2008 teachings tennilä
christian ide hintze: class "sound poetry / performance poetry".
orivesi college of art, orivesi, finland, november 2008.
for conversation: a post-mortem on ide hintze's voice poetry course
i don't believe that you can exit semantics. when i asked about it, ide hintze agreed. a pre-semantic level can't exist in actuality. what remains is a question of what exactly is the focus when you talk about 'nonsense' or 'voice poetry ' as we approached it in hintze' s course.
in my point of view, there actually isn't any difference – because i write and i am interested in precisely the junctions that sounds of speech bring to a sentence – swaying it permanently between different meanings. in that case, a precise meaning needn't inevitably be found. language is branching out all the time.
semantics always leaks into language because it is an organic part of language from the beginning. what then would be the essential difference between voice poetry and other dynamics of meaning?
there´s something different in the process of voice poetry, that one is able to locate. the process begins from the materiality of the sounds of speech, but is reaching out towards a self-contained meaning, as well as towards poetry. this is a question concerning the ear. when forming impressions, the ear is always more precise than cognition, which is striving to follow the issue. more generally: how a human ear filters speech from voice, and furthermore meaning from speech, is not really known.
adhering to the level of literary art (“word-art” in finnish), ergo words, when talking about poetry, is distorting the conception of language. there should at least be as much discussion about the sovereignty of parole, sentence, speech sound, letter, verse etc. a constant returning to the level of words develops an illusion that meaning is something static – for the reason that people are used to categorizing words and listing their meanings acording to an encyclopedical culture. the scale of the word brings an idea of containment to language. it indicates that it's possible to find a meaning via calculus – by counting the meanings of words in the syntax of a sentence. rather, in the semantic play of languages own logic, the knots and bonds of meaning are practically inexhaustible.
i formed clear semantic visions from the nonsense-poems in hintze's voice poetry course, and i believe that they would be coherent for anyone who was interested in knowing. of course, the uncertainty of the poems is relatively vast, but then again, so is it with other forms of poetry as well. you could say that the most essential thing is crossing the borderlines between languages.
i had a bit of a different idea than aleksis salusjärvi about hintze's reply to the question about universal language. i remember that we also talked about singular languages, how each human being has his / her own language. the concept of “universal” doesn't convey this part of the situation.
(olli-pekka tennilä: for conversation, in: särö, a review of literature and culture, 4/2008. porvoo, finland, december 2008 / april 2009. original language: finnish http://sarolehti.net/x9_saro408.php)