Praying in a Car, Drifting Through Syracuse: On Hayden Carruth’s Poetic-Landscapes

Especially for Syracuse people, and anyone who cares about poetry and the tired urban fabric, this is a really beautiful post by Menachem Feuer.

Schlemiel Theory

LEE FRIEDLANDER - CARS - GALERIE THOMAS ZANDER - KOLN - 26FEB 30APRIL 2011_2_www.lylybye.blogspot.com

When one is living a meager existence, poetic and novelistic dystopias may have a passing appeal. After having lived – or rather dwelled – as an undergraduate in the Binghamton and Syracuse area, I can understand the appeal of a landscape that includes – in a contiguous manner – monuments to a prosperous past, empty factories, residential neighborhoods, beautiful parks, and strip malls. But what interested me most was not so much the buildings as the people who drifted in and out of these areas. Like them, I grew up in a rural New York setting. I was always wondering about how the hard working, everyday American would navigate through this mess. To my delight, I stumbled across a poet who lived in Syracuse and sought to address these very things: Hayden Carruth.

Reflecting on his poems today (which were originally written in 1983), I feel addressed by a simple…

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About zjb

Zachary Braiterman is Professor of Religion in the Department of Religion at Syracuse University. His specialization is modern Jewish though and philosophical aesthetics. http://religion.syr.edu
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