jeudi 20 mars 2008

Final cantica: the lyric essay

So I think I am going to try to finish Evangeline in lyrical essays instead of poems. This way, it puts pressure off of living up to some of the dramatic lines that so tore me apart in the first two cycles, allows me to incorporate more factual and cultural information, and gives me a new form to practice.

Part of this reason is me shying away from the confessional in my work, but still incorporating personal stories and images that I directly witnessed. The first part of the manuscript is largely lyric cantos directed at a lover, whether that lover be place or person, with the knowledge of exile still delayed. The second part is more of a travelogue in verse, attempting to destroy the sense of rootedness established in the first. Both use images and bits of language culled from my life and imagination and remain more or less stylized accounts of sex and nostalgia as applicable to geography.

But this last section has to be something different. My emotional connection to Acadie is largely artificial. I've lived there since August, suffered the inwardness of poetry and of regression. Now I am travelling, in transit, once more. Acadie is not my home. It is my foil but also it is a type of redemption for me--an extended long, dark night of the soul. I think it has outgrown my line breaks and imagined encounters, and especially, outgrown my memory.

Next Wednesday, I will be in Ann Arbor for U of Mich's admitted MFA student's "weekend." That Saturday I will be back in Moncton for the final four-week hitch, which will culminate in several readings during the Northrop Frye Festival. Then I will be through with my obligation to Acadie.

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