Tuesday, June 27, 2006

WHO WANTS SOME TOP NOTCH POETRY?

Get your hot poetry here, folks! I'm in a literary mood and in celebration of Mr Stephen Gyllenhaal's (Pops to us) first ever public reading tomorrow I thought it was time for an intellectual discussion again. Stephen's publisher Cantara made me feel like an extra special person by sending Claptrap: Notes from Hollywood to me in PDF form. I'm half way through it now and I haven't quite yet collaberated my thoughts but it's just kind of...electric.

I wasn't even sure what poem to pick out to post here, (the Jake one would be obvious but it's at the back and I haven't got that far yet). So, I've gone for the one that Jamie Lee Curtis picked out in her introduction. Plus I'm re-reading To Kill A Mockingbird at the moment and it reminds me of that in some ways.

Communion

It's not a big thing
when the BMW pulls over
silver blue and German grace
and the Guatemalan gardener adjusts his hip
along the nearby ridge
with his leaf blower and rake
half noting the pure white man inside
with his acceptable rock music
choking
weeping
hands shivering over eyes
weeping til the cows come home
weeping for whatever nameless loss
he's found
as Guatemala
back and forth with his machine
sweeps the rattling leaves
along a green back of Nichols Canyon
like a priest with incense.

So, get your specs on, sip on your Earl Grey and discuss!

You can buy Claptrap; Notes from Hollywood at: http://www.authorsbookshop.com/gyllenhaalclaptrap

Get more info here:
www.stephengyllenhaal.com

87 comments:

Amerika Bound said...

Ahh, what a talented man!
Simplistic, emotive, tender..

Lucky girl brit, being sent the pdf that is, I'm so broke right now, but it's on the list of things to get!!

bless.

miffed67 said...

Man, I just can't wait to get my hands on this book! Gyllendaddy's may be the first poetry I've ever liked!

Nothing Really Matters said...

Can't say i have a love for poetry! Maybe if someone wrote me some i might like it!

~DKBB~ said...

Wow...I gotta buy that book...

Nothing Really Matters said...

94 pages thats a lot of poetry!

beskyddaren said...

I'm no poet so I'll keep it short: fresh. I like it. A lot.

miffed67 said...

LOL, beskydarren! I love it!

nrm, I'll try to think something up for you, but I'm in NO way a writer, as I'm sure you've noticed!

Anna said...

I agree with beskyddaren. I'm not usually a poetry person, but I like the way Gyllendaddy writes.

One of his poems is called "The Man", and it really spoke to me the first time I read it. (Probably because my father had heart surgery recently, and Gyllendaddy's (I guess...?)reactions to his surgery in this poem might have been the same way my father reacted (but wouldn't tell us...).) This poem made me curious of the rest of them, and I'm definitely getting the book. :D

nice anonymous said...

Hmmmm. One long sentence, unpunctuated. One moment in time. Decent imagery. He's good at capturing the **appearance** of the moment, as seen from the outside, with the reader looking on, as it were. He stays out of both characters' consciousness. He just shows us what they are doing & how they look. The externals. You have to supply the story, the cause & effect, the characterization. (Unless other poems around this poem in the book add to the narrative.) In the end, the priest with incense ... is the Guatamalan giving the weeping white man absolution? For what? For being so privileged? Or is the Guatamalan really thinking, "Jesus, this guy has everything, and I'm stuck in this cruddy job, so I can send money home to Guatemala every week. That car costs more than I'll make this year. Why the hell is that guy crying?"

nice anonymous said...

Wonder if Mr. Gyllenhaal has read any James Wright.

Jan in Canada said...

For some who may not have seen this Cantarabooks blog, there's a bit of a description about Stephen Gyllenhaal's book of poems and about him that is quite interesting. Jake's Dad is mentioned about half way through.

