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7 september 2020

Till a few years ago, we had a mulberry tree in our back yard. It was a cultivar of Morus alba, the white mulberry that feeds silkworms. Of course we had no silkworms, and we ended up not having the tree very long. White mulberries are crumbly and short-lived as trees go. This one, planted by previous residents who wanted something fast-growing, soon needed to be taken out – lest it fall and take itself and our utility lines and the neighbors' chicken coop with it.     read more

5 september 2020

Asemic writing seems so familiar that I imagine I've been seeing it for a long time without knowing what it was called, or any of its theory or doctrine. Peter Schwenger's recent book is billed as the first critical book on the asemic, and it sets up the terms for future critical conversations admirably.     read more

31 august 2020

My grandfather tangled with moles that infested his back yard. It's not that they did much practical damage: all he had was a lawn, and nobody could see that lawn from the road anyway. But he felt obliged to go after them by directing a garden hose into their burrows. The lot in northern Illinois where he'd had his house built had recently been a cornfield. Moles are "creatures of rural areas and suburbs," as Steve Gronert Ellerhoff says, and having lived mostly in cities, I haven't seen many molehills since.     read more

30 august 2020

I loaded Henry Fielding's novel Amelia onto my Kindle awhile back because I read somewhere that it was one of Vladimir Nabokov's favorite novels. Now I can't find where I read that. I may have dreamt it.     read more

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