Rachael Blau DuPlessis 'Drafts' online

at logopoeia


Emptiness, as something present yet unpronounceable...

The ‘unsaid’ is a shifting boundary
resisting even itself.
Something, the half-sayable,
gone speechless. Or it can’t

and Inbetween

what is, and
that it is,
is Inside

...... an offhand
sound, a howe or swallowed
shallow. Sayable sign
of the un-.
(‘Draft 11: Schwa’)

The Unsaid as the inside of speech comes forward as the inarticulate sign of the messianic, of the effort of the poem to enunciate the impossible, ‘the very word’ itself, which is like a bell to toll, as DuPlessis, cleverly eliding the word ‘forlorn’ from Keats’s line, has it in her first epigraph. But what sort of toll is it?
In the remarkable ‘Draft 33: Deixis,’ DuPlessis takes up the problem of language’s ability to point toward a referent, to confer meaning at all by way of spatial tropes.

call this the matrix of the unallowable, or, perhaps indifferently, say

call this the problem of the dead

call it the toll

It is the space of poetry.


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