13 September 2012
Another Look at Ann Carson's Short Talks
Who is Ann Carson? Why do I have to read this anyway? I really didn’t see the point in it. For one thing, the writer lost me after the introduction. I was then asked to find the meaning in what Ann Carson was trying to say, to me. It was very hard reading Short Talks. Confusion twists and turns. It was like going through the “fun house at a carnival.” Just imagine. Before you go any further there’s a “big turning barrel” (her introduction) that already had me “slipping and sliding” and falling. I eventually crawled out of it. Then I climbed up the “rickety stairs made out of chains” (the next Short Talk). There's the big goofy mirror” that’s all distorted and everything. Reading Short Talks again and again and again, seemed like an exercise in futility. Or, was it… really? One thing was certain. I seriously had a headache from the first readings. Something began to happen a couple of days after reading “On Gertrude Stein About 9:30”. Researching Gertrude Stein started to help me finally begin to “connect the dots” to some of Ann Carson’s Other Short Talks. I saw a monumental task when, all along, Ann Carson was suggesting “to me” to “just be me.” Immediately, I felt no pressure to have a well thought out plan on what to write. Only to write. When I think of Anne Carson’s “Short Talks” it’s like an abstract work of art. Reading Short Talks was like “riding a bicycle backwards and using a rear view mirror to see what’s ahead.” Yes, reading her works for the first time was very awkward. After re-reading a few short talks, I began to feel like I was that little kid again going to the museum for the first time. I just couldn’t understand the concept of modern art. Going from crayons and markers to Rembrandts and Monet’s is no easy task. In grade school it was exciting going to the museum. Looking at all the pictures and colors and different objects and forms. As...