The Person End of the Poem’s Beginning

Mark Goodwin

Descartes was poorly. He haunted Himself as a ghost in a bowl – a ‘cogito’ cut-off from his own body and the place-world healthy bodies entwine with. Descartes contorted his personhood into a spook carried in a skull by a vehicle of fallacious flesh. He believed his abstracted holy soul to be his corpse’s driver.

But body is all, just as life-world is all. World & body are equiprimordial. Body is part of world, made of the same actual flesh as world … and world is only felt and moved through by animated/animating body. They do not happen at the same time, they happen as the same time.

A body is a place of sorts, and is (through movement) crossed over and through with world’s places – as ‘chiasm’. The experience of this nexus of life can be called ‘mind’. Mind is the place place & body play … out/in …

So, all a body’s actions are as thought, because thought is as the flesh of world/body’s movement. And place is what we move through/with … with/through emotion. Place is all around and all through, and is that which places us.

Phenomenon-focused poets put feeling selves in actively imagined virtual places … places felt as poems. ‘Stanza’ means room and is a particular kind of spatialness, or roominess. In a moved-through house each room may embrace a person’s body and each room can be held in a person’s memories. It is through

the places that stanzas are that we can re member (our)selves

The lantern-like question Where does the person end and the poem begin? opened a door for me … allowing me to condense – through poetic compression – some of my reading-journeys across phenomenologies of embodied-mind & place

Mark Goodwin is a walker, balancer, climber, stroller … and … negotiator of places. He has published a number of poetry books & chapbooks. Find him on Twitter (@kramawoodgin) and Bandcamp.