Friday, February 22, 2008

Jubliat 14: Interview w/ Peter Gizzi

Jubliat's interview with poet Peter Gizzi in issue 14 can be found in its entirety here, but I especially enjoy this opening statement about bewilderment. It kind of feels like home for me:

"I guess I am suggesting here the role of not-knowing that plays itself out in the writing of poetry. That this not-knowing plays a signal role in the production of reality in a poem. I like the word bewilderment because it has both be and wild in it, and I can imagine also wilderness inside it as well. As to certainty or authority in my work, I prefer the word inevitability—that is to say, meaning in a poem can be at once random and inevitable, and not-knowing can come to some sort of order that allows meaning to happen, mystery. A simpler way to say this is that I write to discover what I might know only in the act of making the poem itself. Writing as an aid to discovery, and to hold always a space open, to give this openness some relief. It's a hard thing to nail down. . . so let's go back to the word bewilderment: at a reading someone said, "You're really a lyric poet." When I asked her what she meant, she said, "Well, you're not a narrative poet." To which I responded by saying that I think I am a narrative poet—I'm just narrating my bewilderment as a citizen, and that spontaneous answer seemed true and has weirdly stuck with me. It feels right."

No comments: