Friday, July 31, 2009

"What no one wants to admit is that most of the so-called avant-garde poets can’t write, and most of the so-called lyric poets can’t think."

There's getting to be quite a few very sharp-eyed, -eared and -tongued poets and critics out there. Two of them, Michael Lista and Mark Callanan, put their heads together to talk about the work of a third, Jason Guriel. One thing I'd add to their remarks si that Jason's Pure Product isn't a criticism, tout court, of materialism. Insofar as it's a sidelong shot at overpadded poetry books, it's actually saying that poets by and large pay too little heed to their published work as product for consumption by readers. Entertainment is not, for Guriel, a crass, sub-artistic ambition. The delight to be found on just about every page of the book makes it a far more reader-friendly product than most collections out there.

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