Book Reading


Book Reading at TweetSpeak Poetry

The Anthologist by Nicholson Baker

It’s about a poet, talking about the writing he should be doing, and
his live-in woman friend that has moved out, as well as mentioning other
odd thoughts that he tends to have. He strings the whole thing along going
from his life stuff to what he knows about rhyme and free verse poetry. It’s odd
but not too unusual, it’s frustrating in the way that our own lives can be, in
that it takes us forever and a day to get through some things, if ever. And yet,
some of the information on rhyming starts to sound okay as he relates it to
different things, like song and beat.  He takes time to inform the reader of
his poetic knowledge by talking about certain poets and poems. If it were not
for the story of the love interest in Roz, and the ones about his dealings with his
friends and editor, it would basically be that introduction to the anthology that
he is trying to get himself to write. You can tell that Baker once attended a school
of music as much as he likes to emphasize the beat and rhythm of poetry in
this book.

I can understand about the sound of words and the rhythm of a line…but,
i think one can get a little too caught up in thinking about how to do something
instead of just doing it.  Or even allowing it to happen. Just like the unwritten
anthology in the story.

I like how the story relates how people do things differently, which is what can
make poetry so remarkably interesting in the long run.




photo via flicker

10 thoughts on “Book Reading

  1. shrinkingthecamel

    “Doing it rather than thinking about it ” vs. “Allowing it to happen” – That is such an interesting way of looking at things. Wouldn’t it be great if all of our desires and longings and goals were “allowed to happen,” like a river flowing down a mountain, instead of frustration and fuming and insecurity and tension and disappointments?

    Sounds like an interesting author. And book.


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