Smartass Writing Ideas: Clarice Lispector Edition

•June 29, 2013 • Leave a Comment

Filling out an online dating profile using only sentences from Clarice Lispector novels:

1: I want the adult who is more primitive and ugly and drier and more difficult, and who became the child-seed that cannot be broken between the teeth.

2: I want the inhuman inside the person; no, it isn’t dangerous, since people are human anyway, you don’t have to fight for that: wanting to be human sounds to pretty to me.

3: My own innocence? It hurts me. Because I also know that, on a solely human level, innocence is having the cruelty that the roach has with itself as it is slowly dying without pain; to go beyond pain is the worst cruelty.

4: Identity can be dangerous because of the intense pleasure that could become mere pleasure. But now I’m accepting loving the thing!

5: I, person, am an embryo. The embryo is only sensitive–that is its only particular inherence. The embryo hurts. The embryo is eager and shrewd. My eagerness is my most initial hunger: I am pure because I am eager.

6: How would you know you met your ideal partner? ” Through a love so great that it would be of such an indifferent personal–as if I were not a person. He wanted for me to be the world with Him. He wanted my human divinity, and that had to start with an initial stripping-down of the constructed human.”

7: Guess at me, guess at me because it’s cold, losing the lobster’s casings is cold. Warm me up with your guesses about me, understand me because I am not understanding me. I am only loving the roach. And it’s a hellish love.

8: Use me at least like a dark tunnel–and when you’ve crossed my darkness you’ll find yourself on the other side with yourself.

9: Identity is forbidden to me but my love os so great that I won’t resist my will to enter the mysterious fabric, into that plasma from which I may never again be able to depart.

10: What would you say to your last ex? “Ah, how I wanted pain then: it would distract me from the great divine void that I had with you.”

Sweet Dreams, Friends…

•January 14, 2013 • Leave a Comment

A gorgeous video to watch just before bed I thought I’d post. Even though it’s still a bit early in the evening.

Books Read, 2012 Edition:

•November 25, 2012 • Leave a Comment

. An incomplete list.  I’ve got over a month of time yet to make use of, so this will be getting added to in the meantime, and January will bring with it an overview of some of the notables in this list.


01:  A Heaven of Others, Joshua Cohen

02:  The Quorum, Joshua Cohen

03:  Mother Mary, Heinrich Mann

04:  In the Shadow of the Magic Mountain, Andrea Weiss

05:  Above the Leaders, Alice Notley

06:  From the Beginning, Alice Notley

07:  Hermetic Definition, H. D.

08:  165 Meeting House Lane, Alice notley

09:  Phoebe Light, Alice Notley

10:  Tell Me Again/When I Was Alive, Alice Notley

11:  The Artist as Political Educator, Karin Verena Gunnemann

12:  The Blue Angel, Heinrich Mann

13:  The Box, Gunter Grass

14:  Conversations with Zizek, Ed. by Glyn Daly

15:  Autoportrait, Edouard Leve

16:  Flyover, heather June gibbons

17:  Litany for the City, Ryan Teitman

18: Fjords Vol. 1, Zachary Schomburg

19:  I Have Blinded Myself Writing This, Jess Stoner

20:  Continuous Frieze Bordering Red, Michelle Naka Pierce (Three times)

21:  A White Egg for White Death, Milan Dekleva

22:  The Virgin Suicides, Jeffrey Eugenides

23:  Demarcations, Jean Follain

24:  Suicide, Edouard Leve

25:  Hitch-22, Christopher Hitchens

26:  Marshlands and Prometheus Misbound, Andre Gide

27:  Tiresias: The Collected Poems, Leland Hickman

28:  A Fast Life: The Collected Poems, Tim Dlugos

29:  Encounter, Milan Kundera

30:  The Good Soldier Schweik, Jaroslav Hasek

31:  The Map of Human Knowledge, James Tadd Adcox

32:  Swallowing the Sea, Lee Upton

33: The Holocaust as Culture, Imre Kertesz

34:  Youth without God, Odon von Horvath

35:  In Time’s Rift, Ernst Meister

36:  Adam in Eden, Carlos Fuentes

37:  Emmaus, Alessandro Baricco

38:  The Walk, Robert Walser

39:  Thirty Poems, Robert Walser

40:  Mortality, Christopher Hitchens

41:  A Hologram for the King, Dave Eggers

42:  Madame X, Darcie Dennigan

43:  The Flying Creatures of Fra Angelico, Antonio Tabucchi

44:  Lividity, Kim Rosenfield

45:  The Right Place to Jump, Peter Covino

46:  Everyone Has a Mouth, Ernst Herbeck

47:  Public Figures, Jena Osman

48:  Butcher’s Sugar, Brad Richard

49:  A Penance, CJ Evans

50:  Animal Eye, Paisley Rekdal

51:  MLKNG SCKLS, Justin Sirois

52: Dear, Companion, A. E. Watkins

53:  Theophobia, Bruce Beasley

54:  Predatory, Glenn Shaheen

55:  I Am Your Slave Now Do What I Say, Anthony Madrid

56:  The Talking Day, Michael Klein

Your Saturday Andante…

•October 20, 2012 • Leave a Comment

…is from Henselt’s rarely-heard piano concerto, one of the great concertos that aren’t heard much anymore, here heard performed by Marc-Andre Hamelin.  The second section of this movement (starting at 2:40) gets complicated enough to require four staves.

The concerto served as inspiration and basis of Rachmaninov’s famous prelude in C# minor.

The Library of Babel

•August 26, 2012 • Leave a Comment

Never being able to read all of the books in one’s library is one of the things that book-readers eventually have to resign themselves to.  One of the reasons for this is that, as one goes, more and more books move to the “to be reread” pile, and, of these there are books that can stand to be reread repeatedly.  Combine that with new discoveries and purchases, the books of friends and idols as they come out, and you have an almost infinite regression.  A fragmented, fragmentary attempt at such a “To be reread” list:

Macedonio Fernandez, The Museum of Eterna’s Novel (The First Good Novel).

Robert Musil, The Man without Qualities

Jorge Luis Borges, Fictions

Albert Camus, Notebooks

Heimito von Doderer:  The Demons

Fyodor Dostoevsky:  The Demons

Hermann Hesse:  The Glass Bead Game

Hermann Broch:  The Death of Virgil

Gunter Grass: Too Far Afield

Adam Robinson’s “Say, Poem”

•August 18, 2012 • Leave a Comment

My review for Adam Robinson’s wonderful book is now up at The Lit Pub, where you can also buy it

Walter Benjamin–The Arcades Project

•August 3, 2012 • Leave a Comment

“Our waking existence likewise is a land which, at certain hidden points, leads down into the underworld–a land full of inconspicuous places from which dreams arise.  All day long, suspecting nothing, we pass them by, but no sooner has sleep come than we are eagerly groping our way back to lose ourselves in the dark corridors.  By day, the labyrinth of urban dwellings resembles consciousness; the arcades (which are galleries leading into the city’s past) issue unremarked into the streets.  At night, however, under the tenebrous mass of the houses, their denser darkness protrudes like a threat, and the nocturnal pedestrian hurries past–unless, that is, we have emboldened him to turn into the narrow lane.”

–Walter Benjamin, Arcades Project