Haven't perused Josh's most-recent report on the Z conference yet. But thinking of the focus on Zukofsky long-poem & gender questions.
The critic, the interpreter, seeks out a logical architecture (this leads from that). Necessary even for full aesthetic appreciation of a work.
Each poet's personal "tradition" hinges on those affinities with other poets, whose work inspired immediate love & admiration & desire to imitate. But perhaps underlying this process, lies something infused more tightly with both psychology & the character of poetry in general : ie., maybe what we love in the predecessor or the model, is the flicker or intimation of Paradise-Utopia, the lost equilibrium or childhood or Heaven or ecstatic state or spiritual beatitude or Peace at heart or Jubilee. . . & this is the charismatic or the perfect goal or quiddity hidden in poetry or faintly echoed or represented by poetry.
The epic is a literary game, representing the ultimate "return home". . . thus Joyce's Ulysses points emphatically to Homer; and underneath "Bloomsday" is a kind of apocalypse - a World-Day in which time stops & turns toward Joyce's particular image of happiness, blessedness.
It needs no repeating, that my "tradition" seems like Mandelstam closely joined by Hart Crane & Joyce. . . thus, for Joycean example, Forth of July hinges on many signal dates, and a particular date (4/7). . . aiming toward Jubilee. . .
& the logical architecture - if you want to read this 1000-pp poem as a nice short poem? 4 books in 2 Parts:
1. Stubborn Grew
2. The Rose;
or, dying & rebirth;
& built on what? Family dynamics. . . gender relations. . . ie. tragicomic love song (Orpheus).
The figure of Elena Shvarts as incarnation of the Russian Mandelstam-model;
the figure of Juliet as poetry ghost-bride of a lost-&-found (native) America;
- these are like variations on a theme, the theme of the abandoned Orpheus-poet harping on his losses & mistakes & dreaming of a vast reunion.
& this logical architecture in turn, to repeat, intimates or stems from or allegorizes the general action or character of poetry per se, poetry as a phenomenon (the flicker of a Paradisal state).