John Ashbery

Rookie (28 July 1927 / Rochester, New York)

Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror

As Parmigianino did it, the right hand
Bigger than the head, thrust at the viewer
And swerving easily away, as though to protect
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Comments about this poem (Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror by John Ashbery )

  • Gold Star - 10,267 Points Kim Barney (1/14/2015 7:51:00 PM)

    Amen to all the comments below except those by
    Sunprincess (a wonderful write - -did she really read the same poem?)
    and Michael Morgan (a masterpiece- -you really have to be kidding, Michael) (Report) Reply

  • Bronze Star - 2,120 Points John Richter (1/14/2015 7:11:00 AM)

    Meaningless, boring monologue which I suppose was intended to stay in beat. I'm different, I suppose. Flowery words with no meaning are not poetry in my opinion. I don't know why modern poetry took that turn. Example:

    'That no one else's taste is going to be
    Any help, and might as well be ignored.
    Once it seemed so perfect- gloss on the fine
    Freckled skin, lips moistened as though about to part
    Releasing speech, and the familiar look
    Of clothes and furniture that one forgets.'

    What on earth is this supposed to mean? That's rhetorical, btw - there is no contrived definition that could convince me that this even remotely resembles art - more so that the author might be suffering from extreme aphasia...... (Report) Reply

  • Gold Star - 15,993 Points Mandolyn ... (11/6/2014 5:40:00 PM)


    Great book! I'm still on chapter 3. (Report) Reply

  • Gold Star - 10,463 Points * Sunprincess * (1/14/2014 8:49:00 PM)

    ..............a wonderful transported me to a time when their was no would have been nice if the guy could have had a would have taken less time for his photograph...excellent write.. (Report) Reply

  • Freshman - 2,289 Points Michael Morgan (1/14/2013 3:37:00 PM)

    a masterpiece. Thanks, John. MM (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Charles Boyer (10/3/2009 1:03:00 PM)

    I'm not an Ashbery fan and don't like his influence on contemporary poetry. LIke Derrida, he's pompous and repetitious. No music, no humanity. Logorrehea of flowing, endless, discursive prose, chopped up into lines. I take this poem to be about the indeterminancy of art and an aping of that indeterminancy. If you pick up a thousand-year-old Chinese poem, often the humanity comes through as if it were written yesterday. Can you imagine another society picking this up a few hundred years from now? They're going to have a good laugh on us. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Crystal Hottie (11/23/2004 6:31:00 PM)

    waayyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy tooooo long (Report) Reply

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