All posts tagged: Basho

Jay Yencich: “Passenger Pidgin: Niedecker’s Road Trip through the Geo-Linguistic Strata of Lake Superior”

Lake Superior Lorine Niedecker Wave Books, 2013 Grandfather +advised me: +++Learn a trade I learned +to sit at desk +++and condense No layoff +from this +++condensery writes Lorine Niedecker in the entirety of “Poet’s work,” one her more commonly recognized poems.¬†Wave Books’ release of¬†Lake Superior attempts to unearth the raw¬†material buried in Niedecker’s records and lend insight into how these archives were compressed by the force of her pen.¬†The book¬†opens with the title poem, chiseled to six pages in this edition’s generous lineation. The poem itself is spare‚Äďmostly unpunctuated and numbering under four-hundred words with lines rarely exceeding five‚Äďbut its honed structure leads the reader to allusiveness and juxtaposition. In every part of every living thing is stuff that once was rock In blood the minerals of the rock the poem opens, offering a guide to the subsurface topography.¬†Placing “minerals” and “blood,” non-living and living, on the same line is hardly a move one could make by accident.¬†Sure enough, in the subsequent section we are introduced to “Iron the common element of earth / in …