Pas de Deux (I) by Albert Murray


Like in music, “it don’t mean a thing, if it ain’t got that swang” No matter what you do, it must done with style and grace; a bit of joie de vivre. Ya dig?

Check out:

Pas de Deux (I) by Albert Murray

all art,

said old walter pater,

speaking of sandro botticelli,

constantly aspires

toward the condition

of music.

so it is swing

that is the supreme fiction,



(given the concreteness

of physical experience per se)

our primary concern

is the quality of our conciousness

(how we feel about it)

and swing, which is movement

and countermovement

which is life itself,

is that elegant resilience

that poetry would reenact,

its verbalization being

aesthetic kinectics!

after all, madam

(or rather first of all),

is not the primordial fucntion

of verbal enchantment

the refinement

of our physical responses?

the objective of poetry

is to be moving, madam,

poetry is the supreme effort

to make words swing.

but, according to vico,

(giambattista, 1668-1744),

before articulation

became naration

there was only exclamatioin


along with pantomime

yes, as jamsejoyce came to know

and kennethburke came to say,

poetry is symbolic action,

and symbolic action,


is the dancing of an attitude,

and dance, madam,

don’t mean a thing

minus that insouciant element

of swing

there’s your supreme fiction, madam,

it ain’t what  you do

it’s the way that you do it.


it must never

be more gymnastic

than elegant

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s