Host(s): Stan Sanvel Rubin and David Polizzi
Tape order number: V-51
Visit Date: April 14, 1983
Length: 30 minutes
Brief Summary: Carruth speaks of how too much exposure to a particular theme or topic anesthetizes the reader, and he says the challenge for poets is to find ways to revive the importance of such topics. He says young poets need to learn to work through traditional forms and they need a sense of the tradition in which they are working. Technique, he asserts, must become assimilated to the point that the poet can use it spontaneously and creatively, improvising as a painter or a jazz musician. Carruth also talks about the sociology of literature and the way poetry seems to exist outside the broader culture, extruded, encapsulated and apart in something of a parasitic relationship to the whole. He believes poets should be fully integrated members of the community, their poems giving a permanent shape and structure to metaphysical experience and thereby serving a sort of historical function.
Until you can use a brush as well as Cezanne, you can't think the ideas that Cezanne thought.
-- Hayden Carruth