THE POETRY OF WILLIAM LOGAN. FIVE MINUTES OR FIVE YEARS?

Honoré Daumier | Man on a Rope | The Met

One of William Logan’s former students sent me a link to a couple of recent poems by the famous American critic.

Logan is equally ambitious as a poet and a critic, but he’s much better known as a critic, or, more accurately, a “reviewer.”

William Logan is not a “theorist:” he hasn’t made popular any critical dicta.

And, who knows? this might even make him a better reviewer.  He keeps his eye on the ball (the subject of his review) and is never distracted by pet theories.

In fact, he’s largely ineffective when he wanders into theory; he’s like Camille Paglia, another wolf who turns lamb when speaking of poetry in the abstract, and this would include writing about poets safely dead. Paglia and Logan have fans because they pull no punches with their contemporaries.

You can argue with their opinions, but Letters needs honest criticism even more than trades need inspectors; a building may stand up without a building inspector; a poem without a critic doesn’t really exist. That critic “over there” who needs to tell you how to read a poem is you.  Criticism builds the building. Poetry only admires it.

Logan as a reviewer is rare, but he shouldn’t be.

As a critic, Logan doesn’t make friends—which is how it should be; the conscious decision not to be friendly as a critic is why he is good—for otherwise a critic cannot be good.  So when the New York Times calls Logan “Poetry’s Hanging Judge,” a “slasher, a burner, a brawler,” this is just silly, like a child’s fear of the dark.

Logan strolls into the poetry which he is reviewing with no agenda whatsoever; he’s not even asking that the poem be well-built. When it comes to criticism, “burner” or not, Logan is all Henry James, who said, when it comes to art and its criticism, one should just be intelligent—there are no rules.  This is not bad advice. Let the mind and eye be free.

These are the two principles of Logan’s reviewing:

1. no friends

2. no rules.

If this is a “hanging judge,” so be it.  It’s why Logan is the best critic around.

Actually, the best reviewer around.  Logan is not a critic at all.

Logan’s reviewing has two principles.  His criticism has none.

When those who are honest and controversial like what everybody else likes, the air goes out of the balloon.  Break, Blow, Burn: Camille Paglia Reads Forty Three of the World’s Best Poems is perhaps the most boring book ever written.  A close second is Logan’s Dickinson’s Nerves, Frost’s Woods: Poetry In the Shadow of the Past.

In Dickinson’s Nerves, Logan adds historical facts to a poem—whether they belong to the poem, or not.  Good poems (especially lyric poems) don’t need added historical facts, and that’s why they are good.  Successful poems are the history which Logan goes somewhere else to find.

The New Critics, who err by being too narrow, at least are in the right part of town.  The critic William Logan is like a man looking for a party in the wrong city—not that he doesn’t find interesting things in that other city.  He has a wide-ranging mind.  That’s why he’s a good reviewer.

Logan, when reacting to poems as a reviewer, is a champ—:with the poems of a living author in front of him, he feels no obligation to find historical touchstones in a worshipful sort of way, and with no theoretical axes to grind, obeying the advice of Henry James—obeying no principle whatsoever—he simply allows his intelligence to tell us what it sees.

As far as Logan’s two poems in Blackbird: an online journal of literature and the arts, they are both sound, full of references, and rather dull.

Both describe painting, in one case, a painting, in the other, a landscape, which may be a painting. It is Logan’s habit as a poet to use poetry as a means to be scholarly towards a scholarly artifact.  He’s not being attentive so much as attentively bookish.  And the poems are certainly not how people talk.

My advice to Logan: Write from your memory and your heart.  Avoid “subjects.”

I really believe Logan tries too hard to sound high-brow and thoughtful. He’s too fastidious. We could look at the painting or the landscape he describes and enjoy in a moment, ourselves, what he patiently explains to us, standing in the way. Poetry is speech. It is not describing a painting or a meadow or a street. He should listen to G.E. Lessing. Poetry is not painting. Nor is poetry a series of learned references.

There needs to be more feeling. Logan should read Holderlin.

He attends to the important things—he finds a theme with a physical equivalent in the real world, and the parts of the poem contribute, in an ordered and thoughtful way, to that theme.  And it’s all done with a learned air.

But it’s finally the trivial things, so trivial as to escape scrutiny, which make a poem successful.

This is why no one can will a poem to be good, and why a poem written in five years will not be better than a poem written in five minutes.

Because reviews can’t wait, Logan, by necessity, writes his reviews relatively quickly. Which allows him to skip most of his learning and get right to the doing. The speed, and the irritation at having to be speedy, no doubt contributes to the wit we see in his reviews.

His poems, however, are vacations from the deadlines of reviewing; one senses he writes his poems in the midst of vacations; he spends an entire day in a museum, and almost a whole afternoon in front of a painting. Daumier’s Man on a Rope, perhaps.

And then, five years later, a poem.

Yet all the five years did was hide the true poem, which, after five minutes, was right there:

Above the nothing that is nothing,
Hanging between earth and heaven,
Arms taut with the sum of his own gravity,
One foot steadied against the building,
Braced against the fall,
Burglar or acrobat,
Hung between the idea
And execution, the nowhere
And the nowhere.

~~~

Daumier, Man on a Rope

Above the nothing that is nothing,
he dangles in forethought,
not afterthought, like Mohammed’s coffin
hanging between earth
and heaven, face darkened
by fear or apprehension,
or merely paint, arms taut with the sum
of his own gravity,
one foot steadied against the building,
braced against the fall
that never comes, though whether
burglar, or acrobat,
or just a man on a rope is never revealed.
Like Bede’s sparrow,
like Schrödinger’s cat, like the artist
hung between the idea
and execution, the man
is lost in the nowhere
that is life and the nowhere not.

—William Logan

 

 

 

THE VIRUS

Paul & John May 14,1968 Manhattan press conference announcing ...

Earth saves earth; you have been asked to go.

Something has attacked your lungs;

Children at their games are breathing slow.

Fame is no longer a consequence, the green

Is spreading, and through the trees a holy light is seen.

By 1968, the Beatles didn’t care

What the press thought; soon they were no longer there.

Bathe in the media; what you say

Is reality. Today

All that is famous and pleases us is dead.

The disease, out of love, first coils itself around your legs.

Vines fill holes. Electronic music hisses and begs.

Scotland surrenders. Put this cotton thing around your head.

 

THE SECRETS OF BEN FRANKLIN TRAVEL TO WESTPORT CONNECTICUT TO PLAY HARVEY WEINSTEIN’S ACTORS

Impeach President Washington!” | AMERICAN HERITAGE

The motto for imprisoned Harvey Weinstein’s Connecticut team, The Actors “I am no hackney for your rod,” is by their shortstop, John Skelton, who was tutor to Prince Henry, the future Henry VIII.

Skelton lived 100 years before Shakespeare, and was Shakespeare-before Shakespeare, a hard-nosed playwright and songwriter of much fun:

Gup, Christian Clout, gup, Jack of the Vale!
With Mannerly Margery Milk and Ale.

Benjamin Franklins’s club from Boston (moved from Philadelphia), The Secrets, is considered to be “America’s Team” of the twenty-five teams in Scarriet’s five divisions, despite no team having a definite national identity, per se (but don’t tell that to the Tokyo Mist, the Kolkata Cobras, the Beijing Waves, or the London Carriages, belonging to Queen Victoria!)

Edgar Poe is the ace of the Secrets, and will start today for the visitors. A little-known fact about the author of the “Tell-Tale Heart,” is that he was disinherited by his guardian, John Allan (a Trump in today’s dollars) because John Allan was a Harvey Weinstein in his appetites, and Poe was too outspokenly chivalrous towards Allan’s wife in the patriarchal household.

When asked if it would be a point of honor for Poe to defeat Weinstein’s team, he responded simply, “I will pitch as I will.”

Both the Secrets and the Actors play in the Secret Society Division with three other teams: David Lynch’s Strangers, P.T. Barnum’s Animals, and J.P. Morgan’s the War.

Here is the starting lineup for the Secrets:

Hawthorne leads off, in center field. Cole Porter, at first base, bats second. Emily Dickinson, the catcher, is third. Batting cleanup, Woody Guthrie, at second base. The shortstop, Robert Frost, bats fifth. Carl Sandburg playing third base, batting sixth. Paul Simon, author of the Secrets’ motto ( We come in the age’s most uncertain hour and sing an American tune.) plays right field, hitting seventh. Kanye West is in left field, batting eighth.

Poe is joined in the starting roster by Plato, Pushkin, and Moliere.  That’s a strong starting rotation.

Here’s the lineup today for the Actors:

Skelton, shortstop; Langston Hughes, left field; Hafiz, second base; Thomas Nashe, third base; Amiri Baraka, center field; Marilyn Hacker, first base; Gwendolyn Brooks, right field; Audre Lorde, catcher.

Thomas Nashe, the cleanup hitter for the Actors, knew Henry VIII’s jester. Nashe wrote an erotic poem which takes place in a brothel, privately, for a lord, which became public—“it was for money, and it is not all my taste,” Nashe grumped in a pre-game interview.

Pitching today, for the Actors, their no. 2 starter, Chaucer.

Weinstein, with co-executives like David Letterman and Oprah, has complied quite a team.

The Secrets go to work in the first against Chaucer:

After Hawthorne flies deep to Amiri Baraka in center, Cole Porter lays down a perfect bunt and reaches first. Emily Dickinson homers to left.

2-0 Secrets.

It stays that way until the seventh, as Chaucer settles down, retiring seven in a row at one point, including four by strikeout.

Chaucer throws hard, and goes right after hitters, working very fast.

Poe is baffling the Actors, fanning six and walking one, while permitting only two hits.

Poe’s fastball reaches 105; he also has a good curve, a change, and a nasty slider.

Gwendolyn Brooks starts the Actors’ seventh by looping a single to right, the ball falling between Paul Simon, Cole Porter, and Woody Guthrie.

Audre Lorde attempts to bunt Brooks into scoring position; Poe comes off the mound to make the play, but drops the ball—everybody’s safe.

Brooks and Lorde attempt a double steal; at the same moment, Poe whirls in a pick off move to first, but throws the ball over the first baseman’s head—Brooks, who was heading to third, easily scores, Lorde takes a wide turn at third, but thinks twice about heading home, and holds. No outs. Chaucer hits a sacrifice fly to Simon in right, Lorde comes home; it’s now 2-2.

The next batter, Skelton, hits one down the line in left; a fan in a front row seat apparently reaches into the field and catches the ball, but it’s ruled a home run.  Kanye West, the left fielder frantically points to where the fan reached into the field of play, gesticulating again and again. The president of the United States, in a box seat behind third, who had a pretty good view of the fan touching the baseball, begins tweeting. The play is disputed, especially by Poe, who is quite upset. The call stands. The Actors now lead 3-2.  An agitated Poe is taken out of the game by manager George Washington.

F. Scott Key relieves Poe. Langston Hughes doubles. Hafiz walks. Thomas Nashe homers to center—it’s now 6-2 Actors!

Final score, Actors 7, Secrets 2.

Chaucer wins, he’s 1-0. Poe loses, he’s 0-1.

Grinning, Letterman lights a cigar.

The Secrets are stoic after the loss.  Washington: “It got away from us.” Poe: “Tough loss.” Franklin hands out a note to the press in secret code, which says “You can’t win them all.”

Johnny Depp, the Actors’ manager, takes his team to the five star Italian place near the ballpark in Westport: Finalmente Trattoria.

Keith Richards, from neighboring Weston, shows up; Depp, Richards, Nashe, Skelton, and Hafiz drink in a secluded corner of the restaurant for hours.

~~~

 

 

THE LAUREATES FROM DUBLIN VISIT LOS ANGELES TO PLAY MERV GRIFFIN’S GAMERS

The 25 Future Stadiums We Can't Wait to See | Bleacher Report ...

The Laureates are owned by Nahum Tate, appointed Poet Laureate of England in 1692 upon the death of Thomas Shadwell, the second Poet Laureate of England, who followed John Dryden. Tate, like Shadwell, wore one of those giant wigs. Henry Purcell used Tate’s play as the libretto for Dido and Aeneas.  Tate’s best-seller was his happy-ending version of King Lear. He was born into a Puritan family in Dublin, and after receiving a degree from Trinity College in Dublin he became a working writer in London.

Now the Laureate, with his Laureates, flies to Los Angeles, to play Merv Griffin’s Gamers, in the Gamers home opener.

The Laureates play in the not-so-Glorious League, with the controversial Pistols—associated with Eva Braun, featuring T.S. Eliot, Ezra Pound, and Ted Hughes; the pitching-rich Banners (Dante, Shelley, Virgil); and two solid, British-owned teams—Queen Victoria’s Carriages and Lord Russell’s The Sun.

The Gamers are in the People’s League, with the Cobras of Kolkata, the Mist of Tokyo, the Waves of Beijing, and another California team, television producer Dick Wolf’s the Laws.

Both teams feel they have a good chance of winning their respective divisions.

Merv Griffin has a loose and fun-loving team; Noel Coward leads off at shortstop, John Betjeman, Poet Laureate of England himself, from 1972 to 1984, plays center field and bats second; Billy Collins in left, Eugene Ionesco, the Absurdist playwright, bats cleanup and plays catcher; Thomas Hood, a mock-heroic ballad genius, at second, Tristan Tzara, first base, Ogden Nash in right, Joe Green, the third baseman, and pitching for the Gamers, Lewis Carroll.

Literature can be light, yet serious. This might describe the Gamers.

Or serious, yet light. Here is the starting lineup of the Laureates:

Sara Teasdale 2b; Oliver Goldsmith cf; Alexandre Dumas lf; Charles Dickens 1b; Aphra Behn rf; Mirza Ghalib 3b; Boris Pasternak c; JK Rowling ss, and pitching for the Laureates, Edmund Burke.

