Jake Berry


So much has and will be said, by me and others. I remember that for years before we met I felt like something had gone terribly wrong with poetry. After the modernists there had been significant development in other directions, but most of what I would read of the then present poetry (1985) was very safe by comparison. The only poetry with any fire and music was Beat and by 1985 we were eager to see/read/hear something that broke new ground. Then I received that tape (Poets 11 Audio) and there you and Adelle were reading “Chorus: Overture”! There was the poetry I had been waiting for—keenly aware of modernism, the classics, philosophy, science and more, but it did not sound like any of them. It sounded like poetry of the present—new, intense, musical, intelligent, and everything in a simultaneous rush. Here was a prophecy of the 21st century with its multiple streams of information running relentlessly all day every day. There was other poetry on the tape, but I forgot all of it quickly and contacted the editors. I had to meet this man. I have been meeting him constantly since that time. Trying to keep up, trying to learn, trying to come up with some means of response.

               —Jake Berry