Thursday, June 26, 2003

New/Old Writer

jose garcia villa

I'm into old anthologies. I say to anyone who quests for fame and acclaim to read old anthologies.

As this piece by Kathryn Chetkovich --whose boyfriend's name I won't mention since that would be all to cruel-- indicates when we write we also crave some form of acclaim.

I have this self created mental audience of slavering fans. A nobel prize committe in my head. So I don't have this problem. Still, I do understand.

I got the link from Moorish Girl--who writes a kick ass blog mostly about literature.

Old anthologies are full of extraordinarily good writing by people who you might never have heard of and who may be utterly forgotten in a little while. What does that show? That lots of celebrated writing sucks and good writing falls by the wayside. (Chetkovich mentions that she knows this but it is no consolation.)

So I found this poetry by this writer Jose Garcia Villa in a Modern Library anthology of 20th Century American Poetry published in 1944. And it was breathtaking. When I saw he had a Spanish name and was an American poet I couldn't believe I'd never heard of him.

I say that I collect these anthologies and old cast off literature for some kind of educational reasons but I'm probably rationalizing because I've got dozens and have to move soon and know my shrine to the semi-famous or near-forgotten is going to weigh a hell of a lot. My collectomania has got to stop but I feel guilty throwing any of that away. Who will preserve the name of those writers of forgotten or middle brow fiction?

But Garcia Villa's not out of print so maybe I'm just ignorant.

Here's a link to one of his poems. This isn't as striking as the others but is still good.


Post a Comment

<< Home