Monthly Archives: November 2010

The Poet’s Spells

Any talk of the spiritual in poetry reveals a lack of understanding.  It is forgivable for the poet to misunderstand his work in this way, and say, for instance, that he searches for the god within or the divine spark. … Continue reading

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Anecdote I

When I was a boy, about eight or nine, I remember going to a seaside resort with my father – this was after my parents divorced – and, though it was late fall and all the shops were closed and … Continue reading

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The Poet Needs the Critic to Condescend

It is as if the poet were wooing his critic.  It is as if the poet were lost in the desert and, knowing only semaphore, must flag down rescue from an angel passing overhead.  This is the critic.  It is … Continue reading

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Poetic Material

The poet says that art holds the mirror up to nature.  So we can assume – all thinking people can assume – that anything under the sun may be appropriate poetic material.  And I agree with Thoreau who claimed that … Continue reading

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Apes & Gods

If it is true, and I think it is, that a poet’s best assets are his eyes and ears, then it must also be true that a critic’s best are his tongue and finger.  Why?  Because when the critic points, … Continue reading

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