Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The Next Big Thing.

1. What is the working title of the book?  
(Daughters), which is a companion to another manuscript currently circulating in the world called Daughters of your century.

2. Where did the idea come from for the book?
My daughters Sonia and Alma. How being a parent has changed my orientation as a poet, reversed my process. For many years I wrote big outward systems first, then clawed back toward (or sometimes still away from) my individual experience. Since Sonia’s birth and a little before even, I’ve been drawn to chart the ghosts of those systems in the daily experiences of parenting. Working from inner and quotidian experiences first. Poems have gotten smaller, sometimes too small I worry.

3. What genre does your book fall under?

4. What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?
I’m bad with movies. I would be played by Spiderman I guess. Kate would be played by the colors in City of God—full of a love that holds all that strife and hope together. Sonia would be played by the sparkles coming off a fairy godmother’s wand or a unicorn’s horn. Magic, basically. Alma would be played by something elfin, sylvan, animist.

5. What is the one sentence synopsis of your book?
Sipping coffee in PJs the morning magic’d up: Baby Unicorn stuffed into the attic legs akimbo in the dollhouse where things arrive & stay or don’t—Sonia tells me this is the right place for Baby Unicorn, as opposed to such effluvia as yellow plastic helicopters, or tiny creatures she refers to as chinchillas (but who really knows their provenance)—Baby Unicorn who is the totem animal of these months, how will we remember it if we don’t write it, here or in the baby book we have tried to keep but can never invent time to open.

 6. How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?
Going on five years. The draft isn’t done though.

7. Who or what inspired you to write this book?
See #2.

8. What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
My children are amazing.

9. Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
Stealing Thom’s answer: Neither, I hope.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Shout Outs

Some of the projects that I was lucky to publish in 2012 got some shout outs in various year-enders. Kate & Sonia (in the months before our second daughter's birth) was called "moving and pleasurable" by Eileen Tabios. The Great American Beatjack Volume I got a couple mentions: Lauren Levin had this to say in her Attention Span entry for 2012:
This exquisite object has to be held to be believed, and has to be spiraled to be read. And then there’s the poetry. I love Dan Thomas-Glass’s music, his honesty, and his tireless explorations of community, memory, gender roles, and the future—embodied in his daughters Sonia and Alma, and in political hope.
Erica Lewis mentioned the beatjack in her Disinhibitions entry for Michael Cross:
generosity. love. family. music. dan is one of the most sincere poets out there. and you can feel him putting it all out there. each and every poem. makes you want to believe in something.
I'm very honored by all three—I want my poems to be moving, musical, and sincere—and I'm humbled to know some of these wonderful poets took the time to read and think about the work.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Being other than we are

I sent this coda—a version of the end of my dissertation that ended up chopped, changed, excised and different—to Joyelle McSweeney yesterday, after reading her brilliant take on Outkast's "B.O.B." Though it's missing some of the better theorizing that the eventual conclusion became, I still like the readings that are present throughout—of Outkast, Jay-Z, The Clipse, and others. I thought some of y'all might enjoy it as well. You can download it here.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

On basketball and masculinity

Reconfigurations has just published a found poem I wrote during last year's NBA playoffs, culled from ESPN's basketball blog Truehoop, which I read far more often than I should, on the theme of masculinity and disappearance. For some reason, the sports world becomes obsessed in the playoffs/during tournaments with players either 'disappearing' or 'showing up.' I was interested in how that mapped on various masculine tropes—so I set myself a project of taking a word from each line of that blog's feed for a few weeks, with those constellations of questions in mind.

Here's the poem.

Here's Truehoop.


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Proofs from Little Red Leaves

... for the Ephemera issue & a chapbook designed Dawn Pendergast— holy cow, they are beautiful. I'm feeling very lucky to be working with such a talented artist.

Ephemera issue into the world next month, chapbook the following, as I understand it—ending 2011 and beginning 2012. Exciting stuff.

LRL site is here.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Three Sentences from September @ Poetic Labor Project

"When I try to make a narrative out of it, my job history reflects a string of disillusioned attempts at how I can make money doing something that will help me be a better artist." - Ariel Goldberg

"But we're swamped with craploads of our own non-art work." - Kristen Gallagher

"fetishes using a grant to be anti-productive and a drag on the economy, i.e. not make commodity art, but converse in a leisurely way or wander or day dream or “research” or cruise" - Monica Peck

The whole report is rad. Needless to say I'm honored to be included. The whole is here.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

The Calm Before the Stork

I am going to try my hand at something like improvisational cultural criticism right now. No editing. I think.

