Friday, January 3, 2014

Day 362 of the 365 Days of Blogging

The author/publisher,
Dane F. Baylis


Alright, when it comes to giving out my opinions, I'm no wallflower. Neither do I mince words. If anything, you could say I have the occasional rough edge. You could also say that about my prose and poetry . At least that's been my style, and if there are three things I believe in, it's clarity, consistency, and communication. Which is why I'm a little put out with some of the horribly artsy crowd I'm running into in the poetry scene these days.
There's a trend that surfaces every so often among the wordsmiths in this game that gripes my ass. Someone steps up to a mic and begins reciting in the common language I'm familiar with, English, and before you know it, I have little or no friggin' idea what the hell it is they're trying to say. Words that one might only encounter in an obscure text begin to creep in, images are eviscerated and the mess that's left has little correlation with anything familiar, cadence is about as relevant as a John Cage composition (at least he had balls enough to be outrageous in a carefully calculated manner), and the author adopts a context so personal, the audience hasn't a clue as to what to derive from the performance.
I've been around long enough to see this attempted more than once. Each time with the same agonizing results. Can we agree that the literary arts are about communication - the transmission of emotion, tension, and conflict, resolved or not? If the words are not serving that function then they are like bird feathers hung from branches. Sure, if I do enough investigation, I might determine species, genus, and sex, but by then the beauty of the creature is lost in a clinical quest for substance. Am I impressed? Sorry, horseshit just stinks, no matter how you package it.
Some of these budding young Ezra Pounds even make the stupid mistake of explaining what it is they're not communicating, either before or after they read their piece. Really? That is the resort of the gross amateur who hasn't the confidence or craft for what they're attempting. Jesus H. Fucking Christ on a crutch, ladies and gentlemen! If you're not able to say it with clarity in the body of your written words, what the hell do you think explaining it is going to accomplish?
Let me help you out with that one. You're either going to turn off your listeners, because they came to listen to your poetry, not your lecture on its arcane symbols and allusions, or you're going to piss them off because you're baffling them with bullshit instead of dazzling them with brilliance. Not only that, but when you become even mildly pedantic, you lose any claim to style, and Honey, you'll get a lot more kudos for a rough job done with style than a job lacking any style done roughly.

Just a helpful hint from your Uncle Dane.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------, love, write as if you're life depended on my getting it the first time - without addendum!
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Dane F. Baylis

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