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Jim Cummins
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I was watching Charlie Rose one night years ago when Bill Styron called in and said he didn't "get" David Letterman. Styron said, "Yes, he's mildly ironic, but ..." Letterman is from Indianapolis, which is one of the towns I'm from. I think I "get" Letterman pretty well, but that's another story. I thought of this quote as I was prowling around the recent AWP conference in Chicago. Are we poets too mildly ironic? Is the Midwest too mildly ironic, and poets are chameleons, therefore become too mildly ironic when they visit? Mulling this over as I rode the elevators,... Continue reading
Posted Mar 27, 2012 at The Best American Poetry
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Along with approximately 10,999 other registrants, I attended the recent AWP Conference in Chicago earlier this month. I also attended the first Woodstock, in August, 1969. They were similar events, minus the rock bands and the loudspeaker announcements about bad acid. On the other hand, Chicago had poetry in the elevators; a tape loop of poets reading their own poems played continuously in the elevators throughout the conference. This was obviously a social-networking device on the Hilton's part to help people break the ice, in lieu of mud, good vibes, and the aforementioned bad acid. As I understand it, a... Continue reading
Posted Mar 21, 2012 at The Best American Poetry
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Mar 21, 2012