Loba

by Diane di Prima
(1998)
   It took diane di prima 28 years to determine that her master work, Loba, is about “the feralness of the core of women, of the feminine in everything, in everyone.” The collection of 205 oracular and mysterious poems, titled for the Spanish word meaning “she-wolf,” uses Navajo wolf mythology to represent female and feminine consciousness over thousands of year. Through the trope of loba in the form of the Virgin Mary, Lillith, Kali-Ma, Shiva, a bag lady, a young woman dancing at a bar, and many others both secular and spiritual, di Prima reveals the process by which all humans—innately artists—create themselves. Book I was published in 1978 by Wingbow Press, and Books I and II were published in 1998 by Penguin.
   Di Prima began the poem in the early 1970s, using a process that she describes the intuitive “receiving” of “broadcasts” that she then records. As she worked on the collection making visual collages of images of women, wild animals, and strange scenery, individual poems emerged through the juxtaposition of forms. These images and words eventually coalesced into a portrait of female and feminine power symbolized by the wolf. In method and content, Loba exemplifies many of the passions in di Prima’s life, especially the poetry of John Keats, the alchemical and hermetic arts, Zen and Tibetan Buddhism, the blues and jazz, autobiographies and memoirs, motherhood, the female body, and world mythologies.
   The style relies upon short imagistic lines balanced with longer prose lines, vernacular language mixed with the esoteric, playful use of the page as canvas, shorthand such as & and yr, and quick dancelike rhythms modulated with slow dreamlike rhythms. Book I deals with the physical and sexual life of a woman and Book II with the soul. The collection epitomizes a postmodern form called a rhizome—a nonlinear text with multiple sites of entry and exit. Loba testifies to an essentialist philosophy that characterizes second-wave feminism: recognition and celebration of an essential “femaleness” at the core of all women. One argument that Loba makes vociferously is that female power has remained steadfast throughout history and that every woman possesses the ability to tap this common essence:
   were it not for the ring of fur
   around her ankles
   just over her bobby socks
   there’s no one
   wd ever guess her name. . . .
   While this argument has great value, contemporary psychological and sociological identity research has shown that race, class, ethnicity, relationships, and individual biochemistry complicate the formation of self. Di Prima’s essentialist perspective is mitigated somewhat by the integration of poems that represent critical reviews of Loba, poets’ and painters’ renderings of loba, and male-centered visions such as the “Tahuti Poems” that portray the lover of Isis in Egyptian mythology. These decenter the concept of the essential female nature, lending credence to di Prima’s statement that Loba is about the wildness in all humans.
   Di Prima continues to work on Book III of Loba, which focuses on the journey of the spirit.
 Bibliography
■ di Prima, Diane. “The Tapestry of Possibility” (Interview). Whole Earth. (Fall 1999) http://www.findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0GER/is_1999_Fall/ai_56457596.
■ Foley, Jack. “Diane di Prima.” Poetry Previews. Available online. URL: http://www.poetrypreviews.com/poets/poet-diprima.html. Accessed May 5, 2005.
■ Libby, Anthony. “Diane di Prima: ‘Nothing Is Lost; It Shines In Our Eyes.’ ” In Girls Who Wore Black: Women Writing the Beat Generation, edited by Ronna C. Johnson and Nancy M. Grace, 45–68. New Jersey: Rutgers University Press, 2002.
   Nancy M. Grace

Encyclopedia of Beat Literature. . 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • loba — loba …   Dictionnaire des rimes

  • Loba — puede referirse a: Loba como hembra del lobo, para hembras de otros animales llamados lobo ver Lobo (desambiguación); Loba, un juego de naipes; Loba, una prenda de vestir; Loba, un álbum de Shakira; o a Loba, una canción de Shakira. Además puede… …   Wikipedia Español

  • Loba — ist ein weiblicher Vorname. Inhaltsverzeichnis 1 Herkunft und Bedeutung 2 Bekannte Namensträgerinnen 3 Literatur 4 Weblinks …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • loba — LOBÁ, lobez, vb. I.tranz. A executa un lob2. – Din fr. lober. Trimis de LauraGellner, 24.05.2004. Sursa: DEX 98  lobá vb., ind. prez. 1 sg. lobéz, 3 sg. şi …   Dicționar Român

  • Loba — Loba,   Aké, ivorischer Schriftsteller, * Abobo Baoulé 15. 8. 1927; 1960 erschien als einer der frühen ivorischen Romane »Kocoumbo, l étudiant noir« (deutsch »Kocoumbo. Ein schwarzer Student in Paris«), ein autobiographischer Bildungsroman;… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • loba — |ô| s. f. 1. Fêmea do lobo. 2. Batina eclesiástica. 3. Outeiro. 4.  [Veterinária] Tumor que se forma no peito do cavalo …   Dicionário da Língua Portuguesa

  • loba — lobà sf. (4) žr. lobas 1: Lobẽlėj visada macniau želia Asv. Arklius loboj pririšiau Krd …   Dictionary of the Lithuanian Language

  • loba — sustantivo femenino 1. Uso/registro: vulgar. Origen: Perú. Prostituta …   Diccionario Salamanca de la Lengua Española

  • Loba — She Wolf (single) She Wolf/Loba Single par Shakira extrait de l’album She Wolf Sortie Juillet 2009 Enregistrement 2008 Bahamas Durée 3:08 Genre(s) …   Wikipédia en Français

  • loba — I (Derivado de lobo.) ► sustantivo femenino AGRICULTURA Lomo de tierra entre surco y surco que no se remueve con el arado. II (Del gr. lope, manto de piel.) ► sustantivo femenino RELIGIÓN Sotana, vestidura de los curas. * * * loba1 (del gr.… …   Enciclopedia Universal

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