Saturday, January 21, 2006

Austin's Epistle to "Amerind' Poetry

The Amerind makes poetry because he believes it to be good for him. He makes it because he believes it a contribution to the well-being of his group. He makes it to put himself in sympathy with the wokonda, the orenda or god-stuff which he conceives to be to some degree in every created thing. Finally—and on almost every occasion—he makes it to affect objects that are removed from him in the dimension of time and space.

This affectiveness is secured by two processes, by the subjective coordination of the major rhythms involved, into a rhythmic unit, and the objective coordination of the movements involved, by mimesis. At the same time that the Amerind is using his body as an instrument of rhythm, he is using it as an instrument of realization of the result he desires to affect.

~American Rhythm by Mary Austin

see the complete Secret Book of Son Rivers

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