And finally, “light” can have a thousand meanings.

Edmund Burke, the Laureates starter, said he was confident he would be able to analyze the “lightness” of the Gamers lineup, and turn in a satisfactory performance.  ” I can’t be pedantic; I can’t leave the ball up in the strike zone. As long as I’m around the strike zone, and go right after these guys, and let my defense play behind me, I have no worries.”

The defense behind him isn’t bad.

Ghalib has some wit of his own at third; the women up the middle, Sara Teasdale and JK Rowling, and Dickens at first round out a solid infield. Meanwhile, Dumas, the mysterious Aphra Behn, and the popular and well-liked Goldsmith make for a speedy and daring outfield.

Lewis Carroll looked at the ground and whistled under his breath when asked how would do in the season opener for the Gamers.

The defense behind Carroll is adequate: Tzara at first, Hood at second, Coward at short, and Joe Green at third in the infield; in the outfield, Betjeman is in center, Billy Collins patrols left, and Ogden Nash holds down right field.

The Dublin Laureates are in green.  The LA Gamers are in blue.

And there’s a huge crowd.  This will definitely help the crowd-pleasing Gamers.  But as Marla Muse has pointed out, the Laureates also bring the entertainment.

Noel Coward homers in the bottom of the first off Edmund Burke’s first pitch.

It’s 1-0 Gamers!

Betjeman drills one up the middle. Runner on first. No outs. Burke keeps Betjeman close. Billy Collins flies out. Ionesco walks on four pitches.  Ronald Reagan, the manager, saunters out to the mound to calm Burke down. Thomas Hood batting. A one-hopper to short. Rowling to Teasdale. And back to first, Dickens digs out the low throw. Double play! And the Dublin Laureates are out of the inning.

Meanwhile Lewis Carroll sets down the first nine batters he sees. Change-ups keep the team from Dublin off-balance. He makes a few hitters look bad, especially with his knuckle-change.

Mirza Ghalib and JK Rowling finally break through for the Laureates, as they get a couple of runs in the fifth.

But it’s not Edmund Burke’s day. Lewis Carroll and Ogden Nash knock in runs; Ionesco homers.

After seven, the Gamers lead 7-2.  Dana Gioia is now pitching for the Laureates.

In the 8th, Mirza Ghalib takes Carroll deep to make it 7-3, but the Gamers come back in the bottom of the frame against Gioia—Lewis Carroll lifts a pop fly home run right down the line in left, and it’s 8-3 for Los Angeles.

What a great day for Lewis Carroll! Merv Griffin has to be happy with the Gamers’ opening day performance.

Charles Bernstein takes over for Lewis Carroll in the top of the ninth. Rod McKuen replaces Billy Collins in left.

JK Rowling reaches. Verdi, pinch hitting, strikes out. Teasdale singles, Oliver Goldsmith hits a pitch out of the strike zone and singles in Rowling, it’s 8-4. Dumas hits a perfect double-play ball to Noel Coward at short.  He bobbles it!  Everybody’s safe. Dickens singles, and it’s 8-5. Menander relieves Bernstein. Aphra Behn batting. She’s 0 for 3 today.

The bases are loaded.  No one is leaving Merv Griffin Park. The Gamers fans are holding their breath.

Aphra Behn swings.

There’s a fly ball, hit pretty deep….

McKuen is looking up…

Home run!

The Laureates have gone ahead 9-8!

We go to the bottom of the ninth, Livy pitching for the Laureates.

Betjeman grounds out. Rod McKuen grounds out. Ionesco doubles. Thomas Hood up.

Livy deals 2-2, Hood swings…there’s a fly to right…

Aphra Behn goes back…back…

And takes it at the warning track!

The Laureates win.

Los Angeles groans.

Merv Griffin kicks something.

Noel Coward is not laughing.

Third baseman Joe Green puts his arm around Menander.

Trailing 8-3 going to the ninth, the Laureates have defeated the Gamers by a run, on a grand slam by Aphra Behn.

After showering, and throwing on a dress, she tells Marla Muse how it feels.

This is Scarriet Poetry News.

 

THE CEILINGS OF POPE JULIUS II VISIT PHOENIX TO TAKE ON THE UNIVERSE OF STEVEN SPIELBERG

Phoenix | Arizona, United States | Britannica

The magnificent team assembled by Pope Julius in the Emperor division is enough to scare anyone.

Look at this lineup: Blake, Petrarch, Euripides, Spenser, Michelangelo, Ferdowsi (the epic Persian poet) Camoens ( the epic Portuguese poet) and Tulasidasa (the epic Indian poet).

Now with solemn ceremony and slow, in pomp and studied grace, the Ceilings assemble in Universe Field in Phoenix, the fanfare evident to every soul here in Arizona wearing a baseball cap or a black and purple Universe jersey.

Lotus petals. Rose petals. Here come the Ceilings.

And on the mound for the team visiting from Rome: John Milton.

Flying in from temperate Rome, Italy, the Ceilings are greeted by nearly 100 degree temperatures in Phoenix, Arizona.

The boldly insane William Blake and the sonorous John Milton of the Ceilings both talked to reporters at the airport.

No, they didn’t care about the 100 degrees; hell was much hotter.

“There are many hells hotter,” intoned Blake, “Phoenix is fine.”

But even in the air-conditioned airport, according to Marla Muse, Blake was already sweating quite a bit, just speaking with reporters in a rather high-pitched rant.

No, they were not intimidated by America, and this “loose” and “progressive” American team of Steven Spielberg’s.

“We love America!” Blake said, “But we’re not scared of America.”

“Progressive? In what way?” Milton asked. “Look up Harriet Beecher Stowe’s friend, the Duchess of Argyll. These aristocrats were enslaving Scotland and India while shedding tears for American slaves.”

“What are you implying?” yelled the press.

Marla, this sounds rather embarrassing.  We’ll let it go. Milton doesn’t want to be intimidated by Spielberg’s team. Milton wants to win.

Marla Muse: “Milton’s partial blindness makes him a better pitcher. His focus and control is one of the best we’ve ever seen.”

“And please keep Hollywood away from my poetry,” Milton said, ending the brief press conference at the airport.

Loudly roaring for Steven Spielberg’s team are proud hearts, endowed with as much feeling as any visitor from Rome, and there are tens of thousands of them, and their love surrounds and rains down on these: Batting leadoff for the Phoenix Universe: Chuck Berry, (poet of rock n’ roll) batting second, Maya Angelou, batting third, Bob Dylan, hitting cleanup, Juvenal, the Roman satirist, inventor of the phrase, “bread and circuses,” batting fifth, Paul Celan, batting sixth, Delmore Schwartz, and hitting seventh and eighth, Philip Levine, and Anthony Hecht.

And pitching for the Universe, one of the great moral artists: Harriet Beecher Stowe.

The Universe are in the Modern Division.  This game is the season’s first inter-league play.

The Ceilings receive a few cheers in the opening ceremonies in Phoenix.  They do look proud in their dark crimson, trimmed in punished gold.

The game is scoreless through five—and then in the bottom of the sixth, Juvenal, fouling off pitch after pitch from Milton, refusing to give in, homers to left, giving Spielberg’s team a 1-0 lead.

Can Harriet Beecher Stowe keep the Universe ahead? She’s pitching fiercely, beautifully.  Blake takes a big swing and a miss, strike three! Petrarch grounds out to Chuck Berry at third. Euripides hits a shot, snared by second baseman Bob Dylan.

John Milton retires the Universe in order in the seventh.

So far, Juvenal of the Universe has been the only one to truly solve Milton’s offerings.

Edmund Spenser walks to start the eighth, but Stowe induces Michelangelo to ground to short—Celan to Dylan to Hecht, double play!

Marla, let’s watch that again in slow motion.

Marla Muse: It’s all slow motion to me.

Ah, the eye of the muse.

Now two outs in the 8th, Stowe delivers the 2-2 pitch to Ferdowsi, the 10th century Persian bard.  And that one…is hit well…deep to center…back goes Delmore Schwartz…gone!  The Ceilings have tied the game with one swing!  And it came from the Zoroastrian for Pope Julius’ team!

The Universe threatens in the bottom of the 8th—Milton leaves. And J.S. Bach comes in to put out the fire. What fine pitching from the bullpen.  One can see why many are predicting the Ceilings to win the very competitive Emperor division.

The score is tied, 1-1 in the top of the ninth, and the Ceilings Zoroastrian epic poet Ferdowsi, who homered last time, draws a walk off Stowe, with two outs. The right fielder, the great Hindu poet Gosvami Tulasidasa, in a flutter of lotus dust, steps to the plate.  On the first pitch, Gosvami swings…the ball is launched to left-center, just over the reach of Delmore Schwartz, but still in the park; here comes Ferdowsi trying to score, the throw comes into the plate, Maya Angelou, the catcher has it, here comes Ferdowsi…

Out!

No, safe!

The Zoroastrian has knocked the ball loose from Angelou!

And the benches are emptying! The Universe did not like the way Ferdowsi crashed into Angelou.

There’s a brawl at home plate!  Stowe has tackled Ferdowsi and players, black uniforms versus crimson, are pushing and shoving each other!

Marla Muse: I don’t like to see this.

Me neither.

But thankfully, it’s over fast.  These are good-spirited teams.

The players apologize.  No fines. No suspensions.

With surprising honor and dignity, Stowe goes back to the mound and gets the final out of the inning.

The visiting Ceilings have a 2-1 lead.

The poet Abul-Qasem Ferdowsi Tusi, author of the Shahnameh, has scored both runs for the Ceilings: a homer and a knock-down at the plate.

Bach, tightly buttoned up in his regal crimson garb, sets the side down in order in the bottom of the ninth.

The Ceilings win, disappointing the home team crowd.

The good news for the Universe is that Stowe put in a brilliant performance.

The players for the Universe are somber.

“Bob Dylan!  What’s it like losing on opening day in front of all these fans?” one reporter cried.

Dylan says nothing as he climbs into his limousine.

Autographs are against the rules.  But Ferdowsi cannot help himself. Outside of the park, shyly beaming, he scratches on a few programs.

The Celings’ Michelangelo is different.  “I warn you, stay away from me!”

The Ceilings of Rome, irascible, holy, and fragrant, are going to be a tough team to beat this year. They have St. Augustine in the bullpen, and Dryden is their next starting pitcher.

After the game, Pope Julius is asked if he feels good about his team.

Feel good? What does that mean? God let us win. I pray He does so, as often as possible, in the future.”

Was everybody leaving after the game? Where was Milton?  Where was Blake? Surely Petrarch has something to say.  Had the game taken everything out of them?

Marla Muse: We expect good quotes!  But these reporters! No one wants to talk to these morons!

As the shades of evening fall, the Ceilings, winners on this first day, suddenly shadows themselves, are gone.

The players of the Universe leave even more quickly.

Maya Angelou stops briefly to talk, smiling weakly. “I’m fine,” she says, when asked about the knock-down. “I don’t care,” she says, when asked about Milton’s airport rant on the Duchess of Argyle; “look, we can’t listen to that stuff. We have to stay focused. Fo-cus! Child, then nothing’s gonna stop us.” She pauses, and then: “I shouldn’t have dropped that ball.”

That’s all from Scarriet Poetry Baseball News.

WHAT IF MY POETRY WERE LIKE CLASSICAL MUSIC

The Summer Night that Paused Among her Stars" by John Collier ...

What if my poetry were like classical music

And didn’t say anything? How long

Could I hold your interest with music?

We know a poem is similar to a song,

But what if this poem were like classical music

And said nothing. Would that be wrong?

I knew you once. You lived in your eyes,

And never had that much to say.

Speech is physical, comedy a surprise;

My poetry perhaps could do things that way,

And please exactly as you once made me happy,

A smirk or a smile, not saying a word,

Moving involuntarily a little closer to me,

Or voluntarily—it was all the same:

The evening quick with the excitement of a bird,

Crescendo and coda the first and second syllables of your name.

Isn’t this, then, like classical music?

An evening in the summer, the perfume

Of the flowers affecting us like music,

The weight of our love almost like doom?

What am I saying? I’m only thinking

How I felt then. Silence. And the stars winking.

 

 

 

RIOTS MAR WAVES AT LAWS OPENING DAY IN SANTA BARBARA

Spotlight: Santa Barbara | Visit California

The signs were everywhere, “Go Home Marx,”—referring to the controversial center fielder Karl Marx of Chairman Mao’s Beijing Waves—the opening day opponent of Dick Wolf’s Laws, hosting the Waves of Brecht, Neruda, and Li Po, in lovely Santa Barbara, California.

Prior to the start of today’s People’s Division game, the Laws signed Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr (the poet, “Table Talk” author, and father of the Supreme Court Justice) to their pitching staff; Holmes is a graduate of Phillips Academy, the famous Andover prep school; Dick Wolf, Law and Order producer, co-owner and manager of the Laws, is an alum, as well.

Marla Muse: Who would have thought in sunny, rich, Santa Barbara, there would be riots? People could have been killed!

Amazing, Marla.  But it’s just pretend.

Marla Muse: There is no such thing as pretend.

Right.

Voltaire, the starter for the Waves, a charming man, asked for calm. Mao, the manager, hid in the dugout. Only Marx on this team really antagonizes.

It all began in the top of the 9th with the starting pitcher Aristotle attempting to nail down a 5-4 complete game victory for the Laws. With two outs, Karl Marx, 0 for 3, at the time, stepped to the plate, to the usual boos from the fans. Some fans had flown in from China, and there was some visiting team support from other places as well, making things a little tense.  Humphrey Bogart was in the crowd (expelled from Phillips Academy), as well as Santa Barbara residents Jennifer Lopez and Steven Spielberg—who runs the Universe, a team in the Modern Division.

