Friday, April 25, 2008

Conferencing again

With RSA fresh in my mind, I realize (or re-realize) that there are some conferences that I just enjoy more than others, because the atmosphere seems truly collegial, with folks gathered in mutual interest and with mutual care for one another's work. These tend to be smaller conferences, like the one I'm writing from now. Probably 50 or 60 people here, if that, but all of them interested in having conversations that will improve/ advance/ stimulate good work among all parties rather than in showing off or posturing or some academic version of social climbing. Does it make me a bad academic that I prefer these smaller, less showboaty comings together?


Today's poem, a section of Eunoia, by Christian Bok:

Lightning blinks, striking things in its midst with blinding light. Whirlwinds whirl; driftwinds drift. Spindrift is spinning in thrilling whirligigs. Which blind spirit is whining in this whistling din? Is it this grim lich, which is writhing in its pit, lifting its lid with whitish limbs, rising, vivific, with ill will in its mind, victimizing kids timid with fright? If it is – which blind witch is midwifing its misbirth, binding this hissing djinni with witching spiritism? Is it this thin, sickish girl, twisting in fits, whilst writing things in spirit-writing? If it isn’t – it is I; it is I...


Lisa B. said...

I have neglected to post on these last few wonderful poems--thanks for alerting me/us to them!

Notorious Ph.D. said...

Damn. I was at RSA, too. Small, bloggy world.

Got your comment over at my place -- good luck with your efforts! I'm polishing my Fairly Decent Proposal right now -- 5 hours to D-day!