William Carlos Williams



Belly Music



Literatur: Williams
Literatur: Others


There are a few men and women writing poetry, a few poets who are perfectly conscious of what they are doing, who are not idly dabbling in a new form because it is new but who are writing in free verse because it is the ONLY form that approximates the meaning which after mature thought they are trying to put forward. It is easy to be understood if you do that which is stale. But free verse is the ONLY form that CAN CARRY THE NEW MEANING that is imperatively required today. It is the ONE verse form that embodies the quality of thought which can be designated as modern. And it is only the modern which is worth expressing. The denotations, the connotations of all this, the sidelight it casts on religion on philosophy on abstract thought – these things exist and they are important and no poet has the time or the ability to go into them.

But a critic will waste hours on this or that UNDEBATABLE quality in a poem or a new book of poems: is it passionate or colorful or lewd or SUBTLE or does it exhibit a predilection on the poet's part for uxorious seclusion or nomadic profligacy or indeed does the poet wear pink silk underwear or blow his nose thumb fashion?

What the hell do I care if a man or woman is or is not passionate or tender with his children or loves his wife or she her husband or whether he is dramatic, lyrical, whether his lines are short or long, whether he writes of Tahiti or Back Bay, whether he represents the negro race, the Chinese, the river rat? BUT has he a vision into the desolate PRESENT. Love, yes, but love as it is affected by the violence of present day thought: music, yes, but music as it is affected by the present day revelations concerning the dead or living idolatries of yesterday. I don't give a damn about airplanes and airplane poetry but I do give a damn about the distraught brain that must find its release in building gas motors and in balancing them on cloth wings in its agony.

[31] It is NOT true that we can sing the old songs. The old poetry will NOT do. Its whole form is inadequate, it is lousey with mediæval filth. It is NOT true that Whitman will do –

Clean, new! clean as the tread of a locomotive wheel –

Modern criticism that I am able to find is characterised by a deadly fear for the future. It is true that modern verse has its cliches just as the old did, it is important to say so, it is important for the bad writers to realize that they are bad writers – but it is sickening to hear NOTHING ELSE.





Erstdruck und Druckvorlage

Bd. 5, 1919, Nr. 6, Juli, S. 26-32.

Unser Auszug: S. 30-31.

Gezeichnet: W. C. W.

Die Textwiedergabe erfolgt nach dem ersten Druck (Editionsrichtlinien).

Others   online
URL: https://modjourn.org/journal/others/
URL: https://catalog.hathitrust.org/Record/006062262







Literatur: Williams

Brandmeyer, Rudolf: Poetiken der Lyrik: Von der Normpoetik zur Autorenpoetik. In: Handbuch Lyrik. Theorie, Analyse, Geschichte. Hrsg. von Dieter Lamping. 2. Aufl. Stuttgart 2016, S. 2-15.

Doyle, Charles (Hrsg.): William Carlos Williams. The Critical Heritage. London u.a. 1980.

Holsapple, Bruce: The Birth of the Imagination. William Carlos Williams on Form. Albuquerque 2016.

Jancsó, Daniella: Metareference and Intermedial Reference. William Carlos Williams' Poetological Poems. In: Metareference across Media. Theory and Case Studies. Hrsg. von Werner Wolf. Amsterdam u.a. 2009, S. 451-465.

Käck, Elin: 'Flying Is Writing and Lindbergh's Flight a Poem': William Carlos Williams's Theorising Poetry and Science through Marianne Moore and Gertrude Stein. In: European Journal of English Studies 22.3 (2018), S. 287-301.

MacGowan, Christopher (Hrsg.): The Cambridge Companion to William Carlos Williams. New York 2016.

Marcus, Laura: Rhythmical Subjects. The Measures of the Modern. Oxford 2023.

Newcomb, John T.: How Did Poetry Survive? The Making of Modern American Verse. Urbana, Ill. u.a. 2012.

Painter, Kirsten B.: Flint on a Bright Stone. A Revolution of Precision and Restraint in American, Russian, and German Modernism. Stanford, Calif. 2006.

Welsch, J. T.: The Formalistic Grounds of William Carlos William's Critique of Imagism. In: Imagism: Essays on Its Initiation, Impact and Influence. Hrsg. von John Gery u.a. New Orleans, La. 2013, S. 123-131.



Literatur: Others

Braddock, Jeremy: collecting as modernist practice. Baltimore, Md. 2012.

Budke, Leah: The Definitive Editor: Alfred Kreymborg and the Others Magazine-Anthology Duo In: Modernist Cultures 15 (2020), S. 515-537.

Churchill, Suzanne W.: The Little Magazine Others and the Renovation of Modern American Poetry. Aldershot u.a. 2006.

Churchill, Suzanne W.: The Lying Game: Others and the Great Spectra Hoax of 1917. In: Little Magazines & Modernism. New Approaches. Hrsg. von Suzanne W. Churchill u. Adam McKible. Aldershot, England 2007, S. 177-195.

Churchill, Suzanne W. / Jaffee, Ethan: The New Poetry. The Glebe (1913-14); Others (1915-19); and Poetry Review of America (1916-17). In: The Oxford Critical and Cultural History of Modernist Magazines. Hrsg. von Peter Brooker u.a. Bd. 2: North America 1894-1960. Oxford 2012, S. 299-319.

Newcomb, John T.: Others, Poetry, and Wallace Stevens: Little Magazines as Agents of Reputation. In: Essays in Literature 16.2 (1989), S. 256-270.

Newcomb, John T.: How Did Poetry Survive? The Making of Modern American Verse. Urbana, Ill. u.a. 2012.
Kap 4: There Is Always Others: Experimental Verse and "Ulterior Social Result" (S. 79-117).

White, Eric B.: Transatlantic Avant-Gardes. Little Magazines and Localist Modernism. Edinburgh 2013.
Kap. 1: Contra Mundum: Others and the Transatlantic Village (S. 19-49).



Lyriktheorie » R. Brandmeyer