Photo Series by Syrie Kovitz
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B e y o n d T
i m e
b y R o b e r t G i b b o n
having more to do with blood than dictionary, physical as much as cerebral. Spontaneous more
than calculated. Rife with sensuousness. As internal as dream, eternal as memory. The insistence of pulse,
breath, & bodily fluid. Blood of Love, I wrote once, dripping it repeatedly down the page, Blood
of Love, Blood of Love, which could have culminated in a yell, “Stella!” If that were her
name. Connections to tree roots. Seven evergreens newly discovered here in the neighborhood at the corner
of Hunt & Clinton, or the majestic catalpa a few blocks away at James & Pleasant. Always the
feet tracing streets from Paris to Barcelona; a dialogue of the citizenry of self with city & history.
Skin & bone & wound. Letter by letter back home documenting experience. The second life of writing,
as intense, or more so, than living. Aesthetic based on the tactile. The chew of a word. A certain taste,
not always familiar. I’d film words like Godard, if I could, chant like Coltrane, if need be, paint
a sign like Kline, however one has to get it down, send it out, make a note. Thrust & parry, the
battle & pleasure. My favorite stone in all of Washington used to stand outside, where I worked at
the National Gallery of Art: Noguchi’s Great Rock of Inner Seeking,
where I’d go to wonder & touch.
I have never tried to write about Time, but Time often infiltrates my work. Speed of language counts.
Prose speeds. Can I spend Time wondering where, or whether, to a break line? The spark of the erotic
starts the language act. Kristeva’s chora drums, not knowing where it is going, until last tap
at keyboard. There’s a vibration in the Body called cathexion.
A visceral jolt.”
Robert Gibbons read eleven prose
poems on Bastille Day (2006) at the Poetry & Politics
Conference at the University of Stirling, Scotland. He was introduced by Camelia Elias,
who wrote a review of
his third full-length book of prose poems, Body of
the French online journal Cercles.
In his review of the same book, Jim Feast wrote in Evergreen
his verse, Gibbons sees things others miss, extracting gains from the ruins of powerlessness
in which the average citizen lives, offering, then, a therapeutics for the public sphere."
An online chapbook, Time on Water, is archived
in The Drunken Boat.
His work appears in The
Literary Review, as well as Electric
Acorn and Exquisite
Corpse. He is
the Poetry & Fiction
Editor of Janus Head.