0176 Letter To A Well-Known Contemporary Poet

I wanted to write to you about your poems,
that is, about something I couldn't quite put my finger on
so I didn't write in case it sounded inconsequential
and it's silly to write to a poet who handles words so expertly,
inconsequentially..

Inconsequential. That's it. I appreciate that you want to stress
life's inconsequentiality - this happens, that happens, but
we're none the wiser - that's a modern concern, I appreciate,
no neat wrapping life up with a brisk end-rhyme...

but how can I put this tactfully, inconsequentiality
or is it tangentiality
can seem to the reader eager to extract meaning
that is, the poet's meaning, as near as can be...
inconsequentiality can seem...obscure...
for this very reason, since it's difficult
to share the same inconsequentiality
if you see what I mean

and this unintentional obscurity
can sometimes seem
of course I know you wouldn't
but let's say to an uninformed superficial reader -
like pretension?

I hope you don't mind my mentioning this
it's only because I do admire your writing so much
and I know that the prizes and awards you've won
proves that no-one could possibly accuse you of pretension
it's just that I thought I should say how it seems
to a very ordinary reader. I hope you will read this
in the spirit it's meant. And I do look forward
very much to reading your next book
now the library stocks them.

by Michael Shepherd

Comments (2)

Delicious irony to be savoured
aaagh! I want to know who he is?