A quick & appreciative read of DEED by Rod Smith
Peter Gizzi says that Rod Smiths’s work is “all risk all the time.”
“tears never house us, maybe they
cleanse, maybe they don’t, the word
intend doesn’t seem to fit
from “The Good House”
What we like here is how speech nuances a sort of letterist approach to the lines which resonate nicely around in our heads and then bounces back to a meaning so delicate as to be almost disallowed.
Reviewed in a DC paper, Rod is quoted as saying he figures not to be able to own a house and so has written one instead and I know what he means because I have read The Good House --one of my top 5 favorite chapbooks.
And then I think
Have I not also written that house?
Taken that chance?
“Sacred & infinite, the wipped, stunned spurts pop the placated junk-spider, stoving. Watch yon spider yawn. Watch the furling will can the rasps of spider will. Each foretold tin is a lint spider rioting. Each foretold tin injures the basket. Stand back in the spider. They would not have known injustice if it were not for those things.”
from “The Spider Poems”
At first I think DEED is so good I can barely read it and then I do & it is.
Makes me ridiculously happy or maybe that’s the drugs. Just kidding. Syrup?
About pain. Don’t get me started.
“the worst is not good, it’s alone & not nourish”
from “The Good House”
One of those cases where seeing the work in a new context means reading it as if for the first time, almost.
Not trying to prove anything.
from “the love that is truly a refuse for all living beings”
Or not the usual things.
It comes to me that Kasey was right all along and that A Tonalist and Flarf are subsets of each other. A Tonalists -- I call you to support your Flarfist comrades!
Dead Man, Zatoichi, Pat Garret & the Coward Jesse James, Ghost World, Invitation to a Gunfighter:
“You’re standing between me and the road out of town.”
Jerry Estrin’s last letter was to Rod Smith. It came back a few days after his death. Jerry’s handwriting on the envelope startled me. I remember now only how it ended.
Rock and roll
“& an accordance
& crushes us, internal”
Fom “XCVII ('she knows who she is')"
Jerry would’ve liked this book.
“…the wicked mice of plus signs apparent to the mashed open retreads pulp-listed parental softenings cut apart by the paste & parrots, we crux, we are shared like lettuce, like merits, like the brains in the skulls beside the airs of the grounds above the goings, that, there, those, then, thick awake refascinated leapings in a letter, or something vague, something almost not there, a something garish contracted from contact with fragments, & so we are in the dark alone, like everything else, & maybe there is some light. Maybe we can see it?”
Is this not enlightenment?