Kelli Anne Noftle's
beautiful series of prose-poems are concerned with, above all, art-making. The conceit behind her project, entitled the "Mitoki Poems", is her engagement with an otherwise unnamed visual artist's blog, whom Noftle frequented as a viewer, which included, above all, rants and ruminations on what it means to be a visual artist. Having a background in the visual arts, Noftle brings a certain amount of baggage to the table. Obviously painting, photography, sculpture, as well as other visual media have their affinities with poetry. Then (And by, "then," I mean before Pound) the problem was impression: how to facsimile reality through an artificial representation. Now, we have concept (that is the complexity of art-making in the vein of Jackson Pollock) with impression. I am not going to feign a degree in art criticism, but for the sake of brevity, this should do. Back to Kelli: we get both artistic impression and artistic conception in her wonderful series.
"It is tempting to expound on Simko’s role as a political tragedy, an émigré experience of being irrevocably lost between two identities and burdened with a past that he had little influence over. As a lyric poet, he might make use of these conditions, but to make them into a fundamental of his poetry would be out of proportion and mythologizing. After all, the singleness suffered is not exclusive to the fronts of bygone wars and their aftermath. We take Simko’s lyric mode to be an answer to his condition, not a symptom of it."