to be read by people for whom poetry is an unnatural word

I really am angry at poets - and there are enough of them around, and I try not to be one of them - whose poetry has to show their great learning, and whose poetry is continually moving away from the average person who might happen to pick up a book and begin leafing. I think many poets - and I could name them, but I won't - do a disservice to you or me or other people who might have the same sorts of ambitions... I would like to be read by people for whom poetry is an unnatural word. We've been talking about this, you and I, we know that there's a whole bunch of people - whom we don't look down at for it - for whom poetry is an alien concept, and they shake their heads and turn and look somewhere else. Fine... But I do want to allow that person whom one imagines is the "non-poetry reader" who randomly picks up the book, I don't want to have him or her turn away from it and put it down and say "Oh, I always knew I disliked poetry" and then start looking wherever they normally look.

- Don Coles, in discussion with Jay Ruzesky, from Ruzesky's short video "Don Coles: Fire to a Trail of Thought". You can watch the whole thing here, or in the embedded video below:

Don Coles: Fire to a Trail of Thought from Jay Ruzesky on Vimeo.

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