When you read, as I read in the Victorian and Modern Poetics book noted below, about how the famous Moderns (Yeats, Pound, Eliot, in her telling) in substantial ways repeated the formulae of the Victorians (Hallam, Tennyson, Arnold, Browning, Pater), and that both generations were still struggling with the dilemmas and ambiguities bequeathed by the Romantic poets (the status of the imagination; solipsism and objectivity; sensation, will and intellection; discourse vs. "the picturesque"; aesthetics and didacticism; etc.) -

well, I know this sounds awfully boring, but...

actually I draw the lesson that the vocation of the poet - & the techniques of poetry - are still very much in play :

& that there are a lot of interesting avenues a poet can take, if in an adventurous and problem-solving mood -

the game is poorly described by the ponderous & pedantic theoreticians of the day (& I'm not talking about Ron Silliman here : but rather of the philosophers & "theory" mongers) -

a panoptical, literary-historical perspective - from within the actual practice of the poets - is more helpful, maybe -

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