On Conditioning

Poetry can take a punch. It has had to adapt, adjusting to a relentless besiegement. It knows how to handle insult and injury. It will remain submerged until the squall blows over. It allows for misrepresentation, preferring to keep its grievances to itself. It goes on against all odds.

                    What are acres? What are houses?

                              Only dirt, or wet or dry.

Some excel at definition. “A poem is something generated by an individual human mind and will, using the acquired tools of linguistic proficiency, rhetorical skill, and literary remembrance. It isn’t something spontaneous, and it most certainly isn’t something natural. A poem is a fictive artifact created by someone who has the special skills required for the task. It can’t be produced by everyone, any more than a concerto can be played by everyone, or a ballet can be danced by everyone. Moreover, poems don’t lie buried in all of us, waiting to be coaxed out by workshop discussion.” Provide, provide.

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