Poetry News

Jerome Rothenberg Presents David-Baptiste Chirot's Cinema of Catharsis

By Harriet Staff


Today we found the second installment of the great and wonderful poet/visual-artist David-Baptiste Chirot's Cinema of Catharsis, presented by Jerome Rothenberg, up at Jacket2. Somehow we missed the first installment, here, in which the Preface opens:

El Colonel is smiling, writing with his cigarette’s smoke in that great page, the sky . . . that great page, ever open to all, in which all eyes may read---and there, their readings being writings . . . find also the writings of others . . . moving, living, in skies of their own among these sometimes shared skies, these skies sometimes encountering each other . . . these writings, readings readers & writers . . . meeting among these skies . . . so that—

So that, indeed!

To get a taste of what the Cinema of Catharsis writing is all about, Rothenberg writes:

NOTE. Concerning the whole El Colonel series, an evolving “major” work, Chirot, whose work, both verbal & visual, is a great too often hidden resource, has written elsewhere: “it should be noted that El Colonel is not a ‘static’ being—moves through & inbetween as ‘in-beat-we-in’—is rhizomatic—rhythmic—unfolding—in events among Time & ‘consciousnesses’—non-linear-and ‘occurs’ not so much as a ‘character’ ‘by an author’(including himself)---but exists in dimensions which begin to explore the zones which Stephane Mallarme created as ‘poèmes critiques’—& an obsession with El Colonel is a Writing which exists without ‘materializing’—a Journey with the Writing of the No—
“there is thus no particular ‘order’ to the pieces, though the ‘first’ appearance as and in print of El Colonel is the Chapbook ‘El Colonel Smiles’—(also published as a prose poem text w/o images in Otoliths online & print Journal-)—the first presentation of El Colonel’s ‘thoughts, those improvised compositions’ which may serve as a kind of ‘Intro’ in re ‘composition’& re composition as an emergence out of ‘decomposition’--appears in ‘El Ojo de Dios Part the First: Insects & Letters,’ which can be linked to at the Sous Rature site.”

Read part I-III here, and then move on to IV-VII here. Then sample some of Chirot's collage and rubbings here.

Originally Published: November 6th, 2013