Welcome to the Pataquerical Night Show (Last Episode)

Runa Bandyopadhyay
Essay, Reviews, Translation
Welcome to the Pataquerical Night Show (Last Episode)

Bengali Version & Transcreation here >>> প্যাটাক্যুয়রিক্যাল নাইটশোয়ে আপনাকে স্বাগতম

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      This is the last episode of our Pataquerical Night Show. But Tagore’s song is murmuring in my inner inn: where is the end of the path, what is there in the end! Dense darkness ahead. Numerous questions arise in my darkened den: whether am I chasing an illusion? Like a torn sail, broken helm, my pain is wandering with no destination. But science teases me to ask how pain can move. Sanskrit verb root gam─ ‘go’ in English─ an action of moving the entire entity from one place to another. In that sense, yes, pain can’t move. But the letter “g” has two ways to pronounce, either /j/ or /g/─ the charisma of actions that are going on in nature! When “g” is pronounced with /j/, it resembles to the Sanskrit letter corresponding to “j” that has the verb-based meaning to refer the act of emergence of one’s own self from his inner inn. This act of begetting or progenition leads my thought to say that pain moves not to go with the action of “g” but “j”─ not the whole but the essence of the entity (in the form of gene) moves. The poet keeps the gene inside his words to carry his pain, which covers the aesthetic space between the poet and reader,  and follows the water logic of Edward de Bono to flow through every layers of reading to echo Bernstein, “poetry is a form of lamentation” (Topsy-Turvy: 107). This act of moving follows the fantasy maker Bernstein’s way, not to close toward a fixed destination but to open toward the infinite possibilities. It’s a fantasy, not with calculative but conscious imagination, beyond rationality but not irrational, to obtain the poetic citizenship in the Bernsteinian province that demands─ “to be a poetic citizen is not to act as a citizen but to perform as a poet”, as Bernstein writes his poem “Poetic Citizenship and Negative Dialectics” in his recently published book Topsy-Turvy[1].

     In this last episode of Charles Bernstein’s fantasy of 140 fits, the critical discourse moves around human being, animal being, humanness etcetera. Our tongue play very often with these words. Let’s leave the play to take a dip into the deep to touch the Bernstein’s fits─ whether poetry has to foment to pass as human or “confronts the phobia of not passing as human” (Pitch of Poetry[2]: 342).

     Man has born from Manu, originated from the body of Brahma. According to the Hindu scriptures, Svayambhuva Manu is the first of the fourteenth Manus, and the progenitor of mankind, one who learned Smriti (Sanskrit: “remembrance”; learning without any written text) Shastra from Brahma. Maharishi Bhrigu [Sanskrit: one of the seven great sages], emanating from the heart of Brahma, explained this Shastra to all other sages at the behest of Manu. This is called Manu-Samhita that contains laws/rules and regulations to be followed by the human society.

