about nothing, places, memories, and thoughts: robert creeley (1926-2005) and patricia tomaszek

Klassifikation | Classification:

Autor(en) | Author(s): 
Tomaszek, Patricia
Link zum archivierten Werk | Link to archived work: 
Jahr der Erstveröffentlichung | Year of original publication: 
Sprache(n) | Language(s): 
Autoren-Webseite(n) | Author's website(s): 
Herausgeber | Editor(s): 
Ravi Shankar
Zeitschrift | Journal: 
Drunken Boat
Jahrgangsnummer | Journal volume: 
Heftnummer | Issue number: 
Winter 2007
Englische Beschreibung | English description: 

This work leverages the unique potential of digital media to bring together a death-voice (Robert Creeley) and a life-voice (Patricia Tomaszek). Each time the user clicks the mouse, both poets create - reading back and forth - a computer-generated poem that blends surprise and repetition to create a range of unique (dis)harmonies. In total, 98 selected lines from the authors recordings serve as the raw material from which vast a # of 8-10 line poems - the average length of both poets' works - are created. Simple algorithmic rules determine each outcome; a number of openings and closings are pre-selected while the body of each composition is generated computationally via a probabilistic grammar. The work began with a series of response poems, penned by the author, to the poems of Robert Creeley. These poems where then recorded with each line as a separate sound sample. Crucial lines from Creeley that inspired the responsive writing process were then subjected to the same 'cut-up' procedure. The final set of lines, restricted by the availability of Creeley's audio recordings, were selected on the basis of their cohesion with the selected themes: places, memories, thoughts, identity, loss, absence, and nothingness.