathes in speaking. Any human action, from physical construction to constructing verse, involves breath. This appears to be an acknowledged fact among contemporary practitioners of projective verse.

All Architectures I Am: