THE ALLEGORICAL ISSUE

intro

Sometimes I feel allegories are reality, and that reality has yet to begin. The brilliant allegories of resistance, and transformation that inhabit aglimpseof’s pages contain guising, irony, projections, melancholy, anger, and recursions.

Clinton Craig wrote “Goldwater” at the same time as he was reading “The Yellow Wallpaper” by Charlotte Perkins Gilman: “I was inspired by her character’s interior reality, a reality that she was so sure was true, yet was told constantly was simply a hysteria. I don’t know how Gilman would feel about my appropriation of her work, but it was done with great respect and a feeling of urgency spurred by the current political situation (of alternative facts, egocentrism, and rejection of logic) in the United States.”

The texts that Jazmine Linklater used for her collage poems are Freud’s “The Question of Lay Analysis” (Neurose), Camus’ “The Myth of Sisyphus,” Thomas Nagel’s “The Absurd” (Absurde), and Sartre’s “Existentialism and Humanism” (         Foi).

“By appropriating a linguistic corpus of spam trigger expressions,” Bruno Ministro is “alluding to the performative aspect of words, which are symbolically considered forbidden or allowed by those machinic-built spam filters. What does it mean to be forbidden/allowed in our society? Does this generator work as an true allegory of culture?” This spam generator is for Bruno Ministro “an allegory of all the weird junk people upload to the web, particularly, to social networks. It is somehow what Sandy Baldwin refers to as ‘anomalous web materials.’”

John Morgan started making hand made concertina books on high quality laid paper for his long poems. “From a Stolen Voice” became one of them: “It responds to the idea of differential texts (Marjorie Perloff), where the layout and medium can provide distinctly different reading experiences. Holatyn is one of the old Jewish shtetls that have completely disappeared in western Ukraine. The reference here comes from a novel by Czech writer, Ivan Olbrecht, who uses the name Holatyn in the first chapter of his novel, Nikola the Outlaw (1933), set in WWI in Ruthenia, the region that bordered Slovakia, Ukraine, Hungary and Romania. He refers to it as a mountain in the Carpathians.”

Tom Snarsky’s “Poem” began “as a few unrelated quatrains composed with an 8-syllable line and grew to be a longer meditation on birth and music under the (in?)auspicious sign of mathematics. The poem’s conceit is the Garden of Eden Theorem for cellular automata, which states roughly that an automaton only has a true beginning state (that is, a state with no possible predecessors — a “Garden of Eden”) if that automaton has two states with identical sets of successor states (these are called “twin” states). The poem attempts to explode the kernel at the heart of this theorem outward into history, suspending the usual problematic of birth/origins/creation in favor of the play of twinning & experiment; in so doing, the poem evokes figures like Spinoza, Laurence Sterne, and Alfred Schnittke — all of whom happen to share a birthday. Ultimately, “Poem” tracks a fragmented effort to listen carefully, to attain subjectivity, and then to transform history — or, at the very least, to face the world and speak.”

Many thanks to Mary Alexi, Clinton Craig, Jeremy Hight, Allison Hummel, Anna Lascari, Jazmine Linklater, Erin Lyndal Martin, Bruno Ministro, John Morgan, Tom Snarsky, and Theadora Walsh who made the Allegorical issue deliciously, intriguingly, extremely real.

Dimitra Ioannou

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