Friday, 13 January 2012

Jack Spicer (30/1/25 - 17/8/65) - Extact from: A Textbook of Poetry / Rimbaud.

Jack Spicer - Rachel Burgess

                                                          from: A Textbook of Poetry


   Surrealism is the business of poets who cannot benefit by surrealism. It
was the first appearance of the Logos that said, " The public be damned,"
by which he did not mean that they did not matter or he wanted to be
crucified by them, but that really he did not have a word to say to them.
This was surrealism

   But even the business of ignoring the public is the business of the poet
and not the surrealism of the poet. The surrealism of the poet could not
write words.

    To  be lost in a crowd. Of images, of metaphors (whatever they were),
or words; this is a better surrender. Of the port who is lost in the crowd of
them. Finally.


    it does not have to fit together. Like the pieces of a totally unfinished
jigsaw puzle my grandmother left in the bedroon when she died in the
living room. The pieces of the poetry or of this love.

   Surrealism is a poem morethan this. The intention that things do not
fit together. As if my grandmother had chewed on her jigsaw puzzle
before she died.

     Not as a gesture of contempt for the scattered nature of reality. Not
because the pieces would fit in time. But because this would be the
only way to cause an alliance between the dead and the living. To magic 
the whole thing toward what they called God.

     To mess around. To totally destroy the pieces. To build around them.


They said he was nineteen; he had been kissed
So many times his face was frozen closed.
His eyes would watch the lovers walking past
His lips would sing and nothing else would move.

We grownups at the bar would watch him sing.
Christ, it was funny with that childish grace
He sang our blues forus; his frozen lips
Would lift and sing our blues out song for song.

Intemperance of heart and of the mind
Will block their progress to the last abyss
Unwinkingly; they listen to the wind
And find ceiling in the throat.

image by
R.H Quaytiman.

The collected |Books of Jack Spicer:
Ed.Robin Blaser.Los Angeles: Black Sparrow Press,

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