Alex Saum-Pascual on Poetry and the Senses

20 Apr, 2020

Alex Saum-Pascual on Poetry and the Senses

Alex Saum, Associate Professor of Spanish at the University of California, Berkeley, recently published a blog post about her current project as part of one of the 2020-2021 ARC Fellows. In her blog post she begins by describing the numbness she feels on her thumb after spending hours scrolling through news about the recent pandemic, and the plans she had to write about a new poetry series called corporate poetry!

Make sure to check out her blog post!

From blog post:

I haven’t read a book in weeks. I spend all my reading hours glued to my phone. By the time I am done scrolling words, I feel motion sickness. My right thumb is sort of numb too. When I was a teenager I would go to my friend’s house and play Street Fighter until I got blisters. I am not one for originality, so you can safely guess it was thumb blisters for Ryu, Ken, or Chun-Li. I have been traveling on my screen of news since the pandemic started and I don’t even recall when that was.

I wasn’t expecting this blog post to be about thumb blisters and confinement puns, but nobody expected the Spanish flu either. You hear a lot about the 1918 pandemic these days. Two months ago, or 142,350 days roughly in coronadays, I had planned to write about a new poetry series I called corporate poetry [<>], which was meant to be an exploration into how corporate language captures that other corpora that is our bodies. I made a couple of interactive poems I called “rooms.” They were equal parts bright salt and dark and gloomy cobalt blue. But perhaps because, without me knowing it then, they were also a project on confinement, I feel unable to step into any of those rooms these days.

To read the full blog post click here.