Those "No Eating/No Drinking" signs? They do not kid, people. Eat or drink in the DC metro and you will be taken down. And the transit cops show no mercy. A couple years ago they cuffed and hauled away a ten-year-old girl for eating fries. And there are no warnings. Just cold, hard transit justice.
In form, I think, they're quite un-avante. But quietudinal poems? Nay! There's no flowers!
In my dream last night I was attacked by wolves. I somehow survived this, and went to see a talk by a Very Important Poet (VIP). I do not think this VIP was anyone real, just sort of a dreamworld amalgamation. He looked a little bit like Ginsberg, but was more of a jerk than I can imagine Ginsberg, with his little finger cymbals, ever being. Anyway, the VIP was also very lazy; he didn't want to actually give the talk -- he wanted someone else to read it out loud (it was written down) while he sat in the audience calling out corrections as needed. Somehow, I got stuck with the job of reading the VIP's talk, and for some reason, he had written the entire thing in Cyrillic letters, and his transliteration from the Roman alphabet to the Cyrillic roundly sucked, which caused my reading to be a little stilted and halting. This annoyed the VIP greatly and he kept shifting around in his seat like he really needed to pee, getting angrier with every slowdown. It all came to a head, however, when I got to the part of his speech where he talked about blogs he really liked and he mentioned Bemsha Swing, but his ridiculous spelling in Cyrillic rendered it more like Veemcha Schwee, which my tongue of course tripped over. I left my dream with the VIP having a ridiculous hissyfit as I held his crappy Cyrillic notes up to the crowd as a vindication of my struggle.
Anyway, I like them because I get the joyous cheesiness of mystery fiction while still maintaining my superiority over all those other subway riders clutching ancient airport paperbacks with names like "A Bullet for the Shah," (I really saw that one) or tabloid newspapers.
The best thing about a mystery is that there's someone else already there to do the work. Oh, detective. I know you'll have it all sorted out by the end, and I won't even be bothered if you manage to unravel the mystery through clues that are opaque to the reader, or would be practically impossible to add up into your final equation. I'll just let you do your job, content to watch someone else clean up the mess.
Making the round of the blogs, I once again marvel at the number of you able to hold long, written conversations about highly theoretical subjects. I try to read them, knowing I will thereby be educated, but about two sentences in, my brain starts a conversation with itself along these lines:
"Who said cookie? I want a cookie!"
"Yeah! Cookie! Where?!"
"Cannot read. Must go find cookies."
So there you go. I can write poems, sort of. I just can't think about them.