Evening Will Come: A Monthly Journal of Poetics (Issue 21, September 2012)


Every book has sentences in it the writer hates, that the writer cannot get rid of, that the writer cannot live without. Any writer who cuts out every sentence that he hates is a writer not worth reading.

But what’s even worse than this are the sentences that the writer loves, the sentences the writer needs, the sentences that created the book but which the writer absolutely cannot include.

“Doubt,” writes Duras, “equals writing.”

To which I would add that I have little interest in writing that doesn’t make a mess: of itself, of the world, of its own reason for being.

One can write towards a reduction. One can begin with a mess of words, and then hope, in the end, for a beautiful and satisfying reduction of that mess. One can consciously work towards a reduction in the ability of the writing body to be absorbed by the words it murmurs to everyone and no one in particular.