O Hara Construct The Illusion Of Immediacy English Literature Essay

What is possibly one of the most dramatic characteristics of Frank O’Hara ‘s poesy, a cardinal member of The New York School of Poets, is the immediateness of his poetic voice. His work is filled with mundane life, as he captures blink of an eyes of perceptual experience in New York City and “ images of life, verve, life, gesture. ” A fast gait is created as we journey through a sequence of minutes that continually move frontward and alteration. However, it is of import to observe that this immediateness is an semblance. As we read his poesy after the events have occurred, it is impossible for it to be immediate. O’Hara is alternatively offering us an building of experience, non the experience itself.

O’Hara founded his ain motion called ‘Personism ‘ , bring forthing a pronunciamento in 1959. He stated that he “ puts the verse form forthrightly between the poet and the individual, ” believing in this immediateness. This is apparent throughout his work, “ The Day Lady Died ” begins “ It is 12:20 in New York a Friday/ three yearss after Bastille twenty-four hours, yes/ it is 1959. ” His manner immerses the reader in his ideas and makes them experience the immediateness of the poesy. O’Hara cared really small for consciously utilizing poetic techniques and held a peculiarly blase attitude towards them. He commented, in relation to technique, that “ you merely travel on your nervus ” ( Personism, p.xiii ) . His employment of enjambement generates velocity and gait aboard non-sequiturs, unfinished sentences and a distinguishable deficiency of punctuation, all keeping a changeless watercourse of action. The extended usage of line interruptions creates atomization, which is a contemplation of the haste of the metropolis. This staccato series of minutes in speedy sequence can be clashing. However, while O’Hara cared small for technique, some argue that “ proper names, sign picture and montage all show themselves in some manner to be mediated ” . So, although there is immediateness, it is one that has been created and purposed.

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New York is frequently the capable civilization of O’Hara ‘s poesy. This allows him to make immediateness as he brings the metropolis to life, presenting vivacious imagination from the “ hum-coloured/cabs ” to “ hedge [ that ] are flipping/above heels ” ( ASAFT ll.9-10 ) . Alongside this, his verse forms are scattered with proper names. Location and persons are frequently specified such as “ GOLDEN GRIFFIN ” ( TDLD l.14 ) and “ I get a small Verlaine/ for Patsy ” ( l.14 ) . This allows him to retrace his twenty-four hours to twenty-four hours experiences. This layering of inside informations brings the reader into his work as he creates invariably altering images. However, this motion shows a deficiency of deepness, as one feels that he is simply planing the surface. O’Hara states that he is to travel to dinner but does non “ cognize the people who will feed [ him ] ” ( TDLD, l.6 ) . The reader is so concentrated on absorbing these images, which the poet tries to pull in his head, that he is forced to stay on the surface. Therefore, his true feelings seem to stay veiled, covered by the platitude of the juxtaposed images.

O’Hara frequently marks the transition of consciousness through clip. This produces an immediate consequence as the present constantly alterations and evolves. We, as readers, move through with it, his work scattered with “ I go ” , “ I do ” and “ I get ” . His work could about be described every bit cinematic as we pass through minute after minute. These are frequently assembled together without logical order. There is besides a deficiency of contemplation or account of the events that he describes. In “ Personal Poem ” he merely states “ Miles Davis was clubbed 12/ times last dark ” without any contemplation. The usage of watercourse of consciousness means we sense that O’Hara himself hardly has clip to believe about what he is composing. While O’Hara presents us his ideas and actions, the immediateness is detached as he is composing after these events occurred.

His work as an art critic besides impacted upon his poesy and the immediateness of his voice, as Richard Gray has stated “ O’Hara felt at odds with most of the poesy that was being written in America in the fiftiess. ” His work in comparing to that of pre-WW2 deficiencies a earnestness and deepness which encourages a feeling of immediateness. The New York School of Painters believed in abstract expressionism and spontaneousness. Artists such as Jackson Pollock were described as ‘action painters ‘ and O’Hara himself is frequently referred to as an ‘action poet ‘ .

In decision, O’Hara can be seen to build immediateness within his work, created in different ways. The capable affair of an of all time traveling modern twenty-four hours metropolis, coupled with deficiency of any existent construction within these verse forms, ensures that they are fast paced. The manner in which he uses clip, besides creates immediateness, as we follow his ain consciousness, which continues to travel and alteration. Russell Ferguson stated that “ O’Hara frequently strove to continue in his composing the spontaneousness and elation of touch in his address. ” However, it is critical to observe, as Marjorie Perloff has commented, that “ in O’Hara ‘s inventive Reconstruction of New York, everything is at that place for a intent. ” His verse forms are merely diversions of experience instead than an exact description of the events themselves, they are an semblance every bit good as artificial.


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