Is Poetry Dead?

The Seeds and Fruits of English Poetry, oil on...

The Seeds and Fruits of English Poetry, oil on canvas. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Let me clarify: it’s not me asking. It’s the Washington Post.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/compost/wp/2013/01/22/is-poetry-dead/

Lord Byron

Is good Lord Byron rolling in his grave even as we speak? (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Alexandra Petri, one of the paper’s pundits, investigated the assertion in an article last week (which I just discovered now).  And I quote: “Poets are like the Postal Service — a group of people sedulously doing something that we no longer need, under the misapprehension that they are offering us a vital service.” What’s more, the article goes on to quote playwright Gwydion Suilebhan in delivering the dramatic title of this post: “Poetry is dead. What pretends to be poetry now is either New Age blather or vague nonsense or gibberish. It’s zombie poetry.”

By her own estimation, in fact, there is “no longer, really, any formal innovation possible.”  That world-shaking revelations such as “Howl” or “The Waste Land” are no longer possible in a world where high production movies, video games, and other media are able to do everything the poet can do, but better.

Petri, naturally, was using this as a parallel point to journalism, which if any of you have been following the course of in recent years, is in very dire straits itself. If poetry is dead, then what of journalism?

Personally, I think it is exactly like journalism–in the regards that there will be a struggle for a time, a chaotic crumbling of identity whereby everyone is scrambling to rediscover just what it can be. But is it dead? Will it die? Certainly not. The identity will change. The nature of it will change, and find new ground. But I dare say–nay, I dare hope–this old dose of the literary, stalking us from the very dawning of civilization, is so engrained in us that it could never truly, utterly die.

So poets, journalists, I ask you, what do you think? What are your insights to this, and where do you think things are heading?

Welcome!

“Give expression to the noble desires that lie in your heart.”

~Gordon B. Hinckley

Welcome, friends, to the Waking Den–a blog devoted to the hosting, review, and discussion of my myriad works. Who am I? My name is Chris, and I am a Senior Journalism Major, Philosophy minor (former English major) at Michigan State University. I have written hundreds of poems, dozens of short stories, and a novel, and am presently working on the first book in a planned trilogy. I am a writer, a reader, and an avid photographer as well. If I could draw, or paint, or do any of the many wonderful skills arrayed along that strata of creativity as well, I would, but this is what I do, and I hope that you enjoy what I have to offer.

As opposed to my other site, “The Shut-in,” which is dedicated to the reviewing of others’ creativity, I have made this site as an expression of my own. I think we all need an outlet, to grow and to flourish in the world, and I hope to make this one of mine.

What you will find here is the full range of the literary world. It is a house of my own fancy. One day I may post a poem, another a short story (or parts thereof), some may simply see extended thoughts of mine, even an essay or two, if the mood so strikes. Other days may herald a glimpse of others’ novels or stories, and an expression of my thoughts on them.

All content on this site is mine, tried and true, and I ask that you not re-use anything without permission from me, and appropriate credit given. That said, I hope to make this site as open as possible to any interested–and I encourage your discussion, your insight, and your commentary.

Vincit qui se vincit.