postface
Coverage and Countenance
The final decades of the twentieth century in Brazilian lyric are marked
by plurality and retrospection, as evidenced by the shaping of the post-
utopian poem and by the poetics and polemics of "pos-tudo." These
developments, joining and reflecting a multiplicity of events, brought
with them inescapable senses of contention, transition, and transforma-
tion. Around these moments there coalesced natural considerations of
epoch and an unprecedented awareness of historicity in lyric, with a
questioning of the making of poetry from ancient times to an artistic
present energized by electronic technology. The "everything" of Au-
gusto de Campos's poem and the ultimate focus of Haroldo de Campos's
post-utopian approach return to, clarify, and resituate the imperative of
invention that has always driven the poetics of the Noigandres group,
previous to and since the inception of concrete poetry. At the same time,
their problematizing interventions make certainties and consensus about
the sphere oflyric in the eighties and nineties all the more difficult, which
ought to encourage an open and wide-angle view of contemporary pro-
duction. Haroldo's essay carries the weight of history and, crossing Oc-
tavio paz's path of convergence, concedes a present-future of plurality,
while the unique FinismundoJ even with its classical charge, connects
with other key texts and processes of the literarily un-unified eighties and
early nineties, when all (everything) may contribute to complicate the
separation of strains and stains in the fabric of poetry.
Alfredo Bosi elucidates divergences and differences in recent lyric with
a comparison to the situation of Brazilian narrative:
Parallel to what occurred with prose fiction, which moved from
engagement and testimonial to extreme individualism, the poetry of
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