      The verb-root of mon [Sanskrit: mind, Greek: menos] does the action of measurement, that is to say,  our mind measures all mental and external inputs from the dynamic world, and by analyzing and judging them reaches to a workable fixed concept. The process of measurement can be called as perception in the linguistic science or shaping by lens in Hawkinian science. The activity where mind is on called monon [Sanskrit: to think]─ thought, concentration, intellect, preference, desire, determination and imagination. When the mind achieves a fixed knowledge on the entity under consideration for the time being and no longer doing the new action of measurement, rather doing something else, is called Manu. What is it doing? With the inherited and already achieved knowledge through monon if the mind sets to work and drives others too, that mind is called Manu. Just as Manu refers to one who is the knower of the seemingly complete and fixed knowledge, so too refers to the whole being. That is to say, Manu is a social entity. Concept changes through time and hence the different periods of Manu has evolved with the evolution of human mind. When the normally and naturally evolved primitive man began to direct himself consciously, the period of Svayambhuva [Sanskrit: self-born] Manu started. Next was the period of Svarocisha Manu, who began to follow their own personal tastes/desires. But when the society felt that following individual choice and preference resulted no good, the period of Uttama Manu began. What they did new is that they ate the apple, the fruit of the knowledge-tree, that is to say, the second hand knowledge, achieved from educational institutions (equivalent to ancient ashrama [Sanskrit: hermitage]). However, this knowledge gradually resulted in a mind that consists of tamas (Sanskrit: darkness), one of the three characteristics of Prakriti [Sanskrit: Nature]. As a result, Tamasa Manu appeared. Human mind has evolved gradually to ascertain what one should do. Since these people were always loud with their speech to direct the others, they were called Raivata Manu. But speech doesn’t result any fruit without the knowledge of semantics and commodities, that is to say, achieving the knowledge of capitalism became necessary. Learning to communicate and exchange of commodities opened up people’s eyes, and that gradually resulted in the evolution of Chakshusha [Sanskrit: one who can use his eyes] Manu. In this context, I would like to say that there are still some wild, indigenous communities, who have no knowledge of commodities but have their own meanings and values. I mean the dream society where the Chakshusha Manu has not yet appeared to measure the market price of poetry because the value of poetry is not dollar value but “an experience (released in the reading) which is noncommoditized”, as Bernstein wrote in his essay, “The Dollar Value of Poetry”, published in L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E, in the year 1984. As soon as, people’s eyes opened up, conflict was inevitable between them. To overcome these conflicts, it became necessary to apply some social rules/laws to the society. As a result, the period of Vaivasvata Manu began, which was the period of application of Manu-Samhita that marked the beginning of the period of civilized citizen. Our present time is the continuation of the period of this Manu. This is the evolution history of Manu as per the great unsung Bengali philosopher Kalim Khan.

     Dear reader, surely I’m boring you with the history. But again, history, “which form us and from which we are formed” (Pitch of Poetry: 111), and “When history vanishes/ We’re on our own/ Without an oar/ Like totally shorn”, as Bernstein writes the poem “No Then There Then” in Topy-Turvy (p-46).

     We are talking about human being, and humanness. Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa, an important figure in the Bengali Renaissance of 19th and 20th century, mentor of Swami Vivekananda, one of the history’s greatest leaders and social activists, said: man [Snaskrit: standard, value] + hnush [Bengali: consciousness] = manush [Sanskrit: human being]. That is to say, the one who can ush (use) his man (values) consciously can be called as manush. These mind-born values ​​are of two kinds. The values originated from the faculty of mind (zone of heart) have a sense of integral, wholeness, and the values originated from the faculty of intellect (zone of head] has a sense of fragmentation, which can be called the scientific values. Ascension of these values to a new form gives rise to a human being. That is to say, when the values have taken a fixed form and are not changing for the time being, and when a man or groups led by those values in a desired direction are called human beings. They may exclusively believe in any religion, doctrine, concept, philosophy; they may be Hindu, Muslim, Christian, Buddhist, Sikh, Atheist, Modernist, Scientist, Nationalist, Marxist, Fascist, Fundamentalist, Postmodernist. All those are called human being because they think that the ‘value’ they carry is immutable for the time being and hence steer their gear to follow those values.

     The being in human being refers to the inner meaning of Manu─ becoming─ from indefinite to definite mind. And Sanskrit Manu─ man-uh─ English human with a reversal rule. The letter─ u─ refers to the entity, which takes a leap to persuade revolutionary changes. This reversal rule is according to some of the original Sanskrit grammatical rules for the formation of words, which are inherited in English also. For example, Sanskrit: moho─ Hindi: hom─ English: homo, generates the word Homo sapiens. “Moho” is a feeling, a perception of we-all, that has an underlying meaning of one who blasts his perimeter, going beyond the boundaries, a decentering process that enhances human society with the universal sense of we-all.

     Sanskrit has lot of words born from Manu, but English has four related words: human being, individual, man (woman), and person. Not every word refers human in the same way but as per the different ways of their actions. The one who uses the achieved Manu is a human being. He who can speak for himself is an individual. The word man (woman) means every member of the society. He who can look through each of us is a person.

     If, one who applies his definite knowledge to do his action is human being, then the ability of this application is humanness. This ability, the fundamental talent, has to be achieved, that goes beyond animality, humanity and divinity, and extends to becoming Brahma. This, indeed, echoes Tagore: the way is not to getting Brahma but to becoming Brahma, to echo Bernstein, “I am a very becoming guy… actuality is just around the corner (just a spark in the dark); self-actualization a glance in a tank of concave (concatenating) mirrors: not angles, just tangles. From which a new direction emerges, purges” [Dark City[3]: 16].

    Born from Manu gives the name manab [English: human being is the nearest meaning]. But the words manabata [Bengali: humanity], manabatabad [Bengali: humanism], manabik [Bengali: human], manabikata [Bengali: human quality] are very dangerous because these are not ancient words but merely translated from English, not originated from the soil of naturally nurtured mind but from the colonized Bengali mind, and added in the Bengali family of verb-root of mind after 19th Century. He who carries the inherited values to evaluate his surroundings or/and the achieved values by thinking on different matters and oneself, called manab, who can be self-educated or academy-educated or both. There is a pun in the difference between these self-educated and academy-educated human beings. A person who is nurtured by nature, does not visit the so-called academies and does not eat the apple but attains the mental state of awareness through conscious/ unconscious/ subconscious/ expanded-conscious way, can be called self-educated human being. Such as the great poet Rabindranath Tagore. They are more bhovyo [no nearest word in English] than sobhyo [Sanskrit: civilized]. Survival in a society is not just a matter of being a member but also a matter of trimming oneself and being able to be with others. Similarly, a man can be easily bhovo just by birth in this world but cannot be bhovyo unless he is able to make harmonious relationship with every entity, all living beings, even the inanimate, of his surroundings, which is the very root of his survival.

     But the evil of our civilization is that these self-educated people, engaged with nature, are not considered as civilized in today’s so-called civilized society to echo Bernstein, “Beyond the fear of ethnic or racial difference is the fear of animal difference. The fear of animalady manifests as the need to pass as human (cultivated, learned, well mannered, well dressed)”(Pitch of Poetry: 342). Bernstein calls this malady of modern man as animalady: “human disease to prevent animals from becoming animals” (304).

     Although the present society marks the gentle but not resistive people as civilized, the inherent meaning is hidden in the concept of ​​postmodernism: to shift from I to we. The human being, who is able to overcome his own superiority complex in order to be harmonious with his surroundings, creates the very root of the beauty of equality, the truest sense of communism, in the sense not of uniformity but of inner harmony. On the one hand, it pushes a poet with centripetal force toward the boundless diversity to call the birds of possibilities. On the other hand, it brings a perfect harmony like our ever-expanding universe with its innumerable galaxies: an inward pull of our familiar gravity on the one hand and an outward push of an unknown negative gravity on the other─ an extraordinary tuning between outward diversity and inward harmony.

    Bernstein’s fit “In Praise of Disfluency” leads my thought to mine the ancient ore of the action of speech to seek refuge for my own disfluency. The equivalent word for eloquence, ability of fluency, is derived from Sanskrit word vak [English: speech]. When a person needs to express something, he faces the problem to select the proper sound for the subject to be expressed from the various sounds. This selection is the action of the speech to be performed. When this action sets to work, that is to say, that when the selected sound for the subject is actually uttered, that leads to the action of speech.