With two strikes, Marx laced a line drive to right, which took a funny hop past the charging right fielder for the Laws, Spanish poet Antonio Machado. Marx had a sure triple, but kept going and raced for home, just beating the relay throw from the startled second baseman Jane Kenyon; Marx was safe according to home plate umpire and physicist, Albert Einstein.  The play was hard to see as the Laws catcher, Marital, the Roman poet of bragging and witty epigrams, was all over Marx. The ball arrived before Marx—who apparently slid around Martial, touching home plate with a toe before Martial fell on Marx, as he applied the tag quite roughly.

Einstein made the safe call, as Marx staggered to his feet, beard full of dust, and then Marx celebrated, gesticulating wildly, flipping the bird to the booing home team fans.

How the riots began, no one is really sure.  They say a Laws fan threw something at Marx and was tackled from behind by a Waves fan. Fights sprang up around the ballpark, but the biggest brawl was right behind home plate, and Voltaire ran out of the dugout and actually pulled two fans apart. The two teams themselves stood around, mostly bewildered; the brawling was confined to the fans, though a few Laws players told Marx to get into the dugout and calm down—there was shouting between Laws and Waves players, but Voltaire’s actions focused attention away from the players, and helped keep the peace between the players themselves. Santa Barbara police restored order in the stands after about twenty minutes; seven arrests were made.

After the game, Dick Wolf reminded fans, “Violence in or around our ballpark will not be tolerated.”

In the 12th, with Yvor Winters pitching, Li Po homered to give the Waves a 6-5 lead; Marx could be seen grinning in the dugout; but in the bottom of the frame, the home team tied it up as Akhmatova went deep for the Laws.

The game was finally decided in the 13th. Pinch hitter Reed Whitmore fouled off ten pitches and worked a walk to get things going against Waves reliever Ruhollah Khomeini. Whitmore was signed by Dick Wolf right before the game, along with Holmes; this now-forgotten poet is another Phillips Academy alum, and was U.S. poet laureate twice—in 1964 and 1984. The Laws included his poem, “Thinking of Tents” in the programs handed out at the Santa Barbara stadium. Whitmore, known simply as “Reed,” seemed to bother the hell out of Khomeini on the mound, and ended up stealing second and third, before Khomeini walked two more hitters. Up came John Donne, who launched a game-ending grand slam into right-center.   Mark Van Doren (poet and critic) picked up the win for the Laws.

The riot-weary Santa Barbara fans celebrated the Laws victory afterwards on the beach

~~~

A SLUGFEST ON EAST 47TH STREET

Pamela Harriman’s upstate New York Dreamers came to town to face Andy Warhol’s East Side Printers in the Modern Division.

Sharon Olds went 5-5 with seven runs batted in as the Dreamers knocked around Duchamp, the ace of the Printers staff, as well as John Cage, RP Blackmur, and Guy Davenport, to beat the hometown Printers 18-15.

The top of the Dreamers order—Carolyn Forche, Richard Lovelace, Edna Millay, and Sharon Olds—was relentless. Jack Gilbert and Louise Bogan also drove in runs.

The Dreamers starter, Simone de Beauvoir, didn’t pitch well, either. Louise Gluck ended up getting the win.  Duchamp homered before having to come out of the game, and the big bats for the losing Printers were Aristophanes, Garcia Lorca, Andre Breton, and Hart Crane.

After the game, Warhol just smiled, and said, “gee, that was a lot of scoring!”

Did he even know that he had lost?

After their wild win, Pamela Harriman, Sharon Olds, Muriel Rukeyser, Louis MacNeice, and Louise Bogan enjoyed Jumbo Shrimp Scampi and martinis late into the evening at The Grill.

~~~

PITCHER’S DUEL IN PHILLY

In another Modern Division contest, John D. Rockefeller’s New York Buyers visited Philadelphia to take on A.C. Barnes’ the Crash.

Rockefeller ace Walt Whitman and the Crash’s ace, rhyming poet and Modernist essayist John Crowe Ransom were both brilliant; Whitman’s outrageous curve couldn’t be touched; Ransom’s steady diet of fastballs on the outside corner (with the occasional change up) produced ground outs and pop ups.

The defensive play of the game was when the Buyers’ Jack Kerouac climbed the wall in left to take a homer away from Allen Tate.  Big sigh of relief by Whitman in the sixth. Even his beard was nervous when Tate hit it.

Helen Vendler relieved Whitman in the bottom of the eighth with two on and two outs and got William Carlos Williams of the Crash on a weak roller to Elizabeth Bishop at second.

Jackson Pollock entered the game to start the ninth, as Ransom had thrown a lot of pitches through eight. Robert Penn Warren and Elizabeth Bishop struck out, but then Dylan Thomas hit a towering shot to center, over everything.  Dylan Thomas did not go quietly!

W.K. Wimsatt pitched a one-two-three ninth to earn the save, as Whitman, Vendler, and the Buyers beat the home team Crash 1-0.

Afterwards, Kerouac, Thomas, and a few hangers on were seen celebrating at The Olde Bar in Philly.

No comment from the teetotaler John D.

~~~

 

SHOULD I HAVE NO EMOTION ABOUT THIS, THEN?

The Interior Of A Renaissance Painting by MotionAge Designs

Should I have no emotion about this, then?

Would I look better in the eyes of my fellow men?

The wreck of my emotions, the destruction

Of everything I used to feel

Is still emotional; if I once felt something

About you, it will always be emotionally real.

I can’t help but feel a certain way

Every time I breathe deeply late at night

And I’m not afraid; and I realize, once again,

Everything is going to be all right.

And so I also feel a certain way

When your image comes into my mind,

Brought here by a certain feeling;

And, no matter what—let the parts of all the images dissolve,

Let dreams bump against dreams and be blind—

I still see you, with feelings that never become still,

In whatever it is that is my mind.

I have feelings about my feelings,

Even if the ones which first saw you are gone;

My feelings about feelings, not my vision,

Is the sun; these feelings shine; it is they

Which penetrate into what you are—

What you were is still relevant; the mechanical

Self is entirely made of feelings,

And that is why the universe is so quick

And sensitive; nothing really dies;

I cried once about that, and coldly, that,

Cannot escape now; she cries

That I once cried, she cries because

I will always be sensitive. And love.

 

 

 

MORE EXCITING PLAY AS POETRY BASEBALL SEASON GETS UNDERWAY!!

John playing baseball | John lennon beatles, John lennon

John Lennon plays for the Tokyo Mist

Ralph Waldo Emerson pitches at home for the Devon Sun.

Byron pitches for Harvey Weinstein’s club from Westport, Connecticut—they visit Virginia to take on David Lynch’s the Strangers.

Shakespeare pitches at home in New York City for the War.

John Lennon and the Tokyo Mist host the Kolkata Cobras.

~~~~

Visiting Devon, England, the Banners flew in from Florence yesterday, as Lorenzo d’ Medici’s team, led by second baseman John Keats and starters Dante, Shelley, and Virgil, prepared to take on Lord Russell’s The Sun, and its opening day anglophilic American twirler, Ralph Waldo Emerson.

The home team is always the favorite in Poetry Baseball—poetry has a profound disadvantage when performed for an unsympathetic crowd.

Emerson’s fastball had a lot to say, and he set down the first 13 batters he faced, to an appreciative Devon crowd, noisy and restless in the chilly spring air.

But Dante was just as good, if not better, his inside stuff breaking bats, his outside curve paralyzing the likes of Kipling, Wordsworth, and Matthew Arnold.

It was 0-0 after nine innings.

In the bottom of the 9th, Dante beaned Basil Bunting and then aimed one at Emerson, who just got out of the way.  Home plate umpire Werner Heisenberg immediately tossed Dante, to the delight of the Devon fans.

The Banners went to the top of the tenth with the score still tied, however, after Medici’s relief pitcher William Rossetti struck out Southey and got Kipling to pop up.

Emerson walked Christina Rossetti to start the 10th, who promptly stole second. Emerson retired Keats and Schiller, and with two outs, the stoic writer from Concord faced Dante Gabriel Rossetti, who poked a 3-2 curve ball into right for a single, scoring his sister.

1-0 Banners.

William Rossetti loaded the bases in the bottom of the 10th with two outs, but got Horace Walpole to lift a short fly to left—charging to make the catch and end the game, Christina Rossetti.

The Rossetti siblings didn’t have a lot to say after the game.  They were obviously happy.

~~~

David Lynch’s Strangers hosted Harvey Weinstein’s the Actors in Alexandria, Virginia on a beautiful spring day, blossoms surrounding the park.

Alexander Pope delivered a complete game shutout as the Strangers beat Byron and the Westport Actors 4-0.

Byron couldn’t figure out Theodore Roethke, who walked, doubled and homered against the Actor starting pitcher, to lead the Stranger attack; Mary Shelley, playing third base and batting lead off for the Strangers, chipped in with a triple and a run.

The Strangers, dressed in black, gave out black roses to all the fans entering the stadium on opening day.

Weldon Kees disappeared for an inning in the fifth. No one was in right field.  Pope didn’t seem to notice, and no one hit the ball to right field—fortunately for the Strangers.   We’ve never seen that in a professional ball game before.  After the game, Kees said it was all a misunderstanding and he would never do it again.

David Lynch didn’t seem too concerned. Pope allowed only 3 hits and didn’t walk a batter.

~~~

In another opening day contest, J.P Morgan’s War easily took care of the visiting team—P.T. Barnum’s Animals—-on Madison Avenue, in the War’s beautiful new ballpark, by a score of 8-3.

New York’s Shakespeare was solid, walking two and fanning six. Edward Gibbon finished up for the War.

Rupert Brooke reached base four times, and Philip Sidney broke the game open with a grand slam in the seventh, chasing Ovid, the Animals starter.

Stephen Crane, Harry Crosby, and Keith Douglas also scored for the War.  Ovid, who throws a variety of pitches, showed great stuff, but he had trouble finding the plate, and the War took advantage.

~~~

The Kolkata Cobras visited Tokyo for their first game of the season, Rabindranath Tagore pitching against Matsuo Basho of the Mist.

The shortstop for the Cobras, Anand Thakore, hit a homer right down the line to give his team a 1-0 lead in the second, and a two run single in the 5th by Tagore gave the Cobras a 3-0 lead.

The Mist battled back, however.  Second-baseman Yoko Ono started the scoring with a homer in the 6th.  Then with 2 out, Hilda Doolittle took Tagore deep with Richard Brautigan aboard, tying the score.

Basho left with arm stiffness in the 7th, and reliever Kobe Abe doubled in a run in the bottom of the eighth to give the Mist their first lead of the game, 4-3.

With two outs in the 9th, and Vikram Seth and George Harrison on base, Thakore hit a bullet, which a jumping Ono snared in the top of her glove, to end the game.

John Lennon, shortstop for the Mist, who congratulated his teammate, Yoko, after the game, went 0 for 4, grounding out to George Harrison of the Cobras at third four times. John and Yoko turned a couple of double plays in the close contest. “This one could have gone either way,” John said. “I think Yoko was the difference in this one.” Yoko quietly changed the subject, “I hope Basho is okay.”

~~~

 

LOVE ISN’T KNOWING

norton anthology of poetry - Seller-Supplied Images - AbeBooks

Love requires not knowing.

The super intelligent cannot love;

I think intelligence

Is another name for the inability to love.

Dogs and cats are welcome in our beds.

Being with you, simply, is what the person in me dreads.

I remember two days the most: the day

You liked my poems, and the day

You hated them—thinking they were good enough

To impress others; that day I lost your love.

I keep talking. But it’s too late.

I sound smart. This is what you hate.

I tell this poem to end: It can’t do anything more.

There it is, in the Norton Anthology, calling you a whore.

 

I NEVER HAD AN INTERESTING PERSONALITY

Look Your Best At Rap Concerts - Coup Detroit

I never had an interesting personality—

It all goes into my poetry;

Poetry which thrills and sings up there on a quiet stage;

Here, among you, I’m the father to impotence,

A polite, grinning, veneer hiding my rage:

I cannot believe how stupid and selfish

The lot of you are; your concerns

Momentary and trivial, your taste

Numbed by the flamboyant spectacle

Of a hopeless moment for that moment’s sake.

I don’t believe thinking exists anymore—

I feel its lack in one, long, dull, anxious, stomach ache.

The giddy folly of the craven crowd

Is the only thing down here that is really allowed.

When I hear you talk, I want to yell at you

For being so dense and impolite, but I hold my tongue;

That’s right; I’m dull, perplexed, and old.

In the heaven of my poetry I’m seductive and young;

Honest, witty and exciting, like the violinist

As simple and vulnerable as the lamb,

Who picks up the violin: Beethoven. Damn.

 

 

 

INTERVIEW WITH AN UMPIRE

Janine Jansen | YourClassical

We’re here with famed violinist Janine Jansen, who was the umpire behind the plate in the 2020 Scarriet World Historical Poetry Baseball opening day game between the Broadcasters and the Codes on the island of Corsica. Welcome, Janine.

Thank you. It’s nice to be here in Corsica. And it’s stopped raining (laughter).

Janine, you’re a world class musician. What’s it like calling balls and strikes in poetry?

Well, I think poetry and music are related. Very much so. I do like baseball. Even though I’m from the Netherlands.

Ah, you’ve told me a lot already…

(Blushing) Yes…it’s confusing sometimes…I just play the violin…that’s all I do, really…and yet life is so rich in so many other ways…I don’t have time to…

Well, you are one of the greatest violinists and interpreters of classical music in the history of classical music.

