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House of Forgetting reviewed in Jacket2


Transitionary framings, a case

A review of Geoffrey Gatza’s ‘House of Forgetting’

House of Forgetting

Geoffrey Gatza

BlazeVOX [books] 2012, 38 pages, free at scribd.com, ISBN 978-1-60964-099-6

For readers of Gatza who have already come to expect the unexpected; for those fascinated with emerging innovation in book-structured polygraphies, then House of Forgetting is yet another contribution to what is becoming a prodigious oeuvre. For those who have come recently to poetry and poetics, or desire a greater understanding of Intermedia poetry, House of Forgetting offers an attractive entrée.

While there is a “heart” to House of Forgetting (human figures with human concerns) and an ekphrastic narrative (the death of a beautiful woman/gifted revenant), there are also elements of language-image that transform temporal and human identity. Such transformations themselves form book “frames”; generate a hypertextuality, (“of moving frame to frame”) as Charles Bernstein notes; an alternative to the perceptual limitations of “frame fixation” and “frame lock.” Such transformations seem to invite the display of “an art of transition through and among [interpretative] frames.”[1]

The idea of elastic, transitionary frames in which material assumes the provisional form of the book is as true of this collection as it is of Gatza’s other work: the five seasons of rewoven myth in Black Diamond Golden Boy Takes Bull By Horns; the hagiography of saints and celebs among word images (coinages consisting of gray-scale mutations and other unique treatments), seemingly aleatory and unrelated, found in Secrets of my Prison House, and the most notable of these may beKenmorePoem Unlimited, that four-volume satire on American suburbia, a pataphoric world risen on a foundation of assumptions, fantastic as they are amusing, revealing angles of cultural significance.

House of Forgetting consists of two temporal frames: each interacts with the other in transfiguring human form and identity. The first is “The Twelve-Hour Transformation of Clare,” a woman who morphs into words, and the second section, “Recipe for Water,” is that of an artist who is drawing his wife’s portrait while she is in her deathbed, beginning “Now,” going into the past (“17 Days Ago,” “Last Saturday,” and fragments with similar titles) to conclude with “Five Years From Now” told in the voice of cultural assumption: a radio announcer. The “artist” becomes a reported figure; the “subject,” a fictional image no less real than the figure it re-presents. These are not pairs, but multiples. Their reappearance in alternative contexts suggests, rather strongly, an operative multeity of figures, an ongoing dance with interchangeable partners.


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Two reviews on Petrarchan by Kristina Marie Darling


Here are two new reviews of Petrarchan by Kristina Marie Darling. 

Book Information:


· Paperback: 72 pages

· Binding: Perfect-Bound

· Publisher: 

BlazeVOX [books] 

· ISBN: 978-1-60964-116-0



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Kristina Marie Darling's collaboration with Max Avi Kaplan is featured at Connotation Press


Kristina Marie Darling - Fiction

DarlingKristinaMarieKristina Marie Darling is the author of fifteen books, which include Melancholia (An Essay) (Ravenna Press, 2012), Petrarchan (BlazeVOX Books, 2013), and a forthcoming hybrid genre collection called Fortress (Sundress Publications, 2014). Her awards include fellowships from Yaddo, the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation, and the Hawthornden Castle International Retreat for Writers, as well as grants from the Kittredge Fund and the Elizabeth George Foundation. She is currently working toward a Ph.D. in Poetics at S.U.N.Y.-Buffalo.


Kristina Marie Darling interview with Meg Tuite

I love these micro-flash pieces that seem to be from another time period? I was guessing maybe the 50’s? 

Max Avi Kaplan PRESS IMAGE 1Thank you for your kind words about the flash fictions! You guessed right. My collaborator, Max Avi Kaplan, and I imagined the Polaroids and the accompanying stories as a character study, an in-depth look at the life a 1950s housewife named Adelle. We're both fascinated by 1950s material culture, but also the situation of women of the time period, who were so often surrounded by beauty, but trapped by their roles as wives, mothers, and homemakers. Many of the objects, clothes, and accessories depicted in the photographs are really from the 1950s. Max came to the collaboration with a background in costuming, and strives for great historical accuracy in his photographs. This influence certainly carries over into the flash fictions, which reflect a similar fascination with the complex histories, and the emotional weight, that we attach to objects. 

Were these ekphrastic pieces inspired by the photography or was it the other way around? 

Max Avi Kaplan PRESS IMAGE 2That's a great question. The flash fictions certainly began as ekphrastic pieces, which were inspired by a set of eight of Max's photographs. But he had not yet completed all the photographs. So I sent him poems in response to the initial set of images, then the collaboration became much more of a conversation. Just as I had responded to Max's work in my poems, he began responding to and incorporating the narrative I had constructed around his work. I think of our collaboration as a dialogue, which unfolds over the course of the book. 

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Thanksgiving Menu Poem - 2013 has been declined



For the past twelve years we have had a Thanksgiving menu-poem up and available for you to read and enjoy on Thanksgiving. Beginning in 2002 with a poem to honor Charles Bernstein, I began a series of poems, using a menu that I could prepare, in a feast of words that could be presented if we had a table large enough to fit all of our poetry friends.