    However, according to Manu-Samhita, the verb-based meaning of vaktavya [Sanskrit: the subject of speech to be expressed, worth saying] says that it is condemnable due to abandoning the existing, formal (conforming to the established) action,  as Kalim Khan[4] said. How did the term speech change its meaning? Such a change of meaning is possible only when human starts to control/rule over another human. The worth sayings of the ruled appeared as ugly, low, unpleasant to the ruler. Such a change of meaning might have taken place in some special social, historical background, but I would like to imagine another possibility of this change. As long as man used to express his joy and pain only through sound, whose melody could be understood by all living beings, even the inanimate, language was universal. But as soon as words came into picture for speaking, people began to give speech for other people─ human language became only for the human being. Ancient melody-users might have not liked those word-users. They might have condemned it, which was inherited in the meaning of the word speech.

      Charles Bernstein rightly stated in Topsy-Turvy, “Poetry is not speech but speech sounds” (114). The language of contemporary poetry is the spoken language of the common person’s everyday life. But when a poet realizes the limitations of the conventional language to express his new feelings, queer mysteries, surprising sparks and different kind of signals, and, he tries to pierce the reader’s mind with the hidden hints of his poems, he discovers the gap between the expression of reality and the conventional language. This, indeed, echo Wittgenstein: “The limits of my language mean the limits of my world.”[5] The language, bridge of communication between a poet and reader, becomes the barrier. That is why Bernstein’s mantra: “not voice, but voicings” to go beyond the logocentrism of modernism. In contrast to the lyric voice that only try to transmit the message, describing the emotional subject, Bernstein emphasis on voicing, the modal voice to create the maximum vibration as he writes, “While the conventional lyric of the time stated or named its emotional content, this new poetry enacted its affective state. The move was from emptied-out emotional behavior to a new linguistic sentience. The self was not something assumed in such poems but found in the act of collaboration with the language of the poem and the reader’s response” (Pitch of Poetry: 68, 69). Bernstein uses the air releasing by uttering the words by voicing to create a rhythm in the counter-current, to push the boundaries of the expression of emotional lyric voice, to make the reality more palpable not with speech but with the melody of music.


@@@  Let’s start the last Episode of the Fantasy by Charles Bernstein   @@@

The Pataquerical Imagination
Midrashic Antinomianism and the Promise of Bent Studies
A Fantasy in 140 Fits

CV. In Praise of Disfluency

To be crippled means to be institutionalized, infantilized, unemployed, outcast, feared, marginalized, fetishized, desexualized, stared at, excluded, silenced, aborted, sterilized, stuck, discounted, teased, voiceless, disrespected, raped, isolated, undereducated, made into a metaphor or an example. To be crippled means to be referred to as retard, cute, helpless, lame, bound, stupid, drunk, idiot, a burden on society, in/valid. To be crippled means to be discounted as a commodity or regarded as mere commodity.

                                                            Jennifer Bartlett, Autobiography/Anti-Autobiography [6]

          The poetics of disfluency and disability is the horizon for a querical poetics of de-arrangement.[7] For the purposes of these quarrelsome quarries, I am less interested in narratives of social/cultural identities or disabilities than in how such frames (and the experiences they embody) transform both the writing and reading of poems: difference making for difference, not difference expressed through sameness.

            This is a theme explicitly taken up by Amanda Baggs in her video In My Language.[8] Baggs divides the video into two parts. The first aims to present a primary experience of autistic consciousness; it resembles works of radically deranged art but is framed as expressive of Baggs’s state of mind and modes of perceptual grappling and communication. The second part of the video is a pata-translation of the first part into more normative language, which has the effect of framing the first part not as unintelligible but as otherwise intelligible. Charges that Baggs’s video is a fraud, that she is not really autistic, which Baggs documents on her website,[9] add a devilish twist to the work, since the humanist need to pity authenticated suffering metamorphoses into a virtual Tarr and Fethering by her accusers.

