Monday, September 26, 2011

Poetry Has Its Day in Court

Poetry is news that stays news and people die for lack of it every day and so on, but sometimes in its small way poetry makes news. That’s the case with a book of poems I reviewed a few years ago, 67 Mixed Messages by Ed Allen, a series of infatuated sonnets about a student named Suzi Grace. Turns out the subject of the poems is a real person, and she didn’t appreciate being the subject. On the other hand, it doesn’t sound like she has much of a case. There’s a long history of poets writing about unrequited love (Dante had Beatrice, Yeats had Maud Gonne, and the mid-century confessional poets made de facto fair use of various people in their lives), and it’s hard to imagine a world in which the poet has to fulfill some Antioch-style contract with his or her muse (Honey, is at all right if I say your eyes are nothing like the sun?). On the third hand, methinks the poet doth protest too much when he claims that making the speaker of the poems bisexual lessens his creepiness.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

At the very least, we will not call it love.