Here is the first paragraph of Dan Hoy’s essay, which Justin links in the below post and I won’t bother linking again, since it is, obviously, the only thing you need to read about Flarf, which is that thing, full of poems, poem things, but you only need to read an essay, about them, the poems, about making them, uh huh, yeah.
Google is not a spontaneous manifestation of the zeitgeist in the virtual realm. That it is often misconstrued as such is due to a passive acceptance of its process and mythos, from its humble beginnings and benign-sounding name to the embedded cultural belief that the Internet is the great democratic frontier in which all information is equalized — the user, instead of the disseminator, is the arbiter of what is useful and not useful — and the residual PR advantage this gives to in utero virtual corporations like Google and Yahoo! over preexisting technocapitalist transplants like Microsoft. Google is considered an organic entity only marginally different from a construct like Wikipedia, an open-source encyclopedia in which users define the content by continually creating, altering, contesting, and amalgamating entries.
Now here is most of Drew Gardner’s “Why Do I Hate Flarf So Much” from the July/August 2009 issue of Poetry:
She came from the mountains, killing zombies at will. Some people cried “but that was cool!” and I could only whisper “we should NOT be killing zombies!” What have you gotten yourself to do? Did it ever occur to you that you may in fact hate yourself? I know I do . . . I’m not nearly high enough yet—and you’re not helping. My group got invited to join the Flarfist Collective, set up some hibachis and do what we do best, if you know what I mean. I wouldn’t have so much of a problem with this writing if it were a library and I checked out the entire world as if it were a single book. Strike “helpful” off your list. The 4th quarter gets pretty intense and the announcers are usually trying to figure out who is going to become overwhelmed by their own arrogant nightmares. It would upset the stomach of the balance of nature. I always go red over the stupidest things and I have no clue why. Whether it’s speaking in front of the class or someone asking me why I think I have the right to say anything. Why do I need an enemy to feel okay about what I’m doing? Observe yourself as you browse with sophistication through the topic of Authorship & Credibility. Why do I hate the surface of the world so much that I want to poison it? Why do I hate this so much? Well . . . you Hate Your Fucking Dad! Why is the screen so damn small? And why does the car turn so sharply? And why is the only sound I hear the sound of a raft of marmosets? BECAUSE I’m fucking ANXIOUS AS HELL about EVERYTHING. AAAAAAAAARGH. It’s even worse: “I’ll tell you later.” The medium is literally made of thousands of beautiful, living, breathing wolves. Why do I hate the moon so much? Unpublish your ideas in reverse. People hate any new way of writing. My girlfriend really hates it. There is not so much daytime left. Life is like spring snow tossing off mercurial Creeley-like escapes from life-threatening health problems. In summer we love winter in winter we love summer—all poetry is written in social mercurochrome. Since I hate the abridgement of life, a function of needing to please unpleaseable parents is more what this is about. Hate and love—if those are the options I just want to love and hate lobsters.