Wednesday, April 04, 2007


Today I read LETTERS TO A YOUNG ARTIST, Ed. by Peter Nesbett, Shelly Bacroft & Sarah Andress -- a collection of responses by relatively well-known artists to a freshly-minted art school graduate's letter seeking advice.

Has anyone ever done something similar for poets? A compilation of LETTERS TO A YOUNG POET by various authors (not just the single-author edition by Rilke)?

My edited book BLACK LIGHTNING, which features about a dozen poets, all begin with "ADVICE TO YOUNG POETS" from the subject poets.

But I wouldn't mind reading a project along the lines of a LETTERS TO A YOUNG POET (or NEWBIE POET for those starting out at a non-young age).

Were I to contribute a piece, I'd probably say something loftier than this observation I feel like giving out today to contemporary poets. To wit:

The word "bougainvillea" is becoming as clichetic as "moon," "light", et al.

What would be "loftier" advice? Oh, you know -- like what Mei-mei Berssenbrugge advices in BLACK LIGHTNING: Read widely.

Then you'd realize that "bougainvillea" is ... etcetera etcetera etcetera...

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