by Jean-Francois Bory
Edited by Jean-Francois Bory
This collection presents one of the most interesting and lively developments on the international poetry scene in recent years. Concrete Poetry has been growing in many countries, from Brazil to Japan, and especially in England and Europe. Its ancestry goes back to pre-historic picture writing and the anagrams of early Christian monks; it has affinities with the oriental ideogram, and, in our century, with Apollinaire’s Calligrammes, the work of Klee and Schwitters, and the experiments in “visual form” of Cummings, Dylan Thomas, and the Dadaists and Surrealists. A number of American poets have now begun to do Concrete Poetry, there have been special numbers of Chicago Review and The Beloit Poetry Journal devoted to it, and The Something Else Press of New York published last year an anthology edited by Emmett Williams. Once Again is not so much an anthology, though it includes the work of 54 poets from 10 countries, as a group presentation, designed to be read as a consecutive “visual happening.” It has been assembled by Jean-François Bory, an editor of the Paris magazine Approches and the author of Plein Signe, Height Texts + 1 and other “Concrete” books. Bory has provided an introduction which traces the history 0f the movement and analyzes its aesthetic. He also comments on individual poems. The American poets in Once Again are: Alain Arias-Misson, Jeff Berner, Wally Depew, Carl Fernbach-Flarsheim, Ken Friedman, Ronald Johnson, Alison Knowles, Richard Kostelanetz, D. A. Levy, Lilian Lijn, Cyril Miles, Norman Ogue Mustil, Ad Reinhardt, Aram Saroyan, Mary Ellen Solt, Jonathan Williams.