Sunday, January 24, 2010

Poetry Is is an 81-minute video masterwork by George Quasha. Unlike some other efforts, which ask the question “What is poetry?” of persons in the street, somewhat akin to Jay Leno’s ambush “Jaywalking” interviews, Quasha poses this question of people who have to struggle with it every day. The video includes Ammiel Alcalay, Hector Alves, David Antin, Arman, Coleman Barks, Caroline Bergvall, Charles Bernstein, Mei-Mei Berssenbrugge, Harvey Bialy, Blue, Lee Ann Brown, Tisa Bryant, Elizabeth Clark, Michael Coffey, Alan Davies, Michel Deguy, Timotha Doane, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Allen Fisher, Joanna Fuhrman, Eric Gansworth, Steve Goodman, Carla Harryman, Kevin Hart, David Henderson, Mitch Highfill, Bob Holman, Anselm Hollo, Mikhail Horowitz, Fanny Howe, Susan Howe, Romana Huk, Franz Kamin, Robert Kelly, Richard Kostelanetz, Louise Landes Levi, Judith Malina, Chris Mann, Michael Meade, Joyce Carol Oates, Sharon Olds, Cheryl Pallant, Nick Piombino, Kristen Prevallet, India Radfar, Carter Ratcliff, Hanon Reznikov, Jerome Rothenberg, Sapphire, Leslie Scalapino, Ron Silliman, Charles Stein, David Levi Strauss, Kate Suddes, Chris Tysh, Cecilia Vicuña, Tenzin Wangyal, Barrett Watten, Henry Weinfield, Elizabeth Willis & Krzysztof Ziarek.

Be sure to also to check out Quasha’s companion videos, Art Is (Vol. I), Art Is (Vol. II), and Music Is. I’m been told that Quasha has over 700 interviews to draw on to produce these videos. I’ve known George for some 40 years now & his work is always surprising, well-conceived & optimistic – but you never know what form it might take next. If you give him half a chance, he’ll show you his rocks.