" Stephen, a Hollywood director who has always, always been better than his material, is finally getting a chance to show what a true artist, when uncompromised, can do. And celebrity-mongers, take note: There's nothing scandalous, nothing sensationalistic here. No stroke material. He simply spills the emotional beans, that's all. Although there are some short sharp political observations, the tenderest poem is about Jake, the most joyful one is about Maggie, the most regretful one is about his wife, Naomi, the most complex one is about his own father. All technically brilliant, all showing complete mastery of poetic idiom. And while it is true they're not an ordinary family, their flaws and strengths are not what you'd expect. There really is a Gyllenhaal charm, a Gyllenhaal mystique. That Stephen has the courage to break through that half-manufactured, half-authentic wall of mystique, at this point in his life, leaves me breathless with love and respect."

http://cantarabooks.blogspot.com/2006/06/gyllenhaal-our-titles-works.html


I'm somewhat new here and I enjoy the Jake Watch blog....I'm more of an observer/lurker on here, but like you a huge Jake fan!

beskyddaren said...

the priest with incense ... is the Guatamalan giving the weeping white man absolution?

I like that idea! Nice anon, your posts are always a joy to read. Now why don't you get yourself a proper name finally?

Anonymous said...

Nothing to do with this, but thought you would find it funny...I sure as hell do!

http://www.gambling911.com/Vin-Diesel-Jake-Gylenhaal-Oprah-Winfrey-gay-062506.html

cina said...

I'm not a big fan of poetry, but I find Gyllenpappa's poetry very fascinating and thought-provoking. I could actually consider buying his book, but I have a feeling it would be a bit expensive to ship it all the way over here. But I am thinking about it.

jla said...

Oooh it's official! Gyllendaddy is rivaling Jake for my affection and admiration. But really can you go wrong either way? Stephen's style of poetry is instantly engaging and evocative. The vivid language he uses on the surface appears to be presented in a literal context but the imagery that it elicits takes you much deeper into the more symbolic themes. He's very candid in his approach and expression. It really feels like he is letting the reader into his world, like having one of those great conversations with someone where you gain valuable insight into their soul!

@nice anon... He stays out of both characters' consciousness. He just shows us what they are doing & how they look. The externals.

Exactly!!...I think he employs this technique to invite the reader in, to actively engage them. This allows the reader be refelective and to utilize their past experiences to form their respective interpretaions! The poem is an allegory on capitalism if you ask me! But of course...that's my opinion and perception is a relative concept!!

BTW...BPB...OMG I am rereading To Kill A Mockingbird too!! I am almost done! Is Atticus Finch not the greatest literary character ever conceptualized? So fair and conscientious! I feel a book study thread on the message boards coming on...

Anna said...

I guess a lot of us are reading "To Kill a Mockingbird" at the moment... I wonder why? ;-) (I love this book, BTW. The characters are so well written, and instantly loveable.)

Anonymous said...

Could that be Jake's back on the cover of the Claptrap??

Anonymous said...

I'm guessing he may have written this this year..

The Bearded Lady said...

Jla....sometimes you manage to impress me....this is one of those! XXOO

jla said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
jla said...

The Bearded Lady said...
Jla....sometimes you manage to impress me....this is one of those! XXOO


awww...TBL,I don't know whether to say ,"thank you" or to say "fuck you"...I'm leaning towards the latter!! jk;)

The Bearded Lady said...

Ouch!....You got Bearded Lady with her knickers down!...Can we kiss and make up? :)

The Bearded Lady said...

No really I liked your analysis.....

Kendra said...

Precious poem, quoting Christopher Michael Matheny, Cantara editor, "There's also a passionately individual worldview evident here. By turns confessional, mischievous, humble, lustful, tender, furious and profound, his poetry compels a connection with his readers".
I suppose you are agreeable, Bpb.
Now I'm officially jealou of US Gyllenhaal fans, since his next reading is at:

Housing Works Bookstore Cafe
Wednesday, June 28 at 7pm
126 Crosby Street near Houston

I'm so far -unfair situation- but so close in heart anyway. I just suscribed to Cantara newsletter and received a nice free book "Discover Buzz" and a courteous greeting from the editorial. The Gyllenhaal team seem really down to earth and worthy of our attention.

SquallCloud said...

