dagNotes: The Poet’s Garret (Pritch’s post-ing Shelley reminded me of this)
Something I wrote and wanted to expand but never got to, combined with my comments today, on writing and publishing, might help. I was trying to knock on the highly structured gendering of verse in the Romantic era with the essay and didn’t quite succeed at fleshing out that binary (based in a critique of the bisexual nature of hysterical discourse. I know that came later. I don’t know if it would have worked, but I was having fun with it.) Although I really do like the discussion of “garret” as a verb and my work with the fancy and imagination in the essay. I couldn’t flesh out the gender binary as much as I wanted because the guy I was writing for insisted the essay not exceed its length. As in, “I won’t read it if it’s longer than X”. I needed about three or four more pages, about 1200 words more, to work out what I was trying to do with masculine and feminine. I get it right in my conclusion, but if you read it, it’s clear I cut out some of my discussion. And I didn’t save it. What was I thinking?
Anyway, I wrote this a long time ago. Nobody writes about Mary Robinson. I’m proud of it. But I’m more interested in how I could resurrect it and move away from the gender discussion to focus on The Poet’s Garret in a more materialist manner—rather than a poem that exists as a critique of the (male) poet’s idealized version of himself with all its self-pitying solitude and poverty, a poem that is actually about Robinson’s confession of material poverty in spite of her labor. Both do exist in the one poem. I’d like to look at that and comment.
Also not too happy about the pronoun problem. I use she when writing about the poet in The Poet’s Garret. But to discuss the stupid gender binary—masculine/feminine—complicates my use of she. After all, isn’t she criticizing the assumed he of poetry. Well, yes, but she’s also confessing her real material poverty. So what to do there, I don’t know. Another result of the forced page requirement.
It’s not bad for what I was doing ten years ago. It’s fun to look back through the archives and see some value. I like the talk about aperture and absorption—language poetry, poetics, some of my philosophical work appearing in a minor essay from a Romantics seminar.