I want to put a few things into play:

1) This morning after walking Sonia to drop her off at preschool, I was listening to the RZA-produced Kanye West song "Dark Fantasy," the kinda-title track off his much-lauded album that came out late last year. As I walked and listening, I was thinking about the refrain can we get much higher? in relation to two more things I want to put into play—

2) The Lil Wayne song "I Feel Like Dying" from The Drought is Over 2 (Tha Carter 3 Sessions), one of his 2007 mixtapes.

3) The continuingly spectacular decline of global capitalism.

4) The last piece I want to put into play is where the really bad pun of a title for this post comes from. This afternoon we are scheduled to induce birth for our second daughter, now twelve days overdue. The wait for her these past couple weeks has been a strange anticipatory quiet (and in the way of things in our family, included the death of a parent, Kate's stepfather). A calm, a waiting. I don't know if it's what makes me want to write. Maybe I just don't take time often enough lately to write about music. In any case, in a few hours my second daughter's birth will begin, if not before. So here we go.


I'm watching the video for that Kayne West song now, for the first time. (Does anyone actually watch music videos on TV anymore? I'm guessing they don't.) It opens with a shot of what turns out to be a meteor, but on YouTube I first saw it as a shuttle launch or an oil well fire. Both symbols of a recent past that marks the present—an imagined future of the 1960s that involved various flying things and space travel; and the age of oil, that spectacular commodity.

But no, it's not oil burning, it's a meteor, which is in keeping with the weird latterday fairy-tale overtones of the video—slow-mo deer, forests, and Kanye in a fancy car. "I fantasized about this back in Chicago." The deer, you think? Or maybe Milton Friedman had this dream—millionaire on the open road. Anyway. Next shot of the meteor looks a little mushroom cloud. Another iteration of 20th century dreams of American self.

After about two minutes its clear that this video only has three elements—meteor, forest/car/Kayne, and deer. It's really leaning on the strings that the song really leans on to create its atmosphere. Meteor hits car. Trees hurt. Car/Kanye/deer are ok. Turns out the meteor was a female angel—I briefly hoped it was Nicky Minaj, but it wasn't—probably a lucifer reference there, since the devil shows up in the song in a chrysler lebaron—sucks to be the devil, I guess. Then Kanye shows up what he really fantasized about in Chicago—his moment of action movie slow-mo-walking-away-from-explosion-holding-passed-out-girl.

So it turns out the video is kind of boring—but what about that refrain? Can't get higher. And these lines: "Teacher how do you respond to students / refresh the page, restart the memory." There's something there. A death wish, a wish for renewal, for a clean slate. Wishing he could've been consumed by the meteor/shuttle/oil/20th century, back when there was a future and things were awesome. But instead he is forced to relive cliche moments from that century with these f**king deer that won't die.


"Only once the drugs are done, I feel like dying." There's no video for this song, but that YouTube has a great picture of Lil Wayne looking like the drugs aren't done. Because he is more talented than Kanye, Lil Wayne actually formally messes with the death wish that is late capitalism. Check out what he rhymes with the refrain's 'dying' in the song: lying, flying, frying, buying. Or this couplet: "And violets are blue, roses are red / Daisies are yellow, the flowers are dead." The list of drugs to sustain the high lilting chorus, like the xanax might push the dead of Wayne's monotone into the bright rafters where the sample echoes. (And oh the magic of sampling: hard to believe that came from this.)

What I want to say is that both of these songs are about the moment just before the crash, the long intoxicated pause in the early hours before it is properly tomorrow, when things begin to spin and look beautiful-ugly, shiny with the sweat of it all falling apart. In that moment, in these songs, we hear the late 20th c., still the obsession of the early 21st: but wishing the high would last is knowing already that it's over. Only once the drugs, the $, the oil, the enlightenment, "America," the spectacle—only once it's all done, is the dying feeling of the morning of the new century.


But that's a weird place to end something I'm writing on the day my daughter will begin her birth. And that's why I needed to include this fourth thing. Because, people, today we are still human. Today of all days we are truly human, we are alive and soon more of us, more of my family at least, will be. And tomorrow will be written by us people—it will have to be. So I am ending in this hopeful calm place—that we are alive, that we are human, that we can make something new. Gentle now. I insist. We love you, everyone, get up.