Cleave Poetics 15-19

Four Quatorzain cleaves

“I prefer poems in anthologies
to poems in individual books.
A poem in an anthology has
forgotten its author.”
—Tan Lin, “ambient stylistics,”
Telling It Slant


Brute design—beltway bozos
dEmocracy—lewd propositions
guRly boyz—knowing the truth
thiNk about—halliburton haves and those
scabS of the—ratty mourning have-nots
gangsTer lobbyists—hoodlum politicians
silhouEtting—formaldehyde artifices
uncertaInties—nightly snarky fox-tv
discrepaNcies—elephantine lies

Seed text = BERNSTEIN
Source text = Charles Bernstein’s
“Ballad of the Girly Man,” Girly Man (2000)

(Using the diastic method, the writer reads through the source text and successively finds words or other linguistic units that have the letters of the seed text in positions that correspond to those they occupy in the seed text.)

(Using the cleave method, the writer reads through the diastic text—hyphenating the horizontal text into2 vertical texts. The resulting text is a diastic / cleave intertext—with 3 poems in positions that correspond to each in a unique polymorphosely vocal / textual way.


Gravedigger—slowly finishing up
GReene saying—“One never knows,
WhEn the blow—may fall”
DetEctive—sesame phrase:
“FrieNd—of Harry Lime”—
WinklEr—the Viennese Jansenist

Seed text = GREENE
Source text =The Third Man (1950)

“Jansenist,” Dr. Winkler commented and closed his mouth sharply as though he had been guilty of giving away too much information. “Never heard the word. Why are the arms above the head?” Dr. Winkler said reluctantly, “Because He died, in their view, only for the elect.”
—Graham Greene, The Third Man


Balking at sleep—i was a well
pAscal had his abysses—i was a mine
haUnted by vertigo—nightmares
hanDs reaching down into—darknesss
pacEs full of—languorous indifferences
disobLiging work—being a lyric poet in hell
consolAtions being few—in between while
contritIions ending up—lame and clandestine
surrendeRing sullen—boredom
silhouettEs—baudelaire on the wall…

Seed text = BAUDELAIRE
Source text = Les Fleurs de malNotes:

“Les Fleurs de mal was the last lyric work that had a broad European reception; no other writings penetrated beyond a more or less linguistic area. Added to this is the fact that Baudelaire expended his productive capacity almost entirely on this one volume.” —Walter Benjamin, The Writer of Modern Life: Essays on Charles Baudelaire (2006)


Ganymede—prince, my future king
pAge, sovereign's son—fairest lover boy
joVe’s cutest chicken—lascivious commaund
sweEt beauty's rarest purple—flower in bloom
wordS can’t describe how wanton—the ivy-twisting
idolaTrous my love-sick lips—kissing qualm
gavestOn your servant—ogling eyes astonished
ascendaNt—by rare phoenix youth…

Seed text = Gaveston
Source text ="Piers Gaveston,"
Michael Drayton (1593)

“This Edward in the April of his age,
Whil'st yet the Crown sat on his father's head
My Jove with me, his Ganymede, his page,
Frolic as May, a lusty life we led.....
He might commaund, he was my
Sovereign's son,
And what I said, by him was ever done.
My words as laws authentic he allowed,
Mine yea, by him was never crossed with no,
All my conceit as current he avowed,
And as my shadow still he served so”

No comments: