Friday, April 7, 2017

A Way of Being in a Place Called America

A Poem.
I saw Paterson (2016) last night, and I woke up this morning dreaming in poetry.
I used to write everything in poetry, then I decided to switch to prose in order to try to say the things I needed to say.
Now that I'm older, I find the things I need to say are too complex for the prose I have the ability to write.
Perhaps it's time to go back to poetry.
Michael Holloway       
April 7, 2017        

Paterson is about a bus driver named Paterson who works for the Public Transit Authority of Paterson, New Jersey - the place about which the American poet William Carlos Williams wrote his modernist epic, "Paterson"1; and where the Beat Poet (and my poetry paragon) Allen Ginsberg grew up and spent some time writing.

The film is an art film; something America doesn't do very much. Something the film's maker Jim Jarmusch, has been trying to change throughout his career in film.

The movie talks about identity; how, if we are happy with the identity we have built for ourselves, it can shape the world we chose to understand that we live in.

In Paterson's America, the world is about love.

It is not about a hundred other things that it could be about - those things that appear in the landscape of Paterson's days - it is them, but they are not important, they just inform the other thing.

Paterson tries to reset the conversation in America, and there are strong, deep currents which lend to that.

Perhaps America is too old now for prose. America was once younger than that now.

Perhaps America's dissonance so visible in it's Twitter threads, should be stanzas now instead?


1 Wikipedia | Paterson - by William Carlos Williams |