So yeah, now I'm gonna have to tape these fucking things for a glimpse of the Gyllenhaal. I don't watch any sport whatsoever so Jake better be just as ... nay twice as adorable as he was on MTV movie awards to make it worth my DVR's while.

SquallCloud said...

oops! Wrong entry. Sorry. *sheepish grin*

jla said...

The Bearded Lady said...
Can we kiss and make up? :)
No really I liked your analysis.....


Ohhh... TBL you know I was just kidding!! I took your statement as as a complement and it was appreciated!! XOXOXOX

Ania said...

Since I've heard about it I'm wondering if Claptrap: Notes from Hollywood will ever be available form me to buy...I live in Poland and so far I can see no possibilities.... Any suggestions?

britpopbaby said...

^Cantara said they were shipping to Europe so I'll look into it for you.

This poem reminds me of TKAMockingbird because of the racial gaps I guess. The world of the Guatemalan gardener is so far away from the man in the BMW but you know who is happier. I like the way the gardener is completely disinterested in why the man is crying and we are as readers too because he's a rich white man in a BMW. Sorry that wasn't worded at all intelligently - I'm on a brain freeze today.

Onto To Kill A Mockingbird - my favourite character is Scout. Don't shoot but I don't like Atticus that much - he's too perfect as a character. I mean who would actually let someone spit in their face and then just go, 'Hey, if it makes him feel better about himself then that's fine by me!'. I guess he has to be the balance to Scout and all the other characters and yeah, I wish he exsisted in real life but I don't connect to him as much as Jem, Scout, Calpurina.

Good work today, book club!

JoyceDavenport said...

Pops poem is beautiful. It evokes the Guatamalans simple connection with his own feelings 'adjusts his hip' and with nature and spirituality where he blows the leaves 'like a priest with incense' and contrasts that with the despair and loss of the white man trapped in his expensive life. The Guatamalan knows how to be content, the white man has lost his soul to the illusion sold by the American Dream that the aquisition of wealth alone is enough to sustain happiness and contentment.

I don't think it should be taken as saying that poor is good and rich is bad or that one colour or race has a monopoly on wisdom. It is more subtle than that. It's about contrasting values. The man in the BMW could have been a rich African American. It's about the values people adopt in life and where those choices take them.The Guatamalan has not chosen to be poor but he has chosen to be content. The white man has chosen to follow materialism and has been conned- it doesn't bring the contentment he was sold as part of the package. The Guatamalan is a whole human being, the rich man got it wrong, lost his soul, and is now paying the price.

It could be taken as a comment on the wider issues that western society faces in terms of how we are destroying the planet in the search for material wealth and have forgotten spiritual values. The white man crying in the car is a metaphor for the whole of the developed world who were sold the dream of infinite scientific and material progress and are now bewildered as they see it comming apart at the seams. The Guatamalan sees the man's despair as 'no big thing' and only half notes him. It is obvious to anyone not caught up in the illusion that it is bound to end in tears!

britpopbaby said...

Yeah! What she said!

penny lane said...

I haven't had the time to read all this yet but I love the reference to To Kill A Mockingbird - the book is indeed fantastic with very well defined characters, but do not forget to also watch the movie by the same name and then read the book again - when you do this you will hear Scout's voice 'speaking to you'.

Can't wait to get my hands on Mr. Gyllenhaal's book!

smurfette said...

hey, where is wtbgirl lately? i hope our ny readers will be filling us in on the details of poppa's reading...

The Bearded Lady said...

Joyce dear,...I hope your arguements would be more concise if for example Miss Bearded Lady was facing the electric chair....for I'd be worried right now...looking at the jury with a helpless plea in my eyes.....and mouthing the words..."save me"....Electrocution would not be a poetic end for Bearded Lady as much as many would like to envision such a demise for me. ...Your concerned client, TBL

JoyceDavenport said...

