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Nikki M Pill <[log in to unmask]>
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Ezra Pound discussion list of the University of Maine <[log in to unmask]>
Sun, 25 Jan 1998 14:57:21 -0600
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>I don't think it will take ten years. My son is sixteen, writes >fiction
and>poetry, reads Nietzsche, Schopenhauer, Burroughs. He thinks Pound is
to each his own... i *becamse* fascinated with pound when i was sixteen.
however, three years later, i'm grasping his writing better... partially
because i'm in a school where i can actually *study* his work, and
partially because of mental and emotional maturity.  honestly, i consider
myself someone who is still learning how to read.
i personally need to read poems a few times before i can grok them, and
they're richer to me each time i go back. but i'm a strange bird in that
respect...i agree with joe aheam about the effect of mtv and modern
culture. in a poetry workshop i took this past year, the majority of the
students resented works that required serious thought, background
knowledge, etc. i think we're used to having so much information, from so
many different forms of media, right at our fingertips, that we get
really whiny when we have to work to understand something. after reading
plath's "fever 103" in  my poetry workshop, one of my fellow students
said that if a poem is going to be that long, it needs to have an
[expletive deleted] or an [expletive deleted] in it to keep his
attention. (no, i did not rip his heretic tongue out). again, i'm a
strange bird. i *liked* working to try understanding things like "hugh
selwyn mauberly." i meet a lot of people who are enthusiastic about the
beats, but rarely anyone who has even read pound.
i can see robert kibler's point, about pound's influence on modern
culture. my modern poetry teacher pointed out that what's really "out
there" and avante-garde NOW will be digested and incorporated into
mainstream culture later... such is the poetic cycle. if i understand my
history correctly, then pound's pushing imagism paved the way for
important developments in modern poetry. i haven't come across any poets
right now who write "pure" imagism (i'm hardly an authority on poetry
"right now," though!), but hasn't it had a in impact, both subtle and
i live in chicago, where there are oodles and gobs of poetry readings
etc. i don't know if it's just that i'm older now, or if it's actually a
cultural thing, but every year i've met more people who write poetry.
however, it seems that there are more people in my age group who *write*
poetry than those who read it...
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