Jim Fletcher on Erje Ayden

the thing i love most is his strange relation to the reader.   he speaks in a way 
no other narrator, or author's voice, does, that i know of.   very immediate.  
full of holes.     and the concerns of literature are successfully held at bay...  
for something else... sexuality, something held in common.     
i like how he goes into battle.  i LOVE how he's not all about sounding smart, 
well informed, in command of the tongue, or, especially, Lyrical or aesthetic or 
stylized.... or even anti-stylized.  he certainly has his own lyric.  the less 
editing of his own native American English the better...  
and very difficult to imitate him      at his best he is fearless, great prose 
music, doesn't blink, not macho, not ruled by habits of thought, loves sex,   
funny    not condescending    lives with and for women    friend of Errol Flynn       
i love his relation to the general wish for transcendence.      for him it seems,  
the place where his stories take place is transcendence anyway, even with all 
the fucked up things about money, power, malice, etc...      he sees it plain 
as day,   and any move for more transcendence than that (in language, message,
 etc) is a diminishing of that basic huge and amorphous phenomenon which 
bears repeating til your arm can't write any more, and your voice is too 
faint to dictate,  and your eyes are too cloudy to see the page     always 
surprising to me  fresh  open  i'm often amazed that what i'm seeing on the page 
doesn't ruin the read... on the contrary.  he escapes literature, on literature's 
own terms...  what's that title? The Man Who Met Death a Few Times. 


JIM FLETCHER is a performer and writer. He is a longtime member of the New York City Players, Elevator Repair Service, The Wooster Group, and the English theater company Forced Entertainment (Sight is the Sense That Dying People Tend to Lose First and Quizoola!), most recently in Cairo, Egypt. In 2011: Sarah Michelson’s dance piece Devotion (The Kitchen, NYC, with text by Richard Maxwell). Film: Utopians (Zbigniew Bzymek, 2011); Bass Ackwards (Linas Phillips, 2010); Raptorious (Kamal Ahmed, 2007). He is also a participant in the writing projects of Bernadette Corporation. 2012 Obie Award for Sustained Excellence.


Read more by and about Jim Fletcher:

Interview with Jim at The Poetry Foundation
Jim at the New York City Players


Read more by and about Erje Ayden:

Personal Essay as Performance Text by Erje Ayden
Essay by Frank O’Hara
Friday Pick with a fresh blurb by John Ashbery


Watch Scott Shepherd, Jim Fletcher, Sibyl Kempson, Kate Valk and B O D Y editor Ben Williams perform a reading of Erje Ayden’s work at The Performing Garage, Sunday, May 26th at 3 PM. Get tickets and event info here.


Buy hand printed books by Erje Ayden:

Editor’s note: Erje’s books now are available only in very limited editions on eBay – see the links to selected titles below. If you’re interested in more of his works, please contact Ben Williams.


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