There have been thousands of loony ideas about Shakespeare, down through the ages. There are & have been millions of confused & troubled young people, who take themselves & their own visions too seriously. Granted, my grandiose adventure with the ghost of WS & the sound of the Sonnets, 35 years ago, has its farcical & pathetic aspects.

What has stayed with me, though, and continued to influence my direction in life, is something in the complexity of the total experience which I tried to relate here. Not so much the obsession with the Sonnets, but the way Shakespeare & the Bible turned into an interior agon, like a remake of an old morality play, God & the Devil struggling for a soul. Not so much my megalomania, but the way that "synchronicity" & coincidences (& I am not merely imagining the "knock on the door", at midnight, as I was on my knees overwhelmed by the Faust story; nor am I simply inventing the "voice," which I felt was emerging somehow from my chest) seemed to reinforce the sensation I had that I was living out some paradigmatic drama.

I think what I'm trying to tell here, or want to tell here, or have been telling here, over the past week or so, is a poet's story. Allen, over here, wrote today about the social economy of American poetry, and the sense of being out of the networks, out of the loop. My feeling has been for quite a while that it's very hard to generalize about all that. There are too many groups & group labels, which are nothing but shortcuts (or short-circuits) for apprehension, response & evaluation. I would want to emphasize the uniqueness of each poet's path & approach, as well as the individuality, the originality, of a genuine critic's responses & discoveries.

& I feel like boasting, too. I feel like saying that my work & my example & presence are just too much for the "arbiters" & the systems to handle. Too much of a challenge to the popular aesthetic theories, the networks, the sacred cows, & the ingrained predilections. So there, I'm boasting. But it's futile & counter-productive! A cul-de-sac. I can only keep putting it out there & wait for somebody (like the 2 AB's!) to listen.

No comments: