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Cold Pigging Poetics
Ken Stange
Published by York Publishing (1981)

Prose and poetry and you-name-it come together in this bizarre and entertaining collection of ‘experiments”.  As the Windsor Star reviewer remarked, Stange is expert at "elaborate co-mingling of forms". Alternatively deadly serious and flippant, obscure and blunt, the experiments in this book play with everything from mathematics to anecdotes told from a bar stool.

 “To give cold pig is a punishment inflicted on sluggards who lie too long in bed: it consists in pulling off all the bed clothes from them, and throwing cold water upon them.” (The 1811 Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue).

York Publishing (1981)
ISBN: 0-920424-25-2
Softcover (6x9 inches) 112 pages
Signed by author edition: $25

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Cold Pigging Poetics (1981)

Excerpts (some prose bits)

I Was At A Party When A Fat Woman

            I was at a party when a fat woman came up to me and said: "I saw something in the paper about you. You write poetry, don't you?" I admitted that I did. "I collect stamps," she said.

The Cretin

            The Cretin walked into a room where a poet was reading her poems very loudly. The cretin clutched his ears and thought about poetry. "Poetry is what hurts my ears," he said. Then, being a rather intellectual Cretin, he generalized: "Poetry is a way of experiencing pain."
            The poet heard him say this, so she began reading her poems very softly. Eventually the Cretin took his hands away from his ears. He listened for a moment and thought some more about poetry. (He was a very open-minded Cretin.) "Poetry is also a way of soothing my ears," he said. "Yes," he continued, "poetry is a way of experiencing pleasure."
            The poet heard what he said, and she lost her temper. "Damn it," she said, "poetry has nothing whatsoever to do with making you feel pain or pleasure." The Cretin couldn't understand this.

There Was A Time When I Was Writing Poems

There was a time when I was writing poems far too quickly for them to be properly filled up with whatever it is that good poems are filled up with. I knew this, but still it was hard to turn off the typewriter and go mow the damn lawn. Finally I decided to confide in my friend, the Other Poet. I called him on the phone.
            "Hello," he said. "I can't stop writing poems," I said, "I just can't stop the flow. For the last three days I've been writing poems almost constantly. You wouldn't believe the pile of poems I have on my desk. I'm almost out of erasable paper. My ribbon is in need of changing. My wife thinks I'm headed for another nervous breakdown. My dog shat in the kitchen last night because I forgot to walk him. Even when I'm on the toilet, I keep getting lines for poems. I'll never have time to revise them and polish them properly. I'm writing too many poems. I need help."
            The Other Poet said: "Is this a crank call?"

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