Host(s): A. Poulin, Jr.
Tape order number: C-362
Visit Date: November 27, 1972
Length: 1 hour, 2 minutes
Brief Summary: Ashbery refutes the idea that his poems are difficult or obscure, saying that he writes about generalized experiences that readers can dip into to connect with in their own ways. He stretches poetry to make it more inclusive. He also calls attention to the difficulty of knowing how the reader is going to find meaning in a poem. Ashbery doesn't consider his poems to be private and he writes about his experiences only obliquely. For Ashbery, poetic process is important.
I think that most of my poems are about the experience of experience... The particular occasion of experience is of less interest to me than the way happening or experience filters through to me.
-- John Ashbery
American Democracy Project Lecture: Janet Poppendieck
5 pm - 5:45 pm