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« "This live, throbbing age . . . " by Elizabeth Barrett Browning | Main | On Reading, Part I: Reading for Writers (by Jenny Factor) »

April 10, 2012


When I was in high school and on the school newspaper, I used to scribble Stephen Crane poems all over my desk blotter. (I was an editor and so had a desk and a blotter.) At that age, I didn't really get him, but his stuff sounded profound and I liked it anyway. I probably still don't really "get" it (sometimes I think "getting" poems is overrated, especially when I don't), but I still like it and I'm glad to know that other kids are still reading his poetry!

I love this story, Laura. I can imagine you, editor and high school power girl.

I love both Cranes, of course. Hart Crane is one of my great favs, and Stephen, meanwhile, is a much newer discovery. I can't get over how surreal his little worlds are. A surprising discovery.

And yes, I don't get him either. I think 'getting it' is overrated in poetry. It seems to me that so much good poetry happens just beyond my (human) comprehension. That is part of what makes it so sublime for me. JF

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I left it
on when I
left the house
for the pleasure
of coming back
ten hours later
to the greatness
of Teddy Wilson
"After You've Gone"
on the piano
in the corner
of the bedroom
as I enter
in the dark

from New and Selected Poems by David Lehman

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