I firmly believe that poetry serves a range of cultural functions and I tend to bristle when someone says otherwise. Enter Christian Wiman, editor of Poetry, and his following statement that I got in the mail yesterday along with information trying to convince me to subscribe to the magazine:
Let us remember…that in the end we go to poetry for one reason, so that we might more fully inhabit our lives and the world in which we live them, and that if we more fully inhabit these things, we might be less apt to destroy both.
I don’t know about you guys, but I don’t appreciate the assumption that we all read poetry for “one reason.”
The Poetry Foundation, which received a $200 million gift from the late heiress Ruth Lilly, was in the news a few weeks ago because of recent allegations of “questionable governance and management practices.”
I would add to these grievances questionable proofreading. I think the promotional card should have read:
Let us remember…that in the end we go to Poetry for one reason…
So along with blowing “$1 million on a Web site and a brow-raising $706,000 on a survey to determine poetry’s place in American life today,” the foundation needs to worry about firing the intern who missed the capital “P” and italics.