ABOUT THROUGH THE FRACTURE IN THE I:
In these 27 poems -- meditative, philosophical, lyrical -- Shirley Glubka works and plays with the language, images, and thought of Virginia Woolf, Joseph Nicolar, Jorge Luis Borges, James Baldwin, Eudora Welty, Lucretius, Gilles Deleuze, and others. Each "erasure" becomes a unique amalgam of her voice and that of the source writer. The introduction is a window into her creative process: an explanation, a meditation, and a celebration of this late-life adventure with a new poetry form.
WHEN SOMETHING OPENS AND THE MUSIC ENTERS
All I know is personal, private, vanishing,
but the roar rising from the void is of another order--
terrible, deep water waiting for someone
in torment with the breath of life.
The music tightened and deepened and I--
passing through death--
saw my mother's face on the moonlit road.
It carried me.
The world waited,
wet and real in the dark.
It glowed and shook
like the very cup of trembling.
(Source: James Baldwin's "Sonny's Blues")
TO SEE CRIMSON ROSES
Pull apart the
that flies in the night
with folded wings.
(Source: Christina Diebold's "Transformations")
FROM THE INTRODUCTORY ESSAY:
"Erasure is a process by which you take any text and from it, create a poem." (wave poetry website)
Not one word the source writer didn't use—fragments of ideas/observations/impulses—breaking into, breaking up—I see myself reaching in with my hands, pulling out a piece of language as if it's a material thing; which it is. Sometimes it comes easily, sometimes I have to wrench it away, run with it—but I don't run far, I return and take the tail and hook it in again, to the new place.
It was always language that I loved. It wasn't stories I had to tell, or feelings I had to work through, or ideas I wanted to clarify and express—not essentially. Those were secondary elements. I remember my delight and relief, the sense of validation that came, when I found this quote from W. H. Auden: "A poet is, before anything else, a person who is passionately in love with language." Writing erasures might be the purest and somehow most radical way of working with language that I've found, as if the writer becomes the humble servant of the set of words the source text is, or the servant of language itself.
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