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Language Poetry MP3

Clark Coolidge doesn’t so much write poetry as build it with words. The latter may seem like an unnecessary recasting of the former, but there’s a difference. Check out the recent upload to the Other Minds catalog at the Internet Archive (aka archive.org); it’s an hour-long survey of the collage minimalism that is his language poetry. The track consists of two pieces, each comprised of a series of individual words spoken in various sequences, sometimes overlapping. One is built from “once,” “harp” and “rice,” the other from “but,” “if,” “it,” “though,” “its,” “thus,” “is,” “what” and “and” (MP3). The result is a kind of literary riff on Steve Reich’s patterning.

By Marc Weidenbaum

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