Better, in this case, inept than assassin

December 12, 2011 § Leave a comment

Dear _________,

It’s complex, isn’t it? Because one shares work, as I do with you, as I do regularly online, & as I did at that much lamented reading, out of a desire for self-assertion. Though, I should note, not necessarily affirmation. Some assertions, after all, divest you of yourself, don’t they, until they (& you) become an imposition on everybody else. There is perhaps a time & a place for that, too, though it would be unwise to anticipate where & when. Better, in this case, inept than assassin.

And yet, nevertheless, and this is the point of my writing you today, there is also a real need, no, for the work one shares with others to be about more than the one who shares? Does this not for some speak to the need for a political poetry (about peoples) or maybe a religious poetry (about practices)? Or, still for others, like me, & I think you, flag the necessity that a truly memorable writing is one that is so stylized & intentional that the author herself is lost, but by no means vanished, within the language?

No, none of this need comes necessarily at the loss of the writer, her identity, specific issues, of gender or of past, etc. It is my position, rather, that it, when done well, deepens their significance beyond the mildly therapeutic, if nevertheless flatulent, confines of “expressing yourself.”


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