Friday, April 30, 2004

Not to be the purple rain, Josh, but I have to say these aubergine-ending poems are still not working for me. Yeah, the idea of a blanket ban on a word is dumb, and just the kind of simultaneously high-handed and silly thing that would come out of the mouth of someone like McClatchy. But reading the poems Aubergine Nation has produced convinces me that maybe he was onto something.

Sure, it does depend on context. But that's the problem with putting it at the end of the poem: it forces the word not only into a place where it can't easily be recontextualized (or absorbed into a flow or followed by a wink), but a place where's it's actually being leaned on for closure. And in almost all the aubergine poems the word just jumps out at the end like an exclamation point, because it just doesn't fit right in anybody's style, no matter how high.

I hope my reaction isn't just a jingoistic demand for plain American that cats and eggplants can read.

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