The Poetry Project


World, interrupted — 5-Session Workshop with Benjamin Krusling

This collage image includes white flowers against a blue sky in the top 1/3, and a SMPTE color bars test pattern used to test television signals.

This workshop is not so interested in writing “against” something – a gesture which too often ends up flush with the thing’s surface, auxiliary to or constitutive of the thing that needs destroying. Instead, we will wonder how to interrupt. We might think about Fred Moten on the prose of CLR James: “poetry remains to be seen and heard so to speak and in excess of the sentence because it breaks up meaning's conditions of production.” We might think about how to disrupt a regime of representation that gets reproduced when we “tell our stories” in the linear, categorical time of narrative. Or about delay -- opening time for something different to happen. Or poltergeists, who can’t die and enter Heaven until we bring their violent origin to a just conclusion. Or repetition. Or extremity. Maybe ambience. The point is not to be original -- the point is to break, bust, erode the machines in racial capitalism’s neoliberal language factory.

This five-week workshop at the Poetry Project will engage the notion and energy of “interruption” in our own writing. We might read/watch/listen to Fred Moten, Leslie Scalapino, Simone White, Tytti Heikkenen, James Snead, Nirvana, Playboi Carti, Sylvia Wynter, Axelle Karera, Harun Farocki, “Girl, Interrupted,” and much more, or less. It should be generative; we’ll mostly write and talk.