Dear Bearded Lady

Your life is so precious to all of us here that the question of arguments to the jury would never arise. As the death penalty is morally wrong and a complete violation of human rights the Jake Watch agents would ignore due process and simply storm the courthouse and whisk you to saftey in our state of the art helicopter. Your only slight concern might be that I am currently appointed Jake Watch official helicopter pilot- but the lessons are comming along nicely- promise. You would then be taken into our protection and relocated to place of your choosing with a 24 hour detail of Jake Watch agents to guard you. Perhaps Simon Agent 002 would volunteer for duty?


Your ever attentive attorney

Joyce.

nice anonymous said...

Wtbgirl could have been hospitalized at St. Vincent's for the extreme rush of adrenalin that she experienced after actually sighting Jake.

Or she could have been trampled by very large pairs of stilettos and strangled with a feather boa during the Pride Parade.

Or she might have simply been washed into a storm drain during one of the downpours we've been having.

I hope we hear from her soon.

The Bearded Lady said...

The thought of you spriting me away from the legal system... Oh Joyce you are a rebel after all!!.. But I think I might quickly strap my seatbelt on, before take-off....it's so easy to be ejected from those open sides

JoyceDavenport said...

Dear Bearded Lady

I am indeed a rebel. Once in a moment of weakness I applied for a job as a prosecutor. They did not deign to reply; my reputation preceded me - not to mention the MI6 files. Now I am a Jake Watch agent I plan on having them deleted.

The seat belt would be most advisable. Did I mention the dizzy spells?

Nothing Really Matters said...

What are you guys on about??

The Bearded Lady said...

Pussy, Agent Joyce was asking for someone to accompany her during her helicopter lessons. I immediately thought of you! Do you still have your parachute?

JoyceDavenport said...

@Nothing Really Matters


Lol- you have to read from a little ways back on the thread. We did get slightly off topic

Nothing Really Matters said...

Okay I read so many things I can’t remember where I read them! I thought that happened when you got old!

Simon Agent 002 said...

Look ladies, I came to this thread to gain a greater insight into this poem. Not read about Pussy's copter escapades.... Why is he crying for himself?...the gardener?...it's a "the nameless loss" ...hmmm the gardener hasn't a name. is this a treatise on immigration?

Diana Rigg said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
nice anonymous said...

The man in the expensive car is crying for himself because money does not insulate you from all the troubles that human beings are allotted in this nasty, beautiful world ... like struggling with love & family relationships & your own & others' mortality & etc. The tears represent the common humanity that the motorist shares with the Guatamalan gardener -- and which social position, income level, job or career, fame or obscurity, recent immigrant or native-born does not shield one from.

Anonymous said...

All this analysis of Papa's poetry is stimulating and illuminating and I can't wait to read the book. And I will...but honestly: I'd like a report from the field agents on Papa's reading tonight at the little bookshop! Like, Was JAKEY there? And I'd love some DETAILS.
I mean the creme de la creme of NYC intelligensia and artistes and actor/activist types must have been there.

Anonymous said...

For me I like this poem because it's a short one... clearly written...As I am not skilled at deciphering poetry it's a good poem to start with... I'm not so sure who is observing who tho? ... the jury's still out on it's meaning to me. I do like Jla's analysis. Well said. She could write the foreword to this book and do it proud!

wtbgirl said...

Not to worry - I'm back. I had to be hospitalized after being suurounded by, like, 100 frigging Gyllenhaals at that reading last night.

Some quick points:

1. In person, Jake's dad reminds me of Giles, from Buffy the Vampire Slayer. In a good way. Bookish sexy.

2. Apparently Poppa G has many, many siblings and children of siblings, and they were ALL there, including one guy that could have been his twin.

3. Jake really doesn't look like either parent in person (Momma was there too). Maggie resembles both.

3. Poppa G is completely cool, laid back, funny, and obviously takes a great deal of pride and joy in his family.

4. When he listed his kids, he included Peter (awww).

5. Peter Saarsgard is a stone FOX - last time I saw him, he was sweaty and carrying a large print (as previously discussed on this board). THIS time, looking FINE, open, blue button-down, bedroom eyes. talk about THE SEX. If he was single .... damn ...

6. Maggie looked lovely, looking very pregnant at this point, but happy and glowing. We smiled at one another. Had her hair up in one of those braid hair-do's she likes, black dress, little green coverlet, green earings.

