Argument Over, Amounting

By Clark Coolidge b. 1939 Clark Coolidge
In edges, in barriers the tonal light of t
the one thing removed overemphasizes tonally
and you could hurry it, and it vanish and plan
 
You go out on an avenue, but may be taken in despite
your chordal list of hates, overcomings banished ready
receiving you from a darkened cone, the one a beat
behind the one you there are
 
Then the I not part of the you equation, but the
spider trying to build where it is written
vibrates tentative
I don’t want to talk to you about it anymore
crystal region in its light, there are failures and
there are failures
 
But it’s imperative, abrupt catch, that you sink the
final catch, trounced morning
this is awful but none other available, words reach
and visually fail to tie audibly retire
the pieces of the opening collision, and the reaches of
turning aside remind
 
I am hopefully
this is position
of the world overcome by
and by the wind takes our voice
the collateral one voice
 
                                                                  after Diane Ward

Clark Coolidge, “Argument Over, Amounting” from Sound as Thought: Poems 1982-1984. Copyright © 1990 by Clark Coolidge. Reprinted by permission of Green Integer.

Source: Sound as Thought: Poems 1982-1984 (Green Integer, 1990)

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Poet Clark Coolidge b. 1939

POET’S REGION U.S., Western

SCHOOL / PERIOD Language Poetry

Subjects Arts & Sciences, Language & Linguistics, Poetry & Poets

Poetic Terms Free Verse

Biography

Born and raised in Providence, Rhode Island, experimental poet and jazz musician Clark Coolidge has been connected to both the Language movement and the New York School. His poetry utilizes syntactical and sonic patterns to engage, and generate, meaning. In a 1968 poetics statement, he noted, “Words have a universe of qualities other than those of descriptive relation: Hardness, Density, Sound-Shape, Vector-Force, & Degrees of . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Arts & Sciences, Language & Linguistics, Poetry & Poets

POET’S REGION U.S., Western

SCHOOL / PERIOD Language Poetry

Poetic Terms Free Verse

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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