Episode 105: James Knight, Steel Incisors

Recorded on Wednesday, June 14, 2023

James Knight: https://thebirdking.com/category/visual-poetry/


steel incisors: https://www.steelincisors.com/

James is on the show by way of thanks for steel incisors’ support of the AngelHousePress Caring Imagination crowd funding campaign as a donator of publications from steel incisors.

We speak about poetry as a provocation and performance, visual poetry, hierarchies, the creation and aesthetics of steel incisors.

we talk about James’ pamphlet from Hem Press, cosmic horror.

we talk about the challenges for publishing these days. buy steel incisors books!

we discuss the anthology the mouth of a lion: apocalyptic visual poetry and the reason for its publication. James talks about the US publisher Inside the Castle, an inspiration for steel incisors. we discuss the process of editing an anthology. I talk about the reverence for concrete poetry as defined by the Noigandres Group. a lot of interesting work is being done but it doesn’t fit into that narrow range.

James talks about the explosion of excitement about visual poetry in the last few years. a lot of visual poetry have made connections through Twitter. James sees the creation of visual poetry as more inclusive than it used to be, being able to be made by anyone in anyway from pen and paper to software. I discuss the great work being done in the UK.

we discuss Kaleidoscopic Erasures by ReVerse Butcher.

we talk about the forthcoming anthology, Seeing in Tongues which will come out toward the end of 2023.

James talks about publications on the site that are still available, such as The Venus Atmosphere: Collage Poems by Emma Filtness, gorgeous and inventive collage work.

Greater Vegas Bleeds into the Dreams of My Cryogenic Slumber by Kenneth M Cale uses completely digital collage, colour, text and glitch, and it is very rich, and was a joy to publish.

I ask James about what he uses for publishing. He now uses a local UK printer. He discusses the romance of a box of books being delivered. we talk about print on demand.

we talk about colour visual poetry and messing up the clean line. i ask about James’ relationship to colour. We discuss the palette of cosmic horror. we share a love of intense colour. He discusses making Bloods Dream, using ProCreate. Bloods Dream was put out by Beir Bua Press. We propose a tinder app for colour choices. James describes one blue as a a “fuck off Yves Klein” blue.

James works primarily using digital methods and technology, the IPAD as a digital playground. I ask James about working with AI art generators.

“maybe part of the job of poetry is to reconnect us to some kind of reality.” James talks about poetry as something that connects people, one tiny flame in the darkness.

Thanks to James for being on the show, to Charles Earl for processing, to Jennifer Pederson for the intro and outro and to you for sharing and listening to the episode. Stay tuned for the next episode of the Small Machine Talks!