Friday, October 1

"On being a nobody. What if books of poetry were published according
to the 'Barnes Principle'? In the Barnes Foundation, the pictures have no
wall labels identifying artist, title, date, style, circumstances, etc. A single
artist's works are not grouped together but spread among others. One
wall displays a Tintoretto, a Renoir, a C├ęzanne, and one or two works
by lesser artists of different periods. I imagine books of poetry made
available to the public without illustrious dustjackets, blurbs, bios,
medals of merit embossed on the cover, hysterical reviews, etc. That
way, everybody becomes a nobody, except for the singularity and
expressiveness of the offering in the words.

"What if books and pamphlets were, as someone has proposed, displayed
at supermarket checkout counters? Yes, but let them be displayed
anonymously in plain wrappers. Browse and shop, shop and buy. Let
the poet who suggested that, and the poet suggesting this, be the first to
have their works so displayed."

--W. S. Di Piero

fr. "Out of Notebooks"
in Shooting the Works: on poetry and pictures
[Evanston, Illinois: Triquarterly Books, 1996]

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