From Blue Studios: "I just didn't want beauty in my poetry: any hint was an invitation to a slippery slope of the feminine. Beauty was too nice, too expected, too complicit with what the feminine was in poetry, and by extension, what the female was." She goes on, "In any event I tried not to write beauty (rhetorical staginess, lovely images, and the mellifluous) but to write language, to write syntax, to write austerely. Or to compose a beauty so hard and selective, yet in intense visionary images, as to contain its suspect presence." (p. 220, 221). You can tell how much I like this book by all the dogeared pages in the image above.
In the novel I have recently finished, about the possibility of the existence of a woman art forger, I did want beauty in my narrative, in my forgery. (The subtitle of the book is, A Forgery). She is undiscovered, my forger. (An increasingly difficult feat as technology advances in forgery detection). Her motivation is in fact, beauty, the revelation of a mystical colour via secrets embedded in her forgeries. The best way for a forgery to go undetected? To be whole, beautiful. Fake busters, as they're called, experts in forgery detection, have a sort of sixth sense for knowing that something is odd, off, unfinished, off-kilter. So, in my narrative, beauty isn't hidden, but is what hides, or contains, a suspect presence. In my mind, the whole narrative hangs together only if the reader believes in the beauty of the narrative, in the beauty of the art forgeries and in their capacity to fool or take in the viewer.
It's an odd place to be in. Having one book behind you, not yet published, and working on the next. It's necessary to sort through in my mind what it was I thought I was doing in the previous book, to be aware of how it's infringing on the one in progress. Even though they're two completely different works, there is communication between them, if that makes sense.