Tom Montag, aka The Middlewesterner, gave a talk about Lorine Niedecker (one of my favorites) at UW-Baraboo/Sauk County in Baraboo, Wisconsin; he’s kindly posted it, and its a good, detailed, meaty examination of how the great, too-little-known poet got her effects—just keep following the “Continued here” links at the end of each page, and for ease of reference I’ll link to the Exhibits (bits of her poems that he discusses) and Notes. This is very well said:
I think Niedecker was not particularly concerned with “meaning” in the denotative sense. She was concerned with the thing, and with “something else” beyond that, but it doesn’t seem to me that she was intent on making unequivocal and definitive statements. I’ll venture that for Niedecker, poetry was closer to painting than to philosophy. The painter dabs color onto the canvas just so, but what do color and shape and line mean? What does a dab of cobalt put here mean? That’s not a question Niedecker would ask.
And speaking of swarms, don’t miss Dave’s amazing photographs of a swarm of bees on a tree branch.