Blake and Gene.
I don’t know if you would be willing to put this up, but I figured I’d send it and see. On August 3, underground writer Gene Gregorits was arrested for sexual assault on a 17 year old girl. You can read an article about his arrest here.
He’d posted about the young woman he was arrested for assaulting that night on his Facebook page. He put up a picture of her, under a Facebook status update that said, “The teenage porn star tourist cunt has arrived appx. 8 mins late. And I still fucking hate her. I am going to do things to this woman that Cletus from Moose Snout would not do to the family cow in the depths of a meth binge.” The picture and status update were removed from his page the next day, one assumes, by the Florida police, but many people took screen shots of it when he posted it.
I have promoted Gene’s work for years, always under the auspices that there is something very important about pushing boundaries when it comes to art. I wrote the attached essay about my feelings about his arrest, and the disillusionment I’d been feeling as someone who was such a big proponent of his work beforehand. The essay delves into persona, and the leeway we often give our favorite artists when it comes to their behavior.
Sick of being decent, he craves another
crash. What reaches him except disaster? –Frank Bidart
Author Gene Gregorits recently did a small tour of New England with Lisa Carver, where he was promoting his newest book, Do You Love Me: The Gene Gregorits File. The first night of the tour, a naked Gregorits accidentally- on- purpose slashed open his forearm with a knife, the resulting wound requiring close to 50 stitches. Anybody who is friends with Gregorits on Facebook has seen pictures of the festering wound, above or below photos of his injured cat, posts pleading and bleating his friends for rent money, and a relentless barrage of diatribes against:
- Those who haven’t bought his books
- Those who have, but haven’t written reviews about them
- Other writers and artists who have taken a more conventional path to success, and been rewarded for it.
I haven’t seen the video of the show, as YouTube keeps flagging it, but from what I’ve been told, most of the attendees either ran off, horrified, or dipped their just-purchased copies of his books in his blood as a souvenir as Gene was taken to the hospital. On his Facebook page a few days later, a somberly reflective Gregorits seemed saddened by the audience’s reaction, which I found surprising. Connecting the dots on the Gregorits persona, one would have thought he’d be proud. People always take souvenirs of that which thrills them, and what else could Gregorits have been seeking when he’d disrobed and grabbed the knife? Police had to stop souvenir hunters from removing Clyde Barrows’ fingers after he’d been shot. There have always been rumors that a plaster cast was made of John Dillinger’s dick at the morgue. Surely in someone’s curio cabinet, there is a piece of 1990’s toilet paper with GG Allin’s fecal matter on it.
Today is a few days after our sixth anniversary. Blake Butler and I started this place because we wanted a hub for all of the writing we love, all of the people we enjoy reading, and to do it with a certain openness that we both appreciate. Along with everyone else that came along with us, we succeeded (and occasionally failed) at that for many years.
October 24th, 2014 will be the last day of operation for Htmlgiant. I’m going to step aside as managing editor effective immediately, and in the next few days I’ll open posting up for nearly everyone that has ever been a part of this site. On October 24th I will disable posting privileges for everyone and leave the site up for as long as we can afford it.
The next few weeks will hopefully be interesting, because if there’s anything this website deserves it’s an uncontrolled flameout.
The amount of respect and admiration I have for so many of the writers and editors that we’ve worked with over the years cannot be overstated. There are so many special people I want to hug and thank, and I have a feeling I’ll be doing it in person for years to come.
See you soon.
Contrapposto Action Queen
by Connie Scozzaro
Bad Press, 2013
$9 / Buy from Bad Press
Before I’d ordered the book, I listened to Scozzaro read “What Is Parents?” on the Claudius App and fell in love with the poem. I listened to it the way an eight year old listens to Beatles’ songs. I’d drag my partner in to listen to it and tried to dub the poem to a mix tape but it didn’t survive the transfer. “Isn’t this just the best?” I’d say, jumping up and down as Scozzaro read in a brave and insistent voice.
“What Is Parents?” is one of the more elegant ones. Her verses make adept shifts from a naïve diction to classy Rimbaud/Swinburne-esque lyricism. I like the tension between the vague, the true, and the fantastic in “What Is Parents?”
After this good work with something not mine,
I come home to you, we feed each other and laugh. I love you,
especially when we fuck really well, but probably
we fuck really well because I love you so much.
In the heart of the grass, a fountain rushes,
blood in the shape of a rose. For seconds
I understand birth, and the Incredible String Band
play their instruments
well. What is parents?
What are dreams?
These poems, and this poem, consider everyday ritual and material limitation, but also seem to mediate banal domestic desperation through an intensely personal kind of verse. In my reading, I like to think that the poems are able to capture the boundary between boredom and fetishization.
Contrapposto Action Queen is eight longish poems long. These poems are exhausting in the best way. Reading them I’m too full of ideas. The collection is so full of colliding images, unresolvable emotional states, and shifts in diction. Scozzaro is very good at eloquent and cool verse that isn’t afraid to betray itself with urgent brattyness. Her poems are exciting because they seem to constantly shift, from image to image, from the exact to the vague, as they unfold. From “Elena, Whatever: You Are But Dreaming”
Suitors buy her roses, or posies, which upon inspection,
are but mauve, petals trembling pools,
obscuring heaving shoulders on ahead.
Two or three swoon from daily collapse, this way and
that, to be in another world, to know
how to use your hands.
Write what pleases you, what displeases me,
black liver wobbles out the drain,
dragging itself on a few gross legs.
You are the hero of the bathroom mould,
blocked drain, streams of tangled hair,
you squirt, we get deposit back.
July 18th, 2014 / 10:00 am
Our people do other things (or “thangs,” which is the way I recommend saying that word), and here are some of them. Feel free to support Htmlgiant in new, exciting ways by engaging our contributors outside of this domain. All of their shit is hot, and you should love them as I do.