By A. R. Ammons
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Extra info for Set in Motion: Essays, Interviews, and Dialogues
So, yes, I really think I've covered the gamut about revision all the way from hardly any ... You know, I have in some of my work tested the possibility of writing spontaneously-getting it "right" the first time-in the long essay poems and in The Snow Poems, and earlier in the Tape for the Turn of the Year way back in 1963 I tested my ability to say it right the first time in a long poem. And you know that that is an exaggerated test to place on oneself, but if it does come right somehow it has a ...
I was nearly four years old when the Crash came. I have memories of some bright times before the Crash, and later I found old manila envelopes containing records of money we had once had in the bank. But a strict change occurred that was deepened and made permanent by the death of my brother in May 1930. I have images of him lying in his cradle covered with a veil, and I saw his coffin being made, and I watched as he was taken away, his coffin astraddle the open rumble seat of a Model A. I see my mother leaning against the porch between the huge blue hydrangeas as she wept and prayed.
We watch carefully, we note the various theories and styles of surfing, we learn the technique, too, so we can savor the difference between the masterful or clumsy use of it, the innovative or serendipitous use of it, we contemplate the action till we seem to dwell in it, we come to exist in the action with almost as much, if not as much, maybe as much, certainty of knowledge, trueness of being, as the surfer feels. We may want, having felt the magic, to know which surfer learned from which surfer, how the surfboard took on through history the particular dynamics of its shape, where the best beaches are, what kinds of waves are capable of producing what kinds of action, etc.