Since March 2020, I’ve been working on a new manuscript, Between Plague & Kleptocracy: Invented Poetic Creations & Conversations of Seva & Bill.
In this collection, I cross-reference poems of two dead poets: Vsevolod Nekrasov and Bill Knott, serving as medium, picking up bits of posthumous conversations and imagined collaborations between the two poets. I hybridize and recreate their texts, projecting possible dialogues during this perilous time in history: of pandemic, forced isolation, economic decline, and the US finding itself with a pack of kleptocrats and their sycophants overtaking the three branches of democratic government.
Publisher TBD / Canada.
Watch a cinepoem from Between Plague & Kleptocracy: Invented Poetic Creations & Conversations of Seva & Bill.
Defined: In a kleptocracy (from the Greek: κλέπτης kléptēs, “thief”, κλέπτω kléptō, “I steal”, and -κρατία –kratía from κράτος krátos, “power, rule”) corrupt politicians enrich themselves secretly outside the rule of law through kickbacks, blackmailing, bribes, and special favors—or they simply direct state funds to themselves and their associates. Kleptocrats often export much of their profits to foreign nations in anticipation of losing power.
…the ‘values’ of the kleptocrats would [soon] become America’s own. This grim vision is now nearing fruition.“Franklin Foer, The Atlantic (Mar 2019)
In our new world of ‘alternate facts’, corruption is ‘no longer a sign of a failing state, but of a state succeeding in its new purpose’. The new kleptocrats have subverted their nations’ institutions, ‘to seize for themselves that which rightfully belonged to the commonwealth.’ “Tom Burgis, Financial Times journalist
(Review, Charles Kaiser, The Guardian, Oct 2020)