Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Testament & Testimony - for Endi

It has been a few weeks since I posted here. I feel the lack, even as I have been busy, which tends, I think, to point out personal issues of compulsion. Not that we should allow personality to dictate thought, though it does; not that what we do not allow means anything, though it does.

I wonder if the world grows up, if we know more now than we did ten minutes or years ago, and I believe we do. What I disallow or forget does not disappear, it simply assumes a different sort of costume in the ongoing drama in my mind. I should say that I take the term "mind" to encompass active thought and conscience. What is present, and what is true.

One's mind falls out, here and there, taking in art and life, responding where it might, given opportunity and proximities. There is no cure for intelligence except to write, to give oneself over. I have always liked writing (literal or visual) that appears to me, minor judge that I am, to give itself over to a knowing that eclipses mere intelligence. The greatest, most influential, work tends toward personal testimony. The best fiction replicates it. The best poetry enacts it.

And the best painting invests the world we see, read, and listen to with a presence akin, if not identical to, testimony. Testimony. Testament. The "Here I am" of literature, and more. How we believe...Beethoven, Jackson Pollock, Malcolm X. Our children.

Here I am. In any event, regardless of occasion, the believable testament wins. And so I turn to a purpose, which is to say that I know of no current poetry that is a truer, clearer, or obvious testament of the writer's Here and Now than that of Endi Bogue Hartigan. I do not link to her books. I am not an agent. My purpose is not to promote, but to state. I deplore promotion; I live to state. That shows my philosophical petticoats, I know.

I am one person in a world I happen to believe in for a variety of reasons, one of which is the life and work Endi offers and presents.

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