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Not Mean - Poem by gershon hepner

A poem should not mean, but be,
said Archibald MacLeish;
poets, like real men, should see
it’s so, and not eat quiche.
I don’t eat it and therefore am,
I think, as real as real
can be. The fact I don’t eat ham
is hardly a big deal.

According to Ted Hughes, to fish
is better than to write.
Like fisherman all poets wish
to conjure up a bite,
on quiche and ham and fish less keen
than on their sense of duty
to what they all as poets mean
by truth, defined as beauty.

Inspired by a review of Richard Eder’s Letters of Ted Hughes, edited by Christopher Reid (“Yours Sincerely: A Poet on Fish, Bulls and Love, ” NYT, October 3,2008) :
For a poet, such grotesquely outsized commentary on his own work suggests a decided lack of confidence. “A poem should not mean/but be, ” Archibald MacLeish wrote; and Hughes’s interminable glosses on his poems make you wonder whether he thinks they quite exist. Undoubtedly it is his letters to and about Sylvia Plath that will hold the widest interest; they also contain some of his most directly expressive writing. Before getting to them, though, there are some splendid perceptions among the mass of explicating, along with biographical material that is useful, though not especially revealing.Early on, he writes an account of a bullfight worthy of his best young poems. It is all on the bull’s side; not on account of cruelty, but because he saw one of his great mythical beasts being brought down by pygmies. He ends with an extraordinary line: “It’s surprising how much a bull learns during a fight, but by the time it’s learned it, it’s too late. It is full of holes and has no blood left.” On T. S. Eliot at dinner: “His smile is like that of a person recovering from some serious operation.” To Anne Sexton on the danger of favorable reviews: “They separate you from your devil, which hates being observed.” And his comparison of American and English fishermen is at the excruciating heart of his dislike of the United States. (Fishing, he comes to believe, is a superior form of writing poetry; many of the last letters tell of expeditions to Ireland, Alaska and Africa.) For Americans, he writes, the image is of a lavishly accoutered figure grandly facing “some proud king of the deeps.” The image in the English mind “is of some clown sitting in pouring rain fishing in a pool that has a great notice ‘Petrol Dump.’ ”


10/5/08


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Poems About Fishing

  1. 1. Not Mean , gershon hepner
  2. 2. Sunday Vhf And Sci-Fi Movies , elysabeth faslund
  3. 3. Travel Haiku - Gulf Shores And Orange Be.. , john tiong chunghoo
  4. 4. Haiku - 53 , Dagmara Anna AuraDagimar
  5. 5. At Hout Bay The Fishing Trawler Sails Out , Gert Strydom
  6. 6. I Am Saluting The Sun , Aldo Kraas
  7. 7. The Fishers , Francis Duggan
  8. 8. Icey Holed Fishing! , Michael Gale
  9. 9. God’s Song , Aldo Kraas
  10. 10. Gannets , Francis Duggan
  11. 11. Giovanni , Francis Duggan
  12. 12. Killing The Creatures Became A Verb , O Anna Niemus
  13. 13. Travel Haiku - Cruise To Yangshuo (China) , john tiong chunghoo
  14. 14. Sending Words About Overnight In Fishing.. , Luo Zhihai
  15. 15. Canoe And Fisherman. , Gangadharan nair Pulingat..
  16. 16. Broremann The Fisherman , oskar hansen
  17. 17. Baseball, Football, Fishing & Golf , Tom Zart
  18. 18. Hedgerow Inferno , Nick Hilton
  19. 19. Exerpt #2 From: Hook, Line & Haiku , Joseph James Breunig 3rd
  20. 20. Gone Fishin' , George Hunter
  21. 21. 050510j Trying Not To Work , Manonton Dalan
  22. 22. Gone Fishing , Randy Johnson
  23. 23. Make A Kid Happy , Marilyn Lott
  24. 24. Beside Love Men Need Fishing & Sex , Tom Zart
  25. 25. A Fisher Of Men Jesus Said To Be , Terence George Craddock (Spe ..
  26. 26. Visit Malaysia Year Haiku - Bintulu Prom.. , john tiong chunghoo
  27. 27. Franklins Fishes , vincent armone
  28. 28. Campari Sons.....And Scattershot Daughte.. , delilah contrapunctal.... ye ..
  29. 29. Battle Of Wits , Herbert Nehrlich
  30. 30. Only In Summertime , MOHAMMAD SKATI
  31. 31. Only In Summertime... People Enjoy Every.. , MOHAMMAD SKATI
  32. 32. Ah! Cunning Poet-Seer! You Write , Emmanuel George Cefai
  33. 33. Fishing Can Be A Dynamic Communion , Terence George Craddock (Spe ..
  34. 34. The Fishing Outfit , Edgar Albert Guest
  35. 35. Two Boys Fishing , Colin Ian Jeffery
  36. 36. Hunting Or Fishing? , Ramesh T A
  37. 37. Age Of More-Than-I-Know Mapping Into A C.. , Nyein Way
  38. 38. Ten Thousand Women , Bill Simmons
  39. 39. Lenexa Baptist Church Poet Tom Zart's = .. , Tom Zart
  40. 40. Avoiding Deleted Links In Food Chain , Terence George Craddock (Spe ..
  41. 41. Fishing For Carp (Hybridanelle) , Gert Strydom
  42. 42. Zz As Fukushima Poisons Pour Into Pacifi.. , Saiom Shriver
  43. 43. My Eyes , Aldo Kraas
  44. 44. For A Catch , Edward Kofi Louis
  45. 45. Too Much Good Is Not Always Good , MOHAMMAD SKATI
  46. 46. Man's World Of Sports , Tom Zart
  47. 47. On An April Evening In The Fall , Francis Duggan
  48. 48. Port Albert , Francis Duggan
  49. 49. The Non Swimming Man Of The Sea , Francis Duggan
  50. 50. Louis , Francis Duggan
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