This is year is no different and we had a poem ready to go, however the poet who we were to honor this year kindly declined. Being from another country whose ideas on thanksgiving are different from our own, if not very similar, he felt that he could not support this holiday. We have written a nice note explain his position which is posted below and on our Thanksgiving Menu-Poem page.


Since the project was completed and presented to our guest of honor, who wishes to be left nameless, there was little time to begin on a new work. So we decided it was best to keep this honor in place and announce his wishes. His ideas are very important to understand and devour while we sit and consume. We should also understand the cost this feast represents. We will certainly be back next year with a new, full menu poem! Hurray! 



Thanksgiving 2013 Menu-Poem declined


This year we chose to honor a wonderful poet but this honor has been declined for sincere political reasoning. This poet has been a deeply committed animal rights activist for three decades and anything associated with meat eating, homophobia and generally reactionary nationalist politics would not be something that would be in keeping with his strong beliefs and practices. The thought of this holiday, for this poet, is insulting to indigenous peoples. And in the end, the prospects are all too distressing. To honor this poet, a man of strong integrity and conviction, in the best way we can, this year we will not have a menu-poem. Thank you and we’ll see you next year.



Thanksgiving Menu-Poems Archive


            Bill Berkson 2012

            Keith and Rosmarie Waldrop            

                 and 50 years of Burning Deck Press 2011

            David Shapiro 2010

            C. D. Wright 2009

            Anne Waldman 2008

            Ron Silliman 2007

            John Ashbery 2006

            Robert Creeley 2005

            Kent Johnson 2004

            Forrest Gander 2003

            Charles Bernstein 2002




Even though we are not celebrating and we still might want to have something to read, to the right is a list of our previous eleven Thanksgiving Menu-Poems. But, if you are looking for something new and fun to read, here is a sneek peek of my new book, Apollo. 



It has often been said that Marcel Duchamp gave up art for chess. Geoffrey Gatza has reversed the process, and produced a sumptuous “souvenir program” of a performance of Stravinsky's ballet Apollo, framed by an elaborately-plotted chess game between Duchamp and his female alter-ego, Rose Selavy. The results are stunning.    —John Ashbery 

This book will be released in the Spring and you can frind more information and pre-order it here  

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Kristina Marie Darling interview at The Bellingham Review


Kristina Marie Darling

ALR PhotoInterview

by Carol Guess

Kristina Marie Darling is the author of twelve books, which include Melancholia (An Essay) (Ravenna Press, 2012), Petrarchan (BlazeVOX Books, 2013), and (with Carol Guess) X Marks the Dress: A Registry (Gold Wake Press, 2013). Her work has been honored with fellowships from Yaddo, the Hawthornden Castle International Retreat for Writers, the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation, and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, as well as grants from the Kittredge Fund and the Elizabeth George Foundation. Kristina is currently working toward a Ph.D. in Poetics at SUNY-Buffalo, where she holds a Presidential Fellowship. She edits Noctuary Press.

Carol Guess is the author of thirteen books of poetry and prose. She teaches at Western Washington University. Follow her here at: www.carolguess.blogspot.com.


X Marks the Dress - Book Cover - 2-1Carol Guess: How did you become interested in writing and publishing hybrid forms? 

Kristina Marie Darling: I’ve was initially attracted to hybrid forms because they allow one to manipulate and undermine the reader’s expectations of narrative in interesting ways. When a reader sees prose on the page, they often assume that the text will unfold in a certain way:  a linear narrative will appear, filled with clear explanations of what things mean. I’ve always loved working against these kinds of readerly expectations, creating texts that challenge our assumptions about what prose should be.

With that in mind, I think of hybrid writing as an attempt to question the limitations we place on literary texts as a result of their form, their genre, or their orientation on the printed page. Hybrid writing has a unique ability to expand what we as readers think is possible within a literary text, and to foster more open-minded reading practices.

I’m passionate about publishing hybrid writing by women because of the gender politics inherent in these assumptions about what’s possible in a literary text. So much of the time, socially dominant groups decide what counts as “fiction,” “poetry,” or even “narrative.” I’m very interested in documenting, and bringing visibility to, writing that challenges prevailing ideas about what’s possible (or not possible) within a literary text.

Carol: Your current academic research is focused on H.D. What’s the interplay between your academic work and your creative projects?

Kristina Marie: To some people, H.D. might seem like an unlikely choice for a writer interested in hybrid genre work. But I’ve always been fascinated by her use of the poetic image to lend unity to book-length projects. I feel I’ve learned a great deal from H.D. that I can apply to my own craft.  In Helen in Egypt, for example, several recurring images recur throughout the book: seashells, the ocean, and a lyre. H.D. has shown me that a single image can be inscribed and reinscribed within a long poem, acquiring myriad possibilities for readerly interpretation as the book unfolds. The poetic image generates meaning, rather than being limited to a single fixed meaning. This technique is certainly something I’ve emulated in my own long poems, Petrarchan and Melancholia (An Essay).


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