Thank you.

Did you meet Napoleon?

Very briefly. The umpires are not allowed—

Of course.  As most people know, Napoleon owns and runs the Corsica team…But to get back to my question—it must be a lot of pressure…to call balls and strikes…it can make a difference in the game…

Calling balls and strikes in poetry is different from calling balls and strikes in baseball.

How so?

It’s hard to put into words.

The call in the second inning, when Bobby Burns of the Broadcasters walked—

I know. Some fans thought it was a strike. It was a good pitch by Homer. It was. But it wasn’t a strike. (smiling)

Maybe in digital terms it was a strike. But not in the concert hall?

I like that. Very good. (laughter)

I just watched the 2010 documentary, “Janine,” and one of your musical partners calls you, as a musician, a “great conversationalist…”

I think I remember that. (laughter)  I like the documentary, but it was very hard to make…it made me more self-conscious than I already am!…this magazine was interviewing me in the documentary…it was self-conscious on top of self-conscious….one is already in a fishbowl as a….what am I? (laughter) a classical soloist…I’m only comfortable, really, with…the music…

It was interesting to hear that you play with a full orchestra as if you are playing in a quartet—a colleague said you “listen” to the other musicians…

My family are musicians, and that’s how I started, playing in small groups, and I love that…even though it’s also exciting to play with great orchestras, famous conductors….but it’s a lot more travel and work…

I imagine.  The documentary brought that out…

Yes.  Anyway….Music isn’t just playing, it’s also…listening…

You’re a gift to the world. And we—everyone—appreciates your hard work, your recordings of Britten, Beethoven, Bach…

Thank you.

And that listening quality…it makes you a great umpire…

It’s an honor to serve…So many great poets…

And musicians.  Artists like you make one realize that music is a “conversation”  And for that reason music is…poetry.

I don’t read a lot of poetry…but you’re right.

There are rumors that Beethoven might be recruited to be a starting pitcher for one of the Scarriet Poetry Baseball teams this season…

Oh! You better not do that (nervous laughter)…please… (laughter, embarrassment)

Some teams need starting pitchers…to compete with T.S. Eliot, Homer Goethe…

I wouldn’t be able to be…objective.  Beethoven…  Can that be true?—

That’s all we have time for.  It’s a very long season.

Yes, and it’s all over the world!

Janine Jansen, ladies and gentlemen.  Thank you so much, Janine.

Thank you, Scarriet!

(off mike) Marla!  would you show Janine out?

 

 

SCARRIET BASEBALL OPENING DAY

Ano Meria-Agios Georgios Road

Napoleon convinced Homer the fate of Greece lies with central Europe; the torrential rains in Corsica which delayed both opening game ceremonies and the game itself didn’t seem to bother Napoleon one bit. He smiled the whole time, and even toasted several dignitaries, and the fans, at one point, to tremendous cheers, with champagne from South Africa (watered down).

Homer scattered seven hits in a lengthy and soggy, complete game, 5-3 win over the visiting Rimini Broadcasters in an epic contest marred by heavy Mediterranean rains, as Napoleon’s Codes prevailed over a persistent Federico Felini team in the first game of the season.

The first pitch of the year delivered by Homer was a strike.  Knee high, on the outside part of the plate, where Homer pretty much stayed all day (and into the night—this was a long game.)

The Broadcasters took an early 1-0 lead against Homer and the Codes in the second as Robert Burns walked (Corsica fans thought ball four was strike three) and scampered home on a Jim Morrison double.

The Codes stormed back in the bottom of the fourth, taking the lead for good. The Broadcaster starter, the noble Leopardi, seemed bothered by the muddy mound, and fell at one point delivering a pitch. Homer himself began the scoring with an infield single. After Callimachus fanned, Derek Walcott drew a walk and Jean Racine drove in two with a slicing triple that took a funny hop off the wall past Anne Sexton in right. Racine then scored on a Victor Hugo sacrifice fly.

Wole Soyinka and WH Auden both hit solo homers in the seventh, chasing Leopardi.  Auden, the English poet, was asked after the game, once again, why he was playing for Napoleon’s team.  “Because it’s a good team,” Auden said, “and I love the limestone cliffs of Corsica overlooking this ballpark.” Soyinka, sitting nearby, with a big laugh, called out, “limestone cliffs, baby!”

Not too far away, in Paris, the other Emperor Division contest saw the home Goths trounce the visiting Crusaders 9-5, as Johann W. Goethe earned the opening day win and also knocked in three runs. Thomas Aquinas never looked comfortable on the mound for Philip II’s Madrid team, as he couldn’t find the plate in the first. Somber and humble afterwards in the clubhouse, Aquinas said simply, “God was not with us this day.” Smiling through tears, he added, “He’s not always with us for every little thing we want. I need to pitch better….”

In one other game to report, in the Glorious Division, London was happy as Queen Victoria’s Carriages hosted an opening day win against the Berlin Pistols and starting pitcher T.S. Eliot.

Andrew Marvell, with ninth inning help from Jeremy Bentham, stopped the Pistols, 2-0, besting Eliot in a pitching duel which saw Robert Browning and Elizabeth Browning slam solo homers to provide the scoring for the home team. Eliot struck out 15 hitters, including Henry Longfellow four times, but Marvell never allowed a Pistol past second base as his big curve was accurate and a wonder to watch.

Pistols starting pitcher Ezra Pound, hanging out in the bullpen with Hemingway, Heidegger, Hugh Kenner, Wyndham Lewis, John Quinn, and Olga Rudge, got into a shouting match with some London fans in the seventh inning, and then after the game complained bitterly that the Pistols “gave Tom no run support after he pitched such a great game; I think I might have to put myself in the lineup; when you can’t hit the ball hard, you have to manufacture runs! Maybe I’m crazy, but I think we should win every game!” William Yeats, hitting in the cleanup spot for the Pistols (0-3 with a walk and a strikeout) grumbled as he left, “It’s still early. We have a lot of games to play. This is a terribly good team.”

Reporting from Corsica, Paris, and London, this is Scarriet Poetry Baseball news.

 

THE SEASON BEGINS! SCARRIET POETRY BASEBALL!

Index of /main/wp-content/uploads/2014/01

This is the first world baseball league in history!!!

25 teams, 500 poets, is a lot to take in, but that’s why we’re here to guide you.

Marla Muse: Is that snow outside?

Yes, Marla, snow is falling outside the commissioner’s office here in Salem, Massachusetts…

On April 16th!  But to continue…

There’s been a lot of recent signings as teams attempt to fill their rosters. And Boston took Franklin’s team from Philly.  Philly already has a team: The Crash.

We suggest you generally familiarize yourself with the teams, and pick a favorite team to win the championship–why not?  We assure you, these games will play out, for real; no hidden hand will determine the winners.

The Emperor Division

THE BROADCASTERS

Fellini’s Broadcasters is a team of flamboyance and show.  They know how to live and die.  A sexy team.  Motto: Pleased to meet you, hope you guess my name. Home park: Rimini, Italy on the Adriatic coast.

Starting Pitchers Giacomo Leopardi 5, Ben Jonson 5, Nabokov 5, Coleridge 5, Relief Pitchers Valery 5, Hitchcock (new) 5, Walter Benjamin (new) 4
Robert Burns CF, Rilke 2B, Mick Jagger SS, Charles Bukowski 1B, Jim Morrison LF, Anne Sexton RF, Gregory Corso C, Sappho 3B,
Anacreon, Ingrid Jonker, Edmund Waller, Omar Khayyam, Swinburne

THE CODES

How would the emperor Napoleon pick his team—not knowing who might obey him or laugh at him behind his back? Napoleon was a law-giver, a conqueror, and larger than life, and poets either mocked and disparaged him (Byron, Oscar Wilde, Shelley,) or wrote him knee-bending odes (Victor Hugo, John Clare). The character of this team is difficult to define. Napoleon has brought together the best he can find, if they don’t actively hate him. Motto: Let the More Loving One Be Me.  Home park: Corsica, on the Mediterranean sea.

Napoleon’s The Codes Starting Pitchers Homer 6, Cicero 6, Hesiod 5, Logan 4, Relief Pitchers Kant (new) 6, Balzac (new) 6, Edmund Wilson 5
Racine CF, Victor Hugo 2B, W.H. Auden SS, Callimachus 1B, Soyinka LF, Villon RF, Tati-Loutard C, Derek Walcott 3B
John Peale Bishop, Jules Laforgue, Mina Loy, John Clare, Marcus Aurelius (new), Oliver Wendell Holmes (new)

THE CRUSADERS

This is the Christian team—owned by Philip II of Spain. There had to be one! Motto: If in my thought I have magnified the Father above the Son, let Him have no mercy on me. Home park: Madrid, Spain, near the Prado.

Spain’s Philip II’s The Crusaders SP Aquinas 5, GK Chesterton 5, St John of the Cross 4, Tolkien 4, RP Handel (new) 6, Plotinus (new) 5, Lisieux 4,
Aeschulus CF, Hopkins 2B, Saint Ephrem SS, Countee Cullen 1B, Phillis Wheatley LF, Joyce Kilmer RF, Hilaire Beloc C, Anne Bradstreet 3B
John Paul II, Mary Angela Douglas

THE GOTHS

Charles X of France escaped to England and enjoyed a lavishly supported stay during the French Revolution; he became King after Napoleon, tried to return France to normal, whatever that was, but radicals forced him to abdicate; his team is the Goths—apolitical cool people. Motto: Every great enterprise takes its first step in faith. Home park: Paris, France.

Charles X’s The Goths SP Goethe 6, Chateubriand 6 Wilde 5, Baudelaire 5, RP AW Schlegel 5, T Gautier 5
Sophocles CF, Herbert 2B, Herrick SS, Ronsard 1B, Novalis (new) LF, Catulus RF, de Stael C, Heinrich Heine 3B
Pater (to Printers), Gray, Saint-Beauve, Marot, Irving Layton, Thomas Lovell Beddoes

THE CEILINGS

Pope Julius was a learned pope; he’s got Milton, Michelangelo, (a fine poet, by the way) Petrarch, Euripides, and William Blake. The Ceilings. Not a bad team! Motto: They also serve who only stand and wait. Home park: Rome, Italy.

Pope Julius II’s The Ceilings SP Milton 6, Dryden 6, Ludovico Ariosto 6, Swift 6, RP Bach (new) 6, GE Lessing 6, Augustine (new) 6
Spenser CF, Petrarch 2B, Wiliam Blake SS, Michelangelo 1B, Camoens LF, Tulsidas RF, Euripides C, Ferdosi 3B
James Russell Lowell, Kwesi Brew, Klopstock, Pindar, RH Horne

~~~
The Glorious League

THE PISTOLS

A lot of these teams are owned by mysterious conglomerates.  For the sake of controversy, we’re calling this Eva Braun’s team, but no one knows who really owns this team.  The murky rich. Pound signed with the Pistols, and brought along some friends. Motto: A life subdued to its instrument. Home park: Berlin, Germany

Eva Braun’s The Pistols  SP T.S. Eliot 6, George Santayana 5, Wagner 5, Pound 4, RP Wyndham Lewis 4, Kenner 4, Ernest Hemingway 4, Heidegger (new) 4
DH Lawrence CF, Stein 2B, Yeats SS, Ford 1B, A. Crowley LF, Hughes RF, Jung C, Joyce 3B
Balla, Martinetti, Dorothy Shakespeare, A.R. Orage, John Quinn, Olga Rudge

THE CARRIAGES

This is Queen Victoria’s team—Tennyson, Paul McCartney, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Henry James. You get the idea. Motto: Theirs but to do and die.  Home park: London, England

Queen Victoria’s The Carriages SP Marvell 6, V. Woolf 6, Hazlitt 5, H James 4, RP Jeremy Bentham (new) 4
CF Longfellow, 2B Tennyson, SS Paul McCartney, Geoffrey Hill 1B, Sylvia Plath LF, Philip Larkin RF, Browning C, Elizabeth Barrett Browning 3B
Theocritus, Suckling, Bronte sisters (new)

THE BANNERS

If you want glorious, haunting, human-centered, aestheticism, look no further than Medici’s the Banners. Motto: The One remains, the many change and pass. Home park: Florence, Italy

Lorenzo de Medici’s The Banners SP Dante 6, Shelley 6, Virgil 6, da Vinci 5, RP Boccaccio 6, Joshua Reynolds (new) 5, William Rossetti 5
CF Swinburne (new), 2B Keats, SS Thomas Moore, Friedrich Schiller 1B, C. Rossetti LF, D.G. Rossetti RF, George C, Cavalcanti 3B
Glyn Maxwell, Ben Mazer, Philodemus

THE SUN

Lord Russell, Bertie’s grandfather, was prime minister of Great Britain when France was on their side (under Napoleon III) and America was being ripped apart by the Civil War. French-Anglo Colonialism was wrapping up the globe; Emerson and Thoreau were part of the conspiracy—Poe was dead; the USA would return to England as a bucolic colony. A no-borders paradise run by smart people. Motto: A good indignation brings out all one’s powers. Home park: Devon, England

PM Lord Russell’s The Sun SP Emerson 5, JS Mill (new) 4, Aldous Huxley 4, Thomas Carlyle 4, RP Bertrand Russell (new) 5, Thoreau 4, Christopher Ricks (new) 4,
CF Southey, Kipling 2B, Wordsworth SS, Walpole 1B, Margaret Fuller LF, Basil Bunting RF, Sir John Davies C, M Arnold 3B
Joy Harjo, Marilyn Chin, Macgoye,

THE LAUREATES

Nahum Tate, a 1692 British Poet Laureate, rewrote King Lear with a happy ending. Many own the Laureates, but we think Tate’s story is an interesting one. Motto: Luck is bestowed even on those who don’t have hands. Home park: Dublin, Ireland

Nahum Tate’s Laureates SP Edmund Burke 5, Thomas Peacock 4, Samuel Johnson 4, Leigh Hunt 4, RP Livy (new) 6, Dana Gioia 4
CF Goldsmith, Sara Teasdale 2B, Rod McKuen SS, Charles Dickens 1B, Dumas LF, Aphra Behn RF, Pasternak C, Ghalib 3B
JK Rowling, Verdi