         If Todd Browning’s Freaks (1932) remains the signature work of pataqueasical scopophilia, our age demands its freak shows “tamed by Miltown” into memoirs whose reliability is comparable to (and often as financially advantageous as) junk bonds.[10] Browning’s cinema creates a Brechtian self-consciousness on the part of the viewer via repulsion and fascination; Chaplin’s Little Tramp is the converse, eliciting empathy and identification, without pity. Baudelaire’s “À une mendiante rousse” remains the paradigm for the aversion of objectification. In “Pastoral,” Williams’s approach to the “the houses / of the very poor” is exquisitely oblique: the “weathered,” haphazard scene “smeared a bluish green” occludes voyeurism.[11] In contemporary poetics, Leslie Scalapino’s “Bum Series” (Way, 1988) revisits this dynamic voyeurism and displacement to create an ontological space for turning toward (averting aversion).[12]

         Following Blake and Emerson, Baggs turns pity back onto the beholder as she holds her own ground. “In My Language” turns many of the tropes and quirks of defamiliarizing poetry on their head, returning the metaphors to their source—or rather returning the source to its metaphors and to its criteria, in Wittgenstein’s sense: “An ‘inner process’ stands in need of outward criteria” (§580). Bangs confronts a misleading binary picture of inner process and outer expression, the idea that there is a core, privately experienced, “truth” that needs to be translated into the memoir’s outer expression.[13]

         In a 2011 talk on stuttering and torture, Jordan Scott, charting the interrogator’s relentless search for hidden truth, twists a linguistic knife into actual flesh. In his talk, Scott presented examples of interrogators interpreting outer expressions of verbal disfluency as concealing the sought-after inner truth.[14] Yet the impulse of the torturer to push against the stutter only intensifies the subject’s stutter. Scott’s own stuttering while he lectures collapses the stadium of explanation of academic discourse onto itself: Scott not only talks about stuttering but lacerates his discourse with verbal interruptions, except that these irruptions don’t interfere with, or compromise, his talk; rather, they make it palpable.

           In Scott’s collection of poems, Blert, he sets out to create works that trip his tongue in performance.[15] To hear Scott read is to be aware of stuttering as a literary device collapsing into stuttering as animalady. Scott’s work is a spiky reminder that disability is not (only) a metaphor. Blurt plays on its difference from poems that use stuttering for sound or social or semantic effect—but not by insisting on his real disability versus another’s metaphoric use of disability. Like Baggs, he compounds and propounds the difference. What would happen if his stuttering was cured? Would he lose his poetry street cred? Or would he be better off increasing his stutter, as the professional Frenchman’s accent grows stronger each year he lives in the New World? Or does that just bring us back to Freaks?

          “The Human Abstract” is echoing on the green: “Pity would be no more. / If we did not make somebody Poor.”

CVII. Alien tears

All who see me do mock me—they curl their lips, they shake their head. . . .

Psalm 22, trans. Robert Alter [16]

 He that toucheth pitch, shal be defiled therewith.

Shimon ben Yeshua ben Eliezer ben Sira[17]

Truth from his lips prevailed with double sway,
And fools, who came to scoff, remained to pray.

                                                                                                  Oliver Goldsmith[18]

But let a Splinter swerve.

Emily Dickinson[19]

And alien tears will fill for him
Pity’s long-broken urn,
For his mourners will be outcast men,
And outcasts always mourn.

                                                                                                  Oscar Wilde[20]

I know that queer things happen in this world. It’s one of the few things I have really learnt in my life.



There’s a reason the keepers are the keepers
The sweepers sweeter
But somewhere there’s an in between
That wants to be but never’s been

CIX. Passing

after trying my animal noise / I break out with a man’s cry

Larry Eigner[22]

        American culture is filled with both the desire to pass and a resistance to passing: to be absorbed by the dominant culture or to remake that culture. Assimilation is motivated as much by fear as by desire.

