Litkicks Message Board Archive

it's a good thing

Posted to Action Poetry

you enjoy my chattering, I like to do it...especially with those who can carry a conversation. And the power of words, I do not underestimate in the least. "Striving for abstract beauty beyond rational definitions" just struck me as an interesting way to phrase your poetic goal. I thought, we are so deeply tied to a rational interpretation of things, words in general are these. So I was just considering along these lines what role our reason plays in the use and creation of words. Can we be fully removed from a rational definition? Given the nature of what language is and the prevailing mindset of western philosophy whose paradigm has been as influential as chromosomes, can they be purely abstract in their homage to beauty without the adulteration of reason? Part of me thinks, to a certain extent, they cannot, not in is like the artist's evolution in mimicking nature through the brush, when nature was seen as the divine perfection and it was man's great accomplishment to capture that reflection in its exact form.

It is in appeal to the association of things that surpass our ability to articulate them...where words are so effective. I remember once listening to an hebrew-speaking jew as he described how the original language of the Old Testament inevitably lost something when translated to english, or any other tongue for that matter. This was because the native language was rife with metaphors; how does one name God? How does one pin him down to inanimate characters? Better to not say the name. And yet, I think of Dickinson who said:

A word is dead
When it is said,
Some say.
I say it just
Begins to live
That day.

The sentiment of the word may remain with the hearer, but still the meaning is not inherent in the word itself, it is meant for personal application...I feel....where poetry or most creative writing is concerned, this is the case. Each person has their own interpretation of what a metaphor is expressing, based on their experience of what is known of that relationship. But I may be stating the obvious that language does not exist for its own sake, but was birthed from early man's desperate grasping at roots, something to hold his reality to common substance. However, puritanical lexicographers who witness the atrocities of verbacide may forget the poetry of their humanity that requires language to be relevant to a need. Think of all the archaic words sentenced to the end of more presently precise definitions in the dictionaries. Language must evolve and have the adaptations necessary for survival, or it will die.

I said "thanks for naming Amy" not implying that that might be her name, earth.Your reference to Amy I took to represent your muse, and the naming (as I meant it) was your sharing about your poetic methods. I was just being abstract to the point of confusion, that's all. Of course it all makes sense in my mind.


PS-if we are going to continue this conversation, perhaps we should give it a fresh canvas to adhere to, this one's movin on down.