Selvage:

ON THE EDGE OF LANGUAGE

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Fish Boxes.

Recently, R. pointed me towards a paragraph from a short-story called "The Patch" by John McPhee that appeared in the Feb. 8, 2010, issue of The New Yorker. He got my attention by claiming that he thought it came close to offering a metaphor for my aesthetic, my muse. That it sounded like the way I think about information, about history, about language, as I write poetry.

Okay, so he got my attention. Here's the McPhee paragraph--a story about fathers and sons and fishing, which, in and of itself, does not sound much like my writing. But this:
Pickerel have palatal teeth. They also have teeth on their tongues, not to mention those razor jaws. On their bodies, they sometimes bear scars from the teeth of other pickerel. Pickerel that have been found in the stomachs of pickerel have in turn contained pickerel in their stomachs. A minnow found in the stomach of a pickerel had a pickerel in its stomach that had in its stomach a minnow.
is fantastic. Must. Now. Write. Poem. About. Pickerel.

6 comments:

  1. I have never met a pickerel, but that's as quirky as you are.

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  2. love love love the repetition

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  3. I kinda think that already is a poem about pickerell.

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  4. In a reverse way the Pickerel story reminds me of the idea that we preexist in our grandmother's womb.

    less poetically explained

    every female child is born with all her eggs. Therefor when your mother was in your grandmothers womb, the egg that held your name was in your grandmother.

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  5. The rascals are tasty, too.

    If I was a pickerel, I'd eat other pickerel.

    But if I was REALLY hungry, would I eat myself?

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