Art & literatures emerging from everywhere in this planet

Author

Djelloul Marbrook

Djelloul Marbrook has 9 texts published.

Interview of Djelloul Marbrook by Seb Doubinsky in The Tabago Page

in Interviews by

Djelloul Marbrook is an American writer, essayist and poet. His works include Far from Algiers, Saraceno, Brash Ice and Shadow of the Heron.

What is your earliest reading memory?

Tabloid headlines, probably 103 pt. hot lead headlines. I lived with Grandma Huldah and my Aunt Dorothy in Brooklyn and they used to cut out tabloid headlines as we sat on the floor in order to teach me the alphabet and how to string letters together. They made paste out of flour and water and we pasted words and then short sentences on sheets of paper. I remember how happy I was. It’s no wonder I eventually made a living writing headlines.

Has writing been a conscious choice or a natural thing for you?

I used to sit next to my stepfather in his office on 19th Street in Manhattan and do my homework when I was in high school. He loved Edward Fitzgerald’s translation of The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam. The translation is great fun, quite musical, and utterly misleading. I liked it, but I had grown up in a Protestant boarding school run along English public school lines—it had been set up for East Anglian evacuees during World War II, and I was one of the very few Americans—so I took it on myself to respond to Fitzgerald’s Rubaiyat from a Christian perspective, using his own prosodic schemata. I was hooked on prosody and began to study it intensely.

Read More

What the camera tells the writer about genius and grief

in Art & Photography by

Dedicated collaboration with a camera is worth an MFA degree to a writer. And editing in the era of the digital image is like recruiting unused brain cells.

The camera teaches us how to see things. It teaches us to look for what we routinely overlook. It teaches us nuance, shadow, light, and how to make collages with them.

What distinguishes a good photographer is not the cost of the equipment hanging around the neck. It’s an eye for composition, a sense of how things juxtapose to say something beyond the reach of each thing being composed.

Anyone can learn how to take a good picture of an object. But contextualizing that object in reference to its environ, that’s different. Writing a good sentence is not the same as being a good writer.

Read More

The indispensable face, by Djelloul Marbrook

in Fiction by

Of how many faces can you say, I’m glad I won’t be leaving this place without having seen that face? I don’t mean the faces, necessarily, of loved ones. I mean instead those relatively few faces one is glad, truly glad, not to have missed.

They will differ, of course, for different people. Given the plethora of media in our times, we see many more faces than most people would have seen in earlier times, and we’re influenced by editorial and curatorial ideas about beauty.

Read More

Stuart Bartow pierces the veil of received ideas and notions

in Book Reviews by

stuartlawnbookStuart Bartow’s poems are a proper antidote to two polarities in American poetry, vapidity and pretension. Squashed between those polarities, the spirit of inquiry goes begging, but not in Bartow’s work. He connects the dots. He does not come across as contemptuous of the butterfly effect, as does the American press in its adamant refusal to connect the dots—a refusal shared by many poets, perhaps in the misguided conviction that it contradicts modernist ideas about poetry.

When the American press called George W. Bush incurious it might well have been talking about itself and a large body of our poetry, which prefers to play it safe, keep it light, and by all means spurn the rhapsodic.

The sonnet is in some ways a form of self-discipline, a way of accustoming oneself to thinking concisely. There is something in its fourteen-line structure that requires you to organize your thoughts into a kind of algorithm that then helps you address enigmas, whether in your daily rounds or in your poetry. Stuart Bartow’s nonce sonnets , published here in Arabesques for the first time, reveal his rigor as a poet and as a seeker after elixirs for the elements of his experiences. Succinctness is not merely about saying something well and sharply, it’s about going to the quick: it’s about quickness.

The poems in Einstein’s Lawn are varied. Some of them are prose poems. There are couplets, metered stanzas, rhymed stanzas, and concrete poems. Because he is writing about Albert Einstein and physics, he has taken care to provide notes lest we’re unfamiliar with the God particle, Glaucus or Absolute Zero.

Read More

1 2 3
Go to Top