7. No Jake. He might have stayed away to not take away from dad's night. Considering it was a huge Gyllenhaal family reunion, I assume he stuck around NYC - they were all going out afterwards for some sort of family gathering.

The Bearded Lady said...

Oh Thank You! WtbGirl for that first hand report! Sounds like he had a good turn out....How was his reading?...did he elaborate on any of his poems?...was there a signing? Thanks

wtbgirl said...

He read about 10 or so poems. And yes, he elaborated on some of the poems. I don't have the book with me here, so I can't remember all of the titles.

"At 25" is about Jake. He got a bit choked up when he mentioned his kids.

The one "My Daughter Stips" or something like that is about Maggie - she was performing Closer on stage in L.A. (playing the stripper role), and a critic described her as a "braying mule." The poem was in part a result over Poppa's fury at the time over that remark, and how it made him realize how brave his daughter was to put herself "out" there and expose herself, literally and figuratively. he called her "brilliant."

He read several poems about his mother (definitely exploring the sort-of-sexual/goddess fantasy boys have about their mothers), a few about Hollywood hypocrisy (got to say, I got the distinct feeling he doesn't love it there, or at least L.A. seems to grate on him at times.)

He clearly adores his wife, kept mentioning her throughout the evening.

The reading was very good, poetry is definitely a literary form best heard aloud. There was a Q&A followed by a signing, and he couldn't have been a nicer, more down-to-earth person.

beskyddaren said...

Maggie looked lovely, looking very pregnant at this point, but happy and glowing. We smiled at one another.

I think this calls for a *squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee*

Great work and reporting, agent wtbgirl!!! Smokin' Sarsy and all, what a night it must have been! Jake made the right decision not to go.

The Bearded Lady said...

I think he (Jake) knows of Wtbgirl's powers and is attempting to elude her...You can run dear but WtbGirl always gets her man! :) Just ask Colin....P.S. WtbGirl...Thank's for taking the time to elaborate...XXOO

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the report, wtbgirl!! Sounds like a wonderful evening! Love that family and Peter!

From all reports Jake is back in L.A. doin reshoots on "Zodiac/Chronicles". Otherwise, I am sure he would have found a way to be there and support his dad. However, I bet he may have come in a back way or something as to not distract from his dad's night. Surprising that you say Jake doesn't look like his dad? Based on all pictures Jake looks totally like his dad and Maggie looks totally like her/Jake's mom.

Would love to hear Stephen's poen about Jake, the "At 25" one.

mrs_dalloway said...

How nice..thank you very much, agent wtbgirl, we were all worrying what evil lady got you!And there you were,taking notes with your eyes.
And what about the Q&A? how were the quetions? were they about his work more or were they interested more in his life/family? it is risky..with all the good stough out in there..

wtbgirl said...

"And what about the Q&A? how were the questions? were they about his work more or were they interested more in his life/family?"

The Q&A was pretty focused on his writing process. He was very forthcoming and open out front about his family, so there was no real need to pry - he specifically said at the beginning of the reading that when it came to expressing his feelings about his wife and children, certain poems said it best. And then he read those poems and elaborated a bit on each of them.

"However, I bet he may have come in a back way or something as to not distract from his dad's night."

It's a small space - Jake wasn't there.

phoebe said...

Wow. Thanks for the report wtbgirl!! It must have been amazing being there!! What an experience.

Prophecy Girl said...

OH MY GOD! I'm here. *panting* Cannot find server, my ass!!! wtbgirl you are my HERO!!

mrs_dalloway said...

Wtbgirl, you deserve a special Jake & his family Watch Award!
Did he comment on 'At 25'?
Sorry for all these questions..

Prophecy Girl said...

Ooh, questions from me, too. How many people were in attendance? And did you ask anything during the Q&A (I imagine I would not be capable of speaking in such company, but that's just me!)??

wtbgirl said...