~~~
The Secret Society League

THE ACTORS

Weinstein produced smart, progressive films, and this team, the Actors, reflects that, to a certain degree.  The jailed owner belongs to the league’s timeless ghosts; justice prevails, even as things are and are not. Motto: I am no hackney for your rod. Home park: Westport, Connecticut, USA

Harvey Weinstein’s The Actors SP Byron 6, Chaucer 6, Henry Beecher 5, Petronius 5, RP Sade (new) 6, Gide 4
CF Baraka, Hafiz 2B, Skelton SS, Knight 1B, Langston Hughes LF, Gwendolyn Brooks, RF Marilyn Hacker, Audre Lorde C, Thomas Nashe 3B
Clifton, Page, Jim Carroll

THE STRANGERS

The Strangers definitely have filmmaker David Lynch’s stamp. Motto: So still is day, it seems like night profound. Home park: Alexandria, Virginia, USA

David Lynch’s The Strangers SP Pope 6, Nietzsche 5, Beckett 4, Paglia 4, RP Lovecraft 4, Bloch (new) 4, Philip K Dick (new) 4
CF Rabelais, R. Graves 2B, Riding SS, Roethke 1B, Verlaine LF Kees RF, Rimbaud C, Mary Shelley 3B
Labid, Satie, Burroughs, Fernando Pessoa

THE ANIMALS

It’s a little difficult to define P.T. Barnum’s team, the Animals.   Is it spectacle?  Animal-friendly?  We’re not really sure. Majesty and love are incompatible. Fairfield, Connecticut, USA

P.T. Barnum’s The Animals SP Ovid 6, Melville 5, Verne (new) 5, Robert Bly 4, RP Darwin (new) 5, Nerval 5
CF Jack Spicer, Stevens 2B, Edward Lear SS, Heaney 1B, Mary Oliver LF, Marianne Moore RF, Jeffers C, Ferlinghetti 3B
Scalapino, Kay Ryan, Saint Saens

THE WAR

J.P. Morgan did fund World War One.  This is his team, The War. Motto: The fire-eyed maid of smoky war all hot and bleeding will we offer them. Home park: Madison Avenue, New York, New York

J.P. Morgan’s The War SP Shakespeare 6, Sir Walter Scott 5, Erich Remarque 4, David Hume 4, RP Aldington 4, Gibbon (new) 5,
CF Stephen Crane, Keith Douglas 2B, Sidney SS, Apollinaire 1B, Harry Crosby LF, James Dickey RF, Howard Nemerov C, Brooke 3B
Alan Seeger, T.E. Hulme, Untermeyer

THE SECRETS

America’s team! Motto: We come in the age’s most uncertain hour and sing an American tune. Home park: Boston, Massachusetts, USA

Ben Franklin’s The Secrets SP Poe 6, Plato 6, Pushkin 6, Moliere 5, RP F. Scott Key 5, Jefferson (new) 5, Monroe (new) 5, Madison (new) 5
CF Hawthorne, Woody Guthrie 2B, Frost SS, Cole Porter 1B, Kanye West LF, Paul Simon RF, Emily Dickinson C, Carl Sandburg 3B
William Cullen Bryant, Amy Lowell, Bob Tonucci, Stephen Cole, John Prine, Dolly Parton (new), Willie Nelson (new)

~~~
The People’s Division

THE COBRAS

The great literary tradition of India: the Calcutta (Kolkata) Cobras! Motto: Is it true that your love traveled alone through ages and worlds in search of me? Home park: Kolkata, Bengal, India

Sajyajit Ray’s Cobras SP Tagore 5, Rumi 5, Kabir Das 4 (new), Herman Hesse 4, RP Ghandi 6, Nissim Ezekiel (new) 4, Krishnamurti (new) 4, Faiz Ahmad Faiz 4
Allen Ginsberg CF, Sen 2B, Anand Thakore SS, Nair 1B, Thayil LF, Muktibodh RF, Vikram Seth C, George Harrison 3B
Sushmita Gupta, Rupi Kaur, Meenakshi, Dhoomil, Jussawala, Ramanujan, Persius, Doshi, Meghaduta Kalidasa, Nabina Das, Sophie Naz, Linda Ash, Medha Singh

THE MIST

Yoko Ono and her husband are the double play combination for the Tokyo Mist. Motto: In Kyoto, hearing the cuckoo, I long for Kyoto. Home park: Tokyo, Japan

Kurosawa’s The Mist SP Basho 6, Issa 6, Heraclitus 5, Noguchi 4, RP Kobo Abe (new) 5, Suzuki 4
CF Gary Snyder, Ono 2B, John Lennon SS, Robert Duncan 1B, Doolittle LF, Richard Brautigan RF, Sadakichi Hartmann C, Corman 3B
Shikabu, Philip Whalen, Yukio Mishima (new), Haruki Murakami (new)

THE WAVES

Red China, with some ancient aesthetics, Chairman Mao’s The Waves. Motto: Death gives separation repose. Without death, grief only sharpens. Home park: Beijing, China

Chairman Mao’s The Waves SP Voltaire 5, Lucretius 5, Rousseau 5, Lao Tzu 5, RP Khomeini 4, Lenin (new) 4, Engels (new)  4
CF Marx, Li He 2B, Tu Fu SS, Ho Chi-Fang 1B, LF Li Po, RF Billie Holiday, Brecht C, Neruda 3B
Wang Wei, Gary B. Fitzgerald, Wendell Berry, Lu Xun, Bai Juyi, Guo Morou, Baraka, Guy Burgess, Louis Althusser (new)

THE LAWS

The Law and Order producer calls the shots on this team—which is, frankly, hard to characterize. Motto: In poetry everything is clear and definite. Home park: Santa Barbara, California, USA

Dick (Law and Order) Wolf’s The Laws SP Aristotle 5, Lord Bacon 5, Horace 5, Yvor Winters 4, RP Van Doren 4, M L Rosenthal 4, David Lehman 4
CF John Donne, Jane Kenyon 2B, Donald Hall SS, Gottfried Burger 1B, LF Thomas Hardy, RF Machado, Martial C, Akhmatova 3B
Justice, Campion, Seidel, Ajip Rosidi

THE GAMERS

The league needed a Light Verse team, and this is it, and it’s more than that—Merv Griffin’s The Gamers! Motto: He thought he saw an elephant that practiced on a fife. Home park: Los Angeles, California, USA

Merv Griffin’s The Gamers SP Lewis Carroll 5, James Tate 4, E.E. Cummings 4, Morgenstern 4, RP Menander 4, Charles Bernstein 4
CF Betjeman, Thomas Hood 2B, Noel Coward SS, Tzara 1B, Ogden Nash, LF Billy Collins, RF Wendy Cope, Eugene Ionesco C, Joe Green 3B
Riley, McHugh, XJ Kennedy, WS Gilbert, Tony Hoagland

~~~
The Modern Division

THE DREAMERS

Pamela Harriman married Winston Churchill’s son, the producer of The Sound of Music, and New York Governor Averil Harriman, before she ran the DNC.  Her team is the Dreamers. Motto: Not the earth, the sea, none of it was enough for her, without me. Home park: Arden, New York, USA

Pamela Harriman’s  The Dreamers SP Simone de Beauvoir 4, Floyd Dell 4, Anais Nin 4, Marge Piercy 4, RP Germaine Greer (new) 4, Louise Gluck 4
CF Sharon Olds, Edna Millay 2B, Jack Gilbert SS, MacNeice 1B, LF Rukeyser, RF Louise Bogan, Carolyn Forche C, Richard Lovelace 3B
Propertius, Swenson, Jean Valentine, Stevie Smith, Stanley Burnshaw, George Dillon

THE PRINTERS

Andy Warhol is the ruling spirit of The Printers. Motto: The eye, seeking to sink, is rebuffed by a much-worked dullness, the patina of a rag, that oily Vulcan uses, wiping up. Home park: East 47th St, New York, New York

Andy Warhol’s The Printers SP Duchamp 6, Marjorie Perloff 4, Stephanie Burt 4, Mark Rothko 4, RP John Cage 4, RP Blackmur (new) 4, Guy Davenport (new) 4
CF Aristophanes, James Merrill 2B, Hart Crane SS, Kenneth Koch 1B, LF John Updike, RF Lorca, Andre Breton C, John Ashbery 3B
Schuyler, Thom Gunn, Isherwood, Lou Reed

THE BUYERS

Rockefeller didn’t want to spend too much on his team—will Whitman, Freud, Twain, and Paul Engle be a championship rotation of starters?  Robert Lowell and Elizabeth Bishop are the double play combination. Motto: Have you no thought, O dreamer, that it may be all maya, illusion? Home park: Chicago, Illinois, USA

John D. Rockefeller’s The Buyers SP Walt Whitman 5, Freud 5, Twain 5, Paul Engle 4, RP Vendler 4, Wimsat (new) 4, Beardsley (new) 4
CF Penn Warren, Elizabeth Bishop 2B, Robert Lowell SS, Duke Ellington 1B, LF Jack Kerouac, Edgar Lee Masters RF, Rexroth C, Dylan Thomas 3B
Jorie Graham, Harriet Monroe, Carl Philips, Richard Hugo, Alexander Percy, Alcaeus, Franz Wright

THE CRASH

AC Barnes, the wealthy modern art collector, sold his stock right before the Crash of ’29—John Dewey was his aesthetic philosopher. Motto: But for some futile things unsaid I should say all is done for us. Home park: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA

A.C. Barnes’ The Crash SP John Crowe Ransom 5, John Dewey 4, Wittgenstein 4, Walter Pater 4, RP Jackson Pollock 4, I A Richards (new) 4, K Burke (new) 4,
CF Allen Tate, Richard Howard 2B, WC Williams SS, Donald Davidson 1B, LF John Gould Fletcher, RF Stanley Kunitz, Stephen Spender C, Archilochus 3B
Merrill Moore, Andrew Nelson Lytle, Luigi Russolo, Anne Waldman, Cleanth Brooks, Harold Rosenberg

THE UNIVERSE

Steven Spielberg’s The Universe is very Hollywood: progressive and American. Motto: I know why the caged bird sings. Home park: Phoenix, Arizona, USA

Steven Spielberg’s The Universe SP Harriet Beecher Stowe 5, Harold Bloom 4, Randall Jarrell 4, Margaret Atwood 4, RP Foucault (new) 4, Milosz 5,
CF Delmore Schwartz, Bob Dylan 2B, Paul Celan SS, Anthony Hecht 1B, LF Philip Levine, RF Galway Kinnell, Maya Angelou C, Chuck Berry 3B
James Wright, Stephen King, Larry Levis, Juvenal, Alice Walker,

~~~

Opening Day Games

Rimini Broadcasters v. Corsica Codes SP Giacomo Leopardi, Homer

Madrid Crusaders v. Paris Goths SP Aquinas, Goethe

Berlin Pistols v London Carriages SP TS Eliot, Andrew Marvell

Florence Banners v Devon Sun SP Dante, Emerson

Westport Actors v Virginia Strangers SP Byron, Pope

Connecticut Animals v New York War SP Ovid, Shakespeare

Kolkata Cobras v Tokyo Mist SP Tagore, Basho

Beijing Waves v California Laws SP Voltaire, Aristotle

Arden Dreamers v Manhattan Printers SP de Beauvoir, Duchamp

Chicago Buyers v Philadelphia Crash SP Whitman, John Crowe Ransom

The Opening Ceremony Poem, read by Commissioner Thomas Brady

We hope you enjoy the game.
It’s not about fame.
It’s about the game.

 

PLAY BALL!

WHO LOVES LITERATURE?

Sleep In Art And Literature | HuffPost

Who loves literature?

Most people do not, especially those who work in it.

Why?

Because literature is too big. There is too much of it—too many writers, too many countries, too many languages, too much philosophy and history to absorb.

Even as the most dedicated and grey-haired scholars study and write—there it is, behind them, and looking over them, the truth: the most “learned,” when it comes to literature, are still dwarfed by what they don’t know.

That’s the first thing.

Secondly, literature is a grave. There is no youth in literature—literature is old: the literature we are privileged to survey and read and study and experience is but the tip of an old iceberg—and since literature, like law, is all about precedent, to know literature is to reach after the past, and every study you make of literature is by its very nature, false, since other languages and other times have already expressed, many times over, points you are not only making now, but points you have never even dreamed of, and, as you go back into the past, you find the literati decades and centuries ago knew more languages than you could ever hope to know, never mind understand fluently. You, who pride yourself as a student and lover of literature, how fluent are you in the ancient languages which birthed literature itself: Latin, Greek, Arabic, Hindi, Chinese, and thousands of ancient or national languages and dialects? Even if you knew every single language ever written or spoken, fluently, how much philosophy, history, and ancient or foreign custom do you know? History, customs, philosophy—which includes both science and religion—can never be separated from literature. Otherwise it would not be literature. The most learned can only specialize; in literature, the grey beards are infants. Every scholar and poet is an insect.

Thirdly, literature is one discrete object; it had a birth, a linguistic and historical beginning, a childhood, an adolescence, a slow and painful maturity, and most of this is completely removed and hidden from poets today who scratch away on their island for their 100 friends in their own tongue.

Because literature is one, discrete object, it cannot be known in part; the specialist is only a specialist; the whole—and this includes its birth and its every poem and its every adventure—cannot possibly be known in specialization.

Since one cannot specialize in a million directions at once, the necessary act of specialization (so one is not an amateur) cuts off the specialist from literature completely. From literary ignorance there is no escape.

Fourthly, because we cannot know literature, how can literature know itself? It cannot. Language cannot know language. Poems don’t know anything. They only express what they express, not what lies beyond them, or underneath them. And so in this sense too, literature is a grave—the silent headstone which marks the grave.

Fifthly, because literature is the expression of human beings, human beings who are mostly dead, and because death is the most salient fact of life, literature also resembles a grave—in the silence of its books, in the pessimism of its expression, and in its elegiac and poetic focus on impending death. Every literary movement is, at bottom, distinguished by how it deals with death.

And finally, literature is like a vast tomb because literature can kill you—student and poet. You can read a haiku written by someone on the other side of the earth hundreds of years ago which makes your head explode. You realize in a few moments that here is an expression more pressing, more lofty, more beautiful, more all-encompassing than anything you have written, or thought in your entire life, even as you need to be somewhat learned to appreciate it. Despite all that’s been said, about how literature is essentially hidden from you and unknown to you, literature can still be known to you and know you (or out-know you) in a way that makes you feel even smaller and more insignificant than it does when it is hidden and unknown. Literature kills you—as a student of literature, you become the grave.

You shrug off this pessimism—you cannot finally confess you hate literature (if you’ve read this far I’m sure this is true).

I can hear you saying, “Well, despite all this ‘grave’ talk I still know enough literature to enjoy it.”

Of course, and this is what reality (in its mercy) grants us—two things can be true at once.  You can be ignorant of a subject and still ‘get something out of it.’

As long as you understand.  The fact that you can ‘get something out of it’ in no way cancels anything said above.

And one more indictment must be made.

People use their interest in literature as a jacket and tie, something to adorn themselves with.

People use literature as a way to 1. make themselves feel special and 2. to make their opinion known about some current event.

Literature, for most people, is this crossroads: Me and Current Events.

For those who don’t use literature as an excuse for an obscure pose (which is beyond worthless) this is what nearly all people use literature to do:

“Here’s what I feel about sex or religion or the coronavirus.”

But this is the opposite of what literature promotes; this is the very opposite of what literature is.

Literature is not about you.

Nor is it about current events.

If you think these two things are true, than you don’t like literature. Nor do you know what literature is.

I hear people say that Scarriet’s Poetry Baseball has nothing to do with literature; it’s silly and pointless, it puts literature in a box, it’s reductive and self-indulgent.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

Poets write for fame (and they write for money because money often equals fame) and they write for fame because fame equals whatever is larger than race, country, history, or the individual.  And the greater the poet, the more they transcend these things, even as they, on a crude level, ‘write for money and fame.’ And  further, money can be given out by individuals and organizations which ‘swear off money’ just as much as by entities which are ‘all about the money.’  Crude political demarcations have no place in literature. The poets who sink into frantic denials of ‘money and fame’ miss this. And this has nothing to do with politics—nothing simplistic and crude, applied in a general way, has any place in literature, unless as an object of satire.

Literature is a discrete object, and it is organized, not by contemporary political likes and dislikes, or bullhorn campaign promises, but organized it is—poets do not escape organizing principles any more than anyone else.

The Scarriet Poetry Baseball league—with its twenty five teams reflecting interest and influence and toil in categories which transcend simplistic political and social divisions—is actually a serious attempt to organize world historical literature on a scale never before attempted, from Homer to the present.

The anglophilic Voltaire, who betrayed republican principles in a deeply cynical but learned manner, finding himself playing for Mao’s China is a “roster choice” not made lightly.  Neither is Pushkin playing for Franklin’s “American” team.

The role of a team’s pitcher—representing practical applications of ideas unfolding in a literary lifetime, and backed up by a defensive infield based on the excellence and cooperation of its versifying technique is just one more way Scarriet Poetry Baseball is organized in a highly serious and literary manner.

The playing out of the season, including trades and injuries and every imaginable particular, using poets from all genres, eras and ages, is the greatest attempt we know to bring literature as a discrete object to life.

There is a method to all this madness, and those who support literature should appreciate the way this league is organized.

Those who love literature (and not highly dubious and selfish substitutes) should be fans of Scarriet’s Poetry Baseball.

—Marla Muse

THE GREATER GENIUS

Image result for rabelais

The greater genius in a smaller boat
Has a difficult time staying afloat.
He falls in love with poetry—
But not this century’s, hopefully.
Into the fire the flagging patriarch
Throws log after log;
But the favorite male is the family dog;
Blonde and muscled, he naps by the fire,
Dreaming of infinitely domestic desire.
Every male is torn by these two things:
Pleasures of the marriage bed,
The fear of being cuckolded.
Gay, his poetry minces and sings
On beauties—how they are really hags.
Are they? His wife is beautiful. But nags.

 

 

SCARRIET POETRY BASEBALL—HERE WE GO!

Lord Byron In Albanian Dress - 1813 Painting by War Is Hell Store

George Byron in a pensive mood, before taking part in the opening day Scarriet baseball ceremonies.

Happy Easter!

Scarriet has expanded and restructured its baseball league!!

Gone the 2 leagues of 20 teams led by 20 American poets—Eliot, Pound, Frost, Poe, Williams, Stevens, Moore, Dickinson, Millay, Jorie Graham, Ginsberg, Ransom, Cummings, Whittier, Whitman, Bryant, Longfellow, James Lowell, Ashbery, and Emerson.

Now poets like Emerson, Eliot and Poe can be player/managers—to contribute to their teams both at the plate and in the field.

The field is more international—Scarriet Poetry Baseball is now 25 historical teams from all over the world.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The gods and muses must be pleased with our ten years of Poetry March Madness and our first Poetry Baseball season, where poetry is worshiped through time and space in a manner which no one has ever seen.

Fortunately one of the Muses has always been here to help us, Marla Muse.

Marla Muse: They are indeed pleased, Tom!

You have spoken to the other muses who live in other realms, in those shadowy timeless realms where time is one and poetry lights up suns distantly—

Marla Muse: Yes, and they approve! The stars in the heavens love you more than you know… I would rather die than see poetry die.

This baseball season is different. Mysterious and wealthy owners throughout time and space are bidding, some in secret, for players to fill their rosters.

In the Great Emperor League, we have the Broadcasters. Their motto is “Pleased to meet you, hope you guess my name” and they feature Mick Jagger, Jim Morrison, Gregory Corso, Anne Sexton, Bobby Burns, Omar Khayyam, Rilke, Coleridge, Leopardi, Anacreon, Sappho, and Ingrid Jonker.  They are rumored to be owned and funded by a business group led by Federico Fellini, and their ballpark is in Rimini, Italy.

These ballclubs are timeless, in every sense of the word (these teams compete, with actual statistics, where chance unfolds out of space, out of time) but real money, blood money, purchases these players.  We know JP Morgan, for instance, wanted Shakespeare and bid heavily to get him.

The Pistols, who play in Berlin, are said to be associated with Eva Braun, but this cannot be confirmed; one older muse claims to have overheard Eva say, “I take care of this. Adolf is too busy talking to bankers and architects. He doesn’t have time for poetry.” But honestly we cannot say who owns the Pistols.

Nahum Tate, owner of the Laureates, for those who do not know, re-wrote a popular King Lear with a happy ending (after Shakespeare’s death when, for a long period, the Bard was out of fashion,) and was chosen as Poet Laureate of England in 1692. 

Dick Wolf produces Law & Order on television, and appears to have a controlling interest in the Laws, playing out of Santa Barbara.  He’s got Aristotle, Lord Bacon, and Horace.

John Rockefeller opened his purse to get Walt Whitman, and he thinks that will be enough to win a championship.  We don’t know.  We do know baseball is all about pitching.  All you need is a few good arms which dominate, defense behind them, and some clubhouse chemistry, and not too many injuries. It’s a crap shoot, in many ways, and this is why Rockefeller grumbled he wasn’t going to waste money on superstars who hit home runs and have a high batting average. He’s probably right.  A team that wins 2-1 is better than a team that wins 7-4, by pure mathematics, even though the former score wins by 1 and the latter by 3 runs. It’s the ratio that counts.  2-1 = 2. 7-4 = 1.7  This simple reason is why defense wins in every sport. Rockefeller is using this formula, and the oil baron was also advised that you can’t buy a pennant—throwing money at sluggers doesn’t do any good; it’s 90% pitching and luck. Just put a a poet with critical depth on the hill and three good versifiers in the infield and sit back.

Some of the rosters might have some question marks, but that’s what happens in a free market.  It’s an historical fact that Longfellow did meet Queen Victoria in person. But no one expected him to play for her!

And W.H. Auden just “wanted to play for Napoleon, I don’t why.”

Marla Muse: I can’t wait for the season to begin!  Spring is in the air! Around Rome, and in those still fairer isles… Let’s forget about plagues and the starvation for awhile. Songs are going to sing.

Here then, are the Teams, their Mottoes, and the preliminary rosters—they are always changing (there’s a big minor leagues!)

~~~~~~

THE GREAT EMPEROR LEAGUE

Federico Fellini, Rimini  The Broadcasters [Pleased to meet you, hope you guess my name]
-Mick Jagger, Sappho, Gregory Corso, Charles Bukowski, Paul Valery, Anne Sexton, Omar Khayyam, Robert Burns, Ben Jonson, Coleridge, Jim Morrison, Edmund Waller, Nabokov, Rilke, Giacomo Leopardi, Anacreon, Ingrid Jonker, Swinburne

Napoleon, Corsica The Codes [Let the more loving one be me]
-W.H. Auden, Homer, Hesiod, Racine, John Peale Bishop, Edmund Wilson, Mina Loy, William Logan, Irving Layton, Villon, Jean-Baptiste Tati-Loutard, Wole Soyinka, Jules Laforgue, Derek Walcott, Callimachus, Cicero, Marcus Aurelius

King Philip II, Madrid The Crusaders [If in my thought I have magnified the Father above the Son, let Him have no mercy on me]
-Saint Ephrem, G.K. Chesterton, Tolkien, Thomas Aquinas, Hilaire Beloc, John Paul II, Saint Theresa of Lisieux, Joyce Kilmer, Saint John of the Cross, Mary Angela Douglas, Anne Bradstreet, Phillis Wheatley, Countee Cullen, Gerard Manley Hopkins, Aeschulus

Charles X, Paris  The Goths [Every great enterprise takes its first step in faith]
-A.W. Schlegel, Baudelaire, Goethe, Oscar Wilde, Walter Pater, Madame de Stael, Chateaubriand, Sophocles, George Herbert, Heinrich Heine, Robert Herrick, Clement Marot, Ronsard, Saint-Beuve, Catulus, Thomas Gray, John Clare, Thomas Lovell Beddoes, Theophile Gautier

Pope Julius II, Rome  The Ceilings [They also serve who only stand and wait]
-Milton, Michelangelo, William Blake, Robert Lowell, Petrarch, G.E. Lessing, John Dryden, Klopstock, GE Horne, Ferdowsi, Ariosto, Luis de Camoens, Swift, Tulsidas, Edmund Spenser, Kwesi Brew, Pindar, Euripides

~~~~~

THE GLORIOUS LEAGUE

Eva Braun, Berlin The Pistols [A life subdued to its instrument]
-Ted Hughes, Gertrude Stein, T.S. Eliot, Ezra Pound, W.B. Yeats, Ford Madox Ford, James Joyce, Hugh Kenner, Wyndham Lewis, DH Lawrence, Alistair Crowley, George Santayana, F.T. Marinetti, Giacomo Balla, Richard Wagner, Jung

Queen Victoria, London The Carriages [Theirs but to do and die]
-Lord Tennyson, Elizabeth Barrett, Robert Browning, Longfellow, Philip Larkin, Sylvia Plath, Hazlitt, Paul McCartney, Geoffrey Hill, Henry James, Andrew Marvel, John Suckling, Virginia Woolf, Theocritus

Lorenzo de’ Medici, Florence The Banners [The One remains, the many change and pass]
-Percy Shelley, Dante, William Rossetti, Christina Rossetti, DG Rossetti, John Keats, Marlowe, Guido Cavalcanti, Glyn Maxwell, Ben Mazer, Friedrich Schiller, Thomas Moore, Philodemus, Virgil, Stefan George, Boccaccio, Leonardo da Vinci

P.M. Lord John Russell, 1st Earl Russell, Devon The Sun [A good indignation brings out all one’s powers]
-Emerson, Horace Walpole, Thomas Carlyle, Thoreau, Wordsworth, Rudyard Kipling, Aldous Huxley, Matthew Arnold, Sir John Davies, Margaret Fuller, Robert Southey, Marilyn Chin, Joy Harjo, Basil Bunting, Marjorie Oludhe Macgoye

Nahum Tate, Dublin  The Laureates [Luck is bestowed even on those who don’t have hands]
-Ghalib, Samuel Johnson, Charles Dickens, Peacock, Leigh Hunt, Victor Hugo, Alexandre Dumas, Sara Teasdale, Pasternak, Louis Simpson, Dana Gioia, Oliver Goldsmith, Edmund Burke, Aphra Behn, Rod McKuen, JK Rowling

~~~~~

THE SECRET SOCIETY LEAGUE

Harvey Weinstein, Westport CT The Actors [I am no hackney for your rod]
-John Skelton, Langston Hughes, Henry Ward Beecher, Chaucer, Amiri Baraka, Lord Byron, Hafiz, Thomas Nashe, Marilyn Hacker, Petronius, Gwendolyn Brooks, Jim Carroll, Lucille Clifton, Etheridge Knight, Audre Lorde, Jimmy Page, Andre Gide

