a shockingly mediocre poet…

October 3, 2016


Writing has become the only major human endeavour in which you can flourish and do very well by being a shockingly mediocre poet. Look at just about any program in the country. And they lower the bar and lower the bar until any idiot can trip over it and be rewarded – a deadly situation for the poets of real talent, as well. Everyone knows how difficult it is to turn down offers of substantial money (it has been for me), and when it becomes habitual, it actually prevents poets poised to become truly great from fulfilling their promise. Their energy is channelled in the wrong way, and they know it.

Franz Wright
Interview with Don Zirilli and Zoe Guilherme in TriggerFish Critical Review

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