Jack Ross, ed.: Spin 33 (March 1999)
As a new heaven is begun, and it is now thirty-three years since its advent, the Eternal Hell revives. And lo! Swedenborg is the Angel sitting at the tomb: his writings are the linen clothes folded up.
– William Blake, The Marriage of Heaven and Hell (1793)
Sometimes looking a little cracked is the best response to interesting times, as Blake found at the turn of his century.
Some might see this Spin 33 (apparently a significant number – see above) as unduly weighted towards the dislocated and disjointed, but I’d prefer to see that as inclusiveness. After all, there are plenty of well-crafted lyrics in here as well. Something (I’d like to think) for everyone.
In the end, though, you have to be honest even to your own prejudices, which is why I’ve included some essays and comments on poetics at the end of the issue. I, personally, can see no advantage in living in a cul-de-sac, and thus I prefer that poetry which seems to me to be gesturing outwards. Call it “experimental” if you like – I have one rule of thumb. If someone says: “That could never be a poem,” that’s what your next poem should be.