Sunday, April 26, 2009

My Chinese Publisher...

My Chinese publisher asked me to make the following corrections. I didn't know that they were even reading this blog (where I made an earlier posting), and this also proves to me that Editors are like omnipresent ghosts--just when you think they are on the horizon you realize they are back with a haunting presence...heheheheh. Also, they reminded me that the book may be available in the US in the future.

Tim Kavi announces his latest publication, the Introduction included in the following book: 英汉语言文化对比[阅读教程] Jilin University Press (2008)(吉林大学出版社) 主编:刘桂兰 978-7-5601-3733-9 (ISBN) The book, 英汉语言文化对比—Comparative Readings of English and Chinese (roughly translated as "Comparison and Contrast between English and Chinese Language and Culture") has been published in China as a University textbook.。。。。。。

Friday, April 24, 2009

A Reader Asks About Correct Interpretation? A note about Obscurity in My Work.

A reader and fellow poet asked me recently if they had correctly interpreted my poem?

My partially edited reply (minus the personal exchanges) is here:

I understand what you are saying about interpretations, and the importance of them. However, I am such a cognitive constructivist, that I never mean in any way to lead someone's understanding. OK! Maybe sometimes I choose some things pretty symbolic in my work--but I never mean to be too leading and would rather be somewhat obscure. This is why my work moves between images of the sacred goddess in both religious symbols and in references to the everyday lives and hearts of all women. Sometimes one does not know which I am referring to in my work which is also the point--the power of the goddess is in both places as it morphs back and forth like a Gestalt! I understand though that a novelist and even a poet can hopefully communicate things clearly enough so that a common point is understood. So, it is the writer's duty to not be too obscure. I think though that in many of my poems about the goddess motif I am obscure at times and that is precisely the point. Discovering the goddess or any form of spirituality often requires revelation followed by relationship. (You can bet I am speaking about revelation when I talk about veils, curtains, or seeing each other).

So what is important to me is what you read in the poem. That becomes the most important to me for my readers. IT is the most paramount and cogent meaning, and I am the happiest, when readers simply read it as a joint part of their experience and what it means to them. In that regard, I think and hope that I would rarely if ever say that one interpretation is more correct than any other. The most important is how the reader interacts wit h it and what it means to them.

However if I cite locations in any of my work. They may provide contextual clues to meaning.

I know some might think that this primacy of the reader intrepretation is a cop out. It gets me off the hook, or I never have to offend anyone then? No, I instead respect a person's subjective experience, that unless some harm were to befall them, I feel I have no right and it is a sacred duty for me not to impose any interpretation on them, as they have already devised the most correct one the moment when they first read the work and co-mingled with it in a real way. That is the most any artist can hope for and that is the 'correct' interpretation.--T.K.

Afterthought: Well I am sure my views on this would or will be tested in the unfortunate circumstance where a reader's subjective intrepretation was so negative and critical that serious misunderstandings to other readers could result if the perspective were stated publically and was not challenged by the artist creator. Anyone knows in media studies that a misspoken critic's interpretation can color the public's reaction so badly that any original point of the work is totally lost. I admit in that context, that the artist might have the duty to say, that is not what this work intended at all. In most interpretations of my work I would never state such unless a view was way off the mark, and I think that most readers are not such critics after all. --T.K.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Near the Rhododendron (Poem with Poet's Comments)

Near the Rhododendron
by Tim Kavi

when in
the silent branches
of beautiful
the sun rose

morning dew
clung to
your branches

was at
your morning

Yet the branches
the beautiful

Nature had
for a wonder
of unveiling

planted firmly
in the soul
your roots
dug deep

and breathing
and revealing

You were
as pretty
as She

lying there
on the blanket
in the Golden

Nature clung  
to You, Goddess
the best

ever seen.

Poet's comments:
This is another devotional poem on my recurrent theme of the Goddess (woman, femininity) in Nature. Here, we are once again reminded that as much as Nature takes care of a beautiful flowering plant, supports it, and it thrives in great beauty, so it is with eternal woman. In the end She is the best planting, more beautiful, and embraced by and clung to by Nature itself. I often use definitive terms in my poetry through the use of capitalization, for example whenever I capitalize 'You' I am referring to an encounter with an otherness, that is so special, so unique, it is an address and response to a particular person, wherever that Goddess nature is so revealed. It is the You of You and Me or I and Thou once again. It is the You encountered in dialogue and full revealing at the moment of encounter. This is the moment of revelation, a perception of the dawning of the day, a day where the sun shines and lights up the beautiful rhododendron, but as powerfully, a day of a woman's revealing.--T.K.

Addendum:  This poem, which is one of my most popular poems by blog visits, has been included in my collection, Ascending Goddess which means you can own it for your very own Kindle edition by clicking here ! (Reprinted on this blog by permission of my publisher TiLu Press, LLC) Thanks ~~TK

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Latest Publication of Tim Kavi

Tim Kavi announces his latest publication, the Introduction included in the following book:


Jilin University Press (2008)
Hei Long Jiang Province
Jilin, China
978-7-5601-3733-9 (ISBN)

The book, 英汉语言对比 (roughly translated as "Comparison and Contrast between English and Chinese Language and Culture") has been published in China as a University textbook. It includes an Introduction by Tim Kavi, who is listed as a US Poet. Portions of the book are in Chinese and English and it is currently being used at a number of Chinese Universities in Mass Media, Foreign Languages (English is a Foreign Language there), and Communications classes. My introduction isn't terribly long, and the book is not available outside of China, so no need to rush out and buy one (unles you are a Chinese student in one of the classes where it is required), but it is certainly garnering more interest in my poetry. My collections of poetry to be published here in the US will be published in both China and Japan, especially, Emerging Goddess.--T.K.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

What's in a Book Title?

What's in a Book Title?
by Tim Kavi

We've all heard about translated titles and company slogans having unfortunate and strange meanings when the titles and slogans are made available to foreign markets. But what about when books are published in their own countries, and still have unfortunate consequences? And what happens when the book title itself becomes an inadvertent partner in a marketing strategy that is contrary to the purpose of the book or the purpose the author intended? Finally, what about a book title that seems so influential that many people who see the title assume they already know what's in the book without reading it?

No doubt, book titles are a part of the overall marketing campaign and appeal to readers in the marketplace for the book itself. Books that include brand names in titles are cases where I think one is risking more of a possibility of a book being confused with the brand name or product being mentioned in the title. This can result in the book itself being confused and comingled with the brand name, marketing strategy, and even the company itself, that the brand name belongs to.

Such seemed to be the case with Listening to Prozac by Peter D. Kramer (1993). In fact, the March-April 2009 edition of the magazine Mental Floss shows that this title is ranked third on their list of The 25 Most Influential Books of the Past 25 Years. The article points out that Kramer coined the terms 'cosmetic psychopharmacology' with the intent that Kramer was strongly opposed to it. Prozac, which became the first of a new generation of antidepressants helped to give people a little bit of a lift because of its ability to influence serotonin (a chemical messager in the brain). According to the article, almost everyone that took it felt the effect, and although truly indicated only for clinical depression, the book inadvertently helped to popularize the drug and 'cosmetic psychopharmacology' with the overall effect of greatly increased prescriptions for the drug during the years just after the book came out.--TK