"Did he comment on 'At 25'?
Sorry for all these questions.. "


That's OK, that's what I'm here for - LOL! If I recall, he just said "This one is about my son." He did mention that it was written late last year (which would have been right about when all the Brokeback craziness was getting underway). But he didn't have a "Jake story" the way he had a specific one about Maggie and the critic's "braying mule" comment.

Oh, he also metioned that the poems were pretty much written over a 4 year period (which actually was something I was wondering about).

cina said...

Thanks so much for sharing wtbgirl!! I loved reading about it! And yes - I too think Jake made the right decision not to go. And yep, he's back in LA. Don't ask how I know because I can't tell you. But he is.

Prophecy Girl said...

Cina! Are you holding out on us?! You know you can't do that! :)

cina said...

Well, in this case I sort of am. I really can't say how I know because it's a very private matter. At least I can't say it here....

wtbgirl said...

"How many people were in attendance? And did you ask anything during the Q&A (I imagine I would not be capable of speaking in such company, but that's just me!)??"

It was a good turnout, 50 people or so (this is NOT a large space) -he thanked his entire extended family and basically everyone he ever knew in NYC for filling up the place - LOL!

Actually once I got there I wasn't nervous at all, both Stephen Gyllenhaal and his wife seem very ... well ... parental ... and were very approachable - in general, I go to a lot of book readings, so usually I am not shy about speaking, asking questions, etc.

Maggie in particular seemed SO pleased and proud that people (not just her family) came out to hear her dad's reading. I assume I would have been more nervous if Jake had been there, but really, I felt surprisingly normal.

I was going to ask the question about the timeline of the poetry, but someone beat me to it. I did have a nice few moments with Poppa G when he signed my book, we spoke about his poems that related to the disparity/hypocrisy of the so-called "American Dream" (the poem Democracy in particular) which is kind of on my mind lately (reading a book on that subject). I'm a book geek, always have been, what can I say? LOL

The Bearded Lady said...

W.G. - When you mention him being upset with the critic's remark....it reminded me of a famous episode that Pres .Harry Truman was involved with...his daughter was an inspiring opera singer and gave a public performance. Well some well known critic of the time, gave a scathing review of her in a large national paper....Mr Truman was angry and wrote the man a blistering letter back...using profanity if I recall it correctly, then threating to punch him in the nose! if he ever met him... The critic made Truman's letter public...and it's now a part of history.... I'm sure Mr. Gyllenhaal could identify with Mr. Truman

Prophecy Girl said...

And you answered my next question which was whether you got a signed copy. Oh, wtbgirl. I'm so jealous and yet happy for you at the same time! :) It sounds like it was amazing experience and you're wonderful to recap it for us!! I can't believe you got to meet Daddy G! That is SO awesome!

Prophecy Girl said...

Well, in this case I sort of am. I really can't say how I know because it's a very private matter. At least I can't say it here....

So you ARE holding out on us! Ah ha! :) It's OK if you don't want to tell. (But it's also OK if you want to tell me in private...hee hee...just kidding...not really, but I'm going to stop bothering you now. :)).

mrs_dalloway said...

Oh! Did you try to get his son's phone number?

britpopbaby said...

See, I had to go to work again today and I miss these cool things!!!

zoo said...

wtbgirl I BOW AT THE ALTAR THAT WORSHIPS YOU. Thank you thank you thank you. X

beskyddaren said...

I wish we had a secret handshake or something! So that wtbgirl could have hinted Stephen that Jake Watch had everything under control. ;)

The Bearded Lady said...

LOL ;)

Nothing Really Matters said...

Yea Brit work sucks! I missed all this aswell!

Well done wtbgirl, you did really well!

mrs_dalloway said...

I like the book's cover! The view from behind..it's like being in the spotlight while succesfully hiding from it,analyzing every single thing around..It's like a child in the centre of attention,him actually thinking his aunts are weird,laughing of his dad's faces and feeling the need to be close to his mom..Yeah,I just got this picture and needed to post. Don't mind me.

britpopbaby said...

secret handshake

Yeah, like some cool ass Fresh Prince of Bel Air style shake! I don't want to try though, it must be near impossible to arrange such things over the internet - maybe we should just wink seductively...

jla said...

wtbgirl great job!! Sounds like we definitely have the right agent stationed on the east coast! Thanks for relaying all of the info. You must be floating on air still feeling the effects of the Gyllenaura!! Live it up baby!

