Visual Poems from "How We Gather Ghost-like the Real Wake of Our Intentions"
by Andrew Brenza
From a series entitled “How We Gather Ghost-like the Real Wake of Our Intentions,” each piece—in its attempt to answer the question, “How does one write a poem adequate to this era?”—is entirely composed of the titular phrase. For my part, when trying to compose poetry, the old forms feel so inadequate. I don’t mean obviously outmoded forms like sonnets and villanelles, but lyrical, free-verse poetry in general, poetry centered on the individual experiences and emotive declarations of an unquestionably stable first-person identity, poetry that serves to create narratives, whether self-consciously or not, that rationalize, justify, perpetuate, or ignore the existence of unjust, unequal, oppressive, violent, greedy, destructive, racist, sexist, and cruel societies, poetry that fails to recognize one’s role, even if it is a passive role, in the continuation of the world’s horror, poetry that doesn’t question the basic underpinnings of the grammar that forms its foundation.
Andrew Brenza is an American experimental writer, collage artist, and librarian. He is the author of numerous collections of visual poetry including Compass (RedFoxPress) and Smear (BlazeVOX Books). He is also the founder of Sigilist Press, a micropress devoted to the publication of experimental writing. Weaving together prose narrative, visual poetry, and free verse, WRYTHM, his experimental speculative novel, was recently released by Montag Press.