Skip to main content

THE DEATH OF COBAIN

I was too young for the death of Kennedy and Marilyn Monroe.  I remember John Lennon's death, of course, but it didn't hit me that much.  I was 16.  But, on my 28th birthday, April 8th, 1994, Kurt Cobain's body was found - that I recall.  I no longer listen to Cobain's music very much.  It is part of who I am, like The Beatles, Metallica, AC/DC, The Stooges, The Smiths, Simple Minds, Joy Division, even Prince, but the music is too rich, too intense, for the everyday listen.  But 20 years ago I was very sad.  It felt like a personal blow - a bit like PSH's recent death - for Cobain was really the spokesperson for my generation.  Why?  Well, he seemed to come from a broken suburban home where abuse, failure and madness had played their part; he had low self-esteem; he loved punk, but he also loved indie (Pixies) and the canon (The Beatles); he even name-checked Leonard Cohen, a Canadian - and, oddly enough, he was very witty.  Also, as befit the Gen-X slacker moment, he didn't care about fame, or money, he actually loved creativity and saw self-expression as something necessary and urgent.  He wasn't, of course, a poet, but compared to the Britpop pack across the water, he sure as hell behaved like one.  Cobain was a visionary genius.  And, in about ten songs, he nailed his mix of humanity, compassion, vicious irony, and pop culture nous in ways that made his band the greatest American group of the 1990s. I suppose I am the Cobain who survived - unsung, to be sure, in comparison, but like many young men of my time I am suddenly on the cusp of 50, and Nevermind seems a long time ago, a time Outofmind more than anything.  Bittersweet to think of it, but I once thought I was dumb and everyone was gay.  And we all drank Pennyroyal Tea.
Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

DANGER, MAN

Like a crazed killer clown, whether we are thrilled, horrified, shocked, or angered (or all of these) by Donald Trump, we cannot claim to be rid of him just yet. He bestrides the world stage like a silverback gorilla (according to one British thug), or a bad analogy, but he is there, a figure, no longer of fun, but grave concern.

There has long been a history of misogynistic behaviour in American gangster culture - one thinks of the grapefruit in the face in The Public Enemy, or Sinatra throwing a woman out of his hotel room and later commenting he didn't realise there was a pool below to break her fall, or the polluted womb in Pacino'sScarface... and of course, some gangsta rap is also sexist.  American culture has a difficult way with handling the combined aspects of male power, and male privilege, that, especially in heteronormative capitalist enclaves, where money/pussy both become grabbable, reified objects and objectives (The Wolf of Wall Street for instance), an ugly fus…

AMERICA PSYCHO

According to the latest CBS, ABC, etc, polls, Clinton is still likely to beat Trump - by percentile odds of 66% to 33% and change. But the current popular vote is much closer, probably tied with the error of margin, around 44% each. Trump has to win more key battleground states to win, and may not - but he is ahead in Florida...

We will all know, in a week, whether we live in a world gone madder, or just relatively mad.

While it seems likely calmer heads will prevail, the recent Brexit win shows that polls can mislead, especially when one of the options is considered a bit embarrassing, rude or even racist - and Trump qualifies for these, at least.

If 42-45% of Americans admit they would vote for Trump, what does that say about the ones not so vocal? For surely, they must be there, as well. Some of the undecided will slide, and more likely they will slide to the wilder and more exciting fringe candidate. As may the libertarians.

Eyewear predicts that Trump will just about manage to win th…

SEXTON SHORTLIST!

Announcing the Shortlist for the 2016 Sexton PrizeSeptember 13, 2016 / By Kelly Davio
Eyewear Publishing is pleased to announce the shortlist for the 2016 Sexton Prize. The finalists are, in no particular order, as follows:


THE BARBAROUS CENTURY, Leah Umansky
HISTORY OF GONE, Lynn Schmeidler
SEVERE CLEAR, Maya Catherine Popa
GIMME THAT. DON’T SMITE ME, Steve Kronen
SCHEHERAZADE AND OTHER REDEPLOYMENTS, David McAleavey
AN AMERICAN PURGATORY, Rebecca Gayle Howell
SIT IN THE DARK WITH ME, Jesse Lee Kercheval

The shortlist was selected by Eyewear’s Director Todd Swift with Senior Editor Kelly Davio. Don Share of Poetry Magazine will select the winning manuscript, which will be released at the 2017 AWP conference in Washington, D.C. The winner will be announced in October. 
Congratulations to our finalists!