|b l o g|
Is it John Ashbery or the DayQuil? (I'm sick.) I'm re-thinking the former. He's more than a chatty bard strolling aimlessly (& often) in his NYer 'Versailles of the imagination,' I think. I already liked 'Illustration,' 'And You Know,' 'The Painter,' 'Into the Dusk-Charged Air,' that poem about a view of Delft, etc. But I still didn't understand why his last 10 books exist. And someone mentioned he's a lowering bore (even though he has a poem 'Something Similar'). But about 20 years ago, he selected some of his own poems for a book, which was nice of him. It has more of his poems like Frederick Seidel's, fewer like James Tate's. It has all the astonishment and peculiar locality I never thought about before. So what if his songs are never songs? Or you can take the word of a reviewer who writes like a pinball machine thinks.
And Ashbery's playing laureate for New York, not New Jersey.