I know I harp too much on this Michigan chap, but I do feel you can often get several kinds of nourishment from John Latta's comments : 1) an authentic report or history of a few decades of American poetry (starting in 60s); 2) a perceptive understanding of what poetic language actually does, ie., a real aesthetics; 3) a critical intelligence and a sharp critique of some of the hyper-rationalized or ideological or academic trends in the current scene. I don't always agree with him, but I always learn things with pleasure.

See for ex. comments on the image/metaphor today. Rather than indulging in the fashionable mockery-japery so prevalent on blogs, he finds a way to evoke & illustrate what "deep image" poets were aiming for; and in the process, provides a real sense of how poetic speech examines/humanizes/domesticates, weighs experience in the balance, all at once. I believe this was what Osip Mandelstam was getting at with his (Acmeist) concept of "domestic hellenism" - quoting very roughly from memory : "hellenism is the surrounding of the body and earthly life with the teleological warmth of beloved domestic objects" - the civilizing labor itself. Something akin to Bachelard's notions about how the poetic image, the human psyche, and the surrounding world all unite in that image...

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