[-empyre-] Poetry has no future

Laurent Sauerwein srwn at me.com
Sat Mar 21 18:05:58 EST 2009

As an artist, I would like to defend the idea that poetry has no future.

If, as I believe, what we call poetry is always lyrically at once  
purposeful and hesitant (Valery), unstable, equivocal, unresolved,  
then it can only manifest itself in a state of tension that involves  
the reader/viewer/listener/toucher/or otherwise interactor upon the  
act of reading/viewing/listening/touching/interacting.

In other words poetry - e or not - is always RADICALLY ACTUAL, non?

So it seems difficult to speculate on various forms of future e-poetry  
when the conditions (technologies for instance) for its creation or  
material manifestation do not yet exist. It's hard to put your head  
under the hood to perform your little 'bricolage' if the vehicle  
hasn't arrived.

As we're waiting, we can turn to the time table posted on the wall and  
see it as the graphic rendition of what to expect at what precise  
moment. But the poetic value of the time-table lies in its lack of  
precision, in our impatience, longing, boredom, and other forms of  
exasperation. I've done wall drawings of modernist architectural  
renditions, confronting utopia to the grain of the wall. You need an  
obstacle to project on. A screen to both hide and reveal.

I've always been interested in how science-fiction tells you much less  
about the future than about the time of its creation. It essentially  
betrays the limits of our imagination, or at least it points to the  
actual conditions of its virtual projections.

I will be 'facilitating' a workshop in August here in Auroville, Tamil  
Nadu, South India. I haven't yet decided on the title, but I will  
invite students to rub virtual and actual, pixel and molecule,  
tangible brick and 3D, utopia and soil together. I believe that if you  
rub vigorously _it_ will produce a few sparks, some of them poetic  
maybe. What _it_ will be cannot be seriously announced, unless we  
canonize wishful thinking as a minor poetic genre. We'll see what we  
will see when we cross that bridge.

Sent from my iPhone
Laurent Sauerwein
Currently in South India
Twitter: larrysa

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