David Lynch, Alexandria VA  The Strangers [So still is day, it seems like night profound]
-Jones Very, Alexander Pope, William Burroughs, Rimbaud, Verlaine, Robert Graves, Laura Riding, Weldon Kees, Berryman, Mary Shelley, Rabelais, Charles Simic, Eric Satie, Labid, Roethke, Camille Paglia, HP Lovecraft, Nietzsche, Samuel Beckett

P.T. Barnum, Fairfield CT  The Animals [Majesty and love are incompatible]
-Ovid, Gerald Stern, Robinson Jeffers, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Seamus Heaney, Jack Spicer, Kay Ryan, Leslie Scalapino, Mary Oliver, W S Merwin, Melville, Camille Saint Saens, Edward Lear, Marianne Moore, Wallace Stevens, Gerard de Nerval, Robert Bly

J.P. Morgan, Madison Avenue  The War [The fire-eyed maid of smoky war all hot and bleeding will we offer them]
-Shakespeare, Louis Untermeyer, Apollinaire, T.E. Hulme, Richard Aldington, Rupert Brooke, Sir Walter Scott, Philip Sidney, James Dickey, Harry Crosby, Keith Douglas, Wilfred Owen, Howard Nemerov, Stephen Crane, Erich Remarque, Alan Seeger

Ben Franklin  Philadelphia  The Secrets [We come in the age’s most uncertain hour and sing an American tune]
-Paul Simon, Paul Laurence Dunbar, Edgar Poe, Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost, F. Scott Key, Cole Porter, Plato, Hawthorne, Pushkin, Walter Raleigh, Moliere, William Cullen Bryant, Amy Lowell, Emma Lazarus, Carl Sandburg, Pete Seeger, Natasha Trethewey, Amelia Welby, Woody Guthrie, JD Salinger, John Prine, Kanye West, Stephen Cole, Bob Tonucci

~~~~~

THE PEOPLE’S LEAGUE

Sajyajit Ray, Calcutta The Cobras [Is it true that your love traveled alone through ages and worlds in search of me?]
-Tagore, Allen Ginsberg, Jeet Thayil, Rupi Kaur, Anand Thakore, Dhoomil, G.M. Muktibodh, Rumi, A.K. Ramanujan, Samar Sen, Daipayan Nair, R. Meenakshi, Faiz Ahmad Faiz, Hermann Hesse, Persius, George Harrison, Adil Jussawalla, Tishani Doshi, Sushmita Gupta, Vikram Seth

Kurosawa,  Tokyo  The Mist [In Kyoto, hearing the cuckoo, I long for Kyoto]
-Basho, Hilda Doolittle, Robert Duncan, Gary Snyder, Philip Whalen, D.T. Suzuki, Yone Noguchi, Yoko Ono, John Lennon, Kobayashi Issa, Lady Izumi Shikibu, Cid Corman, Sadakichi Hartmann, Heraclitus, Richard Brautigan

Chairman Mao, Beijing  The Waves [Death gives separation repose. Without death, grief only sharpens]
-Tu Fu, Lucretius, Karl Marx, Voltaire, Rousseau, Guy Burgess, Amiri Baraka, Brecht, Neruda, Li Po, Li He, Bai Juyi, Lu Xun, Guo Moruo, Ho Chi-Fang, Yen Chen, Billie Holiday, Khomieni, Lu Ji , Wang Wei, Lao Tzu, Gary B. Fitzgerald, Wendell Berry

Dick Wolf, Santa Barbara  The Laws [In poetry everything is clear and definite]
-Ajip Rosidi, Aristotle, John Donne, Donald Hall, Jane Kenyon, Donald Justice, Anna Akhmatova, Thomas Hardy, Thomas Campion, Frederick Seidel, Antonio Machado, Mark Van Doren, David Lehman, Lord Bacon, Martial, ML Rosenthal, Horace, Gottfried Burger, Yvor Winters

Merv Griffin, Los Angeles  The Gamers  [He thought he saw an elephant that practiced on a fife]
-Lewis Carroll, James Tate, E.E. Cummings, Tony Hoagland, Ogden Nash, Billy Collins, Eugene Field, W.S. Gilbert, Thomas Hood, Noel Coward, X.J. Kennedy, John Betjeman, Wendy Cope, Tristan Tzara, Heather McHugh, Charles Bernstein, Jack Spicer, James Whitcomb Riley, Joe Green, Menander, Morgenstern

~~~~~

THE MODERN LEAGUE

Pamela Harriman, Arden NY The Dreamers [not the earth, the sea, none of it was enough for her, without me]
-Sharon Olds, Edna Millay, George Dillon, Floyd Dell, Dorothy Parker, Stanley Burnshaw, Richard Lovelace, Stevie Smith, Louis MacNeice, Louise Bogan, Louise Gluck, Jack Gilbert, Marge Piercy, Carolyn Forche, Muriel Rukeyser, Jean Valentine, May Swenson, Propertius, Anais Nin, Simone de Beauvoir

Andy Warhol, East 47th St The Printers [the eye, seeking to sink, is rebuffed by a much-worked dullness, the patina of a rag, that oily Vulcan uses, wiping up.]
-John Updike, Frank O’Hara, John Ashbery, Kenneth Koch, James Schuyler, James Merrill, Hart Crane, Lorca, Thom Gunn, Stephen Burt, Frank Bidart, Mark Rothko, Marjorie Perloff, John Quinn, Duchamp, Aristophanes, Christopher Isherwood, Andre Breton, Lou Reed, John Cage

John D. Rockefeller, Chicago The Buyers [Have you no thought, O dreamer, that it may be all maya, illusion?]
-Walt Whitman, Alcaeus, Edgar Lee Masters, Kenneth Rexroth, Elizabeth Bishop, Robert Lowell, Helen Vendler, Jorie Graham, Franz Wright, Mark Twain, Robert Penn Warren, Paul Engle, William Alexander Percy, Richard Hugo, Carl Philips, Harriet Monroe, Duke Ellington, Dylan Thomas, Jack Kerouac, Sigmund Freud

A. C. Barnes, Philadelphia  The Crash [But for some futile things unsaid I should say all is done for us]
-Allen Tate, John Gould Fletcher, John Crowe Ransom, John Dewey, Cleanth Brooks, Donald Davidson, Merrill Moore, Walter Pater, Wittgenstein, Andrew Nelson Lytle, Archilochus, Anne Waldman, Stanley Kunitz, Jackson Pollock, WC Williams, Luigi Russolo, Stephen Spender, Richard Howard

Steven Spielberg, Phoenix AZ  The Universe [I know why the caged bird sings]
-Maya Angelou, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Bob Dylan, Margaret Atwood, Paul Celan, Czeslaw Milosz, Delmore Schwartz, Randall Jarrell, Anthony Hecht, Galway Kinnell, Philip Levine, Larry Levis, Claudia Rankine, Harold Bloom, Alice Walker, James Wright, Juvenal, Chuck Berry, Stephen King

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Ballpark Road Trips in Review: 2018 - Ben's Biz Blog

 

 

MY LOVE GETS NERVOUS

 

Anime vs Cartoon - Difference and Comparison | Diffen

My love gets nervous when I compare.

I love her here. But what of that one over there?

Does comparison have anything to do with love?

I hid during the Red Scare.

In my heart I hoped: what if she cares?

And then, with dread: what if she compares?

It always happens, that five women you adore,

Contact you at once, because you remembered four

And the fifth, the one who made you write,

Was also one who loved you in her sight,

Even if it was on the Internet

Where love compares politics and affections yet.

I list each attribute, as I see each attribute,

Each silver thought plays on a golden flute

The song that wants to be the best,

As I kiss in the shadows this one, and forget the rest.

When the plague closes the restaurant

I realize, finally, what I really want.

I miss the waiter’s slavery.

I am not nice when I think of you and I.

I want to adore you in a place

Where the ones I want can see your face.

Whose fault that love is sick, and love compares?

The third one loved; but I think the fourth one really cares.

 

 

 

 

NOW THAT WE KNOW

Washington Smoke Information: Smoke in NE Washington and along ...

Now that we know the opposite can be true:
Your spouse can be a stranger—
You know someone you never talk to—
What are we to say? And what are we to do?
We laugh, but we meant to cry.
We see what we love off to the side of our eye.
But reasonably we focus on what we need to do—
And think: it really is the mundane that’s true.
The movies and the love affairs,
The paintings, the arias and airs,
The smoke of the purple evenings,
The parties tinkling with smiling meaning—
It was all just a bunch of crap.
Plato was right. Give me the guidebook, please. The chord. The map.

 

SQUIRT

Charles Baudelaire's Poem Landscape, Read By Tom Healy

Squirt wrote a poem he thought was pretty good.

It said little, and was vaguely understood.

It mentioned breakfast, and how women are bad.

Its glimmering horizon was full of Baudelaire.

It was modern. Not exactly happy. Not exactly sad.

Squirt’s a modern guy. Does this Romantic care?

The truth is on Squirt’s side.

Dirty sunbeams glide.

Squirt’s poem is still there.

I wrote about Squirt’s poem in the past tense.

It still lives. In every single sense.

Women were bad. Now mine is good.

Squirting is the future. I really wish you would.

 

 

I DID THE RIGHT THING BUT SHE SAYS I DID NOT

Image result for the enormous hog

I did the right thing, but she says I did not;
I spoke the truth, but to her it was a sinister plot
Glorifying me, at the expense of her,
And so our love ended forever.
No more shall we travel to farms and pet the pig;
No more in her presence will I get excited and big.
We shall be away from each other, sometimes thinking
Who we are, or, perhaps, what the other is thinking.
She will slide into a store, as if she’s in a movie,
But leave the theater if she chances to see me.
And then those distractions; one thing life
Needs are those, losing a poem, losing a wife.

 

THE MOON HAS LOST HER WOE

Image result for the moon in renaissance painting

The moon has lost her woe,

And I have, too. She was right:

It would hurt but I would live. It took time.

The moon serenaded me every night;

The sonnets of the moon, sweet when she was low

In the heavens, near the sea,

And by those heavenly poems she spoke to me,

Through red clouds, traveling far above the skyline,

Seeming, with her woes, almost to touch mine:

The best way to experience poetry

And love. I felt all her woe.

But now I do not love her. I love you.

She told me, and I protested,

But now it turns out it is true.

She flew upwards, and then she rested

In that far melancholy blue.

Dusk. The earth will take me into her arms soon.

And the orb above will be to me merely the moon.

 

 

IS SCARRIET BASEBALL BACK?

Ebbets Field, Brooklyn 6/15/38 - Dodger fans this night ...

When Scarriet was young and the Scarriet editors more ambitious, an entire 154 game poetry baseball season happened: two leagues, 20 teams, and a world series in which the Philadelphia Poe defeated the Rapallo Pound 4 games to 1.

Teams were built around an American poet and every position was filled with figures (not only poets) associated with the team’s poet-manager.

The sports writing sounded like this:

Whitman picked up Gaugin, Melville, and Aaron Copeland as starting pitchers, but all three were hard-luck hurlers.  There was an odd chemistry to the Whitman club that never clicked: Robinson Jeffers, D.H. Lawrence, William Rossetti, Edgar Lee Masters, Bronson Alcott, Lawrence Ferlinghetti were in a lineup together that never hit in the clutch, didn’t run the bases enough, failed to move runners over, and even fought in the clubhouse; it was a mess.  Whitman’s verve never carried over to his interesting mix of players.

William Carlos Williams shared last place with Whitman; the lineup of Duchamp, Creeley, Rexroth, Duncan, Snyder, Loy, Noguchi, and Spicer just didn’t provide enough punch.

Mallarme and Hollander hit for Stevens, Dos Passos and Picasso for Cummings, and Dickinson got hitting from Keats and TennysonFrost was in the race for a while, getting good offense from Hardy, Larkin, Oliver, and Wordsworth.

After his heralded signing at mid-season, Jesus Christ of the Frost proved to be human on the mound at 10-5.  Pound and Eliot could not be caught.

The final standings:

AL

rapallo pound                       100-54   –
london eliots                          97-57    3
new england frost                  91-63    9
amherst emily                       78-76   22
hartford stevens                    75-79   25
cambridge cummings            72-82   28
new york moore                    69-85   31
iowa city grahams                  67-87   33
brooklyn whitmans                 61-93   39
new jersey williams                61-93   39

NL

philadelphia poe                   92-62    –
brooklyn ashberys                 89-65   3
boston lowells                       85-69   7
cambridge longfellows           83-71   9
new york bryants                   82-72  10
concord emersons                 79-75  13
maine millays                        75-79  17
tennessee ransom                 70-84   22
hartford whittiers                  66-88   26
new jersey ginsbergs            49-105  43

Why was the Pound so successful?  A bunch of players, added after the season was underway, wildly defied expectations.  Here’s a little commentary with the world series lineups:

The Philadelphia Poe’s projected starting lineup:

Gilmore Simms, RF.   Hurt for most of the year (Samuel F.B. Morse filled in admirably).  Simms can run.

Charles Brockden Brown, SS.    A slap hitter who advances runners.  George Lippard, another native Philadelphian, is the reserve infielder.

Charles Baudelaire, 2B.   Gap hitter, makes contact.

George Byron, 1B.    When Byron couldn’t play, Alfred Hitchock took over.  Byron slugged 29 homers.

Thomas Moore, C.    Excellent on-base percentage.

Fydor Dostoevsky, 3B.    Hit over .400 with 2 outs and runners in scoring position.   Team-leading 47 doubles.

