"Torque", on the other hand, is a method for controlling style, a sort of literariness-gizmo. You spin the axle of ir-reference and ir-reverence, like a wheel of chance. But a style can't transcend itself if it's not aimed, from the beginning, somewhere beyond literature. In a comment to Ron's post today, Curtis Faville mentioned Larry Eigner's cumulative momentum as he writes into the unknown. Seems apropos here. The "unknown" is the theme which draws and compels the writer. But a style which is all technique - only technique - can never surpass itself.

This is a paradox about some of the very subtle and highly-wrought styles in our mannerist and mandarin scene - rather than self-surpassing, they are self-devouring. They become brittle style-displays, rather than the trace of an authentic poem (left behind like a cicada's husk).

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