Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Labyrinth- Roberto Bolano

I've been at a loss with what to do with this blog. I think it's a good idea to keep one as part of being a poet, but I haven't cared enough about what I'm writing to take the time to do it.
But I've been interested lately in keeping track of what I'm reading, listening to, watching, and looking at while I'm working on a new book, Stay. And then it dawned on me that those are things easily kept up with by blog, especially with a mobile app to blog by. No one else may care, but this should be a handy list of what input is shaping Stay. First up-
Roberto Bolano's Labyrinth in the Jan 23 2012 The New Yorker. (Doesn't the The make you want to punch them a little?)
I'm a little hot/cold with Bolano but I loved this piece for its concrete origins- a picture of Sollers, Kristeva, & some Tel Quel folk that Bolano runs with. There's thick description, some speculative fiction, a little psychology, all beautifully written. It feels beautiful & insightful instead of pretentious & tricky. The ending feels cheap (Since this is posthumous work I wonder if it was just a placeholder ending. DO NOT PUBLISH UNFINISHED WORK BY ME AFTER I DIE. This is my poetic DNR. Although since no one is batting down the doors to publish me alive, I'm probably safe.) but the rest pulls you along & the structured turnbacks are beautiful. I love the imagination & the joy you feel Bolano had in writing it.
I want to steal its combination of smarts & play. Read it for yourself here

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