         Twentieth-century American popular entertainment, from vaudeville to popular song, is rife with examples of ethnic and racial performance, where stigmas are flaunted by their putative victims for an audience that identifies with these stigma—or are displayed to indulge the racialist fantasies of nonidentifying audiences. Or both: for the play of same and difference is always a lure. Starting in the 1910s, the Ziegfield star Fanny Brice (born Fania Borach in 1891) performed Yiddish-accent shtick (most famously “Cohen at the Beach”), but she also used her Yiddish accent to create an outrageously incongruous comic effect to her American immigrant rendition of “I’m an Indian” (“O look at me I’m an Indian, that’s something that I never was before”): from shtetl to reservation, Jewface as redface.[23]An obtrusive nose visually represents Jewface: Brice got plastic surgery to remove this difference in 1923.[24]By the mid-1940s she had perfected her ventriloquized foreignness, rocketing into mass culture with another of her Ziegfield shticks, the weird but not ethnically marked pataquerical radio voice of Baby Snooks. All the while, Brice sang less-accented torch songs such as “When a Woman Loves a Man”—her middle voice, which Brice explicitly tied to universal socialist values in “The Song of the Sewing Machine” (1927):

There is no song, there is no birds
And God is just another word
If you listen to the song of the sewing machine[25]

       The dream of American “liberty” doesn’t pass the sweatshop test (“America never was America to me,” as Langston Hughes more famously put it):[26] it is class consciousness, not nose jobs, that erases difference, understood here as economic, not racial or ethnic.

         —Beyond the fear of ethnic or racial difference is the fear of animal difference. The fear of animalady manifests as the need to pass as human (cultivated, learned, well mannered, well dressed), which is figured, in the tale of Dr. Tarr and Professor Fether, as the need to pass as not insane.

         Michael McClure directly confronts the phobia of not passing as human in “Ghost Tantra” 49, in which he not only invents a zaumist “beast language” but also performs the poem to growling tigers, exceeding his own expressionist linguistic acrobatics in the final minute (in the audio recording) of the lion’s sounds that persist beyond the poem, theatricalizing a full dissolve of the human into animality.[27] It’s a marvelously incantatory, almost satiric exorcism of the human. The conceit of McClure’s performance is not man taming the beast. Rather the performance is a coming to literary terms with our inner beast, not as noble or even more human than we are (à la Cocteau’s “où est ma bête?”)[28] but as something that, like the body, marks animal being as a base level of human being. But any such literary effort necessarily courts—either by romanticizing or by stigma—jungleification, primitivism, savagery.

         In Curt McDowell’s Thundercrack (1975), George Kuchar (who wrote the script) plays a circus truck driver who has fallen in love with the female gorilla in his charge. In the final, touching scene we see the driver in bed with someone in a very campy gorilla costume. From Baudelaire’s “À une mendiante rousse” onward, artists have tried to find a way to portray society’s “others” without voyeurism, pity, condescension, or romanticizing. Kuchar in bed with an actor in a gorilla suit is the perfect realization of the possibility of the pataque(e)rical as a quest for what Kuchar calls “otherworldly humanity.”[29] Like many pornographic films, Thundercrack portrays a descent into animalistic sexual drives, brought to a head in this last scene. With its parodic bestiality, Kuchar reverses the normal direction of assimilation: he wants to pass as animal.

         As if on cue, on July 30, 2009, Fox News ran a segment with Megyn Kelly that attacked the National Endowment for the Arts for supporting a movie series showing Thundercrack, a film that was disgusting, according to Kelly, because it showedsex between a man and a gorilla.

        Moral repugnance is the last refuge of scoundrels.


        I hate emotion and speech don’t treat me none too good neither.


         As I was reviewing this piece, I saw a number of fatal flaws: the romanticism in the valorization of the failed, the dehistoricizing of stigma, the contradiction between singular and plural, instant and series. The hour was far too late for me to cancel those sections of this work and still have adequate material to present to you. I keep them here to show the unseemly twists and turns of a soul thrown upon the open seas of life without paddle, ballast, or rudder: one addled, bolloxed, uttered.


