Poems and Texts

Backtracking by Marjorie Welish

Brenda Hillman & Marjorie Welish
Wednesday, October 23, 2019, 8:00 pm


WRITING in book__ annotating
NOT-WRITING in book __ annotating a state of grace
A time to reap

The index
Not-writing the unsaid _ to be found in quotients of
more experienced
incorrigible activity all day. Wait a minute. Problems of mind
From back to front.
An indistinct diet of difficulty _ selectively
Pondered in nouns _ from a few back pages of alphabetic
pulsations and values
Not quite predicted through strategic belief _ astonishing the table
Of contents upfront
Rays and everything

Rewriting a stop
Is a pause such that
It need _ not subsist on indemnity from unnamable _ care
Hours minutes seconds rewriting the book inside out _ rewritten.
The patent went to the thief
Disassembly _ of onerous share of fair share arousing Meucci _ to our time
To rewrite mere _ fame
The erased trust.
May I have a second of your timer? A time to reap _ valor and sorrow

Photo: Star Black

Marjorie Welish

Marjorie Welish is the author of The Annotated “Here” and Selected Poems; Word Group; Isle of the Signatories; In the Futurity Lounge / Asylum for Indeterminacy; and So What So That — all from Coffee House Press. The papers delivered at a conference on her writing and art held at the University of Pennsylvania were published as a book in Of the Diagram: The Work of Marjorie Welish (Slought Books). Thanks to Laurie Anderson, Welish’s first solo show of visual art took place at the Whitney Museum Art Resources Center; recently, a joint art exhibition with Olivier Gourvil took place at La Terrasse, in Nanterre, France; and still more recently, her paintings were on view at the American Academy of Arts and Letters Invitational 2018. A decade ago Granary Books published Oaths? Questions?, a collaborative artists’ book by Marjorie Welish and James Siena, which was the subject of a special exhibition at the Denison University Museum, Granville, Ohio, and part of a two-year tour of artists’ books throughout the United States. At present, she is pursuing collaborative projects with artists Buzz Spector and Dan Walsh. Her honors include the George A. and Eliza Gardner Howard Fellowship from Brown University, the Judith E. Wilson Visiting Poetry Fellowship at Cambridge University, a John Simon Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship, Adolph and Esther Gottlieb Foundation Fellowship, Pollock Krasner Fellowship, and fellowships from the New York Foundation for the Arts. She has also held a Senior Fulbright Fellowship that has taken her to the University of Frankfurt and to the Edinburgh College of Art. She was the inaugural Madelon Leventhal Rand Distinguished Lecturer in Literature at Brooklyn College.

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