flarf


“As long as poets limit their poetic output to text (which is fine in itself) while also limiting their conception of ‘poetry’ to it, we’re going to keep getting these episodic moonings and middle fingers made against some stuffy fuddy-duddy or otherwise projected entity (in this case ‘acceptable’ poems and poets) under the guise of a critical leveling of the larger culturopolitical establishment. ”
Dan Hoy. Jacket 29 – April 2006

Ice Fishing in Gimli
by Rob Kovitz
8 volumes, boxed set
4750 pages, 6″ x 8″
ISBN 978-0-9812869-0-7

visit ‘flarf versus conceptual’ – the complete set on Google Video

Kenny Goldsmith: “poetry has been exploring… marginalized to the point of invisibility … our immersive digital environment demands new responses from writers: what does it mean to be a poet in the digital age?…identity for one is up for grabs, why use your own words when u can express yrself just as well using someone else’s. And if your identity is not your own, then sincerity must be tossed out as well… ”


o the beauty that comes
from damp gortex mutants
fucking for bargains
on the giggling back of irony

Flarf was first applied in reference to poems and other creative texts produced by the Flarflist Collective, a group of writers including Maria Damon, Jordan Davis, Katie Degentesh, Drew Gardner, Nada Gordon, Rodney Koeneke, Michael Magee, Sharon Mesmer, K. Silem Mohammad, and Gary Sullivan. The term was coined by Sullivan in late 2000, when he submitted deliberately bad poems to Poetry.com’s poetry “contest” (actually a marketing scheme) as a way of testing Poetry.com’s supposed standards for excellence. (It should be noted that the practice of Poetry.com-baiting predates flarf itself; many other individuals, including North Carolina poet Patrick Herron and syndicated humorist Dave Barry, have engaged in similar pranks.)”