This is a poem that didn't make it into "Other People in Perfect Cities" due to it not being quite right for a while. I've edited it, and it's still not quite right, particularly in the first stanza, smack in the middle of my ever-present "list of three things." In every way (structurally, thematically, etc) this is a typical Stephen Gracia poem, and that may be why it's lingered in the unusable pile for so long. It's becoming increasingly obvious to me that my voice needs to change as I've begun to bore myself a bit.
Someone in my workshop
just discovered Olson,
every poem is filled
with fishing boats,
the dead & undead
giving full throat to myth,
despite his having never actually seen an ocean.
The poems are heartless
but structurally perfect,
& it’s not the lack of authenticity I lament;
it’s the ease with which we slip into a voice
we didn’t earn,
as if it’s the most natural thing in the world.
A Letter by Stephen Gracia is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 United States License
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