A person who reads poems carefully is likely to be the sort of person who reads most anything attentively, and that includes lists of questions. Several respondents have questioned one or more of the questions, and that goes for Ron Silliman, whose response to the “funniest poem / poem that made you cry” question drew attention to its implicit valuation of laughing and crying. Silliman’s response to that question is itself a question: “I tend to resist poems that go for only one emotion or the other -- what feeling do you get from Louis Zukofsky’s "A"?” Point taken.
Silliman also draws attention, in the “other website” question, to “The Annandale Dream Gazette (http://annandaledreamgazetteonline.blogspot.com/), the only site I know of devoted to the unconscious of poets.” Silliman doesn’t mention his own website, which is an important one. He developed a sense of the potential of blogs as a vehicle of conversation about poetry — information, inquiry, convocation — and has maintained his blog for several years now. http://ronsilliman.blogspot.com/
Silliman is not the first respondent to note that he keeps different types of reading in different bathrooms. Hmmm. I’m sure this tendency among poets says something important about contemporary poetry, but what?
I’m learning about a lot of websites from the answers. Dan Beachy-Quick says, “I think highly of Joshua Corey’s blog, Cahiers de Corey, who seems to be engaged in the actual and open work of thinking about poetry. [http://joshcorey.blogspot.com/] I almost invariably learn something when I read it. Also, I think Zach Barocas’s Cultural Society is wonderful, and never fails to put together a group of intriguing and thoughtful writers [http://www.culturalsociety.org/].”
But I’m also building a nice long list of books to find. Beachy-Quick recommends Jacqueline Risset’s Sleep’s Powers. I didn’t find a web journal with any of Risset’s work in it, but a small sample is offered on the press’s site: http://www.uglyducklingpresse.org/page-sleepspowers.html
Beachy-Quick also joins the fairly high percentage of poets who can name all their elementary school teachers, and clearly he received a better education than I did, having been made to memorize sonnet 116 and Shelley’s “Ozymandias” in high school. Christine Gelineau must have gone to Catholic school, an inference I derive from all the Sisters she names, my favorite of which is Sister Rose Sharon. (Though I once knew a nun with a much better name, Sister Thomas Aquinas.) Christine was made to memorize a lot of Longfellow, she reports, though interestingly the lines she says haunt her now come from Yeats. Unlike George Witte, who is haunted by lines from Weldon Kees’s “The Ambassadors.”
T. S. Eliot is getting a lot of nominations for poet over whose work one falls asleep, including a vote from Cecilia Woloch. But Woloch also mentions Yuri Andrukovych, and promises we won’t fall asleep over his work.