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Issue Details: First known date: 2017... 2017 Eyes inside Words : Prose Poetry, Imagism, Aesthetic Empathy and Autobiographical Memory
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'One of the features of contemporary prose poetry is that it often makes conspicuous use of imagery, in some cases drawing on techniques pursued by the Imagist movement in the early 20th century. In Ezra Pound’s words, the Imagists were interested in ‘art that bears true witness … art that is most precise’. Contemporary prose poets frequently try to honour the spirit of Pound’s comment as they make images in their prose poems and, in doing so, providing readers with a way of imaginatively entering their works, enabling them to read them ‘from within’. Visual imagery in prose poetry provides a pathway through which readers are able to achieve aesthetic empathy with such works, allowing them to read these works as if their propositions are actually and presently the case. While the same may be said for poetry more generally, we argue that it is especially the case in prose poetry, where the rectangular form draws the reader into a room-like space. This tends to generate a compressed sense of timespace and thus intensify the effects of imagery and its connections to autobiographical memory. In the absence of line breaks and the kinds of closure associated with lineated poetry, visual imagery also helps crystallise the utterance of prose poems, bringing it into focus – almost as if prose poems see and, in turn, are able to be seen through.'  (Publication abstract)

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  • Appears in:
    y separately published work icon TEXT Special Issue Website Series Prose Poetry no. 46 October Monica Carroll (editor), Shane Strange (editor), Jen Webb (editor), 2017 12944013 2017 periodical issue

    'Just a couple of decades ago, prose poetry occupied a very minor corner of the poetry spectrum, although many major poets have published works in that form. As early as the mid-1970s, anthologies of prose poems were emerging in the USA, but they were preceded by work produced in Europe: the nineteenth-century Romantic Fragment (which was quickly adopted by British Romantics), and then the early twentieth-century experiments, and particularly the poetic avant garde in France. Now it is becoming (almost) a staple; across Australia and internationally, major poets are adding the prose poem form to their oeuvre, and though few dedicated publications yet exist, prose poems are salting the competitions, collections, anthologies and literary journals. International poets too are extending into the prose poem, exploring its affordances.' (Monica Carroll, Shane Strange and Jen Webb: Introduction)

Last amended 22 Feb 2018 12:15:14 Eyes inside Words : Prose Poetry, Imagism, Aesthetic Empathy and Autobiographical Memorysmall AustLit logo TEXT Special Issue Website Series