feature: essay

Poetry and Cultures of Feedback


Published by Dostoyevsky Wannabe, April 2019
ISBN: 9781090582249

this is no longer entertainment is formed entirely out of untreated anonymous or pseudonymous text found in the open comments sections of media websites and other digital platforms. It was composed by filtering this un-authored writing through a process of immediate, instinctive selection and reframing, which is inevitably modulated by the author’s interests and emotional temperature. The poem’s composition roughly covers the period 2014-2017; a period marked by a range of notable social-political shifts and events. In its use of avant-garde compositional methods as parallels with experimental documentary filmmaking practices, this is no longer entertainment borrows from and extends the documentary poetry tradition. It is a poetic exploration of public-private language and multiple/shifting personas enabled by digital technologies and communication, and their effect on social discourse and the broader political climate. Cumulatively, the juxtapositions of the primary material consider mutual influences and intersections between themes like (mis)-information and error, the diffusion of authority, pop/celebrity culture, identity politics, the rise of nationalism, and others.



WHAT THEY SAID:

A starkly innovative, by turns funny and worrying book.
Karl Whitney


This is really rather glorious, and poetry isn’t like receiving communion. And the cover is quite fabulous. Go buy it, folks.
Christopher Cusack


A very intriguing book. Themes emerge, repeat, are revisited and sink into the reader's consciousness... like listening to some kinds of jazz.
Liz McSkeane (Turas Press)


A huge work and an imprint of our time.
Maria Malinovskaya


An incredible book that I happily devoured in one reading. It communicates [...] just how comical, upsetting, absurd and dangerous the online extensions of living can be. A great and important book.
David Spittle


[...] In Poems 47 to 51 in particular, the collision of Irish identity politics with the Syrian refugee crisis and immigration is unflinchingly laid bare with a jostling of voices and all the horrific figurative hyperbole one finds in comments sections. Crucially, these figurations are often repeated across comments in a ritual manner [...] It is difficult to imagine an Irish lyric poem addressing this subject as effectively or explicitly, yet this poem, through the material it deploys, relies on our familiarity with the moves made by lyric poems. We continually await the lyric speaker to appear, the one who will enunciate and therefore clarify for us where our voice, the reader’s voice, sits in all this cacophony; we are waiting for the lyric poetic speaker to tell us what to say so that we may shape the words in our mouths. Markis’s refusal to do this is vital to the overall project.

Kimberly Campanello
(from the conference paper '"I was not able to help, but I tried my best": Material Lyricism in Contemporary Irish Poetry,' presented at Text / Sound / Performance, University College Dublin, 27 April 2019)



Media:

I read section 5 from this is no longer entertainment for the poetry podcast series Words Lightly Spoken, available on i-tunesSpotify, and other platforms (13 June 2019).





Translations:

Five sections from this is no longer entertainment translated into Russian by Maria Malinovskaya, and published in Cirk Olimp on 9 October 2019.

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