Posts Tagged 'living people'

Who’s the Greatest Living Poet?

The Greatest Living Poet

Always reluctant to snark another poet (see recent post), this time it couldn’t be helped! This guy (not Lemmy), who bills himself as the Greatest Living Poet, boasts the following revelation on his website: “At the year 2001 (sic) I made the observation that powerful poetry no longer exists in the West.” And a very powerful observation it was. Inspired by Ziggy Stardust–David Bowie’s early seventies alter ego–he decided to take up the mantle, as it were, as the Greatest Living Poet. It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that this guy snarks himself so well that all commentary is superfluous. Read on: “I took the mask of a visitor from another planet. This poet did not write poetry like any other human then on the planet . Yet this persona wrote his poetry with the confidence and skill of a great poet. It was an outrageous experiment that had a perfect result.” Again, no quip could do justice to this brand of self-worship. And here’s what he has to say about Walt Whitman: “I am certain that when Whitman self- published Leaves of Grass he had in mind a project similar to mine – he too was a greatest living poet (small caps). ” Small caps!! For a while I thought to myself, What a perfect joke!  I should add, however, that this guy takes out an ad in every issue of the New York Review of Books. So, in a way, we must take him (ahum!) seriously, and look to the poetry for an answer. After all, perhaps he really is the greatest living poet, which would be seriously bad news for the rest of us. Judge for yourselves. I present the evidence.

from Daniel, Isaiah, Habbakuk

No longer keep me incantation,
flesh my seamless electron
antenna to all human screens.

Earth behind on math elevators,

light in my space ray, a steam on glass;
daily love soon forgot at the mechanic level;
paper money held till I squeezed the ink,


poem courtesy of the Greatest Living Poet (whatever be his name).

Contrasting Views

"Literalism is a feature of boorish translators." Cicero "The clumsiest literal translation is a thousand times more useful than the prettiest paraphrase." Nabokov

The Faerie Queene

"John Ashbery said reading the Faerie Queene was like reading an endless beautiful comic strip." Kenneth Koch

Sigmund Freud

"Everywhere I go, I find a poet has been there before me."


December 2021

Recent Comments

andre harris on Who’s the Greatest Livin…
Kaj on Who’s the Greatest Livin…
Matt Lubin on Zhu Tou
M.K. on Zhu Tou
Jason chu on Zhu Tou
Blog Flux Directory