Virginia Poe, CF.   Swift as a deer in center.   Surprising power: 17 homers.

Fanny Osgood, LF.     League-leading 14 assists.  Very hard to strike out.

Alexander Pope, P.     Great sacrifice bunter.

And, for the Rapallo Pound:

Aleister Crowley, CF.   Took over for Wyndham Lewis.  Crowley hit three triples in the Pound’s pennant-clinching victory.

Hilda Doolittle, 2B.   Great D from H.D.  She’s been nursing a sore ankle.  Flaubert may start instead.

William Butler Yeats, SS.  The best glove anyone has ever seen.  A disappointment at the plate, but does get on base.  Francis Villon, his replacement, can hit.

Ford Madox Ford, 1B.   41 homers, 134 RBIs.

James Joyce, LF.   .311 batting average.  Back from a late-season injury.  Basil Bunting was his replacement.

James Laughlin, 3B.  The New Directions kid wasn’t expected to hit.  He slugged 39 homers and batted .340.   MVP numbers from a mere editor.

Ernest Fenollosa, C.  Steady, handles pitchers well.  Missed the month of August.  Margaret Anderson of the Little Review is the back-up.

Benito Mussolini, RF.  Great clubhouse presence.  A gun for an arm in right.  Few go from first to third on him.

Marquis de Sade, P.   Chats with the opposing catcher the whole time he’s up.

Pound and his team were frankly, scary. But Poe, and his team were not intimidated, as the two clubs met in the world series.

Here’s a recap of the five games:

Game One

Philadelphia rightfielder Gilmore Simms homered in the bottom of the 14th inning as the Philadelphia Poe edged the Rapallo Pound in the first game of the World Series, 5-4.

The Pound took the early lead as Francois Villon hit a 2-home run in the first inning against Philadelphia starter Alexander Pope.  Manager Ezra Pound chose to start Villon at shortstop over Yeats, who has not hit well this year.  In the second inning,  Aleister Crowley made it 3-0 as he scratched a hit, stole second and third, and came home on a sacrifice fly by Ford Madox Ford.

Sade, the eccentric Rapallo starter, kept the Poe in check until Alfred Hitchcock, starting in place of Lord Byron—unable to play because of dizzy spells—doubled, and came home on a two-out single by Dostoevsky in the bottom of the fourth, to make it 3-1.

Pope, the Philadelphia starter, then scored a run for the Poe in the fifth to make it 3-2.  Sade hit Pope, who then went to third when Simms’s grounder to Villon was thrown into centerfield trying to get a force at second, and Pope scored on Baudelaire’s single to left with two outs.

Philly tied it in the bottom of the sixth on back-to-back singles by Thomas Moore, Dostoevsky, and Virginia Poe.

The Pound went ahead, 4-3, in the top of the seventh on a homerun by Benito Mussolini.

Then, in the bottom of the ninth, with Sade still on the mound, having retired the side in order in the seventh and eighth, James Laughlin, the young third baseman for Rapallo, allowed a grounder to go under his glove, allowing Virginia Poe to score the tying run.  She was on second with two outs, after a bloop double.

Richard Wagner and then Filipo Marinetti pitched well in relief for the Pound, while Winfield Scott and then Jaques Lacan kept the Pound in check into the middle of the 14th inning.

Charles Olson came in for the Pound in the bottom of the 14th, got two easy outs, and then faced Poe leadoff hitter William Gilmore Simms.  On the first pitch, a high fastball, the South took the North deep, and the Philadelphia Poe are up 1-0 in the first Scarriet World Series.

Game Two

Ernest Fenollosa drove his second homerun deep into the Philadelphia night against Poe reliever Conan Doyle to snap a 5-5 tie in the top of the ninth, and give the Rapallo Pound a victory over the Philadelphia Poe, to knot this tense series at one game apiece.

The contest now heads to Rapallo for game three on Saturday.

Alexander Humboldt yielded singles-hitter Ernest Fenollosa’s first of two shocking grandslams on a hanging curve in the second, then allowed a run in the third, before settling down and pitching well until he was lifted for a pinchitter in the bottom of the eighth.   Samuel F.B. Morse went down swinging for the Poe, and the game moved to the ninth, tied at 5.  Pound starter H.G. Wells left the contest in the bottom of the sixth when he allowed the Poe to tie the score with two runs, on a Charles Brocken Brown two-run double off the wall.

Poe reliever Jules Verne walked the bases loaded, after retiring the first two Pound batters he faced in the top of the ninth.  Poe then brought on Arthur Conan Doyle, and Fenollosa took his first pitch fastball deep to left-center.

Louis Zukovsky picked up the win in relief, as he held the Poe scoreless in the seventh and eighth, pitching out of jam in the eighth.  Hugh Kenner came in for the Pound to pitch a scoreless ninth.

After Fenollosa’s first grandslam in the top of the second, Charles Baudelaire got the Poe on the board in the bottom of the second with a two-run homer off H.G. Wells, to make it 4-2.

Game Three

It began with Blavatsky and ended with Dostoevsky.

Ezra Pound’s obtuse opinion of Russian Literature (“I have omitted the Rhooshuns.”  —How To Read) came back to haunt him yesterday, as Fyodor Dostoevsky broke a 0-0 tie in the 14th inning (Poe won the first game of the Series in 14 innings!) with a single punched through a drawn-in infield, scoring Philadelphian George Lippard.  It was Dostoevsky’s birthday, and surely the most exciting one of his life.

The Pound were bewitched for 10 innings by Lord Bacon, not quite in command of his 3 pitches, as the Pound left 12 runners-on-base, 7 in scoring position, threatening to score numerous times.  The French hero Lafayette pitched shutout ball for the next three frames.  Percy Shelley pitched the bottom of the 14th.  The Englishman struck out the Pound’s James Joyce, coming after him with 3 straight fastballs with two outs and the bases loaded to give the Poe a heart-stopping 1-0 victory, and a 2-1 series lead.

The Rapallo fans screamed themselves hoarse.  The game took six hours and eleven minutes to play.  Numerous celebrated authors were spotted in the stands: Homer, Socrates, and Dante were sitting together, as a matter of fact.  T.S. Eliot, of course, was on hand, and in the front row, accompanied by his lawyer John Quinn and the author Aldous Huxley.

The game was stopped at one point, when Poe complained to the umpires that team Pound was dimming the lights when it was team Poe’s turn to bat.
The lighting was apparently the same; no one was sure whether Poe’s complaint was legitimate, or not, but the managers almost came to blows, as Pound went ballistic.  The game itself was almost called.  The Rapallo fans, who were not privy to the discussions on the field, had no idea what was happening, but some started to take the field when they saw Pound rushing the Poe dugout.  It took three quarters of an hour to restore order.

The Pound’s Madame Blavatsky spun her black magic for 7 shutout innings; she was lifted for Harriet Monroe after walking two straight batters to start the top of the 8th.

Harriet Shaw Weaver pitched a scoreless 10th and Dorothy Shakespeare kept the Poe quiet in the 11th and 12th; Pound’s most successful reliever, Richard Wagner, entered wearing his cape for the start of the 13th, and promptly struck out the side, but he quickly got into trouble in the fourteenth, when suddenly he couldn’t find the plate with his magnificent curve.  George Lippard pinch-ran for Samuel F.B. Morse, who was struck on the knee by Wagner with a 3-0 fastball.  Two more walks loaded the bases, and with two outs, Fyodor Dostoevsky made “the Rhooshuns” proud, with perhaps the most important hit for the Poe all year.

Game Four

Samuel Taylor Coleridge scattered 11 hits and helped his team with a bases-clearing double as the Romantic poet led the Philadelphia Poe to an easy Game 4 win over Olga Rudge and the Rapallo Pound.

The Poe came into game 4 leading 2-1, with both wins coming in 14 inning contests.  The Pound missed countless opportunities to score in Game 3 and the team now seems haunted by those missed opportunities.  Rudge, who was 19-5 during the regular season, was not sharp, and Henri Gaudier-Brzeska fared no better in relief.

Gilmore Simms, who won Game One with a 14th inning homer, tripled to lead off the game and scored on a Baudelaire double, setting the tone for the one-sided contest.

Coleridge described his performance as “unreal,” telling reporters after the game he could not remember what he did on the mound, or with the bat.  “I honestly don’t recall the game at all,” he opined, his curls dangling sweat, looking oddly cherubic as he looked upward from the bench in front of his locker, blinking into the photographer’s lights.

Game One starter, the Marquis de Sade, goes for the Pound tomorrow to stave off elimination.

Game Five

Alexander Pope allowed 3 hits over seven innings to lead the Philadelphia Poe to a 5-1 victory over the Marquis de Sade and the Rapallo Pound. 

Osip Mandelstam hurled a pefect eighth for the Poe, and General Winfield Scott pitched the ninth, yielding a solo homerun to James Joyce, as the Poe won the first Scarriet World Series title by winning three straight at Rapallo, the Pound’s home park.

Arthur C. Clarke, starting in left field for Fanny Osgood, was the batting hero for the Poe, with 3 hits and 4 RBIs.

Lord Byron had the other RBI for the Poe, as he delivered a two-out single to knock in Charles Brockden Brown to start the scoring in the third, after looking foolish on the previous pitch by Sade, Byron falling down as he chased a slow pitch out of the strike zone.   “Poetry is nothing more than a certain dignity which life tries to take away,” Byron said later in a jubilant clubhouse.

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BREAKING NEWS

Scarriet may play another baseball season!!

And add more teams!!

More poets!!

Stay tuned.

 

ATTRACTION DOESN’T WANT TO ATTRACT

Thomas Ridegeway Gould (American, 1818-1881) "The West Wind ...

Attraction doesn’t want to attract

At four thirty in the morning. In fact,

Attraction never wants to attract.

It just wants to be attractive.

You would like to choose, sure.

But the attractive can’t be attracted.

Beauty sometimes gets what it wishes for:

The partially indoor museum,

Leaves strewn over lawn and floor.

Staring. Quiet. Bored.

Better the face when it’s sleeping.

Sleeping, you can see

What that person’s beauty was meant to be.

I know. Don’t wake her. What can you do?

Look at me. I’m attractive.

And look. I got you.

 

MY MIND ALWAYS DEFEATS ITSELF

Image result for adam driver

My mind always defeats itself.

This is not because I’m a smart person,

For then my mind would always win,

But my mind loses—to itself!

This is because I’m a quiet person;

Quiet is the worst trait of all; Blake

Said lack of energy is the only sin.

He’s right, unfortunately.

I even noticed it with my poetry.

My poems internally contradict

Themselves, subtly, strangely,

Even as I consciously pound my theme.

I wandered after an attractive man in a dream

Who I thought was ugly, like me.

I’m not ugly. I just don’t see

How others see me,

Until it’s too late. But I am ugly;

No, perhaps it depends. I live my dreams in my poetry,

Which is not a bad thing, except this

Makes me quiet. I don’t need to kiss

Anything, but I do.

I’m quiet. My mind is thinking how it can know your mind. Or you.

 

 

 

SINCE EVERY IDEA BEGINS AND ENDS IN A DREAM

Lewis Carroll | 1843

Since every idea begins and ends in a dream,

And each poem begins with no introduction,

As you look for a title or a mother in vain,

This is a dream. Forgetting in a dream is real,

Even though you never knew their name,

And the embarrassment was unwarranted.

A dream is embarrassed for you,

So you’re embarrassed, and the embarrassment is real.

Your dream has only your dream to tell you how to feel.

Your life is religion, talking to itself in poems.

Your pride in science is a joke.

I refused the landscape; I wasn’t aware of the smoke

Until “green” appeared in a dream, and somebody spoke.

It was a nursery rhyme the whole time, it was, which filled your lung,

The experiment experienced sung.

 

 

 

 

TO PUT ALL POEMS OF NOTE IN ONE

Lincrusta Wallpaper - VE1967 | Lincrusta Wallpapers in 2020 ...

“old magazines piled up against the hours” -Ben Mazer

To put all poems of note in one,

Sacrificial cries watched by Italians,

Exemplifying hills and small lakes,

Cold, held by higher mountains,

Landscapes bitten off by words

Put into little leather books by spies,

All the Germans who translated things

That stood missing a long time in the earth,

Statues discovered only yesterday,

Yet suspected to be Michelangelo’s;

Records indicate he lived nearby,

The rebellious villages giving alms

Where the best of them were found.

Even the English springs, not Victorian,

Edwardian, leftover scents underground

Where even bright petticoats could find them,

Gave us the greatest challenge, poems

Cooked in spice, eastern vegetables

Chopped, and baked in the ovens

Where I saw down into the hole, black

Not moving, something tiny,

Maybe just a sound that modifies

Living with itself, stands under grass,

Heaves large rocks for hours;

Some of us working, seeing in haze

And further murkiness just before

Five o’ clock, the hour we love,

The hour uniting us, in a definite distance

That puts us in the way of so many poems.

Jolly as a thief, covered, at all points,

The instructions vary, half-understood

By the drinking mind that knows us,

Pulp in the garden, the small things fidget,

O twice-painted Keatsian bicycle,

Described, once again, those tools for you,

Placated nicely, soothed in all the paths

Going to you and letting you know

That here in the limestone hills

Where gods develop, you can still,

In the hush of extraordinary vision,

See things grow, peeping, the smaller,

The better, as the trained discover what

They are good at, at last; but pursue,

Instead, something else, to earn a living,

What no one was good at, what sent

The guards down, always indifferent,

Breeding Shakespeare, keeping the whole thing

For later, for the better yesterday,

Because you, jammed up against the wall,

Thought to turn your head slightly,

Habituated or not, towards sunrise,

You, finally in the poem. You can stand here.

Go ahead, I’m waiting.

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