91. Berber City Poems (For El Habib Louai)

El Habib, Paul at Hozomeen, August 14, 2013

It is a month after El Habib Louai visited Seattle, postcards composed during his visit are appearing on my blog and I am reliving the moments through the poems as if they are happening again. Part of what makes this satisfying is the composition method in which, as Robert Duncan suggested, the poem under hand is an event itself, not the record of an event. An important distinction I have come to understand better as the years progress. Habib withdrawal is another part of the dynamic behind the poem and, hopefully, the poem reflects some of the energy still present in Habib’s wake. There’s something about his humility, energy, passion and perception which continues to fuel my own investigations of consciousness through poetry. And so to look over the words used in the postcards, so as to have some material from which to work, to see the links whether they be sonic or content, or best, both, among other qualities, I used the Wordle application to create a soundcloud. (See below). Best read while listening to the poem as it is read, I think. (pdf)

About Splabman

SPLAB and Cascadia Poetry Festival founder Paul E Nelson wrote American Sentences (Apprentice House, 2015), Organic Poetry (VDM Verlag, Germany, 2008), a serial poem re-enacting the history of Auburn, Washington, A Time Before Slaughter (Apprentice House, 2010) and Organic in Cascadia: A Sequence of Energies (Lumme, Brazil, 2013). Founder of the Cascadia Poetry Festival, in 26 years of radio he interviewed Allen Ginsberg, Michael McClure, Anne Waldman, Sam Hamill, Robin Blaser, Nate Mackey, Eileen Myles, Wanda Coleman, Brenda Hillman, George Bowering, Joanne Kyger, Jerome Rothenberg & others, including many Cascadia poets. He lives in Seattle and writes at least one American Sentence every day. https://www.paulenelson.com. Co-Editor of Make It True: Poetry From Cascadia, he is in year five of a twenty year Cascadia Bioregional Cultural Investigation. www.CascadiaPoetryFestival.org (Oct 12-15, 2017, Tacoma, WA)
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