Michael Palmer

I read a few of his books a few years ago, both the most recent one then and the most successful (‘Notes form Echo Lake’). The question seems asinine in the extreme, and he did not reply to me when I sent him a link to my blog, but I definitely don’t think it’s fair to say that I’m doing the same thing just 50 years later. It’s really a question for a critical readership, not myself, but why not comment?

There may well be overlaps in what we want to incorporate, but he seems (I can’t speak for him) to want to hoax closure, forge a lack of readers and their reading, while I’m putting a question mark over whether I have written any poems at all.

Notwithstanding all the naive poetic bullshit: it’s extremely unlikely I’m a post modern version of him, anymore than I am Henrik Ibsen or Debord (which would be my favourite).

I like his poems, and they are difficult to pin down with a general analysis. Independent of whether Palmer is responding to an inability of radical art to fully include itself (which can’t be an ephemeral moment but quite the radical impulse), his “Echoic” writing seems very different in effect, content (I’m an MA student), and form (a sort of narrative composure?).

Just in no way are we different people writing the same poems with essentially the same poetic, which is pretty obvious if you read past the first paragraph. The idea I have to defend that claim is ludicrous: even if Palmer was my only historical precedent (which is also an absurd claim) that means I am no more out of date than any ‘historical precedent’.

Still, kinda funny.