One of my favorite quotes, which seems to sum up the ever elegant ‘shit happens,’ is John Lennon’s, life is what happens while you’re busy making plans. It is sad to think how that was an understatement considering his own tragic New York minute.
It came to mind since that is how this weekend has rolled. The ‘poem’ I posted yesterday was a bit out of character in tone/voice for me. I had written it off-cuff, stream of consciousness on the wp site. A phone call rang from the hospital and with knee-jerk reaction, I slapped on a title and posted. (Odd these compulsions to post sometimes.)
The point of the poem was to segue the latest literary bent I’ve been reading, the ‘New Sincerity’. There really is nothing NEW about it, it is just ‘new’ to me. Sadly, shit does happen; life happens. Where I wished to go isn’t going to happen; maybe later this week.
(I’ll try not to forget my other bent: why the book Memoirs of a Beatnik will never be embraced because of its erotic content, yet the ‘burbanites are eating up 50 shades of nothing. Then there is the pondering on why art seems to get lost behind labels…)
To not completely kill the links I’ve found regarding NS, here is quick and dirty version. Drink it in fast, like an extra dirty martini, and perhaps these midnight words will make sense.
New Sincerity is all about taking back the irony in art and getting back to emotion. Art is the key word. This movement doesn’t just pertain to writing, but to the artist in general in the post 9/11 enviro. 9/11 was a broad-spectrum human tragedy that shook our core, enabling (okaying) the artist to get up close and personal once again. The Surrealist movement, taking emotion to a distant place, hiding behind mask or mirror, could be left in the rubble and ash.
A 2012 take on NS that had me ranting in said poem, was an article regarding Marie Calloway’s recent Google Docs postings. (Calloway is a character whom I’ve yet to figure if she is really she, or if she is n amalgamation of characters she has absorbed via reading/observing/etc.) Her antics are being labeled ‘fresh’ yet they still ring somewhat hollow. Is She the New Sincerity, or just someone trying to weave a new web of individuality experimentalism?** (Don’t get me started on how I think she kills feminism via her art.)
**sidebar>> I do think her use of Google Docs to share to such a vast audience is brilliant.
The thunder has rolled in; a blue-silver electricity is casting vibrant dances across the window panes. The dog sighs under the rumble of the latest strike. The charged environment makes me think just how easily a storm can roll in and change the current of how we perceive the world.
A movement within the art world is not as fast as a Midwestern thunderstorm but certainly just as charged. It was this electricity, this almost negative political energy that had me revisit my love for poetics several years ago. Never did I know that within academia there were such cat-fights; such politics. The mud-slinging can be quite ugly. The storms can be quite loud despite some staying deeply entrenched in the ‘quietude’ of it all.
New Sincerity is no different, though I’ve not found quite the tornadic blog energy that I did several years ago. If you would like to read more, though, here are some interesting reads:
Sincerity – New? Old? Normative? - Johaness/Motevidayo
What We Talk About… – AD Jameson/HTMLGIANT (who also writes for Big Other on WP)
M.C. Google Docs - Butler/HTMLGIANT (links to her docs…the comments are interesting to read)
Symposium on Sentiment - J Katz & others – Pleiades (scholarly journal with some fabulous insight)