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Showing posts from September, 2013

Homage to Kay Ryan

A recent issue of Poetry contains a gem by Kay Ryan. In a few paragraphs of wise reflection on her craft, she continues the tradition of critical reflection exemplified by the celebrated verse of Marianne Moore (the one with toads and gardens that might have been a better specimen for the same issue’s Lemony Snicket anthology of child-worthy poems). California’s laureate chose to express her manifesto in prose written as an appreciation of the art of Robert Frost. 

The Arrow salutes Ryan’s decision to forego the temptation to indulge in meta-poetry, since it comports with his  distaste for plays about plays, films about film, and novels about writing novels. Such works certainly accord with the reflexive Zeitgeist of today. When the Arrow needs teasing subtleties, he prefers to reach for the works of John Donne.

Ryan’s strictures elicit pictures. Parthian’s reaction was to imagine a one woman show of her works hung in a gallery instead of being bound in an anthology. The gallery of Part…