Editor’s Note: As of August 14, 2006, we are no longer accepting sestina submissions.
The Graduate Student in Comparative Literature Weighs the Merits of a Career in Pornographic Film.
BY DAFYDD WOOD
I have crept through the work of Adorno
And thought that he must have been a retard.
There sure isn’t the shine of Pontormo.
Theodor’s sure better than Lyotard.
I would rather be watching a porno,
Preoccupied with something else that’s hard.
Sure their prose is worthless and far too hard,
But I can’t help but like poor Adorno.
Not sure why—I wish he’d made a porno.
He didn’t like pop culture—that’d’ve been retarded.
Though I don’t think this’d stand for Lyotard—
He liked space ships and maybe Pontormo.
But who talks today about Pontormo?
Hauser liked Mannerists. They’re not too hard.
He wasn’t the best Marxist, Adorno,
Better than that conservative, Lyotard.
Can’t you see neocons watching retards
Do unspeakable things in weird pornos?
I might write an essay on the aesthetics of porn,
And maybe an essay on Pontormo.
No jargon! I don’t want to be a ‘tard.
Criticism these days is so like “hard
[B]ound brains.” Just think of that freak, Lyotard,
Not to mention those things of Adorno.
But things could be much worse than Adorno.
At least it’s not Spivak in a porno,
Or a Herzog film about Lyotard.
Let’s read Hickey’s essay on Pontormo;
It’s fun, beautiful, and not all that hard.
I think lit crit might just make you a ‘tard.
Theory’s OK, but it gets retarded.
I’m sick of those critics like Adorno.
There’s no problem with ideas that are hard—
Think of the lines in Plato or in pornos,
Or even that Capella of Pontormo’s,
Not the PoMo Condition of Lyotard.
It’d be hard teaching criticism to retards.
But what I’d give for Adorno or Lyotard’s
Porno. Or for them to be moved by Pontormo.
SUGGESTED READSSestina: Anna Karenina (Or Like, Most of It)
by Jonah Winter (11/19/2003)
Sestina: Literary-Gossip Sestina #1
by Keith O'Neill (10/25/2004)
Sestina: A Wrinkle in Time
by Ange Mlinko (8/6/2006)
RECENTLYIt’s Time to Celebrate the 15th Anniversary of the Release of Our First Book, The Neal Pollack Anthology of American Literature.
by John Hodgman and Neal Pollack (9/1/2015)
Norse History for Bostonians: The Prose Edda for Bostonians: Gylfaginning, Part XV
by Rowdy Geirsson (9/1/2015)
List: How to Hide from Your Friends at a Restaurant
by S.A. Murison (9/1/2015)
POPULARFirst Faculty Meeting of the Year Bingo
by Lisa Nikolidakis (8/25/2015)
“Hell is Empty and All the Devils are Here”: A Shakespearean Guide to the 2016 Republican Primary
by Emily Uecker (8/6/2015)
Donald Trump, Through the Ages
by John Flowers (8/13/2015)