Jacket 6

Nathaniel Tarn, 1953
Check out Jacket 6: full of brain food and good things, including:

Nathaniel Tarn Feature:

Nathaniel Tarn (with Martín Prechtel): Scandals in the House of Birds: Shamans and Priests on Lake Atitlán, (New York: Marsilio 1997) xiv + 397pp, $24.95

Based on a thirty-year span of fieldwork in Guatemala, «Scandals in the House of Birds» is a multi-voiced epic of a sacred crime, and its tangled mythic, religious, and political ramifications

Scandals reviewed : Shamoon Zamir

“Scandals is a synthesising of over forty years of fieldwork among, research on and thinking about the Tzutujil Maya living on the shores of Lake Atitlán in Guatemala (“House of Birds” is a translation of the indigenous name for the pre-Columbian Tzutujil capital, now in ruins at the foot of Volcano San Pedro). Narrated through multiple narratives and many voices, the book deals with a religious conflict between indigenous religion and Christianity. The theft of masks covering Maximón, a Mayan wooden statue venerated since pre-Columbian times, and the later return of one of the masks over twenty years later, is the core around which are spun accounts of Mayan mythology, ritual practices, religious festivals, individual life histories, local social conflicts and the horrors of Guatemala’s national politics. Nine years before the publication of the book, writing of the struggle between poetry and anthropology throughout his career as “the battle between the angel of creation and the angel of the record”, Tarn refers to the project as “the last possible (for me) throw to the record.” More recently, with the book in press, Tarn has referred to it as “a sort of experimental ethnography”.”

Nathaniel Tarn : on new poetic forms

“I must confess in a belief that poetry represents… the ground and constitution of a perpetual opposition which is ill served by the depths of social isolationism into which we have allowed our vocation to sink.”

Nathaniel Tarn : Poem : Ancestors


Frank O’Hara — WHAT’S WITH MODERN ART? — reviews of art shows from Art News, 1953–55 — and a rare O’Hara photo by Renate Ponsold Motherwell

Paul Hoover — THE PLOT AGAINST THE GIANT — a review of David Lehman’s ‘The Last Avant-Garde”

Eliot Weinberger : What Was Formalism?

John Kinsella: commentary on a poem by J.H.Prynne

And lots of poems and other literary nourishment: Jacket 6