Jack Ridl über Mr. 45 und die Macht der Poesie

Jack Ridl, Poet und Kritiker des 45. US-Präsidenten. Foto: privat

Jack hatte eine wundervolle Seite 3-Story von Christian Zaschke in der SZ am Wochenende vom 30.03.2018. Den Inhalt fand ich so klasse, dass ich über Jacks Website Kontakt zu ihm aufnahm – und prompt ein Interview für kbquadrat bekam. Die Tisch-Frage bezieht sich auf Jacks Arbeits- und Esstisch, an dem jede Woche Sonntags von 10 bis 15 Uhr Freunde und Bekannte sitzen, reden und arbeiten. Die Frage nach Ming Lee ist wichtig, weil mit ihr alles begann, was Jack heute wichtig ist.

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Konrad: What’s the real reason, do you think, why it’s so easy for us to be taken for a ride?
Jack: I don’t know the real reason. If you are referring to the U.S. presidential election, actually the majority of Americans did not vote for 45. In general, those who did are a group who felt that 45’s anger affirmed their own. They weren’t so much for anything, but like him, against.

Konrad: Why are our readiness to be be fooled and our longing for honesty and empathy is such close proximity?
Jack: I don’t know. Everyone’s humanity and circumstances are different.

Konrad: How do people who always need to tidy up a table at once let themselves be so easily convinced that a table is only a table when these things are on it?
Jack: Our table is like a shrine to loving human artistry. Scattered on it are jars of brushes, crayons, colored pencils and pens as well as paper, notebooks, a bounty of yarns, needles, wires for sculpting, trays of seedlings, pots of flowers, and more, all an invitation to create.

Konrad: Poetry vs. mass media is like Immanuel Kant vs. Megan Fox – no chance. What makes the small big? What secret forces does poetry set free?
Jack: As writer Frederick Buechner reminds us, poetry makes room for the emotional range of
human experience; whereas, philosophers tend to confine attention to the intellect and the
intellectual. Perhaps poetry is intimidating to those who are hesitant to attend to the felt experience. Regarding the “small” as “large,” scale has little to to with wonder.

Konrad: What happened to Ming Lee (Fifi)?
Jack: She lives in Chicago. She became a highly regarded jewelry maker, her work carried by high end stores. She also composes operas. Her children are grown.

Keen on a fresh poem every week? Visit Jack Ridls website: https://ridl.wordpress.com