Roundtable: On the Origins, State, and Future Perspectives of Finno-Saxon (Charles Bernstein, Leevi Lehto, et al)

photo of Charles Bernstein and Levi Lehto
Charles Bernstein and Leevi Lehto. Photo courtesy of Kirsi Poikolainen, Manhattan, New York 1994.
A roundtable with Charles Bernstein, Frederik Hertzberg, Teemu Ikonen, Karri Kokko, Hasso Krull, Leevi Lehto, Olli Sinivaara, and Miia Toivio at the Kiasma Art Museum, Helsinki, August 24, 2004.

Leevi Lehto: … since maybe Charles and I are the ones most responsible for this thing to happen, and since we’ve had chances to talk about some of the subjects which I think will come up in this discussion … now for two days already, we thought it might be a good idea to start this discussion where we left it last evening … last night …

Charles Bernstein: This morning actually.

LL: … this morning, yes, and there were others involved in this discussion … I don’t quite remember who actually came up with this concept of Finno-Saxon … But last night was the beginning of the Finno-Saxon literature, I hope …

CB: It’s really more of a movement, don’t you think …

LL: It’s more of a movement, yes, and of course the term is also a homophonic translation for “Finnish accent,” which I hope will be heard a lot in this discussion, but just to get this started, Charles, would you like to elaborate a little on this concept of Finno-Saxon?

Thomas Fink in Conversation with Ari Mason and Maya Mason

Maya Mason, Ari Mason, and Thomas Fink. Paintings by Maya Mason.

In this conversation, Thomas Fink and his daughters, Ari Mason and Maya Mason, interview each other about their creative practices.

Ari Mason: Where does the inspiration for your work come from: friends, family, mentors?

Thomas Fink: As we know, in my books Gossip (Marsh Hawk Press, 2001) and After Taxes (Marsh Hawk, 2004), you and Maya elicited the poems beginning with “And Called It Milk,” and your great-grandmother Ethel is the linguistically compelling source for “The Ethel Landsman Poems,” which led me to the “Yinglish Strophes,” a series that started in 2004 and continues. Your grandfather’s speech (& parts of letters to you) are the basis for “In Memoriam” (After Taxes).