David Markson’s Anti-Semites: Ezra Pound

In his novel Reader’s Block from 1996 David Markson shuffles together bits of pieces of fun facts, sad facts and other information about authors, artists and philosophers and combine this with quotes from the same range of sources. One of the repeated motives is anti-semitism in sentences which goes like «he-and-she was an anti-semite». These are never explained more, so I will collect some more information about the background of these people’s opinions.

»Ezra Pound was an anti-Semite.«

»All the Jew part of the Bible is black evil, an Ezra nicety.« Quotes -David Markson

The Jewish poet Louis Zukofsky had something to say about this:

»Through a series of biblical and contemporary allusions, “Nor Did the Prophet” addresses Zukofsky’s relationship with his mentor Ezra Pound and attempts to come to terms with Pound’s antisemitism by reconsidering the rhetoric of Pound’s controversial Pisan Cantos.« (From https://muse.jhu.edu/article/31599)Skjermbilde 2016-05-07 kl. 21.27.31.png

Skjermbilde 2016-05-07 kl. 21.18.23.pngSkjermbilde 2016-05-07 kl. 21.18.28.pngSkjermbilde 2016-05-07 kl. 21.18.39.pngSkjermbilde 2016-05-07 kl. 21.18.45.pngScreen dumps from the book Anew: Complete Shorter Poetry By Louis Zukofsky (Source: http://bit.ly/1s3mUZW)

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Envoy to Palestine By Yusef Komunyakaa

Envoy to Palestine

By Yusef Komunyakaa

I’ve come to this one grassy hill
in Ramallah, off Tokyo Street,
to a place a few red anemones
& a sheaf of wheat on Darwish’s grave.
A borrowed line transported me beneath
a Babylonian moon & I found myself
lucky to have the shadow of a coat
as warmth, listening to a poet’s song
of Jerusalem, the hum of a red string
Caesar stole off Gilgamesh’s lute.
I know a prison of sunlight on the skin.
The land I come from they also dreamt
before they arrived in towering ships
battered by the hard Atlantic winds.
Crows followed me from my home.
My coyote heart is an old runagate
redskin, a noble savage, still Lakota,
& I knew the bow before the arch.
I feel the wildflowers, all the grasses
& insects singing to me. My sacred dead
is the dust of restless plains I come from,
& I love when it gets into my eyes & mouth
telling me of the roads behind & ahead.
I go back to broken treaties & smallpox,
the irony of barbed wire. Your envoy
could be a reprobate whose inheritance
is no more than a swig of firewater.
The sun made a temple of the bones
of my tribe. I know a dried-up riverbed
& extinct animals live in your nightmares
sharp as shark teeth from my mountains
strung into this brave necklace around
my neck. I hear Chief Standing Bear
saying to Judge Dundy, “I am a man,”
& now I know why I’d rather die a poet
than a warrior, tattoo & tomahawk.

Yusef Komunyakaa, “Envoy to Palestine” from The Emperor of Water Clocks. Copyright © 2015 by Yusef Komunyakaa.  Reprinted by permission of Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

Lawrence Weiner In Israel

Weiner: “The picture-frame convention was a very real thing. The painting stopped at the edge. When you are dealing with language, there is no edge that the picture drops over or drops of. You are dealing with something completely infinite. Language, because it is the most non-objective thing we have ever developed in this world, never stops”.

Lawrence Weiner, Exhibition View

Inhabitants of the Secret Annexe

And here’s where your mother sleeps
And here is the room where your brothers were born
Indentions in the sheets
Where their bodies once moved but don’t move anymore
And it’s so sad to see the world agree
That they’d rather see their faces fill with flies
All when I’d want to keep white roses in their eyes

Found Poetry From Lines by Frederick Seidel

With a yellowing badge star, bawled at them. I left too.

I had given up violin and left St. Louis,

I had given up being jewish

Carine Rueff, I was obsessed-I was possessed? I liked your name

I liked the fact Marie Christine Carine Rue F was Jewish.

It emphasized your elegance in Paris and in Florence.

You were so blonde in rue d’Université!

I should not be looking. It should not be there.

It started in darkness and ended up a star.

Jewish stars on the L.A. freeway in Jewish cars

Rachel Mennies

rachel mennies

Here, in part, is how ImageUpdate has described the collection:

Rachel Mennies’s first collection is a powerful lyric account of a woman’s search for self through her relationship to God, Judaism, and history. These carefully-shaped poems arrest the reader with startling imagery and sound. With a compelling voice that is at once anguished and utterly composed, these poems ask: how does one reconcile one’s personal faith and struggles with those of one’s ancestors? And how, within the context of this history, does one come to terms with a God of witness and mercy?

How to Make a Jewish Poem

What makes this poem Jewish? Nobody’s
blessed it yet. Nobody’s named it,
named it again in Hebrew, put the name
on a Kiddush cup, filled that cup
with wine purple as a bruise.

Who’s going to march it
up and down the aisles,
dress and undress it
like a newborn at the altar,
kiss the book that taps it
from the pews?

Where are the bobby pins to stick
the lace to this poem’s crown, cover
its head on the Sabbath? Where’s
this poem’s sense of ritual? Its litany
of tics, its love of counting?

Let’s call this poem Rivka, Also,
Becky. Also, Rose, an ancient
relative this stanza’s never met.
Let’s yoke it to the ox of rules.
Let’s light a candle after dark.

smash a glass under its husband’s foot,
circumcise its wailing, red-faced
sons, watch it multiply
into a book (some poems
will remember, some
will not)—sit shivah
for its passing once
it ends

Rachel Mennies

Totality. Nothing more than

Totality. Nothing more than the place and the word. The land, it is white of marble dust mixed, exile on a Roman ship, queen of the jews, she was jewish. He was gentile. There’s no need to cry, it’s still there. We can piece together the image from the scattered pieces of the jigsaw.

Duras cesare

And if it’s a love story, it’s not for him, or for her. For example, I don’t talk about her.

Bernstein

False face. False relation. A real person is separated from the interpreter of that person, if only by the time passed between the event and its evocation, by a distance that continually increases, a distance that is increasing at this very moment. The sea that drives. She, queen of the jews, returned there. Repudiated. Like a female INRI. Such a moment cannot be rejuvenated by dazzling colors, it can only be evoked in memory. The greatness of art only emerges at the dusk of life.