 We can never safely exceed the actual facts in our narratives. Of pure invention, such as some suppose, there is no instance. To write a true work of fiction even, is only to take leisure and liberty to describe some things more exactly as they are. A true account of the actual is the rarest poetry, for common sense always takes a hasty and superficial view.  … for the wise are not so much wiser than others as respecters of their own wisdom. Some, poor in spirit, record plaintively only what has happened to them; but others how they have happened to the universe …

                                                                                                                     Henry David Thoreau[30]


        It’s always historicize, not only historicize.


Provide feedback on this essay

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        What can we do to improve this essay?


           Give a person a poem and it’s read in a moment. Teach a person to write poetry and it lasts a lifetime.

          Teach a person to write a poem and he can begin to understand himself. Teach a person to read a poem and she can begin to understand the world.

        Give a man a bowl and he will have something to put his soup in. Teach a man to bowl and he can join a league.





Bengali Version & Transcreation here >>> প্যাটাক্যুয়রিক্যাল নাইটশোয়ে আপনাকে স্বাগতম

Note: Transcreation Project:

       It is a transcreation project in series for the essay “The Pataquerical Imagination: Midrashic Antinomianism and the Promise of Bent Studies” by Charles Bernstein. This last episode contains last eleven sections of the essay. The section CXXXIV, containing the quote from A Week on the Concord and Merrrimack Rivers by Herny David Throeau, was in the draft cut out of the final in Pitch of Poetry. The section has been added here. The transcreated part is included in the Bengali section of Ongshumali. The essay was published in Bernstein’s book Pitch of Poetry. To know the details please click the following link.







[1] Topsy-Turvy by Charles Bernstein, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2021.

[2] Pitch of Poetry by Charles Bernstein, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2016.

[3] Dark City by Charles Bernstein, Los Angeles: Sun & Moon Press, 1994.

[4] Bangiya Sabdarthakosh (Bengali Dictionary): A Collection of Bengali words with their Verb-based and Letter-based Meanings by Kalim Khan and Ravi Chakravarti, Kolkata, India: BhashaVinyasa, 2009, translated from Bengali by Runa Bandyopadhyay.

[5] Logical Philosophical Treatise or Treatise on Logic and Philosophy (Latin: Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus) by Ludwig Wittgenstein, tr. Frank P. Ramsey and Charles Kay Ogden, Harcourt, Brace and Company, New York, 1922.

[6](Palmyra, NY: theenk Boooks, 2014), 11. See Bartlett’s preface to Beauty Is a Verb: The New Poetry of Disability (El Paso, TX: Cinco Puntos, 2011) and the interview with her at Jacket 2: jacket2.0rg/?q=commentary/jennifer-bartlett-conversation-jane-joritz-nakagawa.

[7] See Michael Davidson’s groundbreaking Concerto for Left Hand: Disability and the Defamiliar Body (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2008).

[8]www.youtube.com/watch?v=JnylM1hI2jc. The video has received over one million views. See also David Wolman, “The Truth about Autism: Scientists Reconsider What They Think They Know,” Wired 16.03 (February 25, 2008),archive.wired.com/medtech/health/magazine/16-03/ff_autism?currentPage=all.

[9] abaggs.blogspot.com.

[10] “The age demanded an image / Of its accelerated grimace . . . / Not, not certainly, the obscure reveries / Of the inward gaze; / Better mendacities / Than the classics in paraphrase! . . . / A prose kinema.” Ezra Pound, “Hugh Selwyn Mauberly” (1920), EPC Digital Library, writing.upenn.edu/library/Pound_Ezra_Hugh_Selwyn_Mauberly.html. “Tamed by Miltown” is from Robert Lowell’s “Man and Wife,” in Collected Poems (New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2007).

[11]Collected Poems, vol. 1, 64.Williams ends the poem with the pataquerical imperative: “No one / will believe this / of vast import to the nation.”Only this and nothing more.He comes back to the ontology of voyeurism in “The Young Housewife.”

