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Looney #1

by Benjamin Cartwright


Microsoft Word - Benjamin_Cartwright-Looney_%231.doc


Ben Cartwright’s prose poetry, flash fiction, and hybrid work has recently appeared in Sentence, The Stinging Fly, and Seneca Review’s “Beyond Category” issue. Ben hails from the Pacific Northwest, but lives in the country north of Topeka, Kansas near a barn. He is a lecturer, teaching creative writing, literature, and composition at the University of Kansas, and can be found online at benjamindcartwright.wordpress.com

What fascinating, surprising things can you tell us about the origin, writing, revision of this piece?

“Looney #1” is the first in a series of allusive prose poems that incorporate characters and imagery from the Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies cartoons (and many other things, but I’m trying to have the cartoon sources act as ligatures between the individual pieces in the series). The inclusion of the sidebars—essentially a fleshing out of the links in the chain of reference—alters the way the central bar is read (I hope). Without the sidebars, the sentences in the prose poems are enigmatic, and have the kind of “torque” Ron Silliman described in The New Sentence (again, I hope). The addition of the sidebars complicates the torque, but hopefully doesn’t lessen it, by filling in some of the gaps.

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