I’m Searching For Something So Undefined:
Poetry Found in the Cloud
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“Poetry isn’t so easy. Art isn’t so easy—that is, getting it right, ending up with something
that lifts one into another place, a place that one keeps forgetting about. Perhaps it’s the way
these poems were made that gives them a special grace. The words were not written by
the poet herself. Each poem here was put together via a process of selection from an
Internet search. Of course the choices are all made by the poet, but I wonder if there isn’t
something else here, the kind of magic that can come only from getting outside of oneself.
These pieces have that originality, that taste of freedom that’s always new.”
- Richard Whittaker, Works & Conversations Magazine (Spring 2013)
“Knowing the manner of composition encourages the reader (this one, anyway) to
continuously flicker between three modes of reading: first, considering each line
individually – wondering about its original author and context; then, collectively,
as some expression of the ephemeral, “Internet moment” from which all the lines derive;
and then finally as an entirely new poetic construction, with its own cadence and meaning.
In some ways, reading these poems feels a lot like using the Internet itself, as our surfing
yields hobbled-together brief constellations of meaning, cobbled together from vast patterns
of inchoate data.
“Most ‘data art’ takes the form of algorithmic arrangements of pixels on a screen – a medium
that is so new the tools to produce it are still being invented. Mitsch’s poems, by contrast,
manage to embed the Internet in one of our oldest artforms, yet with results that are
no less revelatory.”
- Andrew Zolli, author of Resilience