I wish we had a secret handshake or something! So that wtbgirl could have hinted Stephen that Jake Watch had everything under control.

Excellent idea...that would be agreat way to discreetly make our presence known while still maintaining our anonymity!

miffed67 said...

wbtgirl, you're a GODDESS! Thanks so much for the Poetry Reading Report and Q & A!!!!

So you ARE holding out on us! Ah ha! :) It's OK if you don't want to tell. (But it's also OK if you want to tell me in private...hee hee...just kidding...not really, but I'm going to stop bothering you now. :)).

SHARE!

wtbgirl said...

No problem, ya'll - it was my pleasure to attend and report back.

I like book readings in general, and attending one that was an apparent Gyllenhaal extended family reunion was an extra treat. Who knew there were so many of them out there? LOL There were Gyllenhaals EVERYWHERE.

btw Stephen mentioned on several occasions that this was his "first" appearance to promote the book - they are definitely lining readings up in other cities, Cantara mentioned that as well.

So I would urge brit to keep in touch with Cantara herself (a VERY exuberant and lively woman, btw).

The Bearded Lady said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
nice anonymous said...

My fervent thanks to Wtbgirl, as well, for reporting to us about Mr. Gyllenhaal's reading. I'm glad to get a sense of what the man is like, in person. I wonder who's the distributor for his publisher's books? Is it SPD or someplace else? In other words, is it useless to look for it at the St. Mark's Bookshop or someplace like that? I wish the Gotham was still there. They had a great poetry section.

Was poor Mary Gordon quite eclipsed in all the uproar? I just picked up "Spending" over the winter & finally read it, a few weeks ago, as I'm getting slowly through my summer "to be read" stack of books. Wonderfully erotic. If I cast Jake in the part of "B," the male sex object, and me as the female painter, the book works even better. (But Jake's too young to be "B," unfortunately.)

Anonymous said...

BritPopBaby: Can you post "At 25" for those of us unable to get to the book yet? I'm sure it would spawn an interesting discussion.

Thanks!!

nice anonymous said...

Yes, I'd really like to see "At 25," though probably BritPopBaby would have to ask for the rights for digital display. But I'm pretty sure that Mr. Gyllenhaal and Cantara would be amenable to that, wouldn't they? Or maybe "Poetry Daily" will pick up a Gyllenhaal poem, if we are lucky, and we can read more there.

Anonymous said...

Nice Anon & BPB: It's up at the IHJ forum, but thank you. I don't want to violate copyright or diminish sales, but... I'm stuck at work and can't get down to Borders. I'm sorry.

I think Stephen is very, very talented and I'm kind of seriously jealous of JG for having such an incredible family.

nice anonymous said...

Now probably I'll be pulled apart into pieces for saying this, but the poem that BritPopBaby has posted here is clearer & sharper than "At 25." Because in the one posted here, a scene is played out, and it relies on visuals & imagery. It's relatively simple & it works well. "At 25" is a poem of address, where the speaker is talking to someone, but letting us, the readers, listen in -- & the poet has less control of his material, and I'm not sure that I'm able to follow some of the transitions between the ideas in the poem. The clearest part of the poem is, again, a visual moment: the memory of the child's birth, and then holding him while he squalls with rage. That's Stephen's strength, rather than the harangue. (Though some people do like poetry when it is one long harangue, and there's a long tradition of that.)

britpopbaby said...

Now that Mr Gyllenhaal has sold out I think it's safe to post. I'll probably post it tomorrow and yep, it's long and involved and takes a few readings.

nice anonymous said...

^ ^ ^ ^

Thanks so much, BritPopBaby. I'll look for the poem to be posted. And again, thank you for all the time & effort you put into making this blog look so great. It's such a welcome distraction from my working life. It's a nice place to hang out.

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