Haut or not
Haut or Not: contributor couplet
Of course there’s Barthelme — and Lish, and Brautigan, and Markson — these writers are not knee-jerk ambivalent with form, but better, curious about its malleability. They always nodded to the past, full circle. A hot rating is likely, if not inevitable, but what concerns me more is that pile of rubber bands, the Grateful Dead box set, and the array of book marks. Justin, please don’t tell me you’re one of those bookish hipster kids who wear rubber bands like a bracelet. If those function any way as cock rings, congratulations, your girth is unyielding. I had to google St. Mark’s Bookshop and it’s a pleasure imagining you perusing the shelves (we all love that glue and pulp smell) but must you take a complimentary bookmark every single time? Or are those testament to each book you bought there? As for the Grateful Dead — to borrow a line from my mother whenever she heard Motley Crue coming out of my room, “I can smell them from here.” Free love is okay, free drugs is probably better, but these guys were just annoying. I do give Justin props for boldly fracturing his rubber band bracelet image. Should we ever see Justin with a beard, we’ll know that shit ain’t Walt Whitman. Nah, it’s positively Haight Street. How about this for a c/o Lish title: Will you please take a shower, please?
That old Joan Didion (the book, not her) is tempting, and everyone loves Michael Kimball, yes. I always liked Hemingway’s short stories more than his novels; his sentences were so uncommitted that it felt like the word counts should have been too. Big time props on David Berman’s Actual Air (Berman fronted the late and great Silver Jews). Before we get too gushy, let us direct our attention to Self-Injury, Mutants, and Lord Minimus: The Extraordinary Life of Britain’s Smallest Man. Simmons seems involved in the visceral transgressions of bodies — the ‘weird ass shit’ God let pass on his day off. I’m a Sunday Child myself, just see my eczema. I don’t know what’s under Simmons’ shirt — a tattoo I can deal with, two piercings might make me sigh; I just don’t want to see his twin brother as a calcified fetus coming out of his side, for with Matthew, a question like ‘what’s up bro?’ is all in the family.