Sunday, November 21, 2010

Desire's desire

"It's at this question of desire that Youn's project intersects Herriman's—desire and desire's desire to refute itself in order to perpetuate itself. But, because it takes place in language, and takes language as its protagonist, Youn's project also lets the question of desire overflow the human to impinge upon language itself—a theme well-explored in critical theory and poetics since 1968, but Youn enacts it wonderfully in her emptying out of the Ignatz-signifier through the sheer inexhaustibility of its potential." -Cole Swenson, review of Ignatz for Lana Turner No. 3


"A gauze bandage wraps the land
and is unwound, stained orange with sulfates.

A series of slaps molds a mountain,
a fear uncoils itself, testing its long

cool limbs. A passing cloud
seizes up like a carburetor

and falls to earth, lies broken-
backed and lidless in the scree.

Acetylene torches now snug
in their holsters, shop-vacs

trundled back behind the dawn.
A mist becomes a murmur, becomes

a moan rising from dust-
choked fissures in the rock O pity us

Ignatz O come to us by moonlight
O arch your speckled body over the earth."

-Monica Youn

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