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William Cowper

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Made poetry a mere mechanic art.
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Line 654.

 
William Cowper

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Most of my poetry lies beyond the SF field, yet here I am corralled into 'SF poetry' as part of this poetry weekend. Of course, some might say, 'you've made your own bed now you must lie in it!' But, while fully accepting that dictum, I'm not yet quite prepared to lie down...

 
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Poetry is not; or seems not to be. But it appears that among the great conflicts of this culture, the conflict in our attitude toward poetry stands clearly lit. There are no guards built up to hide it. We call see its expression, and we can see its effects upon us. We can see our own conflict and our own resource if we look, now, at this art, which has been made of all the arts the one least acceptable.
Anyone dealing with poetry and the love of poetry must deal, then, with the hatred of poetry, and perhaps even Ignore with the indifference which is driven toward the center. It comes through as boredom, as name-calling, as the traditional attitude ofthe last hundred years which has chalked in the portrait ofthe poet as he is known to this society, which, as Herbert Read says, "does not challenge poetry in principle it merely treats it with ignorance, indifference and unconscious cruelty."
Poetry is foreign to us, we do not let it enter our daily lives.

 
Muriel Rukeyser
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