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Rachel Blau DuPlessis’s 2008 and 2009 Tapa Notebook — page 20
[ Text: (hand-drawn picture of pistol facing right, three dashes emerge from the barrel) / also called / Slinger / apparently / ‘I don’t think the Perfect / can be known. // ‘Very good. Then you must/ never consort with the Perfect, / stick to the Absolute, it’s / pliable… ’// Dorn / Gunslinger p. 48 // I have no reaction — certainly no negative/ ones except it’s like watered down, narrative / Spicer. Shrug. Amusement only (so far) /because it’s (Gunslinger is) funny in a few words, / boring otherwise.// 6 Jan 09 ]
RBD gloss: In 2008-09, in residence at the National Humanities Center in Triangle Park, North Carolina, my task was to read in and write as much as I could on gender and masculinity in [Pound-descended] poetry. This work became Purple Passages: Pound, Eliot, Zukofsky, Olson, Creeley and the Ends of Patriarchal Poetry (University of Iowa Press, 2012). The Olson-Creeley Letters became very important to that book; Dorn’s Gunslinger was simply read but not written about.
These are scans of pages of a Tapa Notebook, filled out by American poet Rachel Blau DuPlessis for the University of Auckland Library. It ponders Rachel’s experiences writing in 2008 and 2009. For more of this backstory, see here. The word ‘tapa’ refers to the kind of dyed patterned cloth (made from the paper mulberry tree) shown left, and on the front cover of the notebook, an honorable practice popular in Polynesia. (See Wikipedia) Most spreads of this notebook have a blank verso (left hand page), except for 7L and 7R. Blank verso pages are not shown; usually only the recto (right hand) page is shown.