Friday, 20 August 2010
Describing and classifying poetry
I've noticed that a couple commentators on The Tethers, knowing of my "experimental work," seem to struggle with TT's "mainstream" qualities, but where they see a vast difference between the two areas, I see continuities, a spectrum. Asked by an interviewer about the difference between his poetry and prose, Gary Snyder responded, "I don't really think of them as different so much--I adopt whatever structure seems to be necessary to the communication in mind." I feel much the same way. Just as a poet may choose among such forms as the sestina, the sonnet, etc. in composing a poem, I think about modes of expression, degrees of tension or fragmentation, lines versus prose, etc. and may in one day write poems that would be classified as "mainstream" and "experimental." Is such an approach so hard to comprehend? Is it so unusual?