Friday, May 26, 2006

Russell Edson


A near-recluse who whisperingly refers to himself as "Little Mr. Prose Poem," Russell Edson's curious one-page fables (published in numerous slender chapbooks, accompanied by his own quiet Picasso-esque woodcuts, including Ceremonies in Bachelor Space, 1951; The Clam Theater, 1973; With Sincerest Regrets, 1980; and The Tormented Mirror, 2001) typically expose innocuous circumstances imperceptibly spinning out of control into a surreal alternative universe in which, for example, a man might sautée his own hat, a hermit dwarf named Mr. Brain might eat shellfish off the Moon, and a father might erase his daughter Amyloo with a huge eraser.

Although the effect is often humorous, Edson's intentions are not exclusively comic. His visions, expressed in clinically minimalist and unemotional language, are sometimes sad and sometimes terrifying; they are -- in an age of official media soundbites that often have the effect of obscuring meaning and intention -- creepy bite-sized reflections of an everyday, modern way of life constantly on the verge of, or barely containing, deep reservoirs of chaos and insanity.

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1 Comments:

Blogger Gawain said...

thank you

9:09 PM  

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