*From the recent collection LITERATURA IN PRESTOR, eds. Katarina Rakušček & Julija Ovsec (Ljubljana: 2016), by David Vichnar
Just as so many other literary-historical labels, concrete poetry, it seems, is what we make of it, what we include and exclude, where and what against we draw the line. This provisional and necessarily pragmatic character of the activity need not be regarded its weak spot, indeed rather to the contrary, at least according to Mary Ellen Solt and Emmett Williams, editors of two seminal anthologies of the early post-WWII concrete poetry. This indefinability is what concrete poetry has thrived on, what contributed to its mass followership and longevity. Yet at the same time, this multiplicity has also given license to blanket dismissals that target particular tendencies or subgroup idiosyncrasies as emblematic of the entire concretist poetics and sensibility.