Read Not Me (Semiotext(e) / Native Agents) by Eileen Myles Online


Listen, I have been educated.I have learned about WesternCivilization. Do you knowWhat the message of WesternCivilization is? I am alone.This breakthrough volume, published in 1991 by the author of Cool For You and Chelsea Girls captures the high points of Myles' work in New York City during the 1980s. Poet, novelist, lesbian culture hero and one-time presidential candidatListen, I have been educated.I have learned about WesternCivilization. Do you knowWhat the message of WesternCivilization is? I am alone.This breakthrough volume, published in 1991 by the author of Cool For You and Chelsea Girls captures the high points of Myles' work in New York City during the 1980s. Poet, novelist, lesbian culture hero and one-time presidential candidate, Myles has influenced a whole generation of young queer girl writers and activists. She is one of the most brilliant, incisive, immediate writers living today....

Title : Not Me (Semiotext(e) / Native Agents)
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780936756677
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 202 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Not Me (Semiotext(e) / Native Agents) Reviews

  • C.A.
    2019-04-13 17:54

    This book STOMPED through my young mind when I first read it! Eileen Myles was, and remains, one of the best poets of her generation! This earlier book is like a conversation on speed, exciting as it is addictive, the line breaks various sized columns that break your neck to break the line. Gorgeous epiphanies sledge hammer you along the way, AND, you really are almost irritated when it's over, wanting more. BUT, there is more, CHECK OUT her books SKIES, and ON MY WAY, and others!HALLELUJAH for this book!CAConrad

  • Donald
    2019-04-05 11:19

    The Goodreads description of Eileen Myles calls her a hero and when I read her poetry I feel like the world is beautiful and I am beautiful and everything is hopeful and I can do everything and forget I feel guilty all the time. I have ideas of ridiculous things to do because I think they'd be neat but whose appeal my friend's do not understand and discourage me from doing like reading poetry out loud in public parks without permission or running for president. When I read Eileen Myles I feel like she's telling me to do all of those things. This is writing that makes me think I can reshape the world in a way I think is good. The Man of Steel's got nothing on Eileen Myles.

  • Rachel Davies
    2019-04-22 10:16

    everyone's gotta read it

  • Matthew M.
    2019-04-17 16:20

    § The first time around Not Me, these poems provided me with a scaffolding that provided me with some level of discomfort given some of my own attitudes of a political nature. Let me explain. Firstly, this scaffolding appeared in my initial reading as a kind of poetic ledger testifying to the female’s bleak state or social position in the world, but perhaps more specifically, in American social constructs. I became hesitant of what I was being told: I thought identity politics was again being flogged to death by an insistence for recognition in the social sphere. I’m not insensitive to the plight of identity politics, but rather weary of its societal implications to bind ourselves to a fixed idea of ourselves exclusive of others. But as my reading intensified, I noticed a glimmer of something more complex than the whiny body of self-declarative assertions of self and outspoken sexual preferences. As in the poem, “A Poem,” “Life is a vow that frightens as it deepens.” The vow that Myles imagines is embedded in the poems almost peripatetic quality, where as Robert Creeley once said, the poet thinks with the poem. Here, Myles walks us through her poems, while enacting that walking through the poems themselves. § As a whole, the poems do bemoan the exclusion of others off the social map in a way that narrates a lament that includes what we might call the collective citizenry. For instance, in the poem, “The Sadness of Leaving,” the speaker says “I’m terrified/to go & you/won’t miss me/I’m terrified by the/bright blues of/the subway/other days I’m/so happy &/prepared to believe/that everyone walking/down the street is/someone I know.” This poem, informed by a cosmopolitan setting, charts the complexities of emotion that don’t simply belong to ones understanding of self, but that extend to include the outside of social affairs as indicted by the “bright blues of/the subway…” The cityscape is not just a textual strategy for the poem, but the very site of poet’s process of thought. As Myles’ poems present, the city provides a collectivity where reciprocity is often relegated to ones imagination. In other words, it becomes the dream within the dream. § Another aspect of Myles’ poems I wish to present is the usage of plain spoken language. One reviewer of Not Me has aptly said that “very seldom do her words call attention to their wordness.” There is certainly a way that these poems can be read quickly while losing much of their substance, but I would argue that if the poems carry any deceptions for a reader, it’s in the diction, which is strikingly quotidian. Thus, that the poem is made of words and, of course, our experiences are always mediated by language. While, for me, the wordness of the poems is apparent, Myles’ terse lines allow for a kind of recasting of time by the simple turning of one phrase or statement into the other, thereby changing the scope of a reader’s attention. The gaze upon the text is directed downward, where transience follows by way of a poem’s form. Here, time has as much to do with the pacing of thought, and the utterances of narration and their personas. § Lastly, Myles successfully merges the private with the public. I am not willing to assume that the private is independent of history or economic and social statuses, however, as far as national boundaries are concerned, Myles is working in a particular American vein, but one inflected with a radical otherness. While the poems are quite aware of their limitations to change anything, they do emit this exuberance that the poem itself can be a political act of conscience or perhaps interrogate the cultural forms as they exist around us. From “Hot Night” the speakers says “My/poetry is here/for the haul,/the lonely woman’s/tool—we have/tools now, we/have words &/lists, we have/real tears now,/absence, rage &/missing you is/not possible in/the New York/rain because/your name/is caught between/the drops &/I might throw up…” While the utterance of this passage seems to begin as a private confession, its movement asserts a social position made explicit by the “New York rain,” and the complexities of that position to name “caught between drops.” As in this poem, Myles enacts a poetics not of alterity, but of mapping the quotidian in a way that’s spatially alert to inner and outer locations. These locations have to do with identity and acceptance of difference, but in Myles’ poems, the insistence on speculating the ills of our time is conducted through concrete. In other words, the poems are not other-worldly, but of our time and contain multiplicities and contradictions in regard to self, culture, and nation.

