Summer Grades, and the Drinking’s Easy

At lunchtime squirting and stirring the purple energy concentrate into the ice water from breakfast, having woken up too early thanks to the housebroken though leaky diapered beagle pup (we suffer his rare condition despite the studies that say the surgery’s so expensive and unreliable you might as well put the dog down), I feel the first kick of that mindset so treasured among chronic graders of papers: the wired, heady resolve to blast through the payload–a mere near-week after the deadline–while knowing dead-certain this effort will last the weekend–and then, bless it, starts two weeks of summer camp for the littlun. By which point who knows, maybe I’ll have dispatched the assignments and can throw my highlighted rubrics at every single discussion post just a day or two late while receiving definitely fewer than a dozen student inquiries about asterisks in their gradebooks and then BAM–I can write another blog post and practice German. “Die Welt ist voller Widerspruch.”

Word GermsĀ 

What is essential in the weeks to come is that I establish the context of my poetry (which is prose) as outside the gates of self-censorship and well within academic precedent: I did indeed study both modernism and German, just not so much together as I intend to do now. But I’m 7 years out of grad school and so will approach the study just as I did before grad school, independently pursuing a haunted aesthetic of irony and hope–for alternate worlds and literary forms. How glad I am that I opened up NYbooks’s website tonight and landed on a review of Marjorie Perloff’s Edge of Irony: Modernism in the Shadow of the Habsburg Empire. The Kindle sample is fantastic, promising precisely what I need to read right this minute…