"I am an idealistic, naive, passionate, truth-seeking, spiritually motivated artist, unschooled in the science of law and finance." --Wesley Snipes

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Response to Steve Mueske's Thought on NS

I've said it before, and I'll say it again--the New Sincerity (I hesitate to call it a "school" or a "movement" though I don't know what else to call it--as soon as Joe Massey began writing manifestoes, it took on a bit of a life of its own) is an idea invented by Andrew Mister and me. And we didn't even "invent" the idea--we decided that we would try to write poetry that we wanted to read, as it seemed to Mr. that most contemporary poetry is BORING.

We still believe that, but it's hardly a radical position. It's Sturgeon's Law. The only thing that has made us stand out is our public "outing" of ourselves as New Sincerists. It's a rather interesting phenomenon.

To the person who claims that making manifestoes in this day and age is morally indefensible, I saw "Pshaw!" or perhaps "Pbbbt!" If you read Joe Massey's manifestoes and various statements about the New Sincerity, you'll see that he says again and again that we are not a club. "If you feel it, you're in" he says.

I agree. As I've said in many a comment box before, we do not run perpendicular to other poets or poetries, we run parallel.


Steven D. Schroeder said...

Woooohoooo! Sturgeon's Law!

I think manifestos (manifestoes?) are great when you follow them up with kick-ass poetry to crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and hear the lamentation of the women. I think you guys can bring that noise.

While I believe I am sincere, I am sadly more of a retro sincerist. I don't have those avant chops yet. But I suggest a strategic alliance nonetheless.

James said...

Can an old New Brutalist also be a New Sincerist? I think, when it all boils down Brutalism and Sincerism are pretty much the same thing. Brutalism was about emotional openness and honesty in "post-avant" poetry, is that not also a major tenet of New Sincerity?

Tony said...


I developed some avant chops but then decided that the recipes weren't that good.

So I kept the chops and added some old-school flavor.

Or something.


Massey says, "if you feel it, you're in."