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It's all about Song!

Kudos to you for publishing another commentary by David Alpaugh. I admire his insightful assessment of the situation of contemporary poetry, and his examples. His essay addresses young, current writers (even writing program survivors) as well as those unschooled who ply their art from a long love of the pleasure of sound put to meaning. His comments are not meant just for "old" writers. The point he makes is all inclusive: age-free, gender-free, race-free, class-free. Timeless. This morning I heard a bright & funny young woman on "Wait Wait Don't Tell Me" (NPR) explain what it means to speak in "abreves", ie: abbreviations. Her phrase sounded close to code - a code dictated by the character LIMITATIONS of Twitter messaging and texting. (Ah corporate domination...!) I'm sure it gets the job done, like being able to decipher the dits and dahs of Morse code. It's functional, in a weirdly atavistic way. But does it sing? Inspire? Soothe. Teach? No. It abbreviates...sucks blood out of language, music out of winds, birds out of trees. How's that for corny... will there be a place for "corny" in "abreves"?

Kathleen Lynch

read David Alpaugh's article


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