Supple Science: A Robert Kocik Primer

By Robert Kocik

I found this one in a poetry bookshop (Berl’s, in Brooklyn). Despite mysterious contents, it somehow caught my eye.

The introduction doesn’t immediately clear things up, indicating that the book is a primer on “comprehensive ethics of the endogenous…and the subtle…in relation to multiple fields of knowledge, theory, and practice.”

It seems to be an artist book through and through. There’s an obscure yet intriguing table of contents evoking abstract mysteries with phrases like “The Particulars of Subtle Fitness”, “Evoked Epigenetic Architecture”, “Therapeutics of Relation”, “Re-English”, and “Introducing the Logosome”.

It covers the intermingled fruits of a life’s work in poetry, language, science, architecture, and more. From the “Lifework” section on the final page, we find that Robert K. is a “writer, prosodist, builder, artist, caregiver, and economic justice activist”; “Supple Science” is something of a synthesis of his cross-disciplinary investigations. He even has a whole cosmology and “poethics” and philosophy and vocabulary; the book actually contains, in addition to five main sections, a glossary of his own invented terms.

Investigating ideas, making proposals, imagining and exploring complex interactions… This seems like a boundary-shattering, poetico-academic synthesis of a bunch of strands of work and thought — heady to be sure, but an adventure to dive into.

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