  • Julia
    2019-03-30 16:17

    i haven't read all of not me, i think, but that doesn't matter because mostly i feel like books of poetry are never finished. mostly this is a piece of writing about the poem "peanut butter" which is why i bought the book, so i could own peanut butter. i bought this on the last day of april when all poetry at the co-op was ten percent off all month for national poetry month, so i could own peanut butter for ten percent off. there were i think two nights in a row where i read aloud eileen myles to my friend while he made scrambled eggs in the basement kitchen, 2:30am or so. a deal: he supplied the food, i supplied the poetry. i didn't read much recreationally this year (as the absence of ~goodreads activity~ probably made clear). it was awful. it was awful and it was weird because i've always defined myself as A Person Who Reads, and perhaps to my peers i was The Person Who Reads. even to the ones i didn't know, really. so in college i was just A Person, and it was weird to realize, well, i can survive as A Person. (i am writing this now because now i am back home after my first year of college and i am not sure what kind of Person i am.) but peanut butter was vital. there were moments reading not me where i thought, i cannot survive without eileen myles, i cannot survive without this. i was reading something about jacqueline woodson, who was just recently appointed the poetry foundation's 'young people's poet laureate,' and she declared, re: reaching The Youth with poetry, that poetry is a party everybody's invited to. which is a nice, optimistic statement that i'm not sure i can in good faith completely agree with—so much of poetry is hard, so much of poetry is intentionally hard, so much of poetry is exclusionary, and none of that can be declared away—but that's how i feel about eileen myles, if you can get away from how a word like "party" is sort of intuitively wrapped up with the concept of frivolity. eileen myles is a party and eileen myles is necessary. we should all read peanut butter, but only if you want to.

  • Julene
    2019-04-23 17:02

    Her poem about her father's bag and finally letting it go kills me! It is my favorite and makes me cry. Her books reflect her life in years present like a journal that lives. She is amazing and I love listening to her read and talk when she's in town. She is the kind of radical, like Patti Smith, who stands out and draws me in. She has heart.

  • Kevin Mckinney
    2019-04-13 13:07

    "And my art can’tbe supported until it isgigantic, bigger thaneveryone else’s, confirmingthe audience’s feeling that they arealone. That they aloneare good, deservedto buy the ticketsto see this Art.Are working,are healthy, shouldsurvive, and arenormal. Are younormal tonight? Everyonehere, are we all normal."

  • Abbyg.
    2019-03-29 10:15

    Bukowski de-Duded!

  • Vincent Scarpa
    2019-04-22 16:56

    "An American Poem," which opens the collection, is of course Myles's masterpiece, but man, the rest of this book—it's like a document of Myles in the very early stages of trying to figure out what her style and her substance is. The vast majority of the poems here are entirely forgettable; a good line here and there, but forgettable all the same. And a great number of them are just...embarrassingly bad? Which I feel all right saying because I'm crazy about most of her other work—Skies, from 2001; School of Fish, from 1997. I love Inferno and The Importance of Being Iceland and I think (the forthcoming) Afterglow is probably the best thing she's ever done. So, just skip this volume.

  • Jo Benson
    2019-04-05 13:14

    Interesting, entertaining, funny, but in a this-just-got-real sort of way.

  • Steve
    2019-04-22 17:17

    An interesting book of poems that evoke contemporary urban life. The concerns are how the life of the mind and art and sex and family connect. The theme of desire is central as is curiousity about how to live a meaningful life. As poetry, there is a certain amount of repetition in the journal-like entries, but that also lends the book a certain amount of charm in the impoverished (financially) existence described.

  • Miles
    2019-04-04 13:05

    I read this on the train to and from one of the weirdest dates of my life with a boy I wish I had been as attracted to in person as I had been over social media. I felt I could have almost been in love with him. These poems filled me more and better than I would let him.

  • Simon
    2019-04-21 11:00

    Grounded and gritty and really readable and rhythmic. Sometimes feels like your reading weirdly lineated prose- spindly little snapshots running down the center and backbone of the page to tap out erotic and lived morse code. A book for reading on public transit. In cities. I loved it.

  • Jay Daze
    2019-04-04 13:02

    You hold those books you discovered for yourself close. I found Not Me in City Lights Bookstore and read it on the train. The hushed intimate line of Myles poetry, the fragility and strength caught me at just the right time.

  • Mitch
    2019-04-19 17:11

    Classic Myles book!! I love these poems. Eileen is still a fresh young voice from the Plains (of Boston!?), always startling & always impeccable!! This book, in particular, has always rocked my world. Have owned at least 3 copies, one was stolen, one I gave away, one I still return to often. RAWQS!

  • Stephany Joy
    2019-04-10 13:58

    This is my favorite collection of Myles' writing. The first poem, "Kennedys" is all that I love about Eileen Myles.

  • Cat
    2019-04-11 17:54

    I could go on forever about the forceful magnitude of Eileen's work. Her writing and her personal example have shaped me so much.

  • Gina
    2019-04-08 15:56

    This was the first book of Eileen's I had ever read and I instantly loved it. She remains to be one of my favorite writers and one of my favorite humans today.

  • Meghan
    2019-04-05 10:59

    She's a shapeshifter.

  • Bobbi Lurie
    2019-04-12 16:05

    I love this book. I have read it many times / am re-reading it. I love her clarity. I stopped reading--please take off list

  • Steph Anne
    2019-03-24 11:24

    I reread this book about once a year, and it never fails to make me feel as if I'm waking up after a long hibernation. The writing zaps and zings.