April 15, 2011
I stumbled this morning upon this poem, by Catherynne M. Valente: A Silver Splendour, A Flame. It’s exceptional—part poem, part libretto for an imaginary vaudville show, part retelling of the Persephone myth, part kaleidescope, maybe even a bit of ars poetica, and entirely beautiful. Well worth checking out.
The Zingara Poet has begun a new series of interviews with poets, which will feature discussions with poets a bit more off the beaten path than one normally encounters in textbooks or at, say, Poets.org. The first interview, with Alarie Tennille, can be found here.
Just for the record, Liberty University (a private, conservative Christian institution founded by Jerry Falwell) received more money from the federal government last year than the Corporation for Public Broadcasting did. (Hat tip to Fred Clark.)
What’s with the abuse of figurative speech lately? First Senator Jon Kyl states that 90% of Planned Parenthood’s work is related to abortions (when the figure is actually closer to 3%), and when called on it, his office stated that “his remark was not intended to be a factual statement,” and then, after Kobe Bryant received criticism for calling a referee a “fucking faggot,” he stated that the slur “should not be taken literally.” What bothers me about issues like these is, quite simply, words mean things. “Oh, but that’s not what I meant” does not come across, to me, as a particularly compelling explanation. Even when writing poetry—a form of communication that is not generally assumed to represent factual statements or to be taken literally—if most of the people who hear or read your words take from them a meaning counter (or unrelated) to the one you’d intended, you might want to reconsider your words.
Of course, Jon Kyl’s statement ended up leading to a thoroughly amusing Twitter hashtag, so that’s something.
This article about a young woman growing up Objectivist has been making its way across the interwebs, but I thought I’d link to it as well, just in case my lovely readers haven’t seen it.
Happy Friday, all!
December 12, 2008
I first learned about found poetry in a creative writing class I took my senior year of high school. In that class we would create found poems by flipping through a book or magazine, pulling out ten or so phrases, then arranging those phrases in a way we found artful. I wouldn’t necessarily try to argue that my creations in that vein are actually poems, but it’s nevertheless something I enjoy; it gives me a chance to play with rhythm and sound and texture without having to worry about meaning, or even having to come up with the raw material myself. Also, I’m pretty good at reading my creations in a way that makes them sound like they mean something. 😉
Anyway, a while ago I got an email notifying me that this comment had been left on my birthday post from last year. (And I saw there a whole bunch of well-wishes from last year that I totally never got via e-mail, which made me smile — er, the well-wishes, not the fact that I hadn’t seen them — thanks, y’all!) I think it’s probably spam — after reading over it a few times I realized it’s probably (part of?) an article on Viagra that went through a translating program too many times — but I left it, because something about it screamed “turn me into a found poem!” at me. The found poem I concocted from it is below, and if anyone feels like dropping their favorite found poems or sources for found poetry in comments, please feel free!
These exploratory results
a rendering of the sickness
showed the numb eschewed
preserve their hubs
the way the narcotize works
to feud frailty
may also lend a hand
hands to feud inefficacy
a higher jeopardy of
hands scrape people with
from an primeval ruin
brawny dystrophy is
a genetic working order
causing wasting of the muscles
peerless to an increasing decline
but in the nucleus it
hands to certain the implement itself
with the quintessence in a stiff
prepare, it is more superior
to suffer the bumping
of weakening muscle cells
inform on us craving that
one day it inclination be accomplishable
to regale with this proposals
analyse that desire
march the bumping
it dominion father for people
with athletic dystrophy
it is noiselessness
extraordinarily primeval days
–Liz D., 2008
March 6, 2008
February 7, 2008
All clips are from Dressed to Kill (which means many of you have probably seen them already, but they still make me laugh, so I figure the same may well be true of my lovely readers!)—
Empires, Risk, Hitler, mass murder, the cunning use of flags, and — of course — CAKE OR DEATH:
Two countries separated by a common language, and being bi- or multi-lingual:
British versus American film-making, and British actors in American movies:
January 3, 2008
Not much to say about this week’s installment except that I’m always up for some humor, and I suspect Al Yankovic and I would get along famously. 🙂
“White and Nerdy” (a parody of Chamillionaire’s “Ridin’;” from Straight Outta Lynwood, 2006):
“Bob” (an original song in the style of Bob Dylan’s “Subterranean Homesick Blues;” all the lines are palindromes; from Poodle Hat, 2003):
December 14, 2007
This is a couple of months old and so has probably already made the rounds, but I just saw it for the first time today, and it was funny, so, here you go: “In case of chest hair emergency, pull tab quickly and back away.” Enjoy!
