Thursday, June 29, 2006

Not the kind of review you'd want, ideally...

At first I think it’s a poem. Then I realise that it isn’t. Not exactly. Then I’m glad it’s not me he’s talking about. Then I start thinking about school and how it can knock all that’s good out of poetry. Then I think this piece should be posted on every classroom and lecture hall in the country.

I haven't ever read Harvey Shapiro poems. Are they so bad?


Hedgie said...

Shapiro's work is similar in ways to that of Frank O'Hara and "New York" poets. Here are two positive reviews which give you some sense of his work:

from "The Villager"


Here are 3 short poems of his which appeared on "Poetry Daily":

Three poems

I suspect the reviewer has a problem with this entire approach to poetry, and Shapiro simply becomes for him a representative of a trend he (the reviewer) dislikes. Intensely.

I've read little of Shapiro's work myself, so don't have a broad base of his work from which to draw any conclusions.

Rob Mackenzie said...

Yes, it's hard to know. I quite liked one of the poems you linked to, about the expanding universe, and wasn't so sure about the others, but I'd need to read more to get a fuller picture.

Thanks for these links. They do balance things up a bit. But I did find the review in Stride very amusing, although I probably wouldn't have if it had been about me...