[12]Duchamp’s bachelor machine, “Étant donnés” turns the gaze back on the gaze. See also “Reznikoff’s Nearness” in My Way: Speeches and Poems.

[13] “‘But you surely cannot deny that, for example, in remembering, an inner process takes place.’–What gives the impression that we want to deny anything? When one says ‘Still, an inner process does take place here’—one wants to go on: ‘After all, you see it.’ And it is this inner process that one means by the word ‘remembering.’—The impression that we wanted to deny something arises from our setting our faces against the picture of the ‘inner process.’ What we deny is that the picture of the inner process gives us the correct idea of the use of the word ‘to remember.’ We say that this picture with its ramifications stands in the way of our seeing the use of the word as it is.” (§305, Anscombe trans.)

[14] North of Invention: A Canadian Poetry Festival, University of Pennsylvania, January 21, 2011, writing.upenn.edu/pennsound/x/North-Of-Invention.php.

[15] (Toronto: Coach House Press, 2008).

[16] Robert Alter, The Book of Psalms: A Translation with Commentary (New York: W.W. Norton, 2009), 72.

[17] Ecclesiasticus 13:1, King James Bible (1611). Ben Sira is the second century BCE author of the Hebrew “Book of Ecclesiasticus.”

[18] Oliver Goldsmith, “The Deserted Village” (1770): www.poetryfoundation.org/poem/173557

[19] #556.

[20] Oscar Wilde, “The Battle of Reading Gaol” (1897), final four lines of sec. 4, RPO, rpo.library.utoronto.ca/poems/ballad-reading-gaol. These lines are Wilde’s epitaph at Père Lachaise. His haunted elegy views society from the vantage of a prison cell; it is the outcasts/prisoners for whom he mourns. In this poem, sorrow is an aesthetic principle that creates an autonomous work of art: a poem of, by, and for sorrow, sorrow for sorrow’s sake.

[21] Wittgenstein to G. E. Moore, 1946, in Wittgenstein in Cambridge, letter no. 353, p. 400.

[22] Larry Eigner, Selected Poems (Tuscaloosa: University of Alabama Press, in press), no. f9, September 1954.

[23] The Library of Congress streams a 1921 recording of Brice performing “I’m an Indian,” www.loc.gov/jukebox/recordings/detail/id/8288/, lyrics by Blanche Merrill, music by Leo Edwards. This song is not to be confused with, but is worth comparing to, the later Irving Berlin song from Annie Get Your Gun (1946), “I’m an Indian Too,” which has been criticized as racist. For “Mrs. Cohen at the Beach,” go to archive.org/details/FannyBriceCollection1927-1930Complete. More discussion on this topic in “Objectivist Blues: Scoring Speech in Second Wave Modernist Poetry and Lyrics” in Attack of the Difficult Poems.

[24] Herbert G. Goldman, Fanny Brice: The Original Funny Girl (New York: Oxford University Press, 1992).

[25] Lyrics by Ballard MacDonald and Billy Rose (born William Rosenberg in 1899), who had also written “Mrs. Cohen at the Beach.” Full lyric and sound file at jacket2.0rg/commentary/song-sewing-machine.

[26] “Let America Be America to Me,” in The Collected Poems of Langton Hughes, ed. Arnold Rampersand (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1994), 189.

[27] jacket2.0rg/commentary/michael-mcclure-reads-lions.

[28] So says Beauty confronted with the loss of her beast in Jean Cocteau’s 1948 film La Belle et la Bête.

[29] Kuchar uses this term in one of his last films, Lingo of the Lost (2010).

[30] Herny David Throeau, A Week on the Concord and Merrrimack Rivers (Boston: James R. Osgood, 1873), 344- 45.

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Runa Bandyopadhyay, a bilingual poet, essayist, translator and critiqueer in the New Poetry world of Bengal, India, a scientist by profession, but fully addicted to innovative experimental literature. As a critiqueer she invented a new genre in 'recurring poetry' and...

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