5 poems published @The Wagon Magazine

Thanks to Krishna Prasad for taking these 5, which, I don’t think are very easy poems & particularly the last poem, which is about the Seorak War Memorial in which the poet imagines histories superimposed in real time. I went through a stage of submitting poems without titles, simply using the lemniscate & this has been my only success, so I am pleased about that. In addition to my poems, John Looker has written a Letter from London for this issue of The Wagon & John is always worth a read.

The link is here.

Happy reading.

Daniel

 

 

 

25 thoughts on “5 poems published @The Wagon Magazine

  1. These are very nice. I hear the imposed musical cadence of the “|” ( brickwall?) —I call it the “pipe” from Linux and Mac scripting. In these your use of the device shines. Gives a tongue-in-cheek aspect to the juxtaposition of otherwise unrelated images.

    1. I call it the “barrier”.
      Much of my poems & some of these uses motif which handled by me becomes very subjective, making it difficult for the reader.
      The final poem in this set is probably the best poem I’ve ever written, the idea of 2 points in history superimposed in real-time was a real eureka for me & really interesting to work with & I was very pleased with the result but wasn’t confident it would take.

      1. They definitely read with difficulty. I like that the form takes precedent over substance on these. It’s something I work on with my prose poems. Not so much what I say as how I say it (as it is overwhelmingly subjective, and I suspect meaningless to anyone other than myself). The sound and rhythm creates a mythic quality in your pieces that get to be greater than the sum of their parts.

        “Barrier” is the perfect description for the device.

      2. I have this, perhaps…problem, that I don’t really want to say something how it is generally conceived, this to me is being unexpected, which I think is important. Actually the form is often part of the substance, such as the disintegration or “retting” of syllables in the 4th poem. This is sometimes a problematic choice. The 5th poem for example was written in a more ordered way, but then it didn’t physically produce the chaos of 2 time-lines superimposed, to see a sort of hologram of a past battle affecting the present, but the present continuing as if nothing is interfering with it. This needed the jolting of image to image & the interweaving that it now has. So I wrote it chaotically, cleaned it up, then disordered it again, knowing it may be messy & that people may not get it, that editors may think it is badly written, but I know when asked to justify my choice, I could; even if no one asks. That capacity to explain myself is more important than people getting it in a passive read.

      3. You aspire to the highest degree of art. This is what I find valuable in your writing. It’s not just to impress or send a pop message. There’s a certain scholarship in your work that is hard to find in the millennial poets. (Something we communicated in the past on the subject of the youth culture and their music as opposed to that of the 60s.) My work is based on pop culture. I try to bring some sense to the chaos my generation brought to the world. I just wish my brain was still young enough to embrace the education necessary to go beyond what I have but, çe la vie!

        I find the poems here refreshing in that I don’t necessarily need to know what the meaning of each one is. There’s a rhythmic punctuation at each barrier that gives the piece a stop | go flow that sets off the synapses of understanding at a subconscious level. I attempt to do the same in mine, also hoping it’s being got.

        I think the luxury of explaining our poetry might be something that requires greater notoriety. I’ve read TS Eliot’s Wasteland annotated by himself. But I’m sure he was already a scholastic example in literature class before he got to do that.

      4. It’s sort of like this: if you can use the space as much as possible, then use it to its utmost. Keep striving to flood it with as much unexpectedness but no reason to make it unreadable. I don’t aim for un-readability, only depth. I want there to be surface enjoyment but then should someone care enough to get more involved that is there too. I suppose there has to be an element of choice. This is why I like a bit of drama in my poems, a certain character development, it seems to offer a reason to read into the obscurity, or subjective translation of existentialist values.
        I think every poet should be able & willing to talk about their poetry, if they can’t I think they need to think what is the purpose of such a poet. If you want people to get what you have not really tried to get yourself, then I think that invites the kinds of people who say “poetry is dead” the “novel is dead”. This is justified when the subjective consumes all too heavily the content. Sure it needs to take part, been a paramount element, but it must be brought into sharp focus when prodded to explain itself, else it is like cause without effect, which is not even madness, I don’t even know what it is. It is interesting that post-modernism invited us to be open, but that openness taken too far just creates something meaningless & justifies itself through its right to exist. Which is sort of ok if you don’t have much expectation of yourself, but then why accept that, why not realize that you can fix the meaninglessness into many manifestations to fixate on the theme of meaninglessness. What drama can you create out of nihilism? What gut punching line can you make of nothing?

      5. When we write it is important that what we say have meaning even if just to ourselves. Some of my stuff is so obscure I wonder if it makes sense even explained. I’m actually trying to work my way out of that phase. Be more of a spokesman to reason, even if just saying things that are meaningful to a small audience. Not political or preachy stuff—just that I know what I’m saying and why. It all sounds so boring though. I’ll see. Right now I’m elbow deep in getting my stuff into some sort of shape as I send it out. It’s the workingman’s aspect of writing, I guess. One I’ve dreaded so that I’ve procrastinated on as long as possible.

