January 26, 2012KR BlogBlogReadingWriting

Mix Tape: Cursed Poets

What does it mean to “be a poet”? Philip Larkin “didn’t give readings or lectures, was never a poet-in-residence at a university, never taught, rarely gave interviews, generally stayed away from literary circles, stayed away from London, did not work at maintaining a network of editors and publishers, did not have an agent or a publicist, and finally stopped writing poems. For him, to ‘be a poet’ meant spending a lot of time doing things he considered inimical to writing poems.”

And why would anyone want to be a “cursed poet,” anyway?

In this podcast, Donald Hall talks about why he’s stopped writing poetry and what it’s like growing old, surrounded by memories, in the farmhouse his family has lived in since the end of the Civil War.

Check out an excerpt from a memoir inspired by postcards that Angela Carter sent her friend and literary executor—“a paper trail through the novelist’s life.”

Stated or not, there are “rules” of a creative writing workshop. Daniel Nester lists the ones he considers sacred.

Writing with children…or not. Sometimes the “book, baby, book, baby” plan ends up as “book, baby, baby, book.”

According to Google, these are the fifty most quoted lines of poetry. The list is lily white and loaded with testosterone. Can you guess which five women made the cut?