Thursday, September 24, 2009

Eshleman on Deep Image

[Clayton sent me the following response to the Deep Image discussion:]

"You might want to reprint the Kelly and Rothenberg statements on Deep Image from the early 1960s. Both are quite interesting. The primary poetic texts, concerning deep image as i understand it, would be the Kelly poems, The Alchemist, and The Exchanges (both reprinted in The Alchemist to Mercury), and the Rothenberg poems, "Poland/1931" and the "testimony" poems in the New Directions volume, "Poland/1931." Creeley attacked the deep image idea (letters appeared in Kulchur, I think) and both RK and JR backed off. At the point deep image was being discussed and envisioned in poems, Bly and Wright had nothing whatsoever to do with it. And since deep image's theoretical matrix is a combine of Jungian psychology and alchemy, a transformational poetics based on a vision of the coherence of the unconscious and the dark treasures that can be found there, to even call Bly and Wright deep imagists is far-fetched. It is a shame that RK and JR did not continue to work the deep image veins or lodes, as such could have given a movement-like direction to some of the most interesting poets of our generation, and have created a theoretical location for us between Beat/Black Mountain and Language Poetry." Clayton

5 Comments:

Blogger knott said...

huh——so Kelly and Rothenberg were the REAL DI's, the TRUE Deep Image poets,

and everybody else wasn't . . .

good to get that cleared up

3:13 PM  
Blogger rodney k said...

Isn't Jung already alchemical? Which leaves Deep Image a kind of poetic propaganda for ideas already spelled out more clearly elsewhere, in Jung and his multiple sources. Or no?

11:07 PM  
Blogger Johannes said...

Rodney,

I don't understand how you reach that conclusion. That would be like saying, all "flarf" is just propaganda spelling out ideas spelled out clearer elsewhere. It suggests a passive acceptance of jungian dogma, rather than seeing Jung as a "matrix". I don't believe in much Jungian thinking, but it is a little more complex than that.

Johannes

8:38 AM  
Blogger Tiny Leone said...

"You might want to reprint the Kelly and Rothenberg statements on Deep Image from the early 1960s."

are these on the web?


Tk

9:35 AM  
Blogger rodney k said...

Hi Johannes,

What I mean is that saying Deep Image’s theoretical matrix is a combine of Jungian psychology and alchemy is redundant; Jung’s theories already blend alchemy with psychology. I don’t think flarf—or many other postwar American poetries—lays claim to a theoretical progenitor in quite the way Deep Image does to Jung.

1:51 PM  

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