Ten ‘translationed’ fragments from bill bissett’s new book:
Another near-life experience.
““Help, help,”“ such a classical utterance…
Can we connect? Is there time for that?
Obsession is a replacement for interaction.
they showed a cluster of, circle of, people getting back up to standing position after, perhaps, kneeling. It looked like some of them, quite older (it was mid-winter, how their bones must have hurt in the chill!) and the voice-over said ““Cannibalism has now entered the war in Bosnia. ”“ Through the gloomy coats and legs of the now standing people we could dimly see wrecked bodies in the snow. And then, much later in the day, the same pictures / different voice-over said: ““The grieving in Bosnia continues as the war carries on its grim parade. ”“ So they’re just getting up from snacking? Or mourning? (The line of meaning, often so distinct, blurs with what they think we can handle).
If despair is a mask for self-pity, what is self-pity a mask for?
Fear. Of farming. Why do we fear farming? The disappointment of the agricultural revolution.
Someone says ““God is dead”“ to them, and they hear ““God is Ed. ”“ And then you introduce someone to them-say: ““This is Ed. ”“ And they go, ““Please forgive me!”“ or, ““How’s your son?”“
The interesting texture of the bathwater sustains me.
““Get thee to a nouneree. ”“ Ophelia had been experiencing noun slippage, (and haven’t we all?) And where is the nouneree? Do you know the way? With heightened and more sophisticated noun awareness, do we come closer to happiness, starring ourselves? Ophelia unfortunately didn’t find the nouneree and perhaps thought it was the name of the river. Can you walk into the same nouneree twice? She jumped in. Lost lovesickness, now called co-dependency.
As always, it’s much better complete, and in the original. And it’s not even a foreign language.
originalee from lunaria ovr 300 yeers ago in lunarian time
sent by shuttul thru halifax nova scotia originalee wantid 2
b dansr n figur skatr became a poet n paintr in my longings
after 12 operaysyuns reelee preventid me from following th
bill bissett garnered international attention in the 1960s as a pre-eminent figure of the counterculture movement in Canada and the United Kingdom. In 1964, he founded blewointment press, which published the works of bpNichol and Steve McCaffery, among others.
bissett’s charged readings, which never fail to amaze his audiences, incorporate sound poetry, chanting and singing, the verve of which is only matched by his prolific writing career—more than seventy books of bissett’s poetry have been published.
A pioneer of sound, visual and performance poetry—eschewing the artificial hierarchies of meaning and the privileging of things (“proper” nouns) over actions imposed on language by capital letters; the metric limitations imposed on the possibilities of expression by punctuation; and the illusion of formal transparency imposed on the written word by standard (rather than phonetic) spelling—bissett composes his poems as scripts for pure performance and has consistently worked to extend the boundaries of language and visual image, honing a synthesis of the two in the medium of concrete poetry.
Whether paying tribute to his hometown lunaria or exercising his native tongue dissent, bissett continues to dance upon upon the cutting edge of poetics and performance works.
bill bissett was recently a featured poet on the Heart of a Poet series, produced in conjunction with Bravo! TV.
Among bissett’s many awards are The George Woodcock Lifetime Achievement Award (2007); BC Book Prizes Dorothy Livesay Prize (2003) peter among th towring boxes / text bites; BC Book Prizes Dorothy Livesay Prize (1993) inkorrect thots.