Jul 16, 2012

Russell Edson with John Prine, Iris DeMenthe, and Pacific Banjo

Imaginer? Seer?

It's a summer Monday. We all might need a pretty scene and a lighter touch, so here is a Russell Edson prose poem I enjoyed. I hadn't been back to him for years, and some readers might not know him at all. Maybe the first question is how seriously we should take his prose poems. Are they merely entertaining diversions, or is there more? Shall we call it substance? Skill? Or rip-off? Or more meekly, verbal shenanigans? (I like the word "shenanigan").

Let Us Consider by Russell Edson : The Poetry Foundation

Maybe I'm forcing it, but I see at least a vague, thin connection from Edson to John Prine's song to blogger Pacific Banjo's engaging pictorial accompaniment. 

The Tendril That Stole the Show


Hannah Stephenson said...

Hey, I like this Edson piece (and I have never read him before).

Fried roses, yum.

More seriously....the fried rose stanza is the lightest one. Stanzas one and two have some seriously weird things happening in them (that I like a lot!). The common denominator in that first stanza seems to be "people that are lonely." I don't know about that middle stanza...there is a real shift in tone between the mirror vignette and the last stanza, isn't there?

RuneE said...

This time I will limit myself to congratulate you with the photo of that guy with the awesome hat!

Pasadena Adjacent said...

I enjoyed the clumsiness of this poem.

Edson will (in my not so humble opinion) nail a line; snap! And I want to scream "stop there" but he doesn't listen.

I also appreciate how one thought will tumble into another. It's something I do well (again, in my not so humble opinion) when I'm at my best.

Anonymous said...

We don't always get each other, do we? Even after due consideration. It just sounds like random words to me. Proving, of course, there are more things in heaven and earth than are dreamt of in my philosophy. Yeah, I know that.

Jean Spitzer said...

I like the tendril phototherapy way it divides the frame. Also like the poem. Enough to read the biographical info on Edson.

Pasadena Adjacent said...

I went back and read the interview too Jean. I like this line

"But Shurin’s poetry mystified me, challenged me with its semantic disjunction and use of collage; still seeking my own voice, I wasn’t ready to dive into his torqued syntax and seemingly disconnected images. "

Clarified things for me.

And how can you not sing praises for

" the young woman who has set herself the task of scraping her shadow off a wall"

Ken Mac said...

excellent musical choices

Stickup Artist said...

Quirky and eccentric, gotta love that. And I was also drawn to the line about the young woman "scraping her shadow off the wall." The struggle is mighty and sometimes, mighty sweet. Couldn't hang with the tunes though. But I have horrible taste in music. Loved the photo of the guy with the hat and the watery reflections thru the delicate tendrils...

Brenda's Arizona said...

Edson's poem makes me think I can write poetry, ya know?
I have seen Rajistani women, wrapped in colorful fabrics, carrying 2 feet of cow patties on their heads. Along with bricks and mud...

I also think I am the young woman scraping her shadow off the wall.

I know I can do this!

Lovers' Lane