      6. The origin of anything subjective has a life of sorts. It isn’t Boit discarding it but understanding where & why it came to you. If it doesn’t reveal in a short time, live with it, return periodically. One day it will & if it doesn’t then no harm scraping it.
        I think you’re progressing leaps & bounds & I don’t find your work obscure, it is very readable more & more so. I am glad you halted your Zen stuff, I find that a bit over-done. But your introspective & talky stuff is spot on. & the work part of writing is just necessary, you see the differences now & it just gets easier & better.

      7. Thanks, Daniel. I’m glad to see it does get across. I’ve found such a good school of writing here. You, Okaji, Miller, and the many writers willing to share their skills and give and take advice, even if it’s just by subtle inference. It’s what I hoped to find when I first started sharing my work and I would like to think I have found it. Not leaving myself open to criticism, but to meaningful critique. It’s brought about the best of all possible worlds for me as a writer. I hope to keep this up for a long time to come.

  2. : a palm full of soil has as many microbes as people
    on Earth—something is lost in the reduction to whole.
    i’m thinking poems with too much theme
    around the waist & minus turn of phrase…

    O, you beautiful word-lover and your lemniscates (<<auto-correct doesn't recognize this word, but I certainly fixated on and accepted it!). Your astounding exercise in horology (in which "the land shares memories with the present") fearlessly elucidates the horrific that is an ever-present component of the vital (and vice versa), the reality of which too many of us to often fail to perceive: Just when your philosophical calasthenics — the doing of which I venture a guess is largely the point, and which I, for one, appreciate greatly! — are at their most aptly deep and muddy, you toss us a life-preserver of an image to take us to shore. These poems serve both a wake-up call and a salve, depending on how you look at it — and that they not only ask us to look, but richly reward us for doing so, is their triumph.

    1. Yes. Lemiscates. Not only does it not correlate to spellcheck, the in-app dictionary refuses to define it. Daniel’s vocabulary often stumps me. We read his poetry, dictionary in hand and yes, it does lead us to conflict followed by resolve. I agree completely.

      1. Exactly. It demands that we better and deepen ourselves — not for the sake of the poet’s self-aggrandizement (for he won’t capitulate to some notion of socially-acceptable in the interest of garnering praise), but for our own good…

      2. I am so pleased you get this & it amazes me that people I have known my entire life still don’t get it. I had what became an argument lately with a very old friend who said my writing was pointless, never stopping to think that I do it to educate myself, to test the waters of concepts & words to improve my powers of observation. I didn’t even bother pointing this out because if he hasn’t figured this out in the whole time I have known him, then it is best left to him to come to this & one day approach me with the understanding. People I know think knowledge is about one-up-man-ship & I have never been able to get the point across that I am nothing special, I came from an uneducated, working class background & I got it in my head to just try at something & that happened to be poetry. I don’t write thinking I am the only one who can say or claims a certain bias on the opportunity that I wrote it & that makes me better. No. Just simply the challenge of converting experience into an art form.
        I hardly know you, yet you get this & it brings me such happiness.
        You may notice I didn’t Facebook this publication. I won’t be from now on because people who see my posts there just top-up their erroneous bias toward me, which they’d never reveal, & if I saw them we’d be friendly but I know their true thoughts & thing is, I don’t even really hold it against them or think less of them.

      3. People who don’t get it don’t crave for “it” to be a part of their lives. I think it’s similar to people who claim not to like classical music, because they don’t have any real frame of reference for evaluating it, so they simply dismiss it as “pointless,” weird, unpleasing, etc. I know all too well what it feels like to have the very crux of my soul dismissed as irrelevant, and I learned a long time ago to stop trying to make those whose first inclination would be to recoil from (or worse, patronize!) me that they ought to or even could do differently on my behalf. I’ve only recently started to find my people in this world — through decade after painful decade of refusing to (and truly not being capable of) compromise who I am and *how* I am — and let me just say what an honor it is for me that you are one of them! 😁

      4. I don’t really mind if people are encouraging but don’t get it, but when I can have my character attacked for doing something beneficial for myself as a human being, as if not taking my humanity for granted having discovered that through writing & thinking, should be something to patronize & belittle. I don’t mind criticism but there has to be a good reason else it just sounds silly.
        Glad to find were kindred Stephanie. It’s an honour.

      5. Yes but many built-in dictionaries don’t give synechdoche & instead off Indochinese, so…a fantastic online dictionary, for free, which has never failed me is thefreedictionary.com. An invaluable tool.

      6. I use Dictionary.com’s overpriced app for synonyms. I must try the free dictionary app for definitions. I think I have too many with LaRousse Básico and Word Magic Spanish Synonyms, already, but can one ever have too much reference source?

    2. The “palm full of soil has as many microbes as people on Earth” is something I have to credit my friend’s girlfriend for. She is German, a gardener & she was filmed for a short Youtube video by someone to talk about soil & she holds this rich clump of soil & explains how it contains more microbes than people on Earth. I added the Nietzschean twists of “something is lost in the reduction to whole.”

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