(And in case anyone’s curious, we got power back yesterday. More on that sometime this weekend.)
December 6, 2007
The following video is a re-post here at the Realm, but worry not — there is a method to my madness:
Here’s why I thought of the above video, aside from the fact that it never fails to amuse me: Saturday night Evil Bender and I headed out to Kansas City to see No Country for Old Men (we’re fans of the Coen brothers, and it wasn’t showing here, or even in Lawrence). As we were driving back we passed a billboard for some sort of AM radio commentator, and the most prominent phrase on it was the quote/title/wev “Act Your Wage.”
“‘Act Your Wage’?” I said. “What the hell does that even mean? I’m unemployed; what does that say about how I’m supposed to act?”
“Indeed,” Evil Bender replied, “but did you see the American flag up there? I’m betting he’s one of the wingnuttiest of wingnuts.” He then proceeded to tune the station in. On it a man with a British accent was giving some statistics about how many women own vibrators, and went on to say that the numbers suggested that many women might even own TWO vibrators!
I expected him to go on to say that such things are damaging marriage in America or some such fundy nonsense. Instead, we soon discovered we had found the motherlode of craziness: he explained that it wouldn’t be long before women were turning to robots — yes, robots — to satisfy their needs. That way they’d be able to get all the pleasure they currently get from their vibrators, but it would be able to hold them and whisper “I love you, my darling” into their ears. (I couldn’t make this stuff up if I tried, folks.) He went on, and on, and then it turned out he was a guest on a show, and the host asked him clarifying questions, and I got the impression — even as I was, by that point, laughing so hard my eyes were watering — that a big part of why the host was taking him so seriously was his accent, because we all know that everything sounds smarter if you say it with a British accent.
So, for all you ladies out there who feel like your vibrators just aren’t doting on you the way you’d like them to, fear not! The necessary technology may well be available sooner than any of us dared hope.
(WARNING: Persons denying the existence of Robots may be Robots themselves.)
October 18, 2007
Apropos of this meme for which I’ve been tagged (and which I intend to get to soon!), I give you George Carlin. First, a MadTV sketch I stumbled across — Touched By An Athiest (the disclaimers at the end are great):
Next, Carlin on conservatives and their ideologies (a right-on part: “If you’re pre-born, you’re fine; if you’re pre-school, you’re fucked.”)(Also, it takes over a minute for him to get started, just so’s you know.): Read the rest of this entry »
October 3, 2007
Some of you may have heard of, or even seen, The Complete Works of Shakespeare (Abridged). I personally have a videotape of the Reduced Shakespeare Company performing it that I’m afraid I’m going to wear out. Here’s a clip — The Comedies:
It’s silly, complicated, a bit bawdy, even potentially offensive at points — rather a lot like Shakespeare, in fact.
Recently a theater company from New York was performing the play in Arizona. 700 students from the Higley Unified School District’s sixth through twelfth grades paid five dollars each to go on a voluntary field trip to see the play. 40 minutes into the performance, the district’s director of visual and performing arts, Tara Kissane, stopped the show. Read the rest of this entry »
September 27, 2007
I was going to post serious stuff, but I managed to pick up a virus of some sort on my travels, and that last post made me grumpy, so here are some funnies.
First, speaking of insurance…
Next, do not taunt Happy Fun Ball:
Finally, the classic Little Chocolate Donuts:
Good times. 🙂