Download West of the American Dream: An Encounter with Texas by Paul Christensen PDF

By Paul Christensen

Like many a pioneer exiting the japanese forests, Paul Christensen felt the strangeness of an alien panorama while he first arrived in Texas in 1974. Schooled within the cool shades of existence and poetry within the city East, he approached his new profession within the Southwest with missionary zeal and objective: to find the land and the type of humans and poetry it produced.

West of the yank Dream is a multifaceted account of that seek. Christensen stocks his emotions of tradition surprise in eastcentral Texas as he meets the cowboy model of the bluecollar Texan and his Mexican American friends. He introduces readers to the convoluted heritage of poetry in Texas, a practice, begun by way of girls, that shifted from a spotlight at the land to the quotidian behavior of city dwelling. utilizing a distinct dissection of the general public ritual of a poetry examining, Christensen assesses the origins of recent poetry, the worth of mind's eye in modernist and postmodernist verse, and what Texas poets accomplished and the way their paintings advanced after global battle II.

Taking a holiday right here and there to explain characters who crossed his direction and who embodied varied elements of Texas mythology, Christensen then provides 3 pix of contemporary Texas artist/poets—Vassar Miller, Charles Gordone, and Ricardo Sánchez—to express the result of twentiethcentury poetic evolution in Texas. He concludes that during order for Texas poetry to accomplish adulthood and achievement, writers needs to shrink back from selfreflection and turn into "new Whitmans" who will instill ethical ardour and enjoyment into poems that provide a imaginative and prescient of nature and a feeling of accountability for the earth.

West of the yankee Dream will locate an appreciative viewers in all readers who admire the deep function of environmental motion and the $64000 position poets can play in its nurture, in Texas and elsewhere.

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He collected them. He had a justification to be here. I did not explain my own presence, just smiled. Another prof was retired, a landlord now trying to 33 34 West of the American Dream furnish his apartments on the cheap. A third just kind of faded away when I looked at him. So we milled about with the bottom dogs and the outcasts, the newly arrived, each with a dollar or two to spend. The colors of the underclass seemed to run through a rainbow of wounded hues, purples, mauves, dingy yellows, faded reds, scab browns, sticky, soiled white things with old paint stains.

He pulled a rake with all the enthusiasm of a man in deep sleep. He worked his jaw, dozed over the rake, and then fell to with a burst of speed and got up little piles of leaves. He wanted water to 29 30 West of the American Dream drink, but more than anything, a chance to talk. So I listened to him, and what came from his small mouth and loose yellow teeth was a Homeric odyssey of one man on the freights, with every town and lake and hill clear in his memory. He knew everything about the topography from here to California and back to Maine.

One side of the street has formed its identity into a very positive moral and ideological argument; the other is undergoing the profound historical process of redefining and multiplying its identity into some fabulous but not yet fully stated set of relations to paleo-America. We parked our car somewhere on the potholes between the two sides and lived our rather fragile academic life between their boundaries. And because I have lived so long in other countries, I rather liked my position as foreigner among them.

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