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Verse and Worse

Selected and New Poems of Steve McCaffery 1989-2009

SteveMcCaffery, DarrenWershler

Publication Year: 2010

Verse and Worse: Selected and New Poems of Steve McCaffery 1989–2009 presents texts from the last two decades of work by Steve McCaffery, one of the most influential and innovative of contemporary poets. The volume focuses on selections from McCaffery’s major texts, including The Black Debt, Theory of Sediment, The Cheat of Words, and Slightly Left of Thinking, but also features a substantial number of previously ungathered poems. As playful as they are cerebral, McCaffery’s poems stage an incessant departure from conventional lyrical and narrative methods of making meaning. For those encountering McCaffery’s work for the first time as well as for those who have followed the twists and turns of his astonishingly heterogeneous poetic trajectory over the past four decades—this volume is essential reading.

Published by: Wilfrid Laurier University Press

Table of Contents

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pp. v-vi

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Foreword

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pp. vii-viii

At the beginning of the twenty-first century, poetry in Canada---writing and publishing it, reading and thinking about it---finds itself in a strangely conflicted place.We have many strong poets continuing to produce exciting new work, and there is still a small audience for poetry; but increasingly, poetry is...

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Biographical Note

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p. viii-viii

Steve McCaffery was born in Sheffield, England, on January 24, 1947---the day of Antonin Artaud's final performance. He was a founding member of the Four Horsemen sound poetry ensemble, the Toronto Research Group (with bpNichol), the College of Canadian 'Pataphysics, and Language Poetry. He lived in Toronto for many years and now resides in Buffalo, where...

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Introduction

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pp. ix-xiv

"Orthodoxy," said Bishop William Warburton, "is my doxy; heterodoxy is another man's doxy" (Parrinder). Or at least he said something to that effect. A quick perusal of various print and digital collections of quotations will produce a number of variations on this sentence, many of them featuring small but significant differences in punctuation and spelling. One of the...

A Theory of the Lyric

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p. 1-1

from Teachable Texts

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pp. 2-12

from Theory of Sediment: The Curve to Its Answer

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pp. 13-17

A Child's History of Rhetoric Caught as It Happens

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p. 18-18

from The Entries

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pp. 19-22

A Few Donuts from an Hommagiste or: Bad Modernism

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pp. 23-25

from Some Versions of Pastoral

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pp. 26-27

Apologia Pro Vita Sua

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p. 28-28

Coleridge in Calgary (ars poetica 4)

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pp. 29-33

Ephemera

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p. 34-34

from Lag

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pp. 35-38

from An Effect of Cellophane

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pp. 39-40

Oedipus Meets the Abstract Machine

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p. 41-41

Suggestion but No Insult

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p. 42-42

The Dangers of Poetry (for Italo Calvino)

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p. 43-43

The Lone Ranger in Arcadia

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p. 44-44

Restricted Translation with Imperfect Level Shift (after Basho)

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p. 45-45

The Poem as a Thing to See

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p. 46-46

The View from Here

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p. 47-47

Tyrolean Night

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pp. 48-56

A Map

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p. 57-57

Correlata for a Cryptogram

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p. 58-58

The Logic of Six

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pp. 59-62

First Vico Meditation

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p. 63-63

Second Vico Meditation

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p. 64-64

Digital Poetics

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p. 65-65

Prior to Meaning

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p. 66-66

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Afterword

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pp. 67-72

The 1980s proved an important decade for me. In 1986,my critical writings from 1973 through 1986 appeared collectively as North of Intention in a joint Canadian and American venture. It was also a decade in which some of my most substantial poetic texts appeared: the collaborative Legend (1980), the aphoristic Knowledge Never Knew (1983), Evoba (my poetic...

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Acknowledgements

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pp. 73-76

Excerpts from Lag, An Effect of Cellophane, Theory of Sediment, and Teachable Texts, plus "Restricted Translation with Imperfect Level Shift (after Basho)," "The Curve to Its Answer," "The Entries," "The Logic of Six," "Prior to Meaning," and "A Theory of the Lyric," are the same versions that appear in Seven Pages Missing Volume One: Selected Texts 1969--1999...


E-ISBN-13: 9781554582112
E-ISBN-10: 1554582989
Print-ISBN-13: 9781554581887
Print-ISBN-10: 1554581885

Page Count: 90
Publication Year: